Overview of Wonder Festival 2017 [Summer]
WonFes 2017 kicked off back in the winter to a very large attendance, and this summer’s event is no different. For those who are unfamiliar with WonFes or Wonder Festival, it’s a prestigious event that takes place twice a year, and showcases some of Japan’s best figures from various brands and also independent dealers. The wonderful aspect about WonFes is that it caters to just about everyone regardless of gender or age, and it helps to bring people together who all share a passion for the otaku culture. If you’re ever in Japan during the winter and summer months, WonFes 2017 is one event that you’ll want to book on your calendar.
|When it was Established|| 2014|
Official Website: http://wf.kaiyodo.net/
|Length of event||July 30th, 2017|
|Place||Makuhari Messe, Chiba, Japan|
|Price of Admission||2,500￥|
What to Expect
Minori-chan is a wonderful cosplayer who travels to many events across Japan to show off her cosplaying artistry. We didn’t get much information from her but if you do see her around be sure to give her a shout! @minori39
鉢田 - Hachita is a cosplayer who attends many events and is passionate about Japan’s pop culture. Her cosplay is of a Monster Strike character and she really enjoys playing the game! If you ever see her at any cosplay events, please say hi! Please look for her on Twitter @moitiemoitie
WonFes is an event that caters to those who have a love for collecting, creating, designing or even taking pictures of figures. The minute you walk through the doors, it’s like walking into a museum full of artwork ranging from small little accessories, to the more fancy and sophisticated clay models that so many artists put on display for everyone. There’s a lot to see and do at WonFes especially if you’re just there for the atmosphere or perhaps even taking a look at the beautiful cosplayers. Whatever your prerogative there’s something magical there for you to experience and so that’s why WonFes is considered to be one of the major events that many people attend throughout the year. Since WonFes takes place twice a year much like Comiket, the event allows for more expansion and the promotion of products ranging from low cost to the more high end brands. Booths are filled to the brim with attendees who are looking to grab that perfect selfie with their favorite anime character, and the booth babes who are trying to maintain that colgate smile for anyone brave enough to ask them for a photo.
What to Bring in Order to Enjoy the Event
Wonder Festival 2017 celebrates the passion and commitment that many talented artists put in to showcase their work to the world, and many fans come from all over to show their love and support. We had the opportunity to attend both the winter and now summer event and we’ll share with you, some of the finer aspects of the event and what to bring, Since the event caters to the distribution and promoting of figures and garage kits (Gunpla for example), we suggest that you bring along a load of cash to ensure you can grab some of your favorites before the crows come in to grab the early worm. Surely if you plan to stay a while then having your own bag to carry along will surely aid you, especially if you have big pockets and want to spend a ton. While the event does supply bags for free just for visiting, they’re not of the best quality and so therefore having a backup bag is worth it in the long run. If you intend to stay the entire event to wander, then definitely having a camera will be your best friend since you’ll have the chance to take photos of the plethora of booths that are on display, but also to take some snapshots of the beautiful ladies in the cosplay space.
What to do While There / What is Available
Now this is where the fun really begins because WonFes is a cornucopia of figures and anime related goods that you simply can’t pass up, even if you’re just window shopping. The beauty of this type of event is that while money is certainly a pivotal item to carry with you, it’s more the experience of being at the event that’s truly invaluable. Whether you’re into ecchi or perhaps some fantasy, WonFes has every genre covered and so you’ll never feel left out, even if you decide to just take a few photos. With 8 halls to wander through, there’s never a time when you feel bored or bereft of your time because every hall has something new to offer, and to of course stimulate your senses. We started our adventures in the independent dealer section where we were gifted with a plethora of figures ranging from really stylish looking Gundam customizations, to the more adorable and fashionable looking dolls that were scattered all throughout the venue. As we stated earlier, Japan’s pop culture has no borders and we managed to run into some dealers from China, Taiwan and plenty more. The fact that there are so many countries that attend and showcase their artwork only means that WonFes is an event that has global appeal, and you see the cultural uniqueness that each figure displays.
Ume-chan is a well known cosplayer who also loves Japan’s pop culture, and loves to cosplay as Super Sonico. Her love for gaming, anime and everything otaku life is wonderful to hear about, so please say hi to her as well! @ume_cos0521
ぴんく or PinC in English, is another cosplayer who loves to attend various events across Japan and has a passion for cosplay among other things. She's into manga and anime as well so be sure to give her a follow and say hi on Twitter! @wacapiinc
After our adventures in the indie section, we made our way to the big names where the likes of SEGA, Aniplex, Nitro+ and more were in attendance. We took a little breather from all the walking and stumbled across the SEGA booth where there was a press show taking place. Sega Prize was the main focus and showcased a variety of UFO goods that will be available for fans to collect later in the year. If you’re a fan of UFO catcher prizes then please look forward to the new releases slated to drop later this year. Another big press event that took place was at the Nitro+ booth where people flocked to the stage to see the brand new Lexus, which had been custom designed with Super Sonico decals and of course a surprise visit by Super Sonico herself! Cameras flashed in quick succession as Super Sonico posed for fans and thanked everyone for their support. Some members of Twitch were also in attendance so we assume they had a stream going while Sonico did her quick presentation. With so much excitement racing through our veins we decided to go to the cosplay section where tons of photographers lined up to get their exclusive shot of their favorite cosplayers. We managed to grab a few shots which we’ll showcase below, and we must say the quality in terms of costumes this year were much better than last. Perhaps it’s the summer breeze or maybe everyone was in a cheery mood, but more people were inclined to pose for the camera and show off some skin which we were more than happy to oblige to.
We only wish WonFes Summer 2017 lasted a bit longer because it was a one day event unlike the winter one which took place over two days. The price of admission was about 2,500￥ or roughly $25 in US/CDN dollars so it wasn’t too cheap, but it wasn’t expensive either especially since you’re getting a lot for your money anyway. Plenty of food options available, plenty of amazing figures to check out, it’s really an otaku’s heaven and we totally recommend that you come check it out next year!
Honey's Final Thoughts
To be honest, while the event was certainly a worthwhile one, we did run into some of the same booths we saw during the winter event which was a little disheartening. Our only guess as to the reason is that maybe many weren’t able to attend the winter event and so this was a second chance to experience the wonders of WonFes. Be that as it may, this was a splendid event that came with a lot of new activities to take part in and we were more than happy to be a part of it all. As promised, we’ll leave you with some of our favorite shots from the event and let us know what you think of them in the comments below! Until next time, this is NualphJPN signing out!
As always, for everything sweet be sure to keep it locked here on Honey's Anime!