For many years Anime Vegas has been the highlight of the convention season.  I have many great memories of this event.  However, this year was one of the weakest conventions that Anime Vegas has ever had.  It was not bad, but it was far from good.  So much so that I neither dislike nor like the convention this year.  I am not happy with this feeling because Anime Vegas has officially dropped down a level in my favorite convention list.  Still the Vegas nightlife is great so I do not regret my trip, I just wish it had been as good as previous years.

There was much to like about this year.  First off the panel line up was great.  Most years Anime Vegas has a great panel line up and this year was no exception. I loved the Power Rangers panels and I had fun at the various voice actor panels.  I hope next year’s panels are just as good as this year.  Second, the rave and ball were both fun and well run.  I wish I had more time to dance at both events, but a little dancing is better than none.  I hope the staff for both events remain the same and hope next year I will have more time to dance at both events.  Third, the game room is almost back to what it once was.  It was great to see a mix of current and old school games.  I hope the video game room will continue to grow and get better each year.  Finally, the guest list was really good this year. Not only were there the expected voice actors, but a few surprises as well.  There was so much to like about this year, but this was balanced out by many things that did not go so well this year.

This year had many disappointments the first of which was the location.  I was excited to hear that Anime Vegas was going to be in a hotel this year.  However, upon looking into the hotel I decided to stay somewhere else.  Upon arrival at the convention I knew I made the right decision.  The hotel had a filthy feeling to it.  The hotel claimed to be newly renovated, but if this is what it looks like now, I dread to think of what it was before.  Also, it was difficult to navigate at night and during the day it was a pain to have the sun beat down on you as you went to different parts of the hotel for different events.  On the good side, there was plenty of water and enough room to host all events.  This was a step in the right direction and I hope Anime Vegas can move to a hotel worthy of this event.

The second major flaw was the maid café.  I have gone to the maid café every year that it has been run at Anime Vegas.  The café was usually an oasis from the regular convention.  The maids were always nice and had some extra entertainment planned throughout the day.  This year however, the café was less of an oasis and more of a stagnant pond.  The maids were very rude and did not seem to be interested in interacting with anyone at the event.  The once fun and well lit atmosphere was replaced with dimmed lighting and obnoxious J-pop.  The menu was expanded, but they also ran out of various things throughout the con. Although that cannot be avoided, there should be a backup plan in case it happens mid-day.  In addition there was no schedule for maid events and what events I saw were not nearly as appealing as they were in previous years.  I wanted to go to the maid café with an open mind, but even still I cannot even attempt to state that this was a good café.  I do miss the Ichigo Maids, but that has no influence on my review of this café.  This was one of the worst run maid cafes I have ever gone to and that hurts as a fan of the Anime Vegas maid café.

The next problem is the misprints in the program guide.  Not only were some panels not listed, but some panels were given the wrong room or wrong time. There was very little information about when the AMV contest was to be run and where it was held.  The map needed to be marked with location titles.  I should not have to search for a panel room on the map; it should be marked in big bold letters that I can easily see upon opening the map.  This is not a first year convention where I can excuse such sloppiness.  This is something that should be second nature to an event that has been around as long as Anime Vegas has been around.  I am sure these were not intentional mistakes, but they should have never happened in the first place. 

Another part of the previous years that fell apart this year was the dealer hall.  It was very cramped and had a fraction of the dealers that it had in previous years.  This was my first year at Anime Vegas where I did not buy something from the dealer hall.  There was nothing that I found appealing and as a collector of plushies and figures that is not an easy task to complete.  I do not know if this was an issue of spacing or of a lack of dealer interest, but I do know that there are ways of solving both problems.  I hope that next year brings a renewed dealer hall with plenty of options for the collectors out there.

The majority of people I talk with were satisfied with their Anime Vegas experience, but as a veteran of this convention it did not fill me up.  I know that new locations and growth can lead to awkward adjustment periods.  That is likely what this year was for Anime Vegas.  I know that this event can be much more than it was this year and I hope to see my prediction come true.

There are many people who helped make this an interesting event for me.  I would like to say thank you to everyone who helped with my Convention War Stories panel.  I would also like to thank Matt, Ryan, and Lucas for their assistance with this adventure.  I would like to thank everyone who was kind enough to let us get in a quick interview.  The Anime Conji staff was very courteous and I hope things work out for them.  I would like to thank everyone involved with the charity auction and everyone who supported Big Bothers and Big Sisters of Southern Nevada, an organization that is personally important to me.  Finally, thanks go out to those who ran the ball and the rave you did great work and I hope next year is just as good. 

As always if you have any question or comments feel free not to e-mail me at: Jared (at)  I leave you with my list and remind you to give my love to the princesses.  Who?  You’ll see.

The Convention Snob


The List

  1. Pretty sure I saw some zombies at this con

  2. Ichigo Maids, I miss you.

  3. War Stories: Mission Success!

  4. It’s not enough, I need more…

  5. What kind of idiots puts an Xbox in the bathroom?

  6. Shots!

  7. AMV contest, where are you?

  8. Avoiding masquerade never felt so good.

  9. I hate getting con plague.

  10. Pack light, it’s Anime Vegas!

  11. Shout out to Jimmy! 

  12. Keep things cool Jimbo!

  13. Not much cosplay variety this year.

  14. How about a strip hotel next year?

  15. Mortal Kombat!!

  16. Sorry I could not give blood this year.

  17. Next year McNugget, it’s on!

  18. What’s wrong with anime?

  19. Charm is my lucky charm.

  20. Go, go Power Rangers!

  21. Chrono Cross cosplay = bad ass!

  22. We will need some more rules for future War Story panels...

  23. Too many creepos this year.

  24. I like my yanki look.

  25. Blue Man Group, wow...

  26. I barely took pictures this year.

  27. Note to self: pack more snacks.

  28. My favorite senshi: Venus, Mars, Mecury.

  29. Next cosplay: Chuck Greene

  30. Don’t forget kids, this is MY con!

  31. This hangover is killing me, wait I’m on a prime number, good, list over.

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