Sunday, 11 November 2012

ChibiCon III Review

Well, ChibiCon 3 has come and gone.

While it was not the biggest of all conventions, it was perhaps one of the most fun! I arrived to the event, which was being held at Guam's Pacific Islands Club Hotel (PIC) at around 1:00 in the afternoon, well before doors opened to the public. Since I was exhibiting several of my S.H. MonsterArts figures, I was able to get in for free without paying the $15 entry fee. Upon entering the convention room, I was amazed to see many various figures already displayed! There were Figuarts from the hit anime, Tiger & Bunny; Figmas from Black Rock Shooter, many plastic models of Gundams, and a entire set of mechs from Macross. This is the first year that S.H.MonsterArts  was to be displayed. In previous events, Figuarts of characters from Kamen Rider, and Power Rangers were showcased, however, despite their overwhelming popularity in the States, on Guam they were hardly looked at. The main show runners, who I've become really good friends with last night, were very enthusiastic about the S.H.MonsterArts line since Godzilla is a very well known franchise worldwide, and especially on Guam. I ended up regretting not bringing the rest of my figures such as Fire Rodan, MechaGodzilla, and King Ghidorah. However, I promised that by the next event I'd bring them as well as the newer figures such as Burning Godzilla, Godzilla Junior, and Destoroyah. Around the convention hall, I noticed that there was a booth selling various model kits, Robot Spirits figures, DVDs, and etc. I was kicking myself for not bringing enough money. However, I did end up leaving with some momentos which I'll get to later. By 3:00, we finished setting up, and my new friends and I ducked out for a late lunch before doors opened. When we returned, it was time to begin the event.

As doors opened, hoards of people, most dressed in cosplay, entered the room. In a matter of minutes the place was packed! People immediately began signing up for the various events that would take place over the rest of the afternoon and early evening, they took pictures of all of the figure displays, and checked out what vendors were selling. I as well as other exhibitors remained close to our respective displays, ready to answer any questions relating to the figures or the figure line itself. A lot of people expressed interest with the S.H.MonsterArts figures. To my surprise, a lot, and I mean A LOT of them asked, "Where's Jet Jaguar? Jet Jaguar is the BOMB! Why doesn't he have a figure yet?" I could only respond that, "If Tamashii receives enough fan demand, then yeah, we would ultimately get one." The same could be said about Mothra, which people also asked for a lot too. The display was popular with children too as they would gaze with awe at the display. They knew which movie the characters came from, and without looking at the boxes or labels, knew them by name. It seemed about everyone who I talked to relating to my display was egging to see some of the Showa monsters in the line too like Megalon, MechaGodzilla '74, Gigan, Hedorah, Jet Jaguar, and etc. Hear that Tamashii? Get crackin' on some Showa beasties!

After a half hour, the first Trivia Challenge began. Teams of three were chosen and were asked a series of questions relating to anime. I admit, it was kind of nerdy, but this is what I live for! After that, there was a karaoke contest where people would sing the themes to their favorite anime series. I do admit, a lot of the singers were off key - notably for Gurren Lagann's Rappu ha Otoko no Tamashii da!; or Pokemon's third season opening for Johto Adventures. There were some good ones, though for the record, they were sung by Japanese girls. After the Karaoke contest, there was finally the group cosplay contest. Many entered, and the best group entry were a group of guys dressed in armor from the game, Monster Hunter. There were other good entries such as characters from the Pokemon franchise, or from Black Rock Shooter. Over the course of the evening, there was another Trivia challenge, and a raffle. It was funny that one person ended up winning a lot of the prizes for he bought a lot of raffle tickets.

Thankfully, I did not stand around my display all night, and got in on some of the fun. I had a character done of myself in anime form. While the artist has a lot of talent, she really did not capture my likeness in my portrait. Honestly, it looks a lot more like the camera kid from ICarly! Regardless, it still captures my face. I also ended up buying a plush PokeBall to hang from the mirror in my car.

As the evening died down, prizes from the Trivia, Karaoke, and Cosplay contests were given out. By 8:45 people began leaving and us exhibitors began boxing away our figures. Overall, it was a splendid evening, and I really had a great time! I met some new friends, saw some neat cosplays, admired everyone's figures. It turns out that this year's ChibiCon was their biggest and most organized turnout yet. I was so glad to be a part of it. He then explained that for the next event, there will be a large diorama set that will display Gundams facing off with the S.H.MonsterArts figures! That was perhaps the most awesome concept that any of us heard at that time. After socializing for a bit, I left the convention at 9:00.

Last night was perhaps the funnest experience I've ever had since moving to Guam. After the first 10 minutes of the event, I felt at home. Even though I just met these people, I feel like I've known them forever. They have the same interests and knowledge on the subject matter as I do allowing me to fit in with them very well. It's times like these that make me think again about my choice for leaving the island next summer. Regardless, I was happy, very happy, to be a part of ChibiCon 3. If I choose to remain on Guam after I graduate next semester, I will be grateful to take part in helping out with ChibiCon again.


  1. Were are you originally from again? So I take it you are not a Chammorro then right?

    1. I'm originally from Virginia. However I lived in various countries since then.

  2. Glad to hear that you had fun. It's amazing how much children there are fans of Godzilla, especially the Showa era. Honestly, I'm not sure how many kid fans are here in the States. Godzilla movies aren't aired on TV anymore, and it's up to parents to share their movies with their children. The market here seems pretty specialized.

    1. Come 2014, the market for Godzilla related items will sky rocket based on the hype and success of the upcoming American reboot.