Aki Con 2011: My Thoughts and Photos | Giant Fire Breathing Robot

Aki Con 2011: My Thoughts and Photos

Over the weekend, the fourth annual Aki Con anime convention took place in Bellevue, WA. Housed within Bellevue’s Hilton Hotel, Aki Con may not be monstrous in size like Seattle’s Sakura-Con or PAX Prime, but it’s the heart that counts. Thousands of spirited attendees showed up to have a good time with fans sharing their interest in Japanese comics and animation, and I was lucky enough to be a part of it. Whether you wanted to shop, watch anime, show off your costumes, meet special industry guests like Kyle Hebert or Quinton Flynn, learn some new dance moves, play a variety of games, participate in mock weapon battles, or simply meet new friends, Aki Con has you covered.

Of course, I spent just about all my Aki Con time scouting for pictures in order to capture the moment for all eternity. During my Saturday and Sunday visits, I returned home with a total of over 150 photos to share with the world. I’ll begin by showcasing a few of my favorites.

Old or new DC universe, these classic Batman foes will never go out of style.

The My Little Pony madness continues to spread across the convention circuit.

The Count of Monte Cristo takes a moment to ponder his quest for vengeance.

One day, you will see Kingdom Hearts 3 cosplayers, but not today.

Slender Man sets out to prove that he’s truly more than just a creepy Internet story.

Link dons his intricate Magic Armor from Twilight Princess.

Uh oh…I just fucked with the wrong Mexican: Machete!

An elegant pairing from the Princess Tutu series.

For the rest of my photos from Aki Con 2011, check out our Flickr slideshow:

Overall, Aki Con’s going places, and I can’t wait to see how they expand in the years to come. To be blunt, I can’t say that I had a great time when I first stopped by in 2010, but the event has improved leaps and bounds over the course of a year. They succeeded in getting the word out to the otaku community by making noticeable appearances at PAX Prime and Sakura-Con, which seems to have dramatically increased attendance. In my book, more cool cosplayers leads to a more entertaining and memorable convention experience. The larger selection of arcade games was also a welcome sight.

Of course, there’s always room for improvement. It was pain to navigate your way through the dealer room since everything was so cramped. It seemed to be in one of the larger rooms, so it may be time to look into a larger venue for Aki Con 2012. Anime and video games generally go together like bread and butter, so I was also disappointed at the lack of video game vendors. Perhaps the staff could look into actively inviting some of Washington state’s local video game stores to the next event. Even with these gripes from a whiny convention veteran like myself, I gladly look forward to making a return to Aki Con once next autumn rolls around on the calendar.

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