Posts Tagged ‘gudnam’

Anime Punch: Armageddicon Review

April 30, 2010

 

Another weekend, another convention. This time Anime Punch: Armageddicon on April 2-4 at the Hyatt Regency in Columbus, Ohio. I’ve been to this con a number of times before, staff all of them, but missed last year’s. Once I again I helped out with staff and ran some panels for them.

I like Anime Punch cause of how they try to be different in both what events they run, how they run them, how they run the con and how they interact with attendees. They have a mission statement and style all. They strive to be anime only, in fact not allowing any non anime cosplay into the cosplay contest. They also are the “college age” con, meaning they like to be academic and to throw parties.

Unfortently between working the con and my legs which hurt like all get out I didn’t get to do as much as I wanted. 

Vendors Room/Artist Alley

I spent most of my time working in the vendor room helping out the vendors. I wandered in on Thursday night during set up to see what was going on and who was going to be there and just ended up staying most of the weekend. The staff they had there to run things had never worked the dealers room, or any part of a con before, so I moved in to show how to do right. Humble aren’t I.

The room was pretty nice. Nice wide alleys that had plenty of room for people to maneuver through. Good selection of different vendors. though three vendors didn’t show up to the con so it had some noticeably empty ares. Kind of nice, but there were some glaring problems with how things were run that I told the con chair after the con that I couldn’t stand it and I was going to help him run a more efficient vendor room next year.

They quite a few artist around the lobby area. Selling various things from fan art, original art, comics, jewelry, hand made plushies, dice bags, key chains, buttons, hats, wood work, and more. Pretty nice lay out too.

I got two skectch cards from two of the artists. A C.C. from Code Geass and Kanami from Full Metal Panic.

Panels

Panels at AP are always full of plenty of educational and intellectual discussions. That’s one of the bases for the con.

I ran two panels for the con: Anime on Television and Recurring Themes and Symbolism in Anime. The Anime on Television panel was very interesting in the fact that I think I was the youngest one in the room. Really hadn’t had to many moments like that at anime cons since they are mostly a younger crowd. It went pretty well, mostly just sharing stories about what we all had seen on television and where you can find it TV now a days.

The themes and symbolism one I wasn’t happy with. I wanted to do a whole presentation of them, but I never really got around to doing as much research I wanted. I was able to define themes and symbolism at the start and then was able to go over the few of them that I do know and let the audience bring up different ones they could think of. Personally I felt the panel was under par for me, but when I went to end the panel a few minutes early since people were showing up for the next panel and were being a bit distracting I had few people who were disappointed since they were really liking the discussion. That felt nice.

I got to see the other panels, one on the mangaka Shirow (creator of Ghost in the Shell), Japanese Mythos, and Anime Online. The Shirow panel was small with just the host, myself, and a vendor and his wife there. Still very nice got to learn about the man and his projects. Made me want to go get some of his works, which is really the best result you could get.

The Japanese Mythos panel was kind of train wreck in some ways. I’m not sure what happen but the staff members who ended up running it really didn’t know what they were going to talk about or even that much of the topic. At first they pulled up an audience member who was familiar with the topic and talk for a little bit about it. This was good. Then there ended up being three staffers to help her with the panel. That wasn’t so good. You had different panelist calling on different people for questions. One of them was really bad about rambling on about something not quite on topic and not really having a clear point for his rant. When a few people left the room they actual stopped them to ask why they were leaving. While the unprepared part I could leave with cause they had found a solution to it; it quickly delved into a case of too many cooks ruining the soup.

The Anime Online panel I had thought was one I was suppose to do but wasn’t, long story which isn’t too bad. What did happen is this panel and the Anime Industry panel which was suppose to be going on in the other panel room merged. It became a nice talk about the place of fan subs, history of such things, the effect the internet is having on the anime industry, and how people felt about that. All in all very good.

There were plenty of others I wish I got to go to but wasn’t able to.

Guests

Brad Swaile was the main voice acting guest, since the other one Patrick Seitz got sick right before the con and couldn’t come. Got to see Brad back at Colossalcon so I wasn’t as interested in going to his panels as I had been then. Of course working the con does cut back on your time to do such things too. I went to an interview panel they had with Brad where an internet show host interviewed him. Only got to see part of it since I had to leave part way through for business related to another con I’m part of. But the guy was to me kind of asking the same old kind of questions you hear at guest panels so it kind wasn’t that big of a deal for me anyways.

After the panel I escorted Brad to the con suite they had for autograph signings. Ended up pulling along most of the audience from the panel too. Helped keep the line orderly, took pictures of people with Brad, and generally stayed out of the way of things. Got to hear all the questions people asked him and see the different things they had him in sign. Pretty fun too.  Got to hear the potato chip line from Death Note again.  After everyone else had left I got my autographs then. I also got him to do a sketch card for me of his character Moose from Ranma ½. Moose turns into a duck by the way and that’s what he drew.

As always they brought in a number of college professors who have done research on anime and anime fandom. It’s part of their attempts to make cons more intellectual. I only got to hear one of them, Lawerence Eng, talk about anything. They do the kind of panels that really make you think and you learn something from them, so I’m usually kind of annoyed when I miss them.

Jimmy Raggs and The Projectile Style of Funk Nasty Freshness was a local band that was written a number of sons on anime and anime fandom along with knowing a couple of anime classics. I only really got to hear about two songs from them between things I had to do. I got to hear “Smooth Criminal” by Michael Jackson and “Mushroom Samba” from Cowboy Beebop. I really enjoyed both and wish I had gotten to hear more.

There was also a DJ from Japan, but I’m not a raver and didn’t care other than thinking it was someone neat to have.

Gaming

They had a pretty nice video game. Lot’s of stations. Though they had no Dynasty Warriors Gundam, so I played nothing. It was very standard kind of faire, but done very nicely and lot’s of it though. They do have what they call collective gaming where they take a simple game with few choices and have an audience decide what chooses to make. Didn’t make it to that either.

They had a table top gaming room next to the video game room. It didn’t fair was well. There was a Magic tournament, two LARPS, a Gundam model game, and Maid the RPG. I played nothing and the room looked vacant every time I was there, even when there was several people in the room due to the amount of empty space. It’s a good start for the room, having tried to do something similar at the con two years ago, I want to see this become more though.

Con Suite

One of the coolest things that the con takes pride in is their con suite. Free food is always loved at cons. When the food is good and includes some nice sushi, doubly so. It was run by a local family who took pride in their work. They always made sure there was food and drinks in the room, played music, had a photo shoot set up, and had an art wall where con goers could draw on provided paper and then place on the wall. The room was very big too.

Most commomn series cosplay: didn’t really see any one series that really stood out

Comomon cosplay: again just the usual several Naruto, Bleach, Death Note, Soul Eater, Final Fantasy

Favorite cosplays: Char’s custom Zaku, Spice and Wolf group, Ester and Able from Trinity Blood, Yoite from Nabari No Ou

All and all a nicely run con. The only reason I might not come back next year is to save money to go to another con the same time. Why does April have such awesome cons all month long?

This is a great con for anyone looking for an anime focused con, a con with lot’s of academia and deep thought, great parties, and a relax atmosphere.

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