Earlier this year, my friends and I were invited to be overseas guests for HobbyCon in Sabah, Malaysia.
Time flew by very fast, and before we knew it...
Our first day was spent doing a lot of eating, thanks to our guide Alyssa I will justify it as us fueling up for an action-packed weekend! We tried nasi lemak for the first time (LOVED IT), had some shaved ice desserts after, then a big dinner of clay pot rice, stir-fry noodles with clams, really tasty chicken wings, etc. and THEN we still raided Pick N' Pay for our midnight snacks because we love convenience stores and we wanted to try things we don't have in Manila.
We planned our cosplays ahead with Team Kachang Puteh, the guests from Singapore. Our theme for the first day of HobbyCon was Shingeki no Kyojin!
Miguel - Eren Jaeger
Jin - Mikasa Ackerman
Dom - Jean Kirschtein
Kitska - Levi
Tessie - Hanji Zoe
By our powers combined, we became TEAM MEGADERP
Here we are being totally OOC with the fabulous jnalye
We at least tried to stay in character for the Cosplay All-Stars March!
We prepared a little skit for our walk. The three of us new recruits started out marching behind Levi and Hanji, and Eren would run ahead of them when we were near the front. Levi disapproves of Eren's lack of discipline and kicks him down.
We heard that the main sponsor was watching up front and thought that Miguel/Eren was kicked down for real. Much to his shock and further confusion, the crowd cheered and snapped a lot of pictures. We are not always in character, but when we are, maybe we are a little too convincing? Whoops!
Another angle. Look at all the happy sadists in the crowd! Kidding!
There were so many people that the barricades were bending. We had never done anything quite like the All-Stars March so that was pretty cool albeit nerve-wracking!
Our kick reenactment on the news!
After us came the 501st Legion. So cool! Our course they played The Imperial March!
While the crowd took pictures of us, I snuck a quick snapshot of them too
I find Stormtroopers really cute for some reason
The day's most popular pose!
Jean and Eren getting along for once
Yes Jean, you can be a fanciful unicorn too
Eren is on his invisible bike, copying the monkey at the back
Heichou is enjoying the show
With Belle Annachuu as Xiaoyu, our friend from another dimension apparently
I'm always nom-ing her hair doughnuts
After taking pictures with people at the photo wall (I haven't seen a lot from there and I remember we had a bunch of funny photos because we got a lot of funny requests — please send me our pics if you were one of the people who went up there with us! ) we headed up to the holding room to rest. And then Alyssa left some extra maid outfits from the maid cafe and then...
Eren is blackmailed into wearing one of them. Here he is doing a gravure pose while the process is documented. For science.
Eren is starting to feel it while heichou continues to deny his true feelings
Pimp Daddy Mikasa
I pimped our photo with stickers to make the description more accurate
Mikasa's girls are top dollar yes good
Heichou is like, "Eren, please, you're embarrassing yourself. That headband doesn't go with that coordinate. And put on some blush, your complexion is so dull."
Can you handle this colossal level of moe
Mikasa taking upskirt shots
Hanji joins in. For science.
Heichou wa Maid-sama onstage performance!
That evening we went back to the hotel and prepared our costumes for the next day. The way we arranged our things is kind of in-character I guess. Hahah!
Second day of HobbyCon! We are Free!
Kitska - Haru
Tessie - Rin
Miguel - Makoto
Jin - Nagisa
Dom - Rei
Annachuu is our special buddy, Jack Frost!
a.k.a. drowned Nitori
He froze our pool
Squeezing more and more people in the photo! Now with Abi!
Also, Belle is getting revenge for me nom-ing her head during the previous day
Sorry but I am going to continue nom-ing Jack Frost like an icy dessert
I snapped this photo of them and ran it through an app...
This is what I looked like while brewing evil things
And everyone was going HEY JIN WHY IS YOUR FACE ALL RED
I was using the SwapTeleport app and this is what happened:
HAHAHAH I'M SO DONE
Group photo with my chubby penguinnnn
Lots of people wanted to kidnap my pinggu
"REI-CHAN! REI-CHAN! PUT THIS ON! Rei-chan, you're a... Rei-ndeer!!"
I also told Haru
"HARU-CHAN! HARU-CHAN! Are you excited because we're going to SABAh?"
The perks of being Nagisa
I can say things like this
I guess we're more alike than I thought
Commemorative purikura for Rei-channnnnnn!
Haru-chan activates yaoi hands for 3-person selfie
Rin-chan does not like to share
Went downstairs to watch The Hikaru Band perform since we noticed they played classics like songs from Rurouni Kenshin and Slam Dunk. When we got there, they played The Beginning by ONE OK ROCK (RuroKen live action theme song) and we FREAKED OUT. So awesome!
Spirit animal butts display
They also played a childhood favorite, Extreme Ghostbusters!
