Con Report: Mechacon X

Hello again! I haven’t put up any promised reviews yet because I’ve been busy preparing for the title of this post. Mechacon X was a blast! Disclaimer: My experience is not indicative of anything but my experience.

My first day, there weren’t many panels I wanted to go to. I ended up hanging around Artist’s Alley, where Trust was on sale alongside my mother’s crafts and my cousin’s artwork. The first day I made no sales, sadly. When I wasn’t in Artist’s Alley, I was walking the con floor. My major disappointment was with the game room. It was moved off to the side this year and it lacked its defining feature. Without the mecha simulator pods, the game room was just another game room. Sleeping Samurai was a good addition in its stead. I took my fiance on in a bout and won him. Things I learned about myself: I go for the gut. Even so, fake sword fights and a round of Dance Central couldn’t completely fix the mecha pod disappointment.

On day two, I’d planned to cosplay the whole day. However, an early Yu-Gi-Oh sealed deck tournament took up a ton of my time. It was okay. I got a pretty good stall and token deck out of it. (Translation: I could bring up stuff to absorb damage while I got my own attackers out of it.) It was fun, but I felt like it took too much time from me. I had to skip a few panels I’d wanted to go to. After the tournament, I went up to the room and got into my cosplay. Only one person recognized me as Quatre Winner from Gundam Wing. I went to the Eien Strife concert as Quatre and found out something cool. I share a birthday with the lead singer of the band! I told her about it afterwards and it was like, birthday bonding moment is go! The rave was fun. I don’t dance, so I sat to the side with my fiance and enjoyed the music. I had glowsticks!

Day three was the winding down day. Vendors were discounting things, people were leaving, and I sold a few books. I didn’t cosplay that day. I went to two panels throughout the whole weekend on sunday: Eien Strife’s retro gaming challenge, where I failed horribly at Contra, and Spike Spencer’s voice acting panel. I gave Cheydra of Eien Strife a copy of Trust for her birthday. There was some disappointment as well. I got Spike to sign my copy of Tales of Vesperia without issues on Saturday. On sunday, however, I walked away from two actors when they demanded my hard-earned money for their signature. I told Scott Menville to his face that if they wanted my money for their signature, I’d be walking away – and I did.

The best part of my weekend was on Sunday. There was a Mecha Maid and Host Club on the third floor. I went there with my fiance in part because we wanted to see what it was and in part because we were hoping for free food. The food wasn’t free, but we had fun. I mentioned that it was my birthday and about halfway through the show all proceedings were brought to a halt. I’m not sure who she was, but one of the maids who wasn’t in a dress was on stage making this huge spectacle about secrets being kept. The next thing I realized was that I was surrounded by maids and hosts. They got on the floor and sang Happy Birthday to me. I got the cutest little treat for free and it was overall just very adorable.

Next best thing was seeing a booth for TeeTurtle in the Dealer’s Room. I got a Pocket Fury shirt – in short, when I where it, it looks like I have Toothless in my pocket. His tail with his prosthetic sticks out of the pocket and down the shirt. It’s officially the cutest thing I own.

I had a good time during the weekend, in short. There was some disappointment, but overall it was a very positive experience. I already can’t wait for next year.

Louisianime 2013

So, I’m overdue for a post. I figured that while I was excited still over the anime convention I just attended I can post about it! Use this energy for something productive, right? Right?

So, an overview: What the heck is an anime convention? It’s basically an event like any other convention, though this one is centered around Japanese animation – and video games, and comic books, and whatever else feels like wiggling in there. Steampunk is taking over Louisianime (so sad), so even if you just like western video games you can still go to one! While there, one attends panels about various aspects of the anime world – panels about various shows, panels about genres, panels about tea, etc. Industry Guests such as directors and voice actors also show up and host panels, and they also sit still long enough to sign stuff for the fans of their stuff.

My favorite part about Louisianime this year, though, was the Dealers’ Room. It’s a giant room filled with anime goodness. Normally I go through the Dealers’ Room wistfully because I can’t afford what I really want, but this year I had a grand ol’ tax return. I bought a bunch of stuff that I wouldn’t have normally been able to from the Dealers’ Room – plushies, figures, anime series, and my favorite: wall scrolls. I bought a Gravitation wall scroll and a Black Butler wall scroll that I’m going to have to find places for on my wall. So happy!

The last bit about the anime conventions, and this one in particular, was Artist’s Alley. Most cons will have an Artist’s Alley, and it’s basically a space in the convention where freelancers of all sorts – artists, sculptors, sewers – will set up tables. Art of all sorts will greet one as one walks through the convention floor. I bought a print from one person of two characters from No. 6 (an anime I have yet to watch but whose characters are gorgeous), while from another I bought two adorable plushies and almost bought two more but resisted the temptation. There was also a guy doing commissions! For $25 I now own a custom piece, this one of my current book’s character, June. The picture has him smiling and happy, which makes me happy because his story isn’t really a cheerful one. It’s nice to have him at least look happy right?

Ah, I forgot about the most fun part of conventions: cosplaying! The word comes from the Japanese contraction of the two words “costume play” and it basically is what it sounds like. People make the outfits of the characters they like and wear them around the convention. I saw several Kiritos and at least four Jack Frosts wandering around, as well as a kickass dragon that scared several people. My cosplay this weekend was the Pokemon Mew. I did a gijinka version of it so I just had the tail and the ears and a cutsey pink outfit.

So yes. In a single sentence, it could be said that I had fun this past weekend. While wandering around, though, I couldn’t help the fleeting thought that I wouldn’t mind seeing my characters brought to life. One day I want to be pleasantly surprised by seeing June gracing art, immortalized as a plushie, or given a physical form through cosplay.

I’m confident that I’ll have June’s book finished by Mechacon. I doubt it’ll happen that quickly, but perhaps I’ll be surprised. With that, a lot of my manic energy has faded. It’s time to buckle down and get to work.

See you all next week!