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New York Comic Con 2012 @ Javits Center (review)

By: Terrance Pryor

Over 110,000 people came to the Javits Center last weekend for the 2012 edition of New York Comic Con, which sold out weeks ago. NYCC is one of NYC's largest events and attracted attention from people all over the world.


The show room was where most of the action happened during the event. Plenty of video game demos were on the floor including God of War: Ascension, Tomb Raider, Devil May Cry and Playstation All-Stars Battle Royale. GOW: Ascension intrigued me the most with its impressive multiplayer mode. Most of these games won't hit stores until next year. Being a fan of the Ninja Turtles, I found myself constantly walking through the Turtle Tunnel, which was paved in ooze barrels and enchanting green lights. The Shifty Look freeplay arcade brought the old school flavor with Galaga, Dig Dug and plenty of Pac-Man to go around. There were also some musical entertainment going down throughout the event. I had the chance to catch NYC chiptune maestro Ricky Brugal in action. Armed with two Game Boys, Brugal brought some funky chiptune beats that obviously meshed well with the atmosphere.

Street Fighter is one of my favorite fighting game franchises and it was a complete joy to view the Street Fighter 25th Anniversary panel. Matt Dahlgren, Capcom's Senior Product Manager, discussed the new Street Fighter 25th Anniversary collector's set. There were also some sweet SF swag that was displayed in the presentation including a SF Monopoly game, a monstrous Akuma figure and Street Fighter x Sanrio figures that answer the question "What if Hello Kitty dolls looked like they can kick some ass?". Footage from the current Street Fighter world tournament was shown, thus leading to several "oohs" and "aahs" from the crowd. Dahlgren also announced an updated version of the popular fighting game Street Fighter x Tekken. Some of the upgrades for the game includes better camera angles, health regeneration and individual character tweaks.

Before Dahlgren could finish, a loud voice came from the back of the crowd. That voice belonged to special guest Yoshinori Ono, producer of the Street Fighter franchise, who arrived to the panel rocking a dope Chun-Li costume. After leading the crowd into a "Shoruyken" flash mob, Ono thanked all of the fans that wished him well during his illness back in March. The highlight of the panel was Ono's announcement of Darkstalkers Ressurection, a collection of Night Warriors:Darkstalker's Revenge and Darkstalkers 3. Ono stated that numerous fans wanted the Darkstalkers series back and this was the first step towards a possible new Darkstalkers game.



Dark Horse Comics discussed their upcoming video game-based comic books early Friday morning. Aside from the upcoming Dragon Age: Until We Sleep and Zelda: Hyrule Historia releases, the D.H. crew announced their new partnership with Naughty Dog Studios (the company behind great video game franchises such as Crash Bandicoot and Jak & Dexter). Naughty Dog game designer Neil Druckman, who used to write indie comic books himself, announced a comic book adaptation of The Last of Us, which takes place a year before the video game. Dark Horse Comics PR Jeremy Atkins stated that "video game comics kinda sucked" and that he wanted the overall effect of video game comics to be legit. When asked about doing a Mass Effect comic based on the game's protagonist Commander Shepard, Druckman stated that it would difficult doing that because of the fact that Shepard can be seen as either male or female (depends on how you played the game).

Whether you know him as Rudy, Samwise Gamgee or Mikey Walsh, Sean Astin certainly had everyone going bananas for him. Chants of "Rudy" kicked in as Astin arrived to a packed audience. Startled by the huge attendance for his Q&A session, Astin suddenly name dropped some of his least popular film roles (Click and Borderland among others) to an obviously quiet response from the crowd. Wanting to read the prologue of "The Colour of Magic", Astin asked the audience for some help. One fan luckily had a Kindle and was rewarded with a seat next to Astin for the remainder of the panel. Astin surprised the crowd by introducing "The Colour of Magic" author Terry Pratchett to the panel. During the Q&A session, one fan admitted to hiding alcohol in listerine bottle as a kid just like Astin's character in the 1991 film Toy Soldiers. Astin's response? "Bad child."

The World of Capcom panel was large and rightfully so. The entire hour was dedicated to showing trailers and discussing details for upcoming Capcom games. The highlights of the panel were the trailers for Devil May Cry and new Capcom game Remember Me.

You simply can't avoid hosting a costume contest with the high amount of cosplay happening at Comic Con. Friday's competition brought everyone from Kim Possible to Mortal Kombat's Smoke. The winner of the competition rocked a custom made mechanical angel costume.



Saturday was a pretty epic day for Comic Con. The IGN Theater was packed for an entire day of panels from Haven, Evil Dead, Carrie, The Walking Dead and Firefly. Everyone's favorite comic book writer Stan Lee also made his usual appearance at CC after having surgery a few weeks ago.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer was a killer television series that still gains fans after its final episode back in 2003. The Dark Horse panel discussed their current Buffy comic series on Saturday morning. The panel went over the Spike, Angel & Faith and Willow comics as well as their latest character Billy, a 16 year old homosexual male that wants to become a vampire slayer. A lot of people in the crowd started leaving immediately because they thought the panel was going to be mainly about the TV series and not the comics. It sucks for them because Nicholas Brandon, who played Xander on the TV series, joined the panel halfway through. Brandon talked about his least favorite Buffy episodes, working with his twin brother Kelly Donovan on the show and those speedos from the episode "Go Fish".

I'm not gonna go into details about my dating life expect that it sucks. I was interested in trying out Sci-Fi Speed Dating at Comic Con until I found out that all of the guy slots were filled. I wasn't surprised at the fact that there were plenty of girl slots still available.

Not all of the madness happened at the Javits Center. Nintendo was holding a free party one block away at SIR Stage 37 for the release of Pokemon Black Version 2/White Version 2. I only came to see a performance from I Fight Dragons. The chiptune rock band released an exclusive 3-D music video for "Save World, Get Girl" on the Nintendo 3DS earlier this year. Their performance was just as tight as it was on Warped Tour with the addition of the NES Power Pad. The band is set to go on tour with MC Lars in November.

Everyone from Poison Ivy to Ranger Smith LOVES Trapped In The Closet. When IFC announced the TITC sing along, I knew that this would be an epic event. Spatulas, condoms and berettas (toy guns, actually) filled every seat as the crowd quickly filed in. Before the event could take place, sing alongs for popular R. Kelly songs took place which turned the seated room into one big dance floor. The TITC singalong was everything that you could have hoped for. Condoms flying everywhere. Berettas going off. Spatulas being waved in the air.


Sunday was Kid's Day at Comic Con. Many kids came dressed up as their favorite superheroes for the costume contest. There was also an appearance from Elmo and a Spider-Man birthday celebration.

Sunday's highlight was the Q&A session with Harry Potter actor Tom Felton. The room quickly filled up with giddy girls as doors open. The event was originally supposed to last one hour, but was cut to 30 minutes due to a scheduling conflict. Tom Felton arrived to the panel to the ear shattering sound of female screams. Felton managed to have fun with some of the odd questions asked. When asked about his marriage to Harry Potter co-star Daniel Radcliffe, Felton jokingly stated that he "proposed with the strictest confidence". He also managed to turn down a rap request. One fan, a member of the New York quidditch team, gave Felton a honorary jersey.