My 13th Otakon has come and gone. This year was almost no different than the rest, save for visiting the ER Saturday morning at 4am, leaving that same day at 10pm, and not really leaving my hotel room because this con has effectively outgrown the Baltimore Convention Center.
A few things did come out of Otakon though. Funimation announced they will be releasing a few certain anime series that Bandai Entertainment had, such as the classic anime Cowboy Bebop. Other titles they picked up are Witch Hunter Robin, Escaflowne, Code Geass, and several other anime titles.
I didn’t make it to the VIZ panel, but I did hear they were releasing Ranma 1/2 on BluRay.
Like I said earlier, Otakon has outgrown the BCC. They have cited the aging convention center as a reason why they want to move. On one hand Baltimore should put some money into the dated convention center. On the other, we really need to put out money into more important things here. However that is another topic for another blog.
The crowd and lack of crowd control at Otakon was also terrible. Hopefully this is something they can work on for next year. Or maybe they do need to cap attendance again. There were points throughout the con where you were in human gridlock and couldn’t move for some time. Also, while I understand that people should have their badges going into the con, asking for them while I’m sitting down in the Charles Street lobby is absurd. And asking to see my badge going from the con into the Hilton is also a little silly. Again, these are concerns I hope Otakon takes note of for next year.
On the plus side, the rave was good. Lots of energy and good vibes. The music mix was also really good Friday night. OtaChan was terrific (I made a Luna magnet!) and clearly had a lot to keep kids, and kids at heart, busy. The Otakon museum was a nice stroll down memory lane of Otakon pasts. The manga library was also well stocked this year. I did however miss MAT3K, which I’m still bummed about. But what can you do!
The Thursday preregistration pick up was also fantastic. From what I could tell by driving by at 9am, they moved anyone outside into a line that was indoors. That way, you could get up and use the bathroom, get food, and generally not be outside in the summer. This was a great idea. Whomever thought of this deserves a gold star.
All in all it was a good con. I can’t wait for next year!
(Pics to come later!)