Anime Expo 2018 really went out of their way to make the cosplayer’s experience worth while. There were elaborate backdrops to take interactive pictures with. There were even VR experiences to enjoy. This was definitely a convention made for those who cosplay. This was my first time attending Anime Expo and as an experienced cosplayer I was delightfully surprised at all the things available to make the cosplay experience more fun. Yes, even more fun than it already is to cosplay. So in this article, as opposed to talking about all of the lines that you had to stand in at the entire convention, I want to talk about what made it awesome. I especially want to talk about what made it awesome for the cosplayers. So here are five things that Anime Expo got right to make the cosplayer’s experience awesome at Anime Expo 2018.
Interactive Backdrops and Environments
This is something that I had never seen before at any convention. I had been told that Anime Expo had these interactive environments at previous events, but this was the first I had seen them. There were Japanese gardens, classrooms, gym bleachers, subway cars, tea rooms and even spaceships and ball pits. If you didn’t want to leave anyone out of your group in your photo-op, one of the attendants would be happy to take your picture for you. You could do your own photo shoot and make it look like it came from various professional studios and it was awesome. I want to see more of these types of interactive environments at future cons because there’s so much you can do with them and it’s absolutely fun to play around with them. Ultimately, that’s what cosplay is all about right? Having fun!!!
Did you and your friends get together for an awesome My Hero Academia cosplay group? Want to meet up with other cosplayers of the same fandom? No sweat!!! They’ll be at Cosplay Group Meet-Up spot #4 at 2:30. If you got a chance to check out the map and layout of Anime Expo 2018, you probably noticed that there were several designated cosplay meet-up points throughout the campus of the convention center. There were scheduled meets, impromptu group shoots and more. It was made extremely convenient to the cosplayers in attendance. The only real enemy this past weekend was the heat. The weather got to scorching heights this weekend and at points I thought I’d burst into flames in my costume if I stayed outside too long. However there were many ways to beat the heat, which leads me to my next point.
This one was for everyone attending who was at least 21 years of age. Also, you didn’t have to be in cosplay to enjoy it, however it’s hilarious watching some of your favorite characters just casually chill and getting a drink. The lounge at Anime Expo made the over 21 cosplay experience a bit more fun and relaxing as there were adult beverages being served and comfy seats to relax and unwind on.
Usually at comic conventions you may see a few people walking around with mobile cosplay repair kits. This is due to the nature of cosplay where things can and will happen and you’ll need a quick fix to keep the cosplay experience fun and enjoyable. I’ve found myself using the mobile cosplay repair on several occasions. It’s both convenient and you get to make new friends. At Anime Expo, in order to streamline and make cosplay repairs easier, there was an entire section available to help those who needed a quick fix on their costumes. It was right next to the backdrops I talked about earlier and even though I didn’t need repairs this time around, I got a chance to check it out and if you brought in the raw materials you’d be able to create your own cosplay build with what they had at their disposal in the cosplay repair area. This type of awesome is essential for the cosplay experience.
I’m a casual fan of the game Overwatch. However, Blizzard and Overwatch did something completely awesome at Anime Expo and made any and everyone who came to their booth part of their game. This isn’t unheard of, however the cultural impact of Overwatch simply made this a very fun attraction. They even had a fast lane for those who came in Overwatch cosplay. You got to choose your own weapon and either you could go in solo or with a group to defend your payload. The 360 degree cosplay experience in the game was awesome and as soon as I got home I started playing the game more. It was one of those small things that made a huge difference in how much fun you can have at an event.
Did you attend Anime Expo 2018? Did you cosplay? If so leave a comment and tell me what was your favorite thing regarding cosplay at Anime Expo 2018. Who’s your favorite cosplayer? I want to hear these things.