This year’s Comic Fiesta brought their A-game. A bigger venue, a larger crowd, and a Main Hall so huge that it could fit two different stages. Just walking from one end to the other, especially with the “human traffic jam” in-between, took almost 5 minutes of walking. Maybe 2 minutes if we ran and pushed. It was insane.
For us, it was Eleven Tsuki’s first year attending Comic Fiesta as media. Jane, Amos, Joon-Keat and Nathalie were there on both days covering event grounds, doing interviews and stage camping. Due to time constraints, most of our stage coverage was focused on the Main Stage. For more details on the Garena stage and area, maybe you should check out their website here.
If you’re looking for coverage on the artbooths and exhibitors, we’ve done that in another post here. Otherwise, read on!
Invitational Crossover: Mang & G
Mang & G are cosplayers from Taiwan, winners of the Fancy Frontier 26 cosplay competition and here in Malaysia as part of a cultural exchange initiative with Comic Fiesta. From the moment their performance began, it became obvious to everyone that they deserved their spot on stage. They acted out a scene from Hunter X Hunter, coupled with the audio and subtitles playing in the background, that drew everyone in.
However, the most impressive part of their performance was undoubtedly the ‘hair’. There were actual propellers within it to keep it standing straight, and it was so tall that it was a challenge to even get the whole thing in frame! Scroll down to see what we’re talking about.
You can find out more about Mang & G here.
Solo Cosplay Competition — 60 Seconds of Anything (+ Results!)
As per Comic Fiesta tradition, their solo cosplay competition was back for another year. There were a total of 23 contestants, with special guests Reika, Jin and Shimo acting as judges. Even though the contestants were only given 60 seconds, they definitely milked it for all it was worth. There was no shortage of impressive props, action sequences, detailed costumes… There were also a few performances that had us going: “Wait. That was 60 seconds?!”
In the end, there were a total of 5 prizes to give out. We’ve listed the winners below:
- Special Snowflake award: Muhammad Faris Bin (Mr. Satan, Dragon Ball)
- Best Costume: Niki (Terra, Kingdom Hearts)
- Best Prop: Nabi Abdul Aziz (Genos, One Punch Man)
- Best Female: Seiya Hayashi (Erza Scarlett, Fairy Tail)
- Best Male: Roxas Tham (Cloud Strife, Final Fantasy)
For more images, check out our Facebook album here!
Culture Japan by Danny Choo
Danny Choo is one of those people that most people would know about. At least, if you’re attending Comic Fiesta, the chances are high that you know who he is. In return, the turn out for his stage session was impressive. Throughout his session, he mostly gave updates on the ever-popular Mirai Suenega doll. He went through some of the biggest opportunities she had in the past year, such as being featured in a Japanese crime-solving drama, collaborating with the Japanese government to promote Japan tourism, and more. He also screened a few accompanying videos, including one about the making of a Smart Doll.
Eventually, we came out of it feeling very inspired. Beyond Mirai Suenega, Danny shared stories about his health condition and also some advice on becoming an entrepreneur. To sum it up, always remember to sit straight, don’t forget to exercise after sitting still for long periods of time, and never give up, even if you’re only given NOs. Turn them into YES-es. In retrospect, it wasn’t the best idea to put all the advice into one sentence like that /sweats/. Anyway, if you’d like to be caught up on what he’s doing, you can visit his website here.
SQUARE ENIX: What is Final Fantasy XV?
Final Fantasy amassed quite the crowd when it was their turn to showcase what they have. Everyone was crazy excited on knowing what the new game is going to be about. Actually, crazy excited would be an understatement, more like euphoric. The two representatives from SquareEnix were Hajime Tabata, the Director of Final Fantasy XV, and Wan Hazmer, Lead Game Designer of the Culture Team for Final Fantasy XV (and also a fellow Malaysian!).
Beginning with the official game trailer, they had the crowd gasping in awe at how beautifully done it was. Even more cheers and screams filled the convention hall when the director stated that what was premiered to us was, actually, real time game graphics. From then onwards, they only continued to impress. The main theme of the game was revealed to be a mix between modern day and imperial history, and that a lot of the emphasis would be placed on characters, world history, and adventure aspects.
