The fifth edition of CCDA’s Ryujin’Con took place inside the UTICA event center this Sunday.
After starting as a smaller event way back in 2015, Ryujin’Con grew bigger and bigger to become one of Tunisia’s geek event staples and to even fit into the category of a geek convention. We’ve first seen this transition in last year’s edition with the move to the UTICA venue, this year’s just solidifies it.
Every edition we get to see a newer and better version of Ryujin’Con with a different concept being introduced. This year, CCDA took it up a notch and introduced the « multiverse » concept into the convention.
This concept is clearly played out throughout the event. Each wing and each isle of the venue is divided into completely different areas, each holding different activities from different wolds, thus creating the multiverse effect.
It can’t be a geek event without the traditional goodies and poster stands, video game area and the main stage room now can it? Well Ryujin’Con had all of these elements in place! With the entire entrance hallway being used to present a vast collection of goodies stands ranging from stickers to keychains to shirts and posters; this might’ve been the largest collection of goodies we’ve seen in a long time in an event.
The video game area hosted by a Retro Gaming Tunisie and Japanese Events Tunisia duo also was a fan favourite as it had an amazing choice of retro games; such as Mario Kart 64, Super Mario Strikers, special challenges for Super Mario Bros. 3 and Crash Team Racing and of course the unforgettable Just Dance 4.
The gaming did not stop there however, as CCDA introduced another variation to the event on the main stage: a League of Legends tournament. Although the tournament took most of the run time on the stage, Ryujin’Con didn’t lack in performances. There was a cosplay contest, a much welcome occurrence in a year otherwise very lacking in pop culture events. The contest unfortunately did not have a lot of cosplayers competing though. The dance performances by TKE however did create a lot of movement on stage. And the cherry on top was an amazing seiyuu performance hosted by Seiyuu TN, where they finished with dubbing an iconic Gintama scene in Arabic and also Tunisian.
The main room also hosted more stands; but these ones were more interactive than ever. The JET stands hosted a ton of activities such as calligraphy, paper doll making, discussions and anime quiz games (openings, OST, characters…). We can also find individual artists and creators stands with a variety of independent mangakas, associations (TAYA), and game developers (Vastlight). التوانسة إلي يحبو الأنمي also had an exceptional stand where they held of a treasure hunting type game throughout the whole day, where you team up with friends and collect hints to solve a crosswords puzzle by competing in different challenges and answering anime trivia questions. This adds a great deal to the interactivity in the event and brings a lot of people together.
The fun continues on into a second stage conference room where two essential workshops took place; the first being the CREART workshop hosted by mangaka and artist Mr Syrus, and the second being the Arabic Seiyuu dub workshop hosted by Seiyuu TN. There were also conferences in between workshops presented by JET and Vastlight which sadly did not gain much of the audience’s attention, mainly due to time placement.
Ryujin’Con also presented an art contest open to the public. All artworks were showcased in the « Tales of the Empress Museum » room. The « museum » hosts an exhibition centered around Otohime; a princess in Japanese mythology, from which the art contest took inspiration. The place has been decorated and themed to seem and look like an actual museum, all made by CCDA’s crafting department. « The crafting department is all about handmade. We specialise in keeping our things low-price and making all our decorations ourselves, » confirms Lobna Jerbi, head of CCDA’s Crafting Team and manager of the Tales of the Empress Museum in Ryujin’Con Multiverse Fest.
Overall, Ryujin’Con has showed us a new way of showcasing a geek convention, with the inclusion of both traditional and pop culture, and also with collaborating with several other partners involved in the same domain (JET, TKE, التوانسة إلي يحبو الأنمي, TAYA, Retro Gaming Tunisia, Seiyuu TN…) to create one big convention that remains a staple in Tunisian geek events.
JET Press team