Thursday, August 2, 2012

Otakon 2012 + bonus pics

Its a good feeling when things work out the way they do. That was the case with Otakon, an anime convention I was able to attend this past weekend up in Baltimore Maryland.

Originally I was going to end up missing out on Otakon. I had looked ahead at my most likely schedule and was rather dismayed to find that I would work Otakon weekend. But then I was switched to a different work crew, completely changing my work schedule and allowing me the 4 day weekend I needed to go to Otakon.

Downtown Baltimore from our hotel room
You can kind of see the path we had to take to get to the convention center. Sooo far -_-
Baltimore Harbor

Here's how it went.

Trip (4/10): I've pretty much come to accept that as long as my trip is terrible, the event that I am headed to will be nothing but awesome. And of course, vice versa. And so far, that seems to have held up so far. The trip was already 8.5 hours MINIMUM but I ended up jammed in traffic around Richmond for nearly about an hour. Maybe more. Who knows? At that point, I was going stir crazy from having driven for nearly 7.5 hours and I just wanted my trip to end XD After 9 hours of non-awesomeness and 5 hr energy shots, I arrived at the hotel at 1 in the morning.

Hotel (5/10): This hotel can thank the maid that for some unknown reason felt compelled to completely organize our room. Seriously our room was completely neat Saturday evening, everything lined up and neatly organized. In fact... I think there are pics somewhere...

And this hotel did have a separate set of elevators just for the top 8 floors, which made elevator waits short and pleasant :)

What dragged this down was the lack of interwebz. But my phone made up for that. The even bigger complaint was the horrendous service of the hotel restaurant. Seriously... I realize I had left southern hospitality behind when I went north but gawd damn lady... pull your head out of your ass. It was the first time I didn't tip a meal. And its unfortunate the meal didn't taste that good either. I mean... I ordered eggs benedict with hollandaise sauce and I still required ketchup to make it taste good.

Are you frigging serious? It looked so appetizing but tasted so bland.

But I did get to stay with Grace and friends. And it was awesome getting to see Grace again and also meeting her significant other for the first time in person.

Con report:

I wore lolita all three days, with my lineup of Aqua Princess, Milky Planet, and Chess Chocolate. What can I say, I'm a total AP girl now.




I started off Otakon in the ridiculously long registration line. Since I did not know I was going to Otakon till the last minute, I had not pre-ordered my badge. But it was fun. In fact I kind of want to not pre order my badge ever again as long as it meant being in line with the group of people I was with. The group was spearheaded by a cosplayer from Cowboy Bepop who help the time pass by with is overly loud but friendly personality.

Once I had retrieved my badge I quickly made my way to the H. Naoto fashion show, which for some reason had been slated for an 11AM slot Friday. H. Naoto was displaying Hangry Angry this time around. Though the fashion show was nifty, Hangry Angry isn't one of the brands that interest me so I didn't pay much attention. O the irony that was about to ensue.

I ended up perusing the dealer's room, spying out what I wanted and planning out how I was gonna spend my cash moneys. Care to take a guess where most of it went?

I never even knew who Gashicon was XD

If you guessed H. Naoto you are absolutely correct. I ended up buying a new blouse and cardigan to help continue expanding my visual kei closet. But here comes the irony: So apparently, if you bought $250 worth of stuff, which I did, you got an invite to the very first H. Naoto con tea party. Which of course was a Hangry Angry dominated party.

Hmmm... One of us is not like the rest... Could it be that person decked out in lavender?

My picture with Hangry and Angry, the mascots

The local lolita group, Charm City Lolitas, were a lovely group and it was awesome meeting all of them.

a brolita. Actually think he's from NY

Minty hair! So lovely!

RaineDragon of LJ. She let me have her seat when I was looking for a place to eat. She's super nice :D

Ah Unico in Bloomland! So lovely.

Skyler and Beth. I stayed with them in the queue line for the Ultimate Lolita Fashion show.

So much lavender ^_^

Ah Dream Sky! It looks so lovely... I might add it to my dream list now!

Her socks... Just amazing.

There were so many more but only so much time to catch em all
And of course, what is a convention w/o spending some time with awesome friends. 

Left to right: Me, Shiki, Amara, Kate

left to right: Sexy, sexier, sexiest. Aka Me, Kate, Grace

On sunday, Grace, Kate and I spent much of the day together before I had to leave again. Though while we were waiting for Kate Sunday morning, we were bombarded by photographers. 

As you can see, its essentially the same pic three times taken in pretty rapid succession. In fact I'm pretty sure we ended up posing for a solid 10 minutes as others outside of these 3 photographers wanted moar pics. 

This convention was not w/o its fair share of awesome cosplays. And though I didn't take many I was sure to grab photos of ones that were quite awesome.

Why, hello kitty!


Idk what this was

Elmo and his sidekick Deadpool, ready to kick some ass



Wah someone cosplayed Mana!

I remember these two from AZ!

Teaching kids right!

Like all good things, it all must come to an end. Not wanting to end up driving into the night, I said my goodbyes and made my way to Raleigh to camp out for the night before finishing my trip to Charleston the next morning.

Con ratings:
Panels: 8/10
atmosphere: 9/10
dealer's room: 10/10
overall: 8.5/10

I loved Otakon. It was really everything I had wanted it to be and much more. Can't say that I'm looking forward to more 9 hr drives like that one. But to see Grace again made everything worth it and more :)

So where did I rank this con? Why no other than a place right at the top.

1. Otakon
2: Animazement 2011 AND 2012
3: Anime Weekend Atlanta
4: Triad Anime Con
5: Kira Kira con
6: Ichibacon
7: Ancient City Con
8: EXP con
9: Megacon
10: Metrocon

WAIT A MINUTE... What is this Ancient City Con that seems to have snuck into this post? Why its a con I went to for 5 hrs the weekend prior to Otakon. Was rather enjoyable, given its tiny size and low amount of people. Did take quite a handful of pics. But here are my favorites.

Such a cute monster

That is indeed a goose with goggles on.


And of course, every princess requires a personal bodyguard.
Overall, ACC was ok. There was only 1 panel room. But the dealers room was huge for a convention of this size. I'm tempted to say that it was bigger than EXPcon's. And though it didn't interest me, there was a huge ballroom dedicated to Table Top gaming, LARPs, and MtG. Lastly there was a tea party, called The Princess' Imperial Tea Parlour. $5 got you a small treat and some tea.

Enjoying tea time with friends old and new.

Our most gracious host and hostess.

So there you have it. Otakon snagging top from AZ with ACC taking its spot above all other FL cons. Hopefully my next con will be D*con. But with expenses rising and cuts needing to be made, AWA 2012 will most likely become my next destination. Till then, enjoy. And Be Brave!


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