Sorry for being late with this report. Among the reasons for it taking long to be ready:
1. I have other reports to work on (which include photo shoots for some of them);
2. With me still being tired from the con, I do have the right to take some naps;
3. The recent release of the MST3K vs. Gamera box set takes away some of the early evening hours that could be used to work on this report;
4. Keep in mind that I'm also returning back to my normal habits, which include a weekly trip to the mall and my work in data entry.
With that out of the way, it's time to give a report on what I picked up during Otakon weekend.
Note: I'm also including some purchases I made Thursday before the con as part of this report.
Being Otakon, the first stop for me at the Dealers' Room was the Otakon Merchandise table to pick up the con t-shirt as I wear size XXXL shirts. This year, I was also hoping to pick up an additional shirt, one that was designed for the Japan Relief effort. Unlike other years, the line for the table was a big one (I think that much of the huge line had to do with another Japan Relief item being sold: a Puella Magi Madoka Magica poster that was only sold at this con). When I finally got to the table, I found out that the Japan Relief shirt only went up to XL (remember, I wear a XXXL). Thus, I couldn't get that shirt due to it being too small. However, I was able to get the 2011 Otakon t-shirt in my size.
Also, although they were XL, I ended up receiving a few Niconico.com t-shirts from a person at the booth. What can I say? I did check out the site during their coverage of Comic Con the previous week (and remembered their little theme song that they had con attendees sing).
When it comes to my Otakon loot, a majority of it consist of anime on DVD and Blu-Ray, with them coming in three different batches. The first batch involves the premium edition versions of those titles released by NIS America (be it video games or anime, they definitely know how to make premium releases), with me picking up Wagnaria on DVD and the first season of Arakawa Under the Bridge as a DVD/BD combo pack. The second batch reflects my age (and my support for old school anime), as it consists of the two Galaxy Express 999 movies, which were recently released on Region 1 DVD for the first time. Finally, I picked up the Baccano BD set and the second Melancholy of Haruhi-chan Suzumiya DVD at the Bandai/Aniplex booth on Sunday.
My video game shopping run began Thursday after picking up my badge. The first place on my list of places to visit during my traditional Thursday evening run on Inner Harbor this year was the Gamestop at the Gallery Mall, as I had plans to pick up Catherine this week, but was holding it off until Otakon weekend to do so. With the Gamestop still having copies of the game for the Xbox 360, I bought the game there.
After that, I went to the Best Buy that was about two blocks away from said mall to look around. There, I saw the Pac-Man/Galaga Dimensions 3DS game being sold there. With a $10 gift card on me (from a sale around the time Infamous 2 came out for the PS3), I was able to pick up the game for $20.
Finally, there was my usual browsing of what the Dealers' Room at Otakon had to offer. When it came to import games, my main items to search for were the PSP version of the To Heart 2: Final Dragon Chronicles game (preferably, the limited edition with the Nendoroid figures) and the 20th Anniversary Puyo Puyo game for the DS. Sadly, the main import games dealer at the con didn't have either game. However, I was able to expand my collection of import PS3 games (which is relatively small due to me wanting to find games that I can play without major problems not knowing the text and will most likely not be released in the United States) with Mamoru-kun wa Norowarete Shimatta! Wide-Han, a shooter similar to the old SNK game Ikari Warriors (man, I remember playing that game on the NES).
With Udon not having a booth at Otakon this year, my search for books this con trip was limited to a couple of manga releases that I've been looking for in the past month, but couldn't find them (which was made worse by the closing of Borders, which is the closest book store near me).
Luckily, I was able to find both titles this weekend, with me picking up Lucky Star vol. 8 at a Books-A-Million that my roommate wanted to visit on the way to Baltimore, and then finding Sunshine Sketch vol. 5 at the Otakon Dealers' Room. What can I say, I find numerous Lucky Star girls and Yuno to be adorable.
