Otakon 2018 was an amazing experience. As someone that doesn't attend many coventions but watches a lot of anime, attending one is always a good time. Big events such as Otakon are great because you get to have so many people around you that share the same love for the culture as you do. Even if you're not super into anime, you'll always find something or someone at the events that can relate to you. The convention was once again located in Washington, D.C at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. It's a huge convention center that doesn't take too long to learn how to navigate around.
Otakon gives a home to all nerds alike to be themselves without having to worry about being judged. I noticed so many people having a great time. One of the best things about Otakon is how friendly and informative the staff are. As a first time attendee, I found myself a little lost but thankfully a lot of staff members were present all around the convention center. They were very helpful when it came to navigating around to different areas around the con.
Security was pretty tight around the convention and bag check took a little while to go through. While this proved to be quite a pain if you want to exit the convention to get food, it's really good that they are very serious about keeping their attendees safe. They seemed to be very understanding towards cosplayers as well.
While I wasn't able to attend many panels, I did explore a lot of the booths around the different rooms. Such as gaming room, which is a great place to hangout and play some tabletop games or some Japanese arcade games that you may have never seen before. One of my personal favorites is Jubeat. It is a rhythm based game developed Konami that seems to be very popular at every anime con I've been to. The wait times to play the games in the room weren't too bad and the room was filled with all kinds of different titles.
In the gaming room I was also able to try out a game in development by Chronobit Studios called Beyond the Wind. It is a tactics game centered around the journey of a mysterious girl as she explores a world of dragons and floating islands. I enjoyed the demo a lot and encourage you to check it out! While the game is still in early development, you can subscribe to get more information here.
The dealers room is an awesome place to buy some merchandise. From collectibles, to keychains, shirts, and so much more, this room was a lot of fun to browse around. Artist Alley is another place where you can meet different artists and purchase their work or even have one commisioned. It's always cool to see so much merchandise in one area together from all kinds of different animes and video games.
Seeing so many cosplayers is another thing that makes anime conventions such a great experience. People spend months preparing their costumes for these conventions and their completed costumes are extremely amazing to see. I'd honestly love to do it in the future.
Overall Otakon 2018 was a really fun experience and I can't wait to attend again in the future! If you'd like to learn more about it and plan your trip for next years convention, you can visit the official Otakon website. I'd highly recommend attending! Be sure to hit the Follow icon above to stay updated with opinion pieces!