That being said, the main character was confirmed to be Noctis, with other characters Regis (Noctis’ father), Luna Freya, Prompto, Ignis, and Gladiolus playing big parts in the story as well. The objective of the game is to reclaim the lost kingdom, a simpler story to welcome in newer fans that might be turned off by the convoluted stories of the previous games. A big part of the story would also focus on the bonds between characters, such as between Noctis and his father, and between him and his adventuring buddies.
Halfway through the session, one thing definitely became clear to us — the INSANE amount of researching and testing they went through, even with the little stuff like lighting and game physics, all to provide the player with the most immersive Final Fantasy experience. Mr. Hajime Tabata mentioned that they wish to make this latest Final Fantasy installment a masterpiece. The goal is to make this game so good, that when asking future players about it, they would be 100% certain that this was the best one ever made.
To really put a smile and laughter on everyone faces, he also confirmed that there would be mountable Chocobos as well as a Malaysian culture reference — an in-game Teh Tarik stall!! The game is confirmed to be released in early 2016, and we are definitely looking forward to it.
I Scream Night Jam
In recent years, Comic Fiesta have made it a tradition to hold performances in the evening for those that just want to party the night away after a tiring day of shopping and queuing. Last year’s concert was called Space Jam, and this year, the performances came in two different names — ‘I Scream Night Jam’ and ‘Fusion Blast’, which was held on Day 1 and Day 2 respectively. However, we will only be covering I Scream Night Jam, which featured local artists Pretzel Hearts and Raijin alongside special guest FLOW.
Pretzel Hearts was given the first honor to warm-up the stage, and surely, they didn’t disappoint. Even though Nisa, the lead violinist and vocals of the band, couldn’t attend due to furthering her studies overseas, the band still managed to awe the crowds alongside EYO. The sound of the violin combined with the other modern instruments was pleasing to the ears. With songs like Nevereverland, No Regret, Bios and even Sayonara Memories being played, how could an otaku fan resist singing along?
After the wonderful performance from Pretzel Hearts, Raijin took to the stage with their own energetic and nostalgic performance. Although they only formed the group recently, back in 2014, the energy and passion that the group gave out during the concert was more than we could had asked for.
The mere fact that Lynn, the vocalist of Raijin, was enjoying herself by occasionally running around the stage headbanging alongside Hiro, who was on the guitar, showed just how much fun they had. We all know that fun is contagious, and sure enough, the crowd could be seen rocking along with her! Popular songs such as Kanzen Kankaku Dreamer and Unravel could be heard being performed from Raijin that night.
With both Pretzel Hearts and Raijin having to leave the stage after leaving us all exhausted from singing along and rocking to their tunes, we were given a short breathing time as FLOW performed some sound tests on stage.
After a solid 30 minute-long intermission, FLOW finally rocks the stage with their opening song ‘Sign’. The audience was roaring when one of their vocalist, Keigo, started interacting with the crowds in Malay, and it only became more and more hyped as the night went on. With ‘I Scream Night Jam’ being FLOW’s final concert in 2015, they sure delivered a blast for their finale with some of their famous songs such as ‘Go!!!’, ‘Colors’, ‘CHA-LA HEAD-CHA-LA’ and many more.
As much excitement there was during FLOW’s performance, we weren’t allowed to take any pictures or video due to the concert’s regulations. Though, you can find photos of the concert here. Nevertheless, that did not stop us from enjoying the concert as each one of their performances ‘flowed’ more and more energy towards the crowd (pun intended). Of course, a concert wouldn’t be complete without an encore performance, and FLOW even brought along Malaysia’s national flag for their obligatory concert photo with all the crowds.