You know how I mentioned that my Otakon coverage is going to be longer than usual (with it spanning four additonal posts)? Well, I can now say that the reason for it has a lot to do with the figures that I boughts at the con, with the main reason why I'm doing this can be seen in the picture below:
That's right. At the con, there were at least three dealers that were selling Busou Shinki figures (aka one of my current "anti-drugs", as I'd probably won't be able to afford any illegal drugs thanks to what I buy). At two of said dealers, I was able to buy these figures, which I'll be covering individually later on. As for the third dealer (one that had a worker who was also a Busou Shinki fan), I found the other figure that I'll be covering in a separate report, and when you see the figure, you'll see what it also gets its own report (and why I decided to get that over a Fate Nendoroid).
When it came to the Japanese guests that were attending Otakon, the ones that I was interested weren't a famous composer of Final Fantasy music or one of the biggest names when it comes to independently made anime. Rather, my interest involved the Japanese guests that worked on Hetalia. Thus, when I found out that one of the Hetalia guests, series director Bob Shirohata, was having an autograph session Saturday morning at the con (one outside of the a couple of autograph sessions featuring all the guests of honor that worked on Hetalia), I decided to bring along my copy of Hetalia Season 1 (which already had autographs by the English voice actors of Germany and Chibitalia from Anime USA) with me to Otakon to have Shirohata-san autograph it. Well, I did get Shirohata-san to sign my Hetalia DVD cover, as seen below (along with the Patrick Seitz autograph I got at Anime USA).
However, those people waiting to get Shirohata-san's autograph Saturday morning got a bonus as well: Akira Sasanuma, who provides the voice of Austria in the Japanese version, also took part in the autograph session as well. As a result, I also got him to sign my Hetalia DVD cover as well.
With that, I now have gotten autographs from seven seiyuu. Some clues as to who the other seiyuu are (with the clues pertaining to the character they play when it came to what I had them autograph):
1. A Zaibatsu heir who's in the same homeroom as an alien oni princess;
2 & 3. A pioneer in modern day mahou shoujo and her feline mentor;
4. A Nazi-hunting vampire;
5. A perverted bird that can be used as a firearm;
6. A "Honya-chan".
Rounding out my purchases at Otakon were a few odds and ends that I received throughout the con on Saturday.
Starting things off, on Friday, I noticed that the same dealer that sold the Fate body pillow case that I bought at last year's Otakon had another Fate design this year, this time featuring her in swim attire. Wanting to spread my purchases over the weekend, I decided to hold back until the next day to pick up the pillow case. Thankfully, I was able to pick this up before they sold out of them.
Second, while waiting for the Bad, Anime, Bad panel Friday night, I noticed a Strike Witches wall scroll featuring numerous characters from that show in swim attire as well. So, I decided to swing by the Dealers' Room on Saturday to see if there's any of these left. Sure enough, there were a few left. Also, the dealer where I picked up the wall scroll was also tiny Strike Witches plushies as well. So, along with the wall scroll, I also picked up a plushie of Lynette.
Finishing off my list of Otakon loot, on Saturday night, I attended the Bandai After Dark panel (a night time panel that Bandai does at Otakon for some time now). The cool part of the panel (besides Haruhi dub bloopers and the announcement of Bandai picking up the Nichijou anime and manga) was that those people sitting in the front rows received a Gurren Lagann bag, with each bag containing some Ghost in the Shell figurines, a Lucky Star t-shirt, and either a volume of the Eureka Seven or Witchblade manga or a Haruhi single (be it the ED single or a character single). Since I made sure to move up front to get one of these bags (as there was no room clear between panels), I was able to score one of those bags. Even if I didn't get a bag, I can still pick up some Ghost in the Shell figures on the way out of the panel (with me picking up a Tachikoma figure).
While this may conclude the main portion of the Otakon reports, I'm not yet done here, as I still have blog posts covering all four figure purchases coming soon.
EDIT: My Otakon report for the Fandom Post blog is finally up. You can check out my general comments about the con itself here.