comic conventions

Heading to London Anime & Gaming Con? Here’s What You Need To Know


If you like Anime or Gaming and you’re near London, then this might be the convention for you. London Anime and Gaming Con (also known as London Anime Con and LAGC)is a small but growing convention, housed in the Rocket Complex at London Met University. We love London Anime & Gaming Con. We refer to it as the “gateway drug to comic cons”. We often recommend it if you are new to conventions and anxious about going to one of the big ones.

Here’s what to expect:


Cosplayers


Getting there

The convention takes place at the Rocket Complex on Holloway Road tube station.

The closest tube stations are:

  • Holloway Road (Piccadilly)
  • Highbury and Islington (Victoria, Overground and National Rail)
  • Caledonian Road (Piccadilly)


There’s a bus stop outside with buses running from Moorgate, London Bridge, Barnet and Tottenham Hale.

It's best to check with Citymapper to check your routes before you travel as some lines close for maintenance at weekends.

A quick word of warning.

There are loads of London Met buildings all over the capital so double check that you put the right address into your map software. (We’ve got it wrong a couple of times!). If you’re not used to travelling in London, we recommend using Citymapper to find your way around. It’s available online and on the App Store/Google Play.


Getting In

You can pre-book tickets online, and it is generally cheaper. While you can buy your tickets on the door, you aren’t guaranteed to get in.

You will need ID at the door even if you are over 18. A driving licence or passport is recommended.

The convention hall is the Student Uni bar. They require all under 16s to be accompanied by an adult. They are very strict with ID checks so make sure you bring it, even if you’ve already pre-booked tickets.


Atmosphere

London Anime & Gaming Con is probably the most chilled out event that we’ve been to in London. The convention is in a Student Union bar, and there’s a focus on chilling with a cold beer.

As all the drinks are served in plastic cups, it means you can take them outside to the courtyard, and you can relax with your friends. Usually, a few photoshoots are going on, which are fun to watch.

There’s also an “Anime Chillout Zone” which is often sponsored by Crunchyroll. You can relax in here and watch Anime all day or duck in and out as you please. It’s generally pretty quiet in there. Check the Con book (download here or collect on the day) for the daily viewings.

If you prefer your atmosphere more competitive then head up to the Gaming area where there are tournaments and more causal gaming on all day. For a competitive space, it’s usually chilled.


Stages

We recommend heading to this event for the stage content alone!

The stage line-up is always solid. There’s cosplay tips, metal health panels, Lipsync battles, acting singing and so much more.

But, don’t miss the Cosplay Masquerade!

This happens on Saturday and Sunday. It’s free to sign up, and the winner usually gets a cash prize.

All you need is a cosplay outfit and a quick routine. The routine can be anything, from just posing to show off the detail to a full-on dance routine. Either way, it’s a supportive crowd who cheer everyone on – especially if you are brand new to cosplay or performing.

We’ve found it to be a positive and encouraging atmosphere.


Merchandise at a convention


Merch Stands

It’s a comic convention - there will be merchandise! London Anime & Gaming Con has a lovely collection of small independent traders. These feature a lot of adorable anime merch to buy. Watch out for bootleg merchandise though.

Artist alley is a must-visit. LAGC is a perfect testing ground for new artists looking to start being part of the Convention circuit, so go and give them all some love and encouragement.


People

Most people at this expo are pretty friendly. They will happily answer any questions you have. Be respectful and ask before taking a photo of someone.


Hotels and Hostels

As the convention is in central London, you aren’t short of Hotels.

There are a load of very cheap hostels, family-friendly hotels and luxury hotels.

In fact, we have a guide to hotels near the Rocket Complex.


Parental information

As previously stated, all Under 16s must be accompanied by an adult.

The stages often cover adult themes, and there’s lots of swearing.

The Comic-Con is set around a bar, and people do get drunk.

Some of the merchandise is a bit inappropriate for young kids.

However, people are generally well behaved during the day. It can be helpful for young teens to see adults enjoying their hobbies without negativity or prejudice. If you’re a parent being dragged along as the responsible adults, you probably won’t be alone!

There will be others there that will be happy accept you into the “bored parents of comic con” clan.

If your youngster is with a group of friends and you’re happy for them to run around the expo without supervision, then we recommend setting up camp near either of the stages. They both have bars, so you have easy access to both soft and alcoholic drinks, and some bar snacks. Both rooms have nearby toilets too. The stages will have some fun performances and informative panels, so at least you get some entertainment. Grab a program on your way in to see what takes your fancy.

If the weather is nice, another good basecamp is the outside courtyard. Find a seat by the pond and relax with a book or Netflix.


Roundup

London Anime & Gaming Con really is the “gateway drug” to comic conventions. A fun, friendly and relaxed atmosphere that is perfect for those new to comic conventions, or not a fan on crowds. Get your tickets for London Anime & Gaming Con on their website.


Written by Lydia Carrick

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