(Secret cosplay want)
And GO GO POWER RANGERSSSSSSS
At this point we couldn't help running up to the front to properly rock out with the band
For their last song they played... GUREN NO YUMIYA
And we were all like
ACCEPT OUR WORSHIP
AND ANIMAL OFFERINGS
Of course, during the appropriate times there was a resounding, unified yell of
After getting all sweaty from the adrenaline rush of the performance, we went back around the outside of the VIP area
We were asked to pose for pictures, and we got to hang out a bit with people in the crowd
Shingeki no Free!
Heichou gave us a poster!
Blondies and pingguuuu
Tux Team with Tuxedo Mask!!
We made Yuna LOL because I was like OK I'M TIDUS
And then Makoto and Rei are posing like FFX-2 Yuna
We did a discussion and tutorial on cosplay makeup, and how it helps make you look like different people
Showing examples of Miguel's cosplay vs. crossplay. The reactions were priceless!
The setup was very relaxed and comfortable, so we didn't feel as nervous as usual about speaking onstage.
Part of the enthusiastic crowd!
For some reason, Rin-chan and Haru-chan changed into dresses
Jeez, Rinrin stop crying all the time
From our holding room on the second floor, we had a good view of the event hall because the wall was glass. We saw this bride Eren being proposed to by all the heichous.
The glass didn't hide us so people could see us and wave and pose when I held up my phone
They also made hearts at us, d'awww
Tekken Tag Tournament live battle! This was super exciting!
Haru-chan, please contain yourself
Onstage again for the panel! This time we shared the stage with Tessie and Kitska of Kachang Puteh and awesome costume-maker Nex. We discussed some topics with the hosts, and took questions from the audience. It was like a nice, relaxed talk show. We got the chance to address some issues like dealing with low self-confidence, which a lot of people struggle with. From the cheers we got from our answers, I hope the audience took home more optimism! We also talked about what cosplay means to us and how this simple hobby changed our lives, and others in return.
Rinrin's shark looked happy to be there with us.
Stage selfie with the crowd, hahah! Do you see Jack Frost posing with us?
After our talk, we ventured outside and got to meet more people
We also grabbed some Oligo chocolate malt drink which we were all kinda obsessed with. Got asked for more pictures while drinking, and then the Iwatobi Photobomb Club attacked!
I pulled the Rasengan app from my phone and derped with Naruto
Time to judge the group cosplay competition, along with the awesome Jna jnalye as X-23!
We saw some really excellent performances, and it inspired us to try doing group skits again!
Our pens for judging were in our spirit colors, heheh
It was the RWBY pair who took home the gold! They were fantastic!!
Trying to channel Nagisa's poses in their winning team photos, hahah
HobbyCon group photo!!
At the end of everything, a special video played onstage, which led to Max's epic proposal to Jna! SO MUCH LOVE
For the afterparty, we derped to Splash Free! as backup dancers while Kachang Puteh sang. We practiced this for a full TWO minutes, hahahah! Watch the video HERE!
LOL, Pedobear lives!
When the event came to a close, we finally got a chance to take pictures with the HobbyCon committee.
We started taking off our contacts to relax more, and then became the Megane Club!
Shariff wanted us to be sexy and fabulous
And then things turned bizarre
Emitting much love and moe beams with Maguro, the head of the Fuwa Fuwa Time maid cafe!
HobbyCon ThoughtsI can't properly condense the entirety of the experience into this journal entry, but we all had a BLAST at HobbyCon, but I think the best part really was just being able to talk and hang out with everyone during the times we weren't onstage.
I can't begin to describe how thankful I am for everyone who took the time to just personally tell us that they appreciate the things we do. We share our photos and writing and artwork online, and while we do hear from people through comments, there's nothing like speaking to someone face to face and seeing the people behind the names. I've lost count of how many times someone told me "I've been following you since [many many years ago]" and it always amazes me that you guys have stuck around all that time. It doesn't always sink in how people from all around the world are able to follow our silly adventures until we actually feel the distance by traveling and meeting these people in a place that is foreign to us. I'm really grateful to everybody for making us feel at home and welcome and for giving us a chance to make you laugh or smile or feel inspired.
It's really heartwarming to think that something that really just started out as a hobby my friends and I do for our own enjoyment has brought so much joy and inspiration to other people, and made them pick themselves up and make themselves and their lives better, all because we decided to share our photos and stories online.
Our sincerest thanks to the HobbyCon team and the sponsors for giving us this chance to experience the wonderful community in Sabah!
Thank you also to everybody who came up to us to talk and hand over letters or presents or hugs! We'll always treasure them and the memories!
We're really happy that HobbyCon was our first international guesting together and we hope this event and the community will continue to thrive and grow! You've given us unforgettable memories and we look forward to visiting again and pulling more of our friends along!
MESTI DATANG YOOOOOOO
SO MUCH LOVE YOOOOOOO