Cosplay Media has returned from Anime Conji and must say that the convention ranks number 2 in the list of most unorganized conventions, (Comikaze day one with the 2-3 hour lines in the 100+ degree weather still holds the #1 spot).
Arrived at 1pm on Saturday. Parked and spent about 30min to find registration. Absolutely no signs pointing to where to go and no staff members knew or wanted to inform you. Find registration and there is ONE staff member running registration with a line of 30 people waiting tor register!!!! Seriously!?!? Finally get to the front of registration line sn hour later and start on one of their several PCs inputting my information. Get to the payment page and notice it’s $10 more then it was mentioned on their web page. Their web page stated, “$20 if you preorder or $25 at the door”. Nope. It was $35!!!! Honestly is that even legal? If I saw an ad at Target for a brand new PS3 for $200 and then show up and they tell me it is now $250, they would honor the $200 price. But nooooo. Not Anime Conji. I asked the single staff member behind the counter that the price was posted at $25 online and it was now $35 and he stated that finance upped the price for some reason and nothing I could do. Pay or go. Pay the fee and then I’m directed to another line with a single person behind the counter. Wait another 30 minutes, because they are also the pre-reg line! Get my badge and ask for a brochure or schedule, (there are so signs about where things are and what time). I’m told they do not have brochures or schedules and that I will just have to walk around to see what’s going on. After this I go hunting down the exhibit hall and try to find out where everyone is, (it was dead!!!!). 30 minutes later find the exhibit hall and it’s empty with the exception 0f a few cosplayers playing cosplay chess and the people running the booths. Go outside and see a ton of photographers with light kits set up just waiting for cosplayers to show up. There were approximately 20 photographers and 8 of them had a light kit set up with 2 lights plugged into a power outlet. Eventually a few random cosplayers would show up and they looked great. Unfortunately once 3pm hit the con was dead!!! I mean there was not a soul anywhere. Like 3 photographers sitting down eating lunch and that was it. Exhibit hall was empty and there was nothing going on. Maybe if I had a brochure or schedule I could see what was going on at 3pm that caused everyone to vacate.
Fast forward a few days and a good friend directs me to a podcast talking about Anime Conji. In it, they discuss how they did not get any sort of brochure until Mid-Saturday and was full of errors. It also mentions how dead it was. Mostly caused by the weather. Sunday photos from other sources show no foot traffic in the backgrounds. Honestly, after what I went through, I think that we’re entitled to a refund. Nothing that was mentioned on their website was offered and it was so disorganized and a waste of everyone’s time. Don’t tell people that the price of admission is a certain price then change it on the hour. That’s just BS.