Even though I have been before, it’s been a long time since I last came to Hyper Japan. I haven’t been there since it changed its venue from the Olympia to Earls Court, so experiencing the event at a larger venue was going to be a fresh experience. This year’s Hyper Japan was a three day event (Friday 25th – Sunday 27th July). I was only available to attend on the Friday.
I arrived at Earls Court just 15 minutes before the doors opened and the queue was surprisingly large for a Friday. I got to the end of the line just beside the Earls Court 2 building, so I had a bit of time to wait until I arrived at the entrance. Thankfully, when the doors did open the waiting wasn’t too long before getting into the event.
Hyper Japan was spilt into four major sections around the hall.
The first of these was the Game and Anime Park in which companies showcased the latest games and anime vendors sold various DVDs and figures, alongside other activities; the game side sounded pretty small with only Nintendo and Namco Bandai being present but they had a large presence. Nintendo presented big WiiU titles such as Mario Kart 8 and Super Smash Bros for 3DS/WiiU, alongside playable demos for Hyrule Warriors and Bayonetta 2. Their 3DS selection was pretty big as well, with a big promotion for Tomodachi Life and surprising demos for Shin Megami Tensei IV and Persona Q: Shadow Of The Labyrinth. Namco Bandai also delivered with some of their upcoming titles such as Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Revolution, Tales Of Xillia 2 and One Piece Unlimited World Red.
For the next section, I arrived at Eat Japan which provided plenty of stalls selling Japanese food. Two booths that stood out were the Sushi Awards 2014, which allowed people to taste different flavours of sushi from various chefs and learn how they make it, and the Sake Experience 2014, which let people taste sake from a variety of brewers.
The Fringe Market provided plenty of stalls selling Japanese merchandise, including dresses, cutlery, bonsai trees etc., and there were plenty of stalls with travel advice for anyone interested in Japan. There was also a small section for a number of artists displaying their work as well. There were plenty of stages giving demonstrations and performances.
Last was the Hyper Kawaii section, which provided appearances from Japanese models, stalls for fashion products and some camera equipment.
So there was plenty of stuff to see and do. I thankfully got a lot of time to see everything thanks to the spacious layout of the venue, it was a well organised event but the only thing that I could point out is a better queue system.
Overall though, I really enjoyed my day around Hyper Japan. I hope to return next year although I didn’t like the idea of putting a break in the middle of the event on Saturday, which might stop me from coming on that day.