Ani-Com & Games convention to draw massive, costumed crowd

Ani-Com & Games expects annual comics convention to draw biggest turnout in its history

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 23 July, 2014, 3:59am
UPDATED : Friday, 25 July, 2014, 7:33pm

Organisers of this year's Ani-Com & Games exhibition say they are confident they will set a new turnout record as they prepare to open the biggest show in the event's 16-year history.

The five-day festival of comics, games, animation and costumes will take place in its biggest-yet exhibition area of 11/2 hectares, including a single booth measuring 465 square metres.

The exhibition set a 15-year attendance record of 729,000 last year and its chief executive, Leung Chung-poon, said yesterday he expected even more people to attend this year.

"We are expecting a 2 to 3 per cent rise in the number of visitors to the fair," Leung said.

The exhibition opens on Friday and runs until Tuesday at the Convention and Exhibition Centre in Wan Chai.

Tung Tak Enterprise, which organises the annual event, expanded the exhibition area by more than 6 per cent from the area it occupied last year by incorporating an additional section of the exhibition centre.

The fair is one of a series of increasingly popular comic-based events worldwide, such as this week's Comic-Con in the US city of San Diego. That convention started in 1970 and inspired myriad others worldwide.

Attendees often wear elaborate costumes depicting their favourite characters, a trend known as cosplay.

Watch: Ani-Com Hong Kong 2014 brings comic animations to life 

A highlight this year is the launch of a series of Doujinshi events, a Japanese term for self-published works of amateur writers, where comic strips by freelance Japanese manga artists will be on display accompanied by cosplay and stage performances.

Comic artists from the mainland, Japan, Thailand and other Asian countries are expected to attend.

Mad Head, the company behind the popular mobile game Tower of Saviours, will run the biggest booth.

"I am confident that there will be a huge turnout for our booth, what with the scheduled appearance of South Korean boy band Big Bang and the introduction of the Doujinshi events," Mad Head chief operating officer Wong Chun-yu said.

But with the fair's increasing popularity comes an increase in prices. This year's entrance fee will be HK$35, up from last year's HK$30.