Stage Zero Games by Jared the Greek
One of the things that makes Stage Zero an eye catcher is that there is always something going on during the convention. Often times it is a series of silly games like Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes where players touch the body part specified unless the host says ‘bowl’ and they need to quickly reach down and grab a bowl that’s on the ground. In attrition to that, they have little staff tournaments of various video games like Tekken and Street Fighter. However, one of the biggest draws is the Fanime Game Show where attendees battle it out with trivia to win prizes. Stage Zero is great when you need a break from walking around or just need to kill some time before an event. It is easily one of the big reasons why Fanime stands out amongst other conventions.
Dealer Hall by Eri Kagami
The dealers hall was very much larger than the last time we attended in 2012. There was plenty of room to walk; you never felt crowded in. There were a variety of dealers. You can find endless rows of plushes and neso’s. There were several wig dealers present including Epic Cosplay. There were even a few retro anime shops that sold old school artbooks and merch before 2000. The dealers hall also had food. We were living off the takoyaki stand for most of the weekend – very filling for its value! There was even a donut place – great for a sugar boost! The only complaint I have about the dealers hall is I felt there were parts of the hall that were too dark; lighting wasn’t really consistent in the dealer hall.
Angel Hearts Presents Idol Dance Medley by Eri Kagami
Stage Zero had a few idol dance cover groups perform on stage throughout the weekend. The Bay Area is home to several idol cover groups. This gives cover groups an opportunity to perform on stage in front of an audience without the worry of finding empty space in a hall or entering for masquerade. I was able to catch Kitty Princess Kie of Angel Hearts perform covers from Aikatsu on Monday. Throughout the weekend, I would also see Love Live, Vocaloid, and K-pop cover groups perform here on the open stage.
I Sunk Your Waifu by Jared the Greek
This was our last panel of the convention and even on the last day we still had a good sized audience. This panel went over the ships from games like Kantai Collection and Azur Lane that were inspired by ships from World War II. Ships from all around the world were covered and we discussed the destruction that befell the vast majority of them. Despite the depressing content we tried to make it a light hearted panel with a few in-jokes from the games. This was a great way to wrap up our run of panels as the discussion continued after the panel with other history nerds.