Comic Fiesta 2023: The Good, The Bad and The Queue

Comic Fiesta 2023

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Comic Fiesta returns with a bang for its 21st anniversary in December!

I never saw so many Vtubers appearances listed in the event booklet, OMG, I am not kidding when I say the two days of CF were chock-full of famous VTubers. One of the events in Coffy Stage on Day 1 was the ID Cruise Hololive Meet Asia Tour!

Comic Fiesta Event Schedule
Caption: Look at that, jam-packed! (Source: Comic Fiesta’s website)

And of course, we can’t forget ASCA and Spira spica! They were present for both days and performed at Comic Fiesta Coffy Stage on the second day. Those were just a few of the big names to grace Comic Fiesta this year. There was also Ernest Ng of Bro, Don’t Like That La Bro (even though some might have known him earlier from his stints of starring in JinnyboyTV production).

Ernest Ng
Caption: The man behind Covidball himself, Ernest Ng! (Source: Ernest Ng’s Instagram)

 If you’re an avid Otome game fan, does the name Cybird or Ikemen Series ring a bell? Hiroto Kuramasu, producer at Cybird and well-known Japanese cosplayer gave a special talk about the production and history behind otome games. I was there, and he was very friendly and super informative. It was his first visit to Malaysia, too!

Hiroto Kuramasu at 2023 Comic Fiesta
Caption: He was very well-spoken and delved into the aspects behind the history of otome games, not to mention adorable. (Source: Ikemen Series Cybird’s Twitter)

But of course, the real draw to Comic Fiesta is the artists’ booths! If you’re like me, you have already scoured the catalogues and pre-ordered merchandise. Genshin Impact dominated most of the booths, I must say, I’m not surprised, given that it’s still the most popular game around.

I must shamefully admit now that I spent quite a large sum on Al-Haitham merchandise last year so I vowed not to spend as much this year. A vow that I somehow circumvented by spending more on Valorant stuff and original artists’ creations. Nevertheless, money is well spent! 

I feel called out… (Artist’s website: Artsy Jadey)

This year’s Comic Fiesta was also the first ACG event my partner attended if we don’t count Gamescom. He was wholly unprepared for the heat, the walking, and of course, the infamous Comic Fiesta queue. However, I do have to say that this year’s was a whole lot better than the queueing disaster that the 2022 edition was. It was evident that the organization invested some money into crowd control measures. But still, there’s always room for improvement.

Comic Fiesta Queue
Caption: Who can forget the infamous Comic Fiesta 2022 queue? (Source: Gamer Braves)

So, your first time attending Comic Fiesta or any big ACG event? Here are some tips and tricks for you to navigate such events.

  1. Wear comfortable shoes.

I CANNOT STRESS THIS ENOUGH, WEAR COMFORTABLE SHOES. Often you can’t rest inside the convention centre because obviously, no camping is allowed. And even if you find someplace you are allowed to sit, the space is very limited. You’re gonna spend a lot of time on your feet. Unless you want painful blisters to erupt on your feet, it’s best to wear comfy shoes. You see those cosplayers strolling around with a small luggage bag? You bet your bum there’s a pair of comfortable shoes inside there somewhere.

  1. Stay hydrated.

Especially on the first day, it is very very important for you to keep a bottle of water nearby. The queue might have improved, but the hot KL weather can prove to be deadly especially if you’re dehydrated. The long queues mean you have to spend a long time outside before you get inside the cool, air-conditioned convention centre. Yes, there are places inside where you can purchase a bottle of water, but then you will have to queue again. Unless queueing is your hobby, I suggest you bring a bottle of water along before stepping inside. Fans are optional, but if you can’t handle the heat it’s going to provide a huge relief to you.

Hangry and queueing isn’t a good combo.
  1. Lunch? KLCC isn’t an option.

Okay, maybe I exaggerated a little. But make no mistake, if you ever decide to have your lunch at KLCC, you likely have to wait a long time to be seated (in other words you have to queue again) just to get inside the restaurant. I made this rookie mistake when I attended the 2022 Comic Fiesta and honestly, you can avoid the hangry situation altogether by hopping on the LRT or even walking to nearby malls to eat. Comic Fiesta is always held on a weekend, and KLCC is full of people on weekends. Like, jam-packed with people. You’re better off going somewhere nearby like Avenue K or Wisma Central or even Pavilion for lunch.

  1. Browse artist’s catalogues before the event.

There are 3 halls dedicated to artists’ booths this year, and they’re allllllllll crammed. In that cramped, narrow space, count yourself lucky if you’re able to buy from popular artists like Fishball or Bichi Mao. Or if you manage to browse all the items on display. Often people are pushing against one another to pay or to take a closer look at the items. Seriously. It’s hell in there. If you’re a fan of a particular artist, it is best to take a look at their offerings on Instagram and decide early what you want to get or even preorder the items, so you can just pick them up at their booth.

*Mr  Krab’s voice* Money, money, money!
  1. Cash is king! (Only in this particular instance.)

Signal can get a bit wonky in the convention centre, so it’s advisable to bring cash just in case your banking app won’t work. There’s free WiFi you can connect to, but there are also thousands of people connecting to the WiFi network, so it might take a while. Based on my observation, most vendors take payment either in cash, DuitNow QR transfer or TnG. 

Have fun meeting your idols and cosplayers! Don’t forget to ask for their permission before you snap their pictures, yeah? And don’t forget to heed my tips, trust me, you’ll need them. 

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