15 Best Fan Conventions to Visit in 2024

As long as you’re a fan of something, there’s probably a convention for you. Fan conventions are a great way to meet your favorite voice actors and actors who play your favorite fictional characters. It is also a great time to buy exclusive merchandise, cosplay, and even possibly sell merchandise yourself.

1. Katsucon

Image Credit: Katsucon.

This three-day anime convention in Washington, D.C., features live anime screenings, karaoke sessions, Japanese fashion panels, and more. Katsucon is held every year for anime fans in the area to geek out and have fun.

2. Gamescom

Gamescon, Cologne, Germany
Image Credit: Sergey Galyonkin – CC BY-Sa 2.0/Wiki Commons.

One of the largest gaming conventions in Europe, Gamescom attracts gamers from all over the world to come and attend this event held in Cologne, Germany, each year. Typically, gamers could try out the latest games, experience high-end gaming technology, and attend panel discussions on the gaming industry.

3. Anime Boston 2024

Image Credit: Anime Boston.

As the largest fan gathering in the Northeast for anime lovers everywhere, it would be remiss not to add Anime Boston to the list. This con is known to be graced by famous names like Shinichiro Watanabe, creator of Cowboy Bebop, and many others.

4. Retro World Expo

Retro World Expo
Image Credit: RetroWorld Expo LLC.

A fan convention that focuses entirely on retro gaming, Retro World Expo is a unique gaming convention that showcases classic games and gaming systems—an excellent spot for collectors and older gaming enthusiasts looking to splurge or