On the last weekend of Pentecost, the Düsseldorf exhibition halls have been transformed into an oasa of Japan fans. The DoKomi anime convention again attracted numerous visitors from Germany and abroad this year. The largest Japan Expo in Germany is known for its colorful program and the flashy costumes of the cosplayers, which transform the event area into a gigantic comic universe. The organizers expected around 55.000 guests for this year's convention - an increase of over 20 percent compared to the previous year's figures. We have summarized the highlights of DoKomi 2019.
In 2009, DoKomi celebrated its start with only 1800 visitors in a school building. Today, exactly ten years later, tens of thousands flock to the convention halls, which offer almost all topics from Manga to Marvel that interest Japan and comic fans. Andreas Degen and Benjamin Schulte originally launched the event as a fan event - and would like to maintain the character of the convention despite the increased number of visitors. From fans for fans has always been the motto of DoKomi and it was no different this year.
One of the highlights of DoKomi 2019 was once again the countless cosplayers who give the convention that atmosphere that fans love so much. A visit to “Lucky Chocolate”, a so-called maid café, where disguised waitresses ensure a good atmosphere is a must for many; the counterpart to this is the host club "Sweet Spice". Admission was granted to those who had obtained a separate admission voucher – free of charge, but necessary in order to be able to regulate the rush of visitors.
Manga to Marvel in the Düsseldorf exhibition halls
Numerous visitors and cosplayers streamed into the Düsseldorf exhibition halls, where everything from posters to motif pillows could be bought on 60.000 square meters of exhibition space. The organizers had transformed an entire exhibition hall into a shopping paradise for Japan fans. Another hall was available as an artist area, while in the semi-darkness gamers were allowed to indulge their favorite hobby and try out both retro games and top-class titles from the modern era. It should come as no surprise that the Japanese publisher Nintendo of all places has secured an area at DoKomi 2019 as an exhibitor. Tournaments were also held. To well-known video games like Super Smash Bros Ultimate for Nintendo Switch.
Lovers of indie games could allude to current highlights in the “Indie Area”, which is related to Gamescom. Those who prefer to watch rather than do it themselves were able to watch the pros on screens – then at speedrun sessions, among other things.
Otherwise, there was all the program items that fans expect from such an event: photo areas, cosplay competitions, workshops, dance and music - even a selection of Japanese delicacies at the usual high fair prices. For cosplayers, the preliminary round of the German Cosplay Championship in particular should have been - in the truest sense of the word - a point of attraction.
Image gallery for DoKomi 2019
DoKomi is flashy, loud and colorful - exactly what die-hard fans and curious visitors expect from an Anime and Japan Convention. The focus is clearly on entertainment and commerce, which is definitely meant positively, because many of the merchandise items on offer Japan can otherwise only buy indirectly or order on the Internet. A so-called bring-and-buy flea market was available for fans of fans. There everyone could offer their own no longer needed items or buy new items from other fans.
For real fans, the attraction of DoKomi is anyway to be able to exchange ideas with like-minded people about trends and rumors and to spend a happy time in a "parallel world". Optionally also at one of several themed events such as in the J-Disko or at the Cosplay Ball. The latter was completely sold out within a short time.
In the coming year, DoKomi 2020 will take place again in Düsseldorf, then on Saturday and Sunday, May 23 and 24, 2020. Information is available from us or on the official DoKomi website at www.dokomi.de.
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