Cosplay, anime, Lego and gaming draw early birds to 19th Ani-Com and Games Hong Kong
Other attractions include cosplay contests and art and design competitions
Hong Kong landmarks and icons such as the Star Ferry rendered in Lego have stolen the limelight at the Ani-Com and Games fair that saw thousands of early birds and overnight campers pour in when it opened on Friday morning.
The annual show, now in its 19th year, is to run until next Tuesday at the Convention and Exhibition Centre in Wan Chai. It features 70 exhibitors and 608 stalls in an expanded venue measuring 270,000 square feet.
Some vendors tried to lure attendees with limited promotions for coupons and games on a first-come, first-served basis.
Lucas Ho, 22, attending the fair for the first time, was nervous about trying to get to the booths ahead of other fairgoers.
“I aim to be the first today to buy more than HK$3,000 [of PlayStation products] to win a Sony television,” he said, referring to a promotion by the console maker.
Wing Li, creator of a Lego work of a sports car carnival in Causeway Bay, said her idea was based on Japanese designs for landmarks.
“We want to call on Hong Kong enthusiasts to refer to other countries’ strengths to build a better Hong Kong,” she said.
Lego competition participant Joe Lam said he spent 60 hours working on a miniature Star Ferry built with about 5,000 bricks by the toy manufacturer.
“With over 100 years of history, the Star Ferry has witnessed several Hong Kong events, and its contribution serving the city year-round symbolises the Hong Kong spirit,” he said.
Ronald Fung, 19, said he bought a life-size Spider-Man Bluetooth loudspeaker and Lego products that in total cost more than HK$3,000 – five times more than he spent last year.
“I’m a super fan of Spiderman, so getting the product on the heels of the new movie is definitely attractive,” he said.
Lego marketing official Kenny Sham said the company expected a 5 to 8 per cent uptick in its sales this year compared with last year.
Sony Interactive Entertainment marketing official Jessie Chan said her company’s promotions drew a considerable number of visitors thanks to its PlayStation offerings and expected sales at the fair to grow 5 to 10 per cent from last year as well.
The effort by Ho, the first-time fair attendee who headed the queue outside the entrance, was recognised by the company.
“We have informed him he will be able to redeem a Sony TV before the opening of the fair,” Chan said.
Meanwhile, the Customs and Excise Department said it had found 249 suspected unsafe “weapon” toys for the fair after an operation in Sham Shui Po over the past two weeks.
The toys – shaped as knuckles, sectioned whips and single-edged swords – did not bear any identification markings such as details about the manufacturers, importers or suppliers, nor any bilingual warnings, the department said.
Officials said the lack of markings and warnings could contravene the Toys and Children’s Products Safety Ordinance and that there would be safety tests on the toys.
They added that the department’s operation would continue during the fair.