Anime Fusion 2018
Merchandise. Anime Fusion’s merch room was on par for most Minnesota cons. A variety of items were offered. That said if you’re looking for recent anime merchandise fresh from Japan, tough luck. Recent figs, dojinshi, and manga selection were lacking, as were cosplay vendors. Otherwise, the merchandise room met most needs.
Artist Alley. Anime Fusion’s Artist Alley is not particularly memorable. This isn’t because the artists work was poor, but simply because it was clear they weren’t a priority. When I think back to this con I honestly can’t remember if there even was one?
Organization & Venue. While the con was organized, it did NOT work for the space. Crowne Plaza is arranged like a labyrinth. We missed multiple events simply because we couldn’t find anything, despite being hotel guests, and having plenty of signage. It’s truly an awful venue.
Panels & Guests. The panels and guests list was pretty small for Anime Fusion, BUT never would I ever complain about a chance to see Samurai Dan and Jillian. They are always a pleasure to see and learn from. Honestly, they may have been the highlight of the con.
Events. The costume contest/masquerade was teeny tiny, but that doesn’t mean the entries weren’t talented. Shout out to Cobalt Witch Cosplays for winning best craftsmanship - her cyber Maki Nishikino was out of this world.
Rave. Consistent with it’s neighboring con, Meta Con, Anime Fusion faces the struggle of a decent rave DJ/setup, but without the attendees to populate it to the point of being fun. After regular check-ins we determined that attendees either couldn’t find it, or were preoccupied with other things (like the Jackbox game room).
Overall rating: 3/10 - Scenic, but weak. Would love to see this con grow in attendance and perhaps a new venue.