My first con ever! What do I expect?

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bludhoundz
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My first con ever! What do I expect?

Post by bludhoundz »

Howdy! I’m a novice cosplayer (just started this year!) and I’ll be joining you all this April! I’m planning on coming all three days (a lot of my friends are egging me on!) The only problem is I’ve never been to a convention, and large spaces tend to make me extremely anxious.

So basically- what is this convention? Do we all just hang out and talk about anime/go to panels/etc? That’s what I’m finding, however I could be wrong. Sounds fun!!

Second- I live around here, is it okay if I don’t get a hotel? I can’t afford all three days and a hotel room, so I hope not. :c

Third- how the heck do I get in? I’m planning on buying my tickets soon, and I need an ID to enter, right? Do I just walk up to the convention center? Do I have to do anything to get in other than show my pass and my ID?

Fourth- (sorry, still more questions) can I just wander? Do I have to attend panels, and if I want to can I just show up? Do I have to sign up for anything? What are the contests? (I don’t want to join, just wondering...) is everything announced, or do people just have schedules and go to places when the time comes?

Fifth- (I think this will be the last one) do I have to sign up for photoshoots? I really wanna find my Peko (am I cosplaying as Fuyuhiko? Maybe..) and I want to participate in a Danganronpa photo shoot if there is one scheduled. How do I join one?

Thank you all for your help! Just a clueless 17 year old here, sorry.
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Re: My first con ever! What do I expect?

Post by aresef »

I haven't been to AB since 2014, I'm returning this year, but I can explain your questions more generally.

Anime Boston and other conventions have various tracks of programming. Unlike comic conventions, where guests typically set up shop and a booth and seldom leave, expect to see the guests at panels, autograph sessions and, in the case of m-flo and GIRLFRIEND, concerts.

The programming schedule is going to contain a bunch of fan panels, the idol showcase, some industry things and events like the AMV contest, the balls and idol showcase. The con will also have karaoke, video games and a manga library.

It's totally OK if you don't get a hotel. Just keep in mind when the last train home is, if you're taking the T.

When last I was there, it wasn't that far removed from the attack and there was a bag check at the door. Most big cons do this now. If you don't have your badge on you and don't see appropriate signage, just tell someone who looks like they need to know that you're en route to pick it up. Consult the website, too, so you know where to go.

You shouldn't feel pressured to do anything. I'd suggest getting the Guidebook app on your phone. Schedules for AB's past have been on there and more and more cons are using that app now. You can get mobile alerts when something you want to do is coming up. There are things you have to sign up for, but these are things like the AMV contest and what have you where they really need to know. This should answer most of your questions about cosplay and photoshoots. And here's where you can apply to the convention's cosplay events.
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Re: My first con ever! What do I expect?

Post by Selestyl »

Hi! I'm not staff so can't answer all of this, but there's a few general things I hope I can help with! :)

Your general summary is pretty spot on! But more specifically:

- You can absolutely just wander! I've done that a lot. If you don't ever want to see a panel or event, you definitely don't have to.
- You have to apply to participate in things like the Masquerade or the Cosplay Games, but as far as I recall other panels you can come and go.
- You don't have to have a hotel! I'm also a local person who commutes in every day.
- A schedule goes live leading up to the convention which should help you narrow things down that you might want to do. As for at the con itself there are usually screens outside of panel rooms telling you what's in there now and what will be in there later. I usually get the Guidebook app and then download the AB schedule when it comes out.

I hope that helps a bit! Enjoy your first con, and welcome to the AB family! :)
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Re: My first con ever! What do I expect?

Post by leadfootnh »

This will be my first Anime Boston as well, but I have attended and worked at many other comic conventions.

1. First of All, it’s perfectly fine to wander and take things all in. Go at your own pace to explore and discover things. Talk to vendors and other attendees. Ease into it on your terms. I know when I’m not working at the event this year, I’ll be exploring this new world myself.

2. You’ll meet a ton of new people and make some new friends. Just being around people with a common interest will spark some fun conversations.

3. If you feel uncomfortable in a situation at any time, find an event staff member. Explain your situation and they can help you from there.

4. If you’re nervous about the venue, it can be helpful to familiarize yourself with maps of the general area and the Hynes itself. A quick Google search will help you find that stuff.

Hopefully this is helpful to you.
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Lamron
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Re: My first con ever! What do I expect?

Post by Lamron »

bludhoundz wrote: Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:57 pm Howdy! I’m a novice cosplayer (just started this year!) and I’ll be joining you all this April! I’m planning on coming all three days (a lot of my friends are egging me on!) The only problem is I’ve never been to a convention, and large spaces tend to make me extremely anxious.
If you have any problems seek out any AB staff member. There are also quiet rooms, one of which is the Manga library. The rooms AB uses in the hotel are also pretty quiet, if you need them.
bludhoundz wrote: Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:57 pm So basically- what is this convention? Do we all just hang out and talk about anime/go to panels/etc? That’s what I’m finding, however I could be wrong. Sounds fun!!
You can do what ever you want to do or not to do. Coming to AB does not mean anyone is going to force you do to something, but checking out panels, shows and everything else is very fun :-)
bludhoundz wrote: Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:57 pm Second- I live around here, is it okay if I don’t get a hotel? I can’t afford all three days and a hotel room, so I hope not. :c
You do not need a hotel, like it was said earlier, just pay attention to the time so you don't miss the last train.
bludhoundz wrote: Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:57 pm Third- how the heck do I get in? I’m planning on buying my tickets soon, and I need an ID to enter, right? Do I just walk up to the convention center? Do I have to do anything to get in other than show my pass and my ID?
If you are buying online, bring your ID and the confirmation that you will get by email, to the registration room in the Sheraton(same floor and down the hall from the Hynes main entrance) Should be signs or just ask any AB staff. There you will pick up your badge and then you are all set.
bludhoundz wrote: Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:57 pm Fourth- (sorry, still more questions) can I just wander? Do I have to attend panels, and if I want to can I just show up? Do I have to sign up for anything? What are the contests? (I don’t want to join, just wondering...) is everything announced, or do people just have schedules and go to places when the time comes?
If you want to be in any of the Masquerade or the Cosplay Games you will need to sign up, but going to watch is ok. Panels are just walk in, just remember some panels fill up fast, so you might want to get there early
bludhoundz wrote: Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:57 pm Fifth- (I think this will be the last one) do I have to sign up for photoshoots? I really wanna find my Peko (am I cosplaying as Fuyuhiko? Maybe..) and I want to participate in a Danganronpa photo shoot if there is one scheduled. How do I join one?
Sorry don't know about photoshoots (will edit if I find out anything) Keep checking this forum and also check out the AB pages on Facebook. I've seen posts about shoots in the past there.
bludhoundz wrote: Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:57 pm Thank you all for your help! Just a clueless 17 year old here, sorry.
You only remain clueless if you don't ask any questions :-) Have fun
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bludhoundz
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Re: My first con ever! What do I expect?

