I’ve partially recovered from this awesome but very tiring 3-day event(desk job has done nothing for my energy levels) so here’s my roundup of the show!
Opening the event on Friday, JARUJARU got Hyper Japan off to a great start with their unique comedy. They performed 2 sketches based around sumo and photo taking, interspersed with filmed Laurel and Hardy style silent routines. And they even stayed around for a quick Q&A session before their plane back to Japan. Seemed like such nice guys!
Sake Discovery Afternoon With Zuma
Later on Friday, we joined Satomi Okubo for a great session on Sake. We learned about sake production, and how the varying qualities are created by polishing the rice further and further to remove imperfections. The session was rounded off nicely with a chance to taste 2 different types of Sake.
ITK Robot Show
I caught the ITK Robot show on Sunday, and was impressed by all of their creations. From the aptly named ‘handroid’ to their motorised extending walking stick, plus who could live without an Electric Weed Buster?! Another really interesting session, their booth was packed all weekend so it was nice to get a good look at their wonderful machines.
JETRO Presents: Japanese Multimedia â€“ A Bright Future in Britain
This panel discussion on Friday featured Mr Andrew Partridge(UK Business Development, Viz Media Europe / Kaze) Mr Yen Hau(Product Manager, Rising Star Games) & Mr Peter Stone(General Manager, KONAMI Digital Entertainment) discussing Japanese multimedia in the UK, and their plans to strengthen it’s presence to close to it’s popularity in France.
I saw Kanon’s performance on Sunday, and even though it was a little shorter than the Saturday one it was still great! She’s a very unique artist, combining an awesome voice and incredible cello skills, she really sung with conviction and made the very most of that 20 minute set. Kanon sang in her native Japanese but addressed the crowd between songs in English and was a very gracious performer, thanking the audience a number of times.
This was incredible, absolutely incredible. Joji Hirota and his band play with an absolutely unstoppable energy, and the sound was like nothing I’ve ever heard before… huge and powerful but not noisy in the least. I’m so glad I was there on Friday to enjoy this.
Japan Media Arts Festival
A collection of 16 short films, I particularly enjoyed this stand, although it would’ve been nice if it had a little more attention as it was just a large tv playing the films, a quieter area with dedicated seating would’ve been ideal. My personal favourites were I â™¥ XXX / OTSUKA Ai :: Chie MORIMOTO / Show YANAGISAWA – a tale of two penguins walking around the world to find one another again and ab_rah :: Kohei YOSHINO (networks) – amazing stop motion animation drawn on magna-doodles!
Square Enix Cosplay Battle
I grew up playing Square Enix Games(well, Squaresoft and Enix as they once were), so it was great to watch a cosplay event where I recognised just about everybody! So many great costumes, found cross-dressing Cloud Strife particularly amusing. Too bad nobody cosplayed as Vivi though, that would’ve been awesome.
So many upcoming games were playable, I managed to get some time with Resident Evil Revelations, Mario Kart, Super Mario, Starfox 3D, Dark Souls & the new Ace Combat! And there were tons more like the new Zelda, Kirby and Xenoblade Chronicles!
Oh the food! It’s probably easier to list what I didn’t eat… There was just about everything you could ask for
My hopes for next year
Well firstly, I’m really interested in getting involved, so hopefully I can do that but here are my hopes for the 2012 show:
Hyper Japan has outgrown the Olympia Two, it’s time to move onto a bigger and better venue which can allow the event to get as big(literally and figuratively) as it deserves to be. With this could come a dedicated music stage, with acts running all day long, and another for all the great presentations and seminars. Obviously this all comes down to cost though!
Sorry dude… this years MC was very good at what he does, but I just didn’t think he was a good fit for the show. A bit loud, and with an interview style which bordered on confrontational
There was a great turnout this year in terms of playable games from Nintendo & Namco Bandai, here’s hoping they can get SEGA and Konami on board for future events. A mini game arcade with classic shmups, bemani games and beat ‘em ups could be a real winner too.
I’d love to try and organise a Gunpla related event for next year, mobilise some of the UK modellers and get us a space in the hall where across the three days we build a diorama and then raffle it off at the end, or something…
Oh and last but not least, a loot pic! Picked up two sushi kits 2-for-1 on the last day – can never have enough rolling mats and soy sauce Also, a copy of Hobby Japan magazine for an amazing £5 - you can’t even get it for that price at face yen value! And finally, a Gundam Rose kit, simple little 1/144 model which I bought because it features in the G-Gundam Cell Emma got me a few years ago bought it from the Gundam Nation stand – check them out!
So there you have it, thanks for reading this mammoth post. I highly recommend checking out Hyper Japan next year! Lots more images of the show below, enjoy!