Cos-Losseum Con, originally from San Diego, came to Atlanta to give east coast cosplayers a weekend full of cosplay contests, panels and cosplay themed parties. Atlanta residents aren’t new to cosplay conventions – they’re home some of the biggest cosplay conventions on the east coast – so it was interesting to see how Cos-Losseum Con would leave it’s mark on the cosplay-rich city.
As a roaming guest, I was there all weekend starting Friday, July 14th, for their opening ceremonies, thru Sunday, July 16th. It wasn’t all great and it wasn’t all bad, but they definitely have their work cut out for them as a new and growing convention. First, I’ll start with the pros:
- They had one of DragonCon’s host hotels, the downtown Sheraton hotel, which was
more than enough space for the 1st year con. Personally, I enjoyed the nostalgic feeling of walking through the Sheraton, uninterrupted by hoards of cosplayers trying to get in line for their next panel, and being in a familiar place that was easy to navigate.
- Cos-losseum Con had a HEAVY focus on cosplayers and their craft, which is important and a nice change of pace from your usual, “Gotta meet all the famous guests!” that you have at MomoCon and DragonCon. Don’t get me wrong – I enjoy running around and getting autographs from some of my favorite voice actors/actors/actresses, etc, but it was nice to have the local Atlanta “big shots” get some lime light.
- Even though the convention itself was small, the con-goers and staff were friendly and a lot of them were either from Momocon or Dragoncon which was great! It definitely showed that Cos-losseum knew who to call on for volunteers and it was nice seeing familiar con-family in a non-busy setting. MarksterCon even came out and helped by running the late night “Party of Thrones” rave on Saturday night.
- The timing of the con was my favorite part. My bank account was still recovering from “MomoCon adventures” and I was saving up for DragonCon, the next big Atlanta Con I go to, but I was already getting long-term con blues and didn’t have enough money to out of town twice before DragonCon. With Cos-losseum con being in early July was perfect and also they were extremely affordable. I was able to get my con fix without damaging my bank account further.
As much as Cos-Losseum con was good they definitely had more than a few sour points ranging from organization, print verses their digital schedule and times listed and attendance. The cons of this con were:
- Lack of attendees. Period. I lucked out on a dealer’s booth, so I didn’t have to worry about making a whole lot of money over the weekend, but for those who did definitely felt the pinch when it came to the crowd size. Given the tables were extremely affordable compared to other, established and bigger conventions, a lot of dealers either made a profit or didn’t. There was no in between.
- Organization. Most of their panels went smoother than most 1st year cons, but if you had an emergency or needed con staff you didn’t know where to go. Cos-lossum had a registration desk and at least 2-3 staff members floating around the hotel, but if you went to the registration desk looking for guest info or panel info the volunteers either didn’t have an answer or gave you the wrong answer.
- Scheduling. Being a small con it was easy for them to post large-ish boards with the scheduling printed out for each day and each room BUT the times listed were off by 30 minutes. Minor error, but definitely something that should have been caught before a final print was done.
Personally, I would love to see what Cos-Losseum: San Diego Con is like compared to Atlanta, but if they come back to Atlanta you bet I’ll be there again. For a 1st year convention they didn’t totally tank and considering Atlanta has so many cons already, I would rate them 2.5/5 stars for organization and prep and a solid 3/5 stars for execution and overall fun. Again, a lot of work needs to be done before they reach Atlanta standards for a “great convention” but the group has a lot of good intentions and will hopefully take great notes from this year and blow our pants off next con.