Post by bludhoundz »

Thank you very much for your help! Looking forward to it in April<3
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Re: My first con ever! What do I expect?

Post by Fetch »

Lamron wrote: Thu Jan 23, 2020 7:22 pm
bludhoundz wrote: Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:57 pm Third- how the heck do I get in? I’m planning on buying my tickets soon, and I need an ID to enter, right? Do I just walk up to the convention center? Do I have to do anything to get in other than show my pass and my ID?
If you are buying online, bring your ID and the confirmation that you will get by email, to the registration room in the Sheraton(same floor and down the hall from the Hynes main entrance) Should be signs or just ask any AB staff. There you will pick up your badge and then you are all set.
If you don't go on the Thursday for pre-reg pickup, enter the Sheraton lobby and go up the escalator. Pru security the last few years hasn't let people go down the hallway towards the Hynes or the Sheraton during AB. I have even seen them yelling at people that were just trying to get to Top of the Hub or the Dunkin' to TURN AROUND AND GO OUTSIDE! (Had to put that all caps, because the Pru guards were screaming it that loudly.)
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Lamron
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Re: My first con ever! What do I expect?

Post by Lamron »

Fetch wrote: Mon Feb 17, 2020 4:51 pm
If you don't go on the Thursday for pre-reg pickup, enter the Sheraton lobby and go up the escalator. Pru security the last few years hasn't let people go down the hallway towards the Hynes or the Sheraton during AB. I have even seen them yelling at people that were just trying to get to Top of the Hub or the Dunkin' to TURN AROUND AND GO OUTSIDE! (Had to put that all caps, because the Pru guards were screaming it that loudly.)
I don't cosplay and I hide my badge when I'm in that area, so it hasn't been an issue for me :-)
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Fetch
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Re: My first con ever! What do I expect?

Post by Fetch »

Lamron wrote: Mon Feb 17, 2020 5:39 pm
Fetch wrote: Mon Feb 17, 2020 4:51 pm
If you don't go on the Thursday for pre-reg pickup, enter the Sheraton lobby and go up the escalator. Pru security the last few years hasn't let people go down the hallway towards the Hynes or the Sheraton during AB. I have even seen them yelling at people that were just trying to get to Top of the Hub or the Dunkin' to TURN AROUND AND GO OUTSIDE! (Had to put that all caps, because the Pru guards were screaming it that loudly.)
I don't cosplay and I hide my badge when I'm in that area, so it hasn't been an issue for me :-)
I shall clarify: Pru security was screaming at everyone, no matter if they were attending AB or not. That was a couple years ago. They might have smartened up since then, but I wouldn't bet on it.
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Re: My first con ever! What do I expect?

Post by InuMiroLover »

Late to the party, but please make sure you keep your bodily needs in check! Remember to eat, stay hydrated, wash up and sleep! Believe it or not you are going to be pushing your body since there is just so much to see and do, and you'll want to experience everything the con offers. Especially since this is your first con! Keeping your body's defenses up is also good for fighting off the dreaded "con flu!" (Not a flu persay, but its common to feel a little under the weather after a convention.) So remember to find the time to rest yourself, have a good meal and shower! Your body will thank you!
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Re: My first con ever! What do I expect?

Post by Elli21486 »

Welcome. I am not staff but I am on here a lot, especially when it comes to weather. Anyway, I can provide some useful links so feel free to go through them.

Weather in Boston 2020 - Discusses our local weather and what to expect on the day of (which I start every year)
Preparation checklist: Things to bring with you! - A list of things provided from experiences of other con goers. This is pretty useful, especially for first timers.
Re: Restaurants in the area? - The beginning phases of a master list of places to eat.

Hope this all helps.

Oh, there is one important thing to remember about going to Anime Boston.... have fun!
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Re: My first con ever! What do I expect?

Post by MidnightSiren182 »

This is the altar you shall worship all weekend Image

I do not kid. The water is the life giver, the life saver. It is the Alpha, it is the Omega, and no not in the fanfic way. The only knotting you'll be getting is knots of stomach pain if you do not pay visits to the Water Cooler.

Drink a little more water than you normally would, cons are more dehydrating than you'd realize. Get yourself some collapsible or refillable water bottles and become friends and patrons of the Water Cooler. Water Cooler loves you. It wants to keep you going.
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Re: My first con ever! What do I expect?

Post by lazerem »

The cosplay photoshoot schedule is here! https://animeboston.com/cosplay/cosplay_photoshoots
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