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hoshisai

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Looking for your guidance
« on: January 17, 2016, 03:36:22 PM »

Hello everyone

I am Sai, i live in Japan.
I am a full-time cosplay model and
i have decided to travel to some interesting places in the world in 2016 , 2017 and 2018 !

This convention seems to be interesting,
i have been to California before for some photoshoots but i have never been to an American Convention before!
I have so many questions and i am so exited to check this out !

Some questions
- The convention, are the rows very long to buy a ticket? how long averagely do people wait?
- The convention, it is inside or outside?
- The convention, is there fun activities? (sadly most conventions in Japan have become 100% Market area)
- is it allowed to walk outside with cosplay and enter the convention with a  cosplay on? or must we dress up inside the convention?

meet-ups
I think it will feel a little bit awkward to walk around knowing nobody in the convention,
Is it possible to meet up with some of you people ? , i think i will go in 2016... depending the airplane fare. ^-^
But it would be so great!

Thank you,
i look forward to it

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Red_Eye

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Re: Looking for your guidance
« Reply #1 on: January 17, 2016, 04:46:47 PM »

Some questions
- The convention, are the rows very long to buy a ticket? how long averagely do people wait?
- The convention, it is inside or outside?
- The convention, is there fun activities? (sadly most conventions in Japan have become 100% Market area)
- is it allowed to walk outside with cosplay and enter the convention with a  cosplay on? or must we dress up inside the convention?

- In the past, there have been some veeeeeeeery long waits to get a ticket upon arrival.  But in the past 2 conventions, they've GREATLY improved the process and cut the wait times down immensely.  I can't speak for everyone on average wait times.  Big groups of first arrivals may wait for about an hour or two if they arrive sometime before the ticket booths open. But for those who arrive after they open may not have to wait very long at all based on how they've looked the past 2 years.  So in a nutshell, may be a little wait, but not HUGE compared to years ago.

- The convention itself is mainly inside the convention center/halls and the neighboring hotels.  Yet plenty of people hangout outside the surrounding area as well.  Many photo shoots can be found outside as well.  But inside is where you'll find all the screening rooms, arcade hall, dealers, artists, panels, etc...

- There are PLENTY of fun activities!  Gaming tournaments, panels of almost any variety you can think of, screening rooms for all manners of entertainment, group photo sessions for all series, dance halls with live DJs, game shows, stage shows, etc...  There's literally ALWAYS something happening or going on for the full weekend.  Day or night.

- There are some rules with cosplay (regarding weapons and such), but no rule regarding wearing it outside or inside, upon arrival or after arrival.  You are free to dress up whenever and wherever.  From when you first get there to when you leave if you like.  Hundreds of people wear their outfits inside and outside all over the area.  Feel free to be a part of all that.

I hope these answers were helpful, and that you may consider coming to join us!
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echoshadow

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Re: Looking for your guidance
« Reply #2 on: January 18, 2016, 03:30:36 AM »

Red-eye pretty much said it all in a nutshell. But I can explain some parts it a bit more.

The fastest way is to buy your ticket online then pick it up the day before the convention starts other wise know as day 0. There are two location which you can pick up your badge (ticket). At the San Jose convention center or at Clockwork Alchemy.

Fanime takes up the whole convention, and a few hotel meeting rooms that are connected to the con. Also also the Fairmount hotel, Parktee Hall, and the Civic Auditorium which all just across the street. Fanime also gives you entry to its sister steampunk convention ClockWork Alchemy which is a few miles down the road. They do provide free shuttles busses to both cons.

A key feature of fanime is it's a 24 hour con. So even in the early morning there is something to do.

Yea people walk all over downtown in cosplay while attending Fanime. While you could change into your cosplay at the con many attendees change in their hotel rooms or come already dress from home.

Also for meet ups. You can look here for verious cosplay meet ups/photo groups. Just like a con they that. You can also set up other kinds of meet ups, like dinner meet up, bar meet & greet, or for dancing at the late night dance, Black & While Ball or just a night out in downtown. But like any meet up it all takes planing and the right people that want to hang out.

