The week before this year’s WonderCon in Anaheim, me and my boyfriend decided to make a trip back to the Convention Center on Sunday. It’s been a couple years since the last time we attended this convention, and the main reason for attending was to check out the Monster Hunter panel (a game he is a pretty big fan of). We had previously gone up to Capcom’s offices in San Mateo for a Monster Hunter community event (and may go up again for another one soon), which doubled as a chance to check out their offices. They also put out some other games (Mega Man, Street Fighter), both of which Andrew also really likes. Saturday was already sold out (as it tends to do first), but I think it eventually sold out for each day.
The Capcom booth was decked out with a lot of cool Monster Hunter style decor – sort of rustic like the game’s small village where you go to relax after long battles with giant monsters. The focal point of the booth was a customized trailer (which doubled as a shop) and a bunch of tents for lounging and playing a demo of the newest Monster Hunter game: Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate.
We walked around the Expo Hall a few times and happened upon the High Voltage Magazine booth, which I am a subscriber. They’ve already posted about their experiences at WonderCon. After that, we went to check for the location of the panel, which was preceded by a panel for Battlestar Galactica called “Battlestar in Crisis.” Richard Hatch (Tom Zarek/Capt Apollo) lead the panel with a science consultant Dr. Kevin Grazier, who brought a couple rats and joked about calling the panel Rat-tlestar Galactica. Also, on the panel were an effects artist (I didn’t catch his name), who mentioned redoing some stock footage scenes for the original series, and an actress named Luciana Carro who played Kat in the new series.
It was a pretty interesting panel as they discussed how the original series was re-imagined into the new version and how there may be another re-imagining in a film version (though I think this is still in the works). There was a video playing before the start of the panel with a lot of scenes and discussion with the cast of the new series about how it was a very different type of sci-fi series, which they all seemed very proud of. Much of the actual panel was spent discussing another project called Star Trek Axanar, which they ended up playing a trailer for at the end.
We stayed in the room for the Monster Hunter panel, which included the executive producer Ryozo Tsujimoto and executive director Kaname Fujioka, plus a moderator and translator. The biggest new additions for this new installment of the series seems to be the collaborations in costumes with Nintendo, Square Enix, and Capcom, and the addition of epic monster battles, which apparently are even larger than the newer 3DS screens can even fit.
The Q&A portion was actually a giveaway for those who knew enough about the Monster Hunter series to answer questions. Some people got plush cats from the game and a couple people got the special Monster Hunter 3DS edition consoles for correctly guessing the favorite weapons of the director and producer. Lucky them! There were a few people cosplaying as characters from the game, I was sitting next to one of the people dressed as a guildmarm, who gives quests in the game.
We were halfway down to go back to the expo hall, when I remembered to check the schedule and found out the Honest Trailers panels was in the same room. So we went back and found some seats farther back. I have enjoyed a lot of those Honest Trailers videos and I was kind of excited to hear from the creators of them. It seems like they were pretty new to seeing an audience reaction (since the videos are all just posted on YouTube) and they hadn’t done many panels before. I wasn’t familiar with Screen Junkies or Movie Fight, but they did some discussion on those too including a live Movie Fight on who the worst director is: Michael Bay or M. Knight Shyamalan, which was pretty funny. They showed a couple Honest Trailers, including this one for Interstellar:
The last panel of the day before returning to the Expo Hall was Full-Time Creative Work on a Part-Time Schedule, which didn’t actually seem relevant to either of us but we ended up staying until the end. It did seem like a way for people to meet people to work with and to discuss how they manage to do a lot of different creative projects while still working. I think Andrew was expecting more like time management tips rather than meeting writers, artists or “cat herders,” which was just like project managers. I decided I’d prefer cat herding (but more of the literal kind), but I didn’t actually attempt to meet anyone since I didn’t really have any projects or plans for any.
It was pretty enjoyable day at WonderCon, since the last day is more of a half day – probably not as tiring as the other days might have been. We looked at the schedule and started seeing a lot of other panels and events we’d like to check out, so hopefully we will be back for the entire event in the future!