Crunchyroll Expo: Worth going?

Crunchyroll Expo: Worth going?

Hey guys! Been some time since my last post. I believe @rokutsu put it quite well in one of his last posts. We are so god damn busy. Part of the struggle of blogging is for most people this is mainly for fun and second to any other real life responsibilities. As much as we love making content whether it’s written posts, podcasts or random YouTube videos, we have to deal with what’s more important. I promise we will be more present probably in a few weeks or so but just know we love y’all and miss interacting with you!

So back to what this post is about! I recently got a chance to head out to San Jose California to go to Crunchyroll Expo at the McEnery Convention Center! I thought this would be a good chance to try traveling alone and maybe review the con altogether since this was only its second year. There may be other people like me that wonder if it is worth going from one side of the country to another or even if it’s up the street and around the corner. Wait. If it’s up the street… GO. DON’T BE LAZY! Cons can be great opportunities to meet new people that are into things similar to yourself.

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Now a bit of background about myself, as a side gig before starting this blog, I was a convention crew member. I specifically went out and worked for local cons and sometimes not so local. I worked with some pretty big companies like Crunchyroll and Square Enix. I’ve always thought about writing about those experiences but I’m not sure how much of that would interest you. If so, you can let me know in the comments below! Back to my original point, because of all the experience I’ve gained from not only attending all the cons but also working them, I feel that I can give a pretty good recommendation on whether it would be a good choice to go or not. Alright! Let’s jump in and see what Crunchyroll Expo has to offer you!

Entering, Leaving and Security

One thing that I was very impressed with for Crunchyroll Expo was the amount of security. Attending events like this can be a terrifying experience due to recent events(For those who don’t know what I’m talking about). The security reps didn’t seem like the security that’s just contracted to work with this specific convention center or one that is recommended, they seemed like maybe something hand picked by Crunchyroll to handle this event. If they were actually with the convention center, that’s awesome. As much as security was tight, it wasn’t a huge waste of time to go and come back into the building since they worked so fast. Not to shit on Anime Expo, but I felt that their security was lacking. I believe they only really checked my bookbag once when I first came in.

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They used RFIDs on the badges so you would need to tap to leave and return. If you didn’t tap out when leaving, you wouldn’t be able to come back in that day. As much as some may find that to be a pain, I can see why you’d implement something like this from the standpoint of Crunchyroll. You shouldn’t be able to just get a friend in, run out with a badge and pass it to someone else you know? There’s probably some other security reason this was done but I can’t be bothered to look it up. Also the main reason why you’d go outside is to take the cool cosplay pictures!

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Kick-Off Party

I’ve seen Crunchyroll and other companies do this at other conventions but didn’t think the kick off party would be as fun as it was at CRX. I will say that I rarely ever attend these events because I’m usually at a convention with a group of friends from all of the US. They had a DJ set up with everyone jumping into a big dance circle and areas to get yo drank on. What really made my night was being able to mingle with friends I had in the Anitwitter/tuber space. I’ve had small interactions with Arkada, the YouTuber that runs the Glass Reflections channel, but I’ve never actually got the chance to meet him IRL. So when I got to the kick-off party, not only did I find Arkada but he was practically surrounded by all the big anitubers of the convention and other big names in the industry. So that was pretty awesome to just hang with them for the night and just talk about their creative processes.

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SPACE

One thing that I found really interesting about this venue was the amount of space it had. There was plenty of space to walk down aisles in the Dealers’ hall without nudging or bumping into someone. I’ve always had this problem at other conventions, I’m a big dude. Not only was the plenty of space in the Dealers’ Hall but the entire con. Crunchyroll provided plenty of chill areas to just hang out whether you wanted to sit outside the Dealers’ Hall and listen to some anime tunes from a DJ or check out some of the lounge areas sprinkled around the convention.

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Artist Alley and Dealers’ Hall

One thing I’m not a big fan of, even if it’s kind of due to laziness, is going to separate halls, rooms or even buildings to switch between Artist Alley and Dealer’s Hall. At CRX, you had all of it in one big hall and it even contained an autograph area. So you had a majority of everything you would want to see in one area. It’s pretty cool. I was with some friends who go to Fanime so since this was the same the convention center that they used, they were able to compare between the two conventions and they really enjoyed CRX.

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Panels

For most anime conventions, they have an assortment of options when it comes to panels from all kinds of big company names in the industry or just someone that really wants to show you clips of anime characters eating burgers whilst eating burgers. Seriously, if you get the chance, check out Evan Minto’s Anime Burger Time. Just know, it’s B.Y.O.B (bring your own burger).

I attended panels that provided announcements and premieres to shows like FLCL and also attended panels from content creators like anitubers, LilyPichu and Xell from offlineTV and RDC World. So I appreciated having such a versatile listing of panels and I could tell that the people booking/planning these panels knew what they were doing.

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Final Verdict

DO IT. You will have a good time especially if you are already on the west coast. I went to Anime Expo this year for the first time and as much as I enjoyed myself, if I was living on the west coast, I’d prefer a con that’s less busy. I understand it’s kind of the nature of the beast. At the end of the day, conventions will only get bigger over time and a true sign of success for them is the turnout. But CRX was a breath a fresh air especially since it’s brand new.

Hopefully, you found this post useful. If you enjoyed this kind of content, please let me know by hitting that like button! Also, I will be reaching out to my next monthly Aniblogger interviewee so hopefully I can get that out in a week or two since everyone seemed to really enjoy the one I did with Irina. Thanks again for taking the time to read this, hope you all have a wonderful week. Later!

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