Feel free to ask anymore questions you might have.
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Nina Star 9

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Re: Looking for your guidance
« Reply #3 on: January 18, 2016, 11:56:07 AM »

Hello :]

I have not had the opportunity to attend a Japanese anime convention, but from what I understand, Japanese and American conventions are quite different. Some of it may be a little bit of a culture shock.

From what I understand, Japanese cons are mostly about buying and selling artwork. You can do that at American cons as well, since we have both a Dealer's Hall and Artist Alley, the difference being that the former is for official merchandise, and the latter is for fan-created merchandise. (It's almost never doujinshi and only rarely original artwork and comics, at least at Fanime, and usually fanart prints, charms, buttons, and craft items.) American cons tend to be more about both events and the social side. Most American cons have panels, where either invited industry guests or regular attendees will get up on stage to to Q&A sessions, talk about their work, give informative lectures, or perform comedy shows. Most American cons also have video gaming (Fanime has a fairly extensive arcade as well as console gaming) and video rooms, where attendees can watch anime or Japanese live-action films, or take part in the AMV contest. Fanime also has 24-hour programming, with late-night events including karaoke, anime screenings, a dance, and hentai screenings. Western cons also have a cosplay competition (the Masquerade), where people perform skits on stage and can win awards for their costumes and performances, and have cosplay gatherings, which I'll talk about below. I'm not sure if Japanese cons have these things, but I'm listing a few things so that you know what's out there and can compare.

Buying your badge/admission to the con doesn't have a long line (anymore), but some events, such as the Masquerade and the concerts, as well as some popular panels, can have long lines to get in, so be sure to plan accordingly.

The biggest difference is probably the cosplay culture. From what I understand about Japanese cons, it's seen as rude to wear your costume on the way to or back from the convention, and the cons provide changing rooms for people to get dressed. American cons don't provide changing rooms, and most people get dressed in their hotel rooms or at home before coming to the convention. It isn't seen as rude to leave the convention center in costume (and you are free to leave and come back at will, since your admission is in the form of a badge that you wear all weekend), and the entire downtown area seems to be taken over by people in colorful costumes. (I would encourage leaving the convention center to get food from nearby shops and restaurants instead of buying it all at the convention.)

Taking photos is also a lot different. It is perfectly okay for people to ask for your photo anywhere, at any time. While it is seen as rude to stop in the middle of a crowded area for photos (and you should move to the side), there are no regulations about when or where photos can be taken. Some events don't allow for photography or certain types of photography (no flash photogrphy during the Masquerade, no photography during certain panels), and the Cosplayer Hangout room, which has areas to sit and a place to repair your costumes if they break, does not allow photography. Otherwise, people can and will ask for your photo anywhere in the halls, not just in designated photography areas. Some areas of the convention attract more photographers than others, such as the area in front of the convention center, where you may end up having a small mob of people around taking your photo, but nothing at Comiket levels. Off-site photoshoots are also common, which you can set up ahead of time with photographers, or sometimes a photographer will see you and pull you aside to a blank wall or an area a block or two away for some more photos. Also, just because someone is allowed to ask for your photo doesn't mean you have to accept. It's also generally considered rude to take photos without permission, but people do it anyway.

Cosplay gatherings are another event that a lot of people attend. These are set up ahead of time, and are where people cosplaying from a particular series or with a particular theme will all gather at a single location at a specific time to mingle and take photos. Usually these are set up where there is a list of characters that the organizers go through, and when they call a character (or pairing, group, etc.), everyone cosplaying that character goes to a designated spot, poses, and lets people take photos. The organizers will then count down, and once they reach zero, everyone relaxes, goes back to the crowd, and the next character or group is called. In between photos, people will chat with other fans that they have met. This is a good place to make American cosplay friends who have the same interests as you!

Besides cosplay gatherings, as already mentioned, people will have small gatherings that aren't tied to cosplay or aren't official to the convention. These are organized on these forums, on Facebook, Tumblr, and other social media, or are private to a group of friends. Sometimes these will have a theme (for example, fans of Utena all going to a bar together one night...and now I need to organize an Utena fan bar meetup), and sometimes they will not. Since this is a con that goes on for 24 hours from Friday until Monday, a lot of bar-hopping and room parties happen. This is actually increasingly becoming a party and hangout con, which is perfectly fine, but I don't recommend going to the con itself while drunk. Keep that in your rooms. (You are also not allowed to have alcohol at the con itself.)

