What is it about?

More than 75,000 people turned up for this year’s STGCC

More than 75,000 people turned up for this year’s STGCC

People from all walks of life responded enthusiastically to the second run of the Singapore Toy, Games & Comic Convention (STGCC).

Held at Suntec Singapore International Convention & Exhibition Centre, the STGCC 2009 returned even bigger and better from Aug 14-16 after more than a year since the first STGCC.

Taking up nearly twice the space as compared to last year’s STGCC, which had only took up 3,300 sqm, the convention was organised by PI Events, and admission was also free to the public for all 3 days.

The Singapore Tourism Board supported the Convention as part of the Meetings, Incentive Travel, Conventions and Exhibitions (MICE) initiative to start and nurture business events locally. Ms Melissa Ow, Assistant Chief Executive, Business Travel and MICE Group of the Singapore Tourism Board, said in a press release that the second STGCC “creates an excellent platform for industry leaders in these fields to converge and share ideas, network, and explore business collaborations”.

Indeed, there were many kinds of booths at the STGCC, with exhibitors taking up a space for trading card games, comics, art illustrations and collectible toys. And yet these are only a few types of the variety of booths at the Convention.

This year, many famous brands such as tokidoki, Lego, Nintendo, and also artists such as Joe Ledbetter and Tan Eng Huat were showcased. Filled with activities, such as autograph signings, Cosplay competitions, product giveaways and many others, the STGCC this year also includes Conference sessions on Aug 14.

An artist from USA, who is famous for designing adorable creature toys

Joe Ledbetter: An artist from USA, who is famous for designing adorable creature toys

Aimed at students and professionals from the creative industry, these Conferences featured big names such as Animax Asia and Singapore filmmaker Eric Khoo. This is done with the aim of exchanging more knowledge between local and overseas creative companies and brands, and also generating more interest in youths towards the arts field.

Exhibitors’ sentiments

So what do exhibitors think about this event? According to Ms Daphne Tan, Marketing & Communications Executive of Play Imaginative, exhibitors present at the previous STGCC “have returned with larger spaces and brought in more products from overseas”.

An example of this is Hasbro, which now features a much larger space with products exclusive to STGCC 2009 from Marvel, Star Wars, and even many different kinds of Transformers figures.

This Transformer toy is an exclusive – only given out at the STGCC 09

This Transformer toy is an exclusive – only given out at the STGCC 09

A spokesperson from Klik.TV said, “As an exhibitor here for the first time, we did not expect to receive such an overwhelming response from the crowds here. The STGCC is well planned out, with events that are interesting such as the Cosplay Competition.”

As for the crowds this year as compared to last year’s, Mr Sinclair Yuen, Events Manager for Wizards of the Coast, said, “Well the crowds seem to be less concentrated as compared to last year, but I’m sure that is because of the larger space available.”

This is definitely a good change, as having a larger space also meant that audiences could spend less time squeezing past others, giving them more time and space to appreciate what the various booths at STGCC could offer them.

The shows

With many shows available on-stage, such as Nintendo showcase, the Awards Ceremony for Singapore Polytechnic’s Toy Design Competition and Cosplay Competition, spectators were kept entertained for the duration of the event.

Off-stage, there are numerous products launched during the STGCC, like Slander Snake, which is an exclusive STGCC product with Joe Ledbetter and also tokidokis at the Play Imaginative booth.

Dickson Goh, who went down to the event with his friends, said, “The event was really enjoyable as there’s just so many activities going on at the same time.”

The main highlight had to be the CosCon Cosplay Competitions. Many enthusiastic cosplayers appeared in their various costumes of anime and movie characters, taking much effort in their costume design and makeup. According to Ms Hilda Hoo, a cosplayer who regularly heads to such events, her reason to join this year’s STGCC was because it’s “a very large event where many cosplayers are sure to attend”.

Indeed, it was difficult to move anywhere near the stage where the finalists are showcased, as there were many fans and family members who were showing their support for the many cosplayers.

The finalists on stage for the movie-themed CosCon on Aug 15

The finalists on stage for the movie-themed CosCon on Aug 15

Missed it?

Well, there is no need to worry if you missed out on this year’s STGCC. Based on the popular response by the public, which exceeded the expected turnout rate of more than 70,000 this year, Ms Daphne Tan said that a third STGCC “is very likely” next year. You can be sure that this local event will be even more popular when it comes by again for the third installment.

Here are some pictures UrbanWire took over the three days of STGCC, all for your viewing pleasure.

Photo sessions do go well with the crowds.

Photo sessions do go well with the crowds.

The gundam got first place in the Single category of the anime-themed CosCon on Aug 16.

The gundam got first place in the Single category of the anime-themed CosCon on Aug 16.

A booth for the local Star Wars community which ran a fund-raising programme to benefit Make-A-Wish Foundation®.

A booth for the local Star Wars community which ran a fund-raising programme to benefit Make-A-Wish Foundation®.

*Images by Daniel Ong