July 22nd, 2007
What is Avcon
Avcon is Adelaide’s Anime and Gaming convention. Next question, what is Adelaide Adelaide is the capital city of South Australia, an important Australian state. This is an annual convention situated at the Adelaide University. The events lasts for a weekend including the Friday night launch.
I’ve been so busy lately with training for my new job that I didn’t have much anticipation for this year’s Avcon. Which is somewhat unfortunate as the event was quite a significant improvement over the previous year. I can whole heartedly say that I thoroughly enjoyed myself.
Despite only going on the Saturday due to other commitments, I still had an awesome time. Judging by the timetable Saturday had most of the hows meat. I’m just gonna now run thru my personal highlights of the event.
Are something that stood out this year. Throughout the day I noticed some great changes, big and small that improved on some of last years issues. For starters they let people in a bit earlier in order to avoid the long wait. Last year the wait was over half an hour, this time we got in in about 3 minutes. The overall layout was much easier to navigate through and also more spaced out over several areas. The staff levels, range of activities and the BBQ where improved greatly from last year(yay, bread!).
This time around I didn’t spend most of my time watching anime screenings. I had a good variety of anime, games and shopping. The best events in the morning where the screenings, so I watched the early stuff being: .hack//Roots and Devil May Cry. .hack//Roots was alright, I’ve seen some of the series before and got the same impression. It’s just a bit bland overall, although it was a premiere which was cool.
Devil May Cry should be renamed to Alucard May Cry. This series looks so similar to to Hellsing its not funny. The style, camera angles, voice acting and even the sound seemed to be almost identical. But it’s got one thing that Hellsing will never lay hands upon; Dante. Dante is a cooler dude than Alucard anyways. Plus he uses his fists more. It’s worth mentioning that it surprised me too that there was a DMC anime, never knew about it.
Watch a trailer for DMC
If posible I like to reserve my purchases relevent to the show for the show because of all the savings. Although there where considerably less vendors than last year the quality was better and more relevent to the show. Personally I’m not interested in goth wear or oddball dress up people no matter how interesting their personalities may be.
This year I most enjoyed the new stalls; namely EzyGames, but I’ll get to that a little later on. The usuals had a good show, Shin Tokyo, Pulp Fiction Comics and Madman. Madman had their own computer survey set up, by filling in their survey you received a free DVD with 3 full length episodes and 60+ trailers, nice.
There was a small stand with some guy selling dating software with young ,attractive anime babes. When I talked to him it seemed a little awkward and he wasn’t quite sure on how to pitch it to people. Interesting. There was also a stand from a second hand games shop that I have seen out the bus window a few times on the way to Uni. They had a notable collection of games, including an almost perfect SNES + Mario All Stars package. I spent a considerable amount of time chatting to him about the store and games in general. There where a few games that would have been great for the collection. I saw Street Fighter Alpha 3(GBA) for $29 which was a major pain. I decided to hunt around for this game and couldn’t find it so I bought SF Alpha Anthology for the PS2 after the Connection Tour.
Ezygames had a stall this year which was quite surprising and also useful. You see I recently ordered some rare games through the site and haven’t recieved them for almost two weeks now. Concerning I know Only a few days ago I had sent an email in to query this, so I went to the stand to ask what was going on.
The first guy that I talked to was the owner of the business, he pretty much runs the whole thing himself. He knew who I was straight away and explained the situation. We then spent a bit of time talking about games, the business and his business ethos. The guy was straight out genuine and shares the same strong but level headed passion for games that I have.
Later that day I returned and bought some stuff with my brother. He provided us with some excellent deals and was a true champ. I promised that I’d link out to him because he won us over with his genuine passion to deliver great games with great service and prices. So check out his site, its relatively new but already has made a good dent in the Australian online games market.
Throughout the day a number of tournaments where hosted, I myself only took part in two of them being the Tetris DS and Smash Bros Melee. I wasn’t too keen on playing Smash Bros. as well it’s Smash Bros. it just sucks playing a game that is seen as being so superior to everything else when its not. Plus it’s not a skill based game either, ugh. I played against a group of campers which wasn’t much fun. I came 3rd because they all ran away and I managed to slip and lose a life amidsts the excitement and having not played it for a while.
The Tetris tourney was much better, I came 5th out of about 20 people which is really impressive as I only play the game with mates and I’ll often lose to my brother(whom was knocked out of the first round :p) during thse times.
The overall gameplay set up was more spaced out the previous year. There where 3 main areas for gaming if you don’t include the hallways littered by people with their pastal coloured DS Lite. Two areas where general gaming and one for mature gaming. Mature gaming had games like Gears of War, Golden Eye an Halo. I also demoed the first level of Timesplitters Future Perfect for the Gamecube(I didn’t even think that a GCN version was made!). It felt like a much more interactive game than TS2, I guess that I gotta hunt this game down now as well. 🙂
The smaller gaming area had two tvs and some Mario Strikers. I think that the Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo tournament was there as well. I was impresed by the idea of playing the movie; The Wizzard on a project in the centre of the room. Shows a lot of character.
The larger room held the Smash Bros competition. I was pleasantly surprised to see a large TV an couch dedicated to King of Fighters XI. Awesomeness, I sat down and played this game with a Chinese student from ShangHai. He was really good, a pure master of the button mashing technique. Unfortunately we had to take turns as there was only one controller and it wasn’t even a dual shock pad. In the same room DDR, Donkey Konga and Tekken where being played to death.
Avcon has seen a large improvement over the previous year. This can be seen in the presentation, organisation and personality that this event holds. Even the small things such as whats includinged in the goodies bag when entering. The reference guide is a great example of how professional this event has become, with its ultra trendy design and clever layout. Avcon was a lot of fun, had a good vibe and I overall had a great time. Can’t wait until next year.
Unfortunately no pictures have really surfaced yet. 🙁 I forgot to take my camera too, so I’ll post some up in the following days, if they become available.