Anime Central 2014: recollections and how I ruined my body

Day 2

Panel notes: Be Your True Mind: A Personal Panel

After getting very little sleep, I headed out for the second day bright and early for the 9:00 Persona panel. This one covered the history of each Persona game, and I think it pretty much convinced me to not play the first three (that would be Persona, Innocent Sin, and Eternal Punishment).

The funnest part was going over the new announcements: Dancing All Night, Persona Q, Persona 4 Arena Ultimax, and Persona 5. Out of all of these, they had the most material for Persona Q and Ultimax. The dancing game had, well, dancing, and there’s very little info on Persona 5 out. Red color scheme and chairs were confirmed, though.

After the Persona panel, I went to a series of cosplay meetups.

ACen 2014 Samurai Champloo cosplay

The Samurai Champloo meetup was very small, and I usually enjoy those more than ones with gigantic mobs. Small meetups let you interact with folks, get more of the shots you want, and are more flexible in terms of location. It also feels like I’m always the first photographer to show up. A few more arrived eventually, but being the first photographer on deck lets you direct the action. Seriously, you just say things and people do them!

There was some time between Samurai Champloo and the next meetup, so I did some shopping.

ACen 2014 Mamitan at the GSC booth

The Good Smile Company booth was pretty busy, but I got a chance to get a picture of Mamitan and her Sonico tiger parka costume. I’m just now noticing she even got the correct t-shirt. Such attention to detail! Wow!

I make it a point to chat with figure manufacturers if they show up to conventions. It’s not like I get any hot tips or anything, but it’s cool to see what they’re up to and what they’ve been looking forward to. I asked the GSC staff what playset they’d make for Nendoroids if they could make anything, and they settled on an American-style supermarket. I’ll have a little bit of coverage on the GSC booth, but there wasn’t anything new. I debated getting the Nendoroid Colossal Titan set, but decided against it.

ACen 2014 Judge Dredd cosplay
These guys were REALLY good at frowning.
ACen 2014 Kill la Kill cosplay
This is just a taste of the madness.

Next up was the Metal Gear meetup. Metal Gear is one of my favorite things ever, but it doesn’t seem to be super popular in terms of cosplay. It should be easy enough – just put on some tiger stripe camo and an eyepatch – but maybe the additional vests, pouches, etc. makes it costly.

ACen 2014 Metal Gear cosplay

ACen 2014 Metal Gear cosplay
The best thing about Metal Gear fans is their sense of humor.

I guess it isn’t so surprising that Evangelion isn’t so popular for cosplay nowadays – it’s a really old show after all. The photo shoot did have some familiar faces from last year, but a little less diversity in terms of the characters represented.

ACen 2014 Evangelion cosplay

Once again, there was time until the next meetup so I went back into the exhibition hall. And I did a whole lot of shopping. But I always stay on the lookout for great costumes!

ACen 2014 Silent Hill cosplay
When your face bandage comes loose but another nurse is there to fix it #JustNurseThings

ACen 2014 Master Roshi cosplay

The next meetup was for Trigun, but it was really small and brief. Again, the mislabeled locations caused a lot of trouble. Come on ACen, get that shit together.

ACen 2014 Vash the Stampede cosplay

Mortal Kombat vs. Soul Calibur Impersonation Game

This is another one of those be rowdy and have fun events. The idea is to have two teams – one side impersonates Mortal Kombat characters while the other impersonates Soul Calibur characters. Why those two franchises? Because those were the ones the panelists liked most. It was a fun event. I think I could pull off a decent Yoshimitsu, an okay Mitsurugi, and a flawless Xianghua.

We did have one surprise guest, when a huge guy with a deep, booming voice came in to do a Mortal Kombat impression. He turned out to be one of the voice actors who portrayed Jax! He was just wandering around while his daughter was attending a panel.

From this point on there was a steady stream of cosplay. Let me tell you: it’s great to always have things to do, but being on your feet for eight hours with camera gear is hard work. At the eight hour mark, I was already feeling some exhaustion, but my day was only half over.

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