Om Noms (feat. Reika, Jin, Xizhen, and Shimo)
After missing the rest of the mini events like Brunch Crunch, we found ourselves at stage for this adorable event. Acting as a time filler between stage events, special guests Reika, Jin, Xizhen and Shimo battled it out in a lip sync competition to become the ultimate champion and golden banana winner (don’t ask). After one round of solo performances, a few lucky fans would be chosen to join each cosplayer in a second, bonus round. Much fun ensues.
In a kind of expected way, Reika won this mini battle. What can we say? Her fanbase really is saikou. 😉
Cosplay Invitational (+ Results!)
After the solo cosplay competition on Day One, you could say that it was the senpai’s turn on Day Two. Cosplay Invitational, if you are not familiar with it, is an exclusive invite-only cosplay competition. Most of the contestants are invited online, although two teams are also picked each year from Comic Fiesta Mini and Animangaki’s respective cosplay competitions. The teams, judged by Weon Haur, Kikyo, and special guest Xizhen, all put up spectacular performances.
They utilised all parts of the stage from projectors to lighting, and brought no shortage of props and saikangs on stage; all that effort to present the most perfect performance they could. And boy, was it worth it. It being our first year covering Cosplay Invitational officially, we think it was some, if not the most, captivating string of cosplay performances we’ve ever had the pleasure of watching.
After this competition among the cream of the crop, eventually some teams would have to emerge as winners. Later in the day during the Comic Fiesta Awards, they were announced to be:
Third place: Team Chevalier (Kuroshitsuji)
Second place: GG Twins (Warriors Orochi 3)
First place: Fruits (Fate/Prototype)
Congrats to all the winners, and even to those who didn’t won, for your amazing performances! We have more photos on Facebook, and you can view videos of their performances on the Comic Fiesta website here.
11 bit Studios — the road to creating This War of Mine
11 bit studios were sort of the dark horse of the whole event. Fans of the game gathered around, and were joined by both random passer-bys and stage campers, but most people did not really know what to expect from Marek Ziemak, Senior Producer at 11 bit studios. There was no doubt that the crowd was smaller than others, but nevertheless, the crowd enjoyed the showcase.
It was shared to us that the game was initially inspired by real life events, something that could definitely hit a little too close to home for players. Creating a game in which you are stuck in the middle of a war and you play in the perspective of a civilian, who is a victim, is definitely a standpoint that is rarely explored. For inspiration, the studio focused on the Siege of Sarajevo during the Bosnian War, getting real life accounts from the victims and stories from the news that was broadcast during that time.
The goal of the game was to create a dramatic ambiance, with each decision you make as the player filled with some amount of weight and regret. There was also emphasis on leaving a small amount of the game mechanics to be “blank”, leaving players to use their imagination to piece together the game’s ‘story’.
The graphic art style that was chosen was also decidedly simplified and darkly toned, in order to set focus not entirely on the characters but on what was really going on in the game. To be honest, as a person whom has already played the game, the producers have really stuck to their word. They truly did a great job in making you, as a player, feel bad about your decisions.
All and all, the 11-bit studio showcase showed much of the thought that went into making such a beautiful game, and it was also really heart warming to know that some amount of the game sales are placed into charity for War Child.
This is the 3rd time in a row in which Garena has held a League of Legends tournament during Comic Fiesta, bringing the top gamers from Malaysia and Singapore to the big stage. There was a mix of people there, those who came just for League of Legends or FIFA, weary travelers who just wanted to sit down and watch, and so on. While the tournaments were certainly interesting, there were also other sections to this area, such as an area where people could test out the latest Garena games or show off their skills while they just gamed away.
We personally didn’t spend much time in this area compared to the rest of the hall and the Main Stage, but Amos did stop by during the cosplay competition to witness some awesome cosplays, and I wasn’t disappointed at all. The cosplays were amazing, performances were awesome as well and I got to see Aza Miyuko dance as DJ Sona, who am I to complain?
The stage events arranged this year were really exciting. The PA system, lighting, and music was practically flawless too. Our only regret is not having the time to catch all of the events happening on both stages! You’ll definitely find us stage camping again next year! *peace*
For more images, view our Facebook album here.
Read the second part of our general coverage here: Crowd & Booths