Saturday saw cosplayers, comics fans, movie fans, videogames fans… ALL THE FANS… descend on the Guildhall in Plymouth, Devon for the first ever DEV-CON.
I was there for several reasons, not just because I like geeky things and write for here, but also because a comic I lettered was launching and I wanted to be there for the launch. So my reasons for being there were several, but mainly I was there to have some fun.
Opening up with video games (old and new) on the ground floor, plus some Scaletrix, then up some stairs to a ring of collectors’ tables (mostly figures), and then on into the main hall where there were comics traders, more collectibles traders, art traders, creators, actors and interest groups – there was a lot going on. The opportunity to leave with a lighter wallet was immense.
Another awesome sight was the number of creator owned, indie, comics that were on sale at DEV-CON 1. I believe I counted at least five titles, including what I had worked on. There was definitely a nice vibe of indie mixing with mainstream.
There were a lot of fandoms catered to at the event, which was a huge plus. It wasn’t hard to find something that drew in your interest. However the only thing that was missing was talks, really could have with some or some Q & As involving the creators and personalities that were in attendance.
Being the first of its name and in the Guildhall (it’s not Excel size) it wasn’t a humongous convention. While this worked against it in some ways (there was no space for individuals to give talks) it worked for it in others – you couldn’t get lost easily and it wasn’t hard to track down all the awesome things that were going on. Though it would have helped if the con had been taking place in a location with better ventilation.
Due to the convention’s size, it made more sense to go in for a bit and then nip out across the road to the rest of Plymouth’s main shopping area before heading back. The central location meant that you didn’t have to spend the whole day there, which for me is a plus having gone to bigger cons like MCM where I haven’t appreciated being stuck there in the entire day.
DEV-CON 1 has been a huge success, if local news coverage and the number of people attending was anything to go by. This means that the organisers, comic book store chain Final Frontier, are hoping to organise another one next year. And you know what? I’ll definitely go to it.
Want to know a bit more about what it was all like? Check out this video produced by Skymind Studios:
(Original Bat family cosplay image courtesy of Chris Trace.)