On Saturday, August 13th 2016 I went to my first ever convention!
Me and my buddy Jacob went to AnimeFest Dallas 2016. Jacob and most of my other friends have been to previous AnimeFests, but this was my first time going. And boy did I have an awesome time.
Jacob and I hit the road bright and early that morning, so we made pretty good time getting to Dallas. As soon as we made it to the hotel and found parking, I saw this awesome Kairi cosplay get out of her car. She was the first of three Kingdom Hearts cosplays I saw that day, and all of them were really well done, especially their Keyblades. Anyways, Jacob and I then found our way into the hotel and got our passes for the day. We arrived with a bit of time to spare before the events of the day would begin, so we just walked around and browsed Artist Alley until the shopping room opened.
We spent quite a bit of time in the shopping room, and also spent quite a bit of money…
But I did manage to pick up a ton of really cool stuff! I bought the first seven volumes of Akame Ga Kill, a series that I’ve wanted to start for some time now. I also managed to get a pretty good deal on the complete series of Spice & Wolf on Blu-Ray/DVD.
Besides anime and manga, I also picked up a few collectibles such as toys, keychains etc. This Sailor Pikachu plush is adorable, but I did have a really hard time deciding between this one and the Okinawa one. I finally got my hands on the Kid Goku Funko Pop, and almost bought the exclusive Super Saiyan Blue one, (but I decided it probably wasn’t a good idea to spend $30 on a Pop figure).
Of course I had to pick up some Sonic related merchandise. I got this sweet Classic Sonic tumbler, and a Sonic Advance decal sticker. I also picked up a bottle of Ramune, and a box of strawberry Pocky. These were the few things I got from the shopping room, but there was plenty of other stuff I really wanted. A bunch of different vendors had a few Kingdom Hearts Play Arts Figures, but they were a bit too expensive for my taste. There was one vendor that had Yugioh and Force of Will cards, and I specifically avoided them because buying cards at a convention sounded like a terrible idea. Speaking of Yugioh, I actually met a few guys later that day that brought their decks, which made me regret not bringing mine.
By the time we finished in the shopping room, it was time for lunch. Afterwards, the two of us decided to go to a screening of My Hero Academy, courtesy of Funimation. The show was pretty entertaining, and I really dug how funny it was. Following the screening, Jacob and I paid a visit to Artist Alley, a place where I would continue to spend money…
For starters, I got this really cool print of Aqua, which I need to get framed asap. I also picked up a towel that had the Four Star DragonBall and a mini print of Harley Quinn. My favorite art booth was probably Myken Bomberger’s. The majority of their stuff was Yugioh related, and all of it was really well done. Their art style reminds me quite a bit of Tyson Hesse/Boxer Hockey, which is always a good thing in my book. From them I bought a keychain of Yuya from Yugioh Arc-V, and a playmat of Yugi and Kaiba at locals.
After our little trip down Artist Alley, we went to a panel hosted Funimation. They told us about a lot of Funimation’s upcoming shows and movies, complete with trailers. I was particularly interested in Psychic School Girls, which comes out later this year. They also gave us a ton of information about their revamped streaming service, Funimation now. Becoming a member gives you access to a ton of different anime, as well as simulcast for around 15 different shows.
After the panel, Jacob and I went to a screening of Blood Blockade Battelfront, a show that I really enjoyed. While I didn’t really have a grasp on the overall narrative, the characters and dialogue were more than enough to keep me entertained. After watching 3 episodes, we decided it was time to grab a bite to eat and head home.
Overall, I had an amazing day at A-Fest. Besides picking up tons of cool stuff, I just loved the atmosphere of the convention. Being in a building of hundreds of people with a shared interest was a really cool feeling. And the amount of awesome cosplays that I saw was incredible, special mention to the group of girls who put together a really creative one for Love Live! There’s so much more that I didn’t even talk about because it would turn this post into a light novel, especially the crazy amount of Pokemon Go related stuff, Steven Universe cosplay and people on their Nintendo 3DS. Not only am I already looking forward to going again next year, but now I’m super stoked to go to even more conventions in the future!
Did any of you guys go to AnimeFest! Let me know in the comments, and be sure to follow me on Twitter to stay updated on all the latest posts. Thanks for reading, and I hope you have an awesome day!