I hope this helps answer some of your questions more in-depth! If you have any other questions or concerns, feel free to post here or ask me directly. :]
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Love Sign Master Spark

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Re: Looking for your guidance
« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2016, 06:56:04 PM »

Hi.

I knew no one at Fanime when I attended for the first time (save one person who I met up with for an hour on Sunday of the con) and still had an enjoyable experience.  So while roaming with friends may be preferable and is safer, it's not a requirement for enjoying Fanime.

It's OK to walk around in costume outside the convention grounds.  As it turns out, there are people who are out and about who do appreciate a well crafted costume.  (there are also those who will give funny looks and/or whisper among themselves too, comes with the territory)  I was one of the attendees who stayed in costume a whole day at a time as my cosplay took over 30 minutes to put on so taking it on and off multiple times would take up lots of time.

Cosplay gatherings are a good starting point for finding people you can connect with.  You're welcome to stop by gatherings even if not in a corresponding cosplay to take photos, mingle, and chat with people who are there.
« Last Edit: January 26, 2016, 04:54:22 PM by Love Sign Master Spark »
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Angelx624

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Re: Looking for your guidance
« Reply #5 on: January 22, 2016, 12:37:21 AM »

Hello there!!

I remember my first Fanime. I only knew a few people that had been to SacAnime. But, I'll never forget that weekend. It was exciting to finally be able to go to Fanime when I had been planning an entire year in advance for it! XD

Now this'll be my 6th year going. ^^

Now, to answer some questions:

-No, they recently fixed the line problem for badges. Now it's super quick and there shouldn't be a hassle!
-The convention is both inside and outside. Stuff like the vendors, Stage Zero, and gaming are inside. A lot of the cosplay gatherings are outside. Across the street they hold the concert and Masquerade.
-Yes!! There's plenty of fun things to do! I mentioned some of them above. Fanime is a fun con to explore!
-There are no restrictions on wearing a cosplay outside or inside. Just make sure it's an appropriate costume(nothing extremely revealing!!) and make sure you're always wearing shoes! ^^ Some props will need to be peacebonded before you can walk around the con with them.
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SmallMittens

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Re: Looking for your guidance
« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2016, 10:34:42 AM »


meet-ups
I think it will feel a little bit awkward to walk around knowing nobody in the convention,
Is it possible to meet up with some of you people ? , i think i will go in 2016... depending the airplane fare. ^-^
But it would be so great!

I would love to meet up with you! I am female and I will also be in cosplay!
I was going to be alone, but I would rather show someone around my favorite convention.
There are many activities and it is so very fun!
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JohnnyAR

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Re: Looking for your guidance
« Reply #7 on: March 13, 2016, 04:34:22 PM »

As a local and patron of Downtown San Jose, some advice.

Don't stick around too late at night, a lot of weird people are out and about

Just be careful in general whilst in downtown. Crime has been getting pretty bad as of recent, trafficking, prostitution, drug dealing, constant bar fights and shoot outs.

Feel free to PM me if you need someone who knows the area well.
« Last Edit: April 12, 2016, 06:29:43 PM by JohnnyAR »
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umbrakinetics

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Re: Looking for your guidance
« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2016, 09:42:19 PM »

I agree with Johnny! The area surrounding the convention center is very nice, but the line between the nice areas and the dodgy areas is thin. A lot of homeless people around, too- back in 2014, my friend got her phone stolen and we ended up having to confront a very nasty older woman about it. If you stick to the immediate surroundings of the con and don't wander, you should be fine!! Since it is very hot in May, you may end up spending most of your time inside the convention center, so you shouldn't worry too much. San Jose is a lot safer now than it was when my dad was growing up there in the 80s.
P.S. Cosplay outside the con is actually encouraged. Local shops and restaurants love the extra business they get, and some places offer discounts if you are a con attendee! Everybody loves a well done cosplay.
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fanime 2016 lineup
Friday: Rose Lalonde, maybe Ciel Phantomhive
Saturday: Punk/Festival/who knows!Rose Lalonde, Punk Rock!Homura Akemi
Sunday: Ciel Phantomhive, Ciel Phantomhive In A Funny T-Shirt after the meetup
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