DAY 2: SLICE AND DICE
As expected, a lot more people showed up in costume today when compared to yesterday. Surprisingly enough, I only spotted one Homestuck cosplayer, further proving my theory that internet memes do not survive long out in the real world. However, I continue to spot various folks dressed up in characters from video games and cartoons of all kind. Including yesterday, I have now spotted at least five or six cosplayers dressed as various characters from the video game Danganronpa. Hell, at one point, I even saw a guy dressed in this extremely elaborate Warhammer 40k outfit. But enough about that: here are some of the pictures I took today:
Among some of the shows and video games I saw cosplayers representing was Danganronpa, a visual novel/detective adventure game that went viral a couple months ago thanks to a Let's Play on Something Awful. This cosplayer here is dressed as Junko Enoshima, one of the main characters in the first game.
Here we have a guy dressed as a Blood Raven from Warhammer 40k (minus the Blood Raven emblems). I have to say, that thing he was wearing was HUGE.
And then there's Attack on Titan. Need I say more?
Entering the main hall, you can see that there were a lot more people roaming about this morning, with long lines at the autograph booths and people sitting down to watch various panels and demonstrations of all kinds, be it music performances or random guys in Japanese school uniforms walking around singing and waving a giant orange flag around. Apparently, they’re called an Ouendan, and are supposed to be a cheer squad of some kind that you would often see in Japanese high schools, usually at sporting events or as motivation for their fellow students. Now that I mentioned it, I think I now understand why those dudes in Osu! Tatake! Ouendan were always cheering all the time (course, this kinda didn’t make any sense in the American version, Elite Beat Agents, but what the heck).
As always, the autograph lines were extremely long, mostly filled with girls who I assume use tumblr a lot.
In addition to Japanese anime and video games, Japan Expo also showcased various parts of traditional Japanese culture, including traditional festivals and dances. I think this is what they usually refer to as a Matsuri.
In addition to the Ouendan, there was also a demonstration being held that showcased various types of blades and weapons used by the Samurai during the old days of Japan. The demonstration was mostly composed of a group of several historians and practitioners of these weapons, showcasing the deadliness of each weapon by slicing various sticks of bamboo in all kinds of traditional postures, some of which resembled the moves in Rurouni Kenshin, a series I used to watch when I was a kid.
Then there were the weapon demonstrations. They brought in a local historical society to demonstrate some of the weapons they used back in the feudal era. Gotta love the posture too, especially since it looked pretty badass.
Same with this dude's armor.
Exhibit Hall aside, many of the other rooms at the convention were packed, including the Game Room. Last I checked, I found myself stuck in the middle of a smogaboard of high schoolers and college kids, with the occasional middle schooler hogging the Modern Warfare 3 table to himself (at one point, I think I heard one of their parents utter “Now how do you feel about shooting your own mother?” upon getting shot at in a Free-For-All match on Seatown). Sadly. the Wii U table didn’t see enough action, as it lay vacant for nearly the entire day (save for the ten minutes i spent playing Scribblenauts Unlimited).
Much could also be said for the screening rooms, where various sponsors would screen select episodes of whatever show they had out at the moment, which, last I checked was the hit swimming anime known as Free! Iwatobi Swim Club. Some of our fellow readers might recognize it as that Swimming anime thing that caused at least several thousand female Tumblr users to literally lose their shit when it was first previewed in a short commercial by Kyoto Animation earlier this year. Surprisingly, the audience attending today’s screening was actually quite packed, filled with both men and women who were actually quite immersed with the program. Either that, or they were waiting for Attack on Titan to start.
The first interview I conducted was with composer Noriyuki Iwadare. Accompanying him was one of the two moderators I recognized from yesterday’s Phoenix Wright panel. Unfortunately, he was also one who was terrible at video game trivia, which made my interview with Iwadare somewhat painful. In fact, I was also slightly surprised when Iwadare revealed that he never actually composed the music for After Burner II (more on that in my interview later). Things got slightly better when I interviewed Yoshiyuki Sadamoto later on that day; however, the translator spoke in a heavy French accent that made it extremely difficult to make out what he was saying sometimes. Regardless, I was able to get all of my questions answered as quickly and precisely as possible, despite the delays that is.