Kitacon 2016 Review

Kitacon has just finished and what a weekend it’s been. The event was a slight divergent for the ScaryGranules crew, but we’re still pretty glad we attended. What is Kitacon you ask?

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The Karnival (yes spelt like that), is a predominantly anime focused convention that occurs in Birmingham and hosts several panels, film screenings, talks, cosplay events, stalls to throw your money away and 3 nights of surprisingly amazing parties. We say surprising, because we’ve been to a lot of geeky related con parties or dance nights and a lot have let us down, but Kitacon 2016 had 3 nights in a row of pumping tunes, Japanese beats and old school nostalgia ticklers.

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The event is a massive pull for cosplayers, those starting out, those who are in it for the heck of it and also for people are extremely dedicated to knitting, gluing and fitting themself into outfits that may lessen their life span on this planet. There were some amazing cosplay costumes at the event, we were impressed with the variety and the skill some people have at costume designing and makeup. Cosplaying is not essential at these sort of gigs but at the same time it’s fun to try out and we can see why people enjoy doing this as a regular thing.

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Gaming characters made plenty of cameos throughout the weekend, from Dragon Age, to Half Life and a lot of Borderlands and Undertale knitted homages. Undertale has really blown up in popularity, it’s pretty great.

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Panels were varied, though many were basically hentai related and most people can admit that they love that sort of thing. We attended a Yuri panel that was quite brief and quite lackluster, though a few members of the audience seemed to know their Yuri scenes in a lot of keen detail. The Waifu Cringe Comedy competition was actually a lot of fun and of course packed with the most important aspect of anime, cringe. We kid. Kinda. Maybe. But no seriously…

They had film screenings of the latest two smash hit Dragonball Z films (Battle of the Gods and Resurrection F) and also Mad Max Fury Road, though we were glad to rewatch the loveable Baymax in Super Hero 6 (another film that has some amazing cosplay).

The letdown for us and for others we spoke to, were the prices of food at the hotel itself, which is no real shock and the gaming room, which boasted a limited offer of very old games and some board games. This seems to be a common trend oddly enough, or at least where we go. Setting up a game hall should be a lot easier, but for some reason a lot of event organisers go for the same standard games and don’t really try to add more to the experience. Decoration, placement and variety can do wonders for games rooms. We know this isn’t Eurogamer but at the same time, the improvements that can be made, can be done effortlessly, at least in our opinion.

Kitacon also has a lovely collaboration with charities, primarily S.O.P.H.I.E and Attitude. Attitude was represented by the amazing and party loving animal lady who also hosted a brilliant panel called Legeless for the Legless. She also could be seen rocking with everyone at the nighttime parties. Go check out these charities that do wonderful work helping people to enjoy their passions, be it gaming, music gigs or extreme cosplaying!

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Photographs are probably scattered all over instagram and the Kitacon Facebook page, but we met the man who managed to snap almost every attendee and make them even more glorious looking, Donald Manning (check out his Facebook Page, he’s also an amazing cosplayer alongside his son).

Well done to everyone who attended Kitacon and looked amazing in their costumes, well done to the gophers and staff at the hotel who kept everything running smoothly and kept us from accidentally walking in to more hentai rooms or better yet, directed us straight there.

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