Highlights From Summer Wonder Festival 2018
posted on by Kim Morrissy
We were lucky to have Wonder Festival last weekend. It was almost postponed because of the sudden typhoon that hit Tokyo around the same time. Although the event proceeded as planned, many garage kit makers couldn't make it to their booths this time, leaving the halls a little sparser than usual.
Even in the unfortunate absence of those fan makers, however, Summer Wonder Festival 2018 was jam-packed with new announcements and figures to look at. We've already covered some of the main news stories to come out of Wonder Festival, from virtual Youtubers to life-size figures. In this report, we'll be covering the other highlights from the corporate booths.
At the Kaiyodo booth, there were big-name anime franchises like Gurren Lagann and Neon Genesis Evangelion. The famous mecha figure designer Akira Tani's Evangelion works were on display, taken from his Mechanical Archives.
The biggest surprise was this In This Corner of the World figure set, which was revealed publicly for the first time.
The Kaiyodo booth had a special Evangelion booth adjacent to it, which played the teaser video for the upcoming Evangelion: 3.0 +1.0 movie all day.
The Bandai Spirits booth was filled with interesting models, like these Naruto clones that can stick to the wall with magnets.
The Dragon Ball franchise was well-represented, too, with entire shelves of character figures from across the colorful history of the series. Bulma from the classic Dragon Ball manga days got a new figure, shown here using the mechanical vehicles from the Capsule Corporation.
Giant robots were another big part of the Bandai Spirits booth, from Full Metal Panic! to classics like Nekketsu Saikyo Gozaurer (which is celebrating its 25th anniversary) and Mazinger Z.
It's not quite a robot, but the cuddly transforming dragon from Dragon Pilot: Hisone and Masotan was there, too.
At the Ichiban Kuji area of the Bandai Spirits booth, some more figures from brand-new series were being shown off, like Alice from the third season of Sword Art Online, which hasn't even aired yet!
There were also these fantastic figures of Sheryl from Macross Frontier to celebrate the 10th annniversary of the series.
The Good Smile booth had plenty of new items to showcase. My favorite is this Simon Nendoroid from Gurren Lagann doing his iconic Gunbuster pose.
Other older series got some love, too. New figures for Envy from Fullmetal Alchemist, Arale from Doctor Slump, and Naga from Slayers were on display.
Of course, most of the booth was dedicated to the latest big hits in the anime-sphere, from Darling in the Franxx to Cardcaptor Sakura: Clear Card andFate/Grand Order.
There was also a tsunami of KanColle stuff. Despite the sheer volume of characters on board in that series, no ship girl was left at sea.
Batman Ninja, anyone?
Just outside the Good Smile booth, Persona 5 had its own area just to showcase all their latest figures. The protagonist of the series sure has gotten a lot of love, both in his Joker form and in his ordinary student form.
Don't forget Jack Frost, the monster iconic to all Shin Megami Tensei games, and the protagonist of Persona 3!
If that wasn't enough Persona for you, the Sega booth had a recreation of the Morgana cat bus and cosplayers.
Also a thing at Sega: Lots and lots of Re:ZERO and Fate/Grand Order.
At Kotobukiya, the retailer was pushing their “ikemen” (pretty boy) series for the DC comics, particularly (for some reason) Robin.
There was, of course, anime stuff, too, like more Darling in the Franxx and Sword Art Online Alternative: Gun Gale Online.
Medicos Entertainment was showing off their JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Golden Wind figure line ahead of the anime's TV broadcast in fall. The characters are shown doing their iconic poses.
In a neat move, Nitro+ was showing off models of the swords that correspond to the Touken Ranbu characters.
On the other side of their booth was their elaborate Thunderbolt Fantasy display. They showed off many of the same dolls as they did in the last Wonder Festival, but with more focus on the characters from the upcoming season next fall.
To celebrate five years of Aniplex+ (Aniplex's specialist store), their booth had a display of their most notable figures since their inception.
It was interesting to see Takashi Murakami, the popular contemporary artist who coined the term “superflat,” show off some of his own anime-style figure work at Wonder Festival. He has been collaborating with the renowned sculpture artist BOME for over ten years to produce various works (including the infamous three-meter-tall anime girl sculpture). Their works at this summer's Wonder Festival were more subdued.
There was, of course, plenty more to see and do at Wonder Festival, even if you're just sticking to the corporate booths. For more pictures, check out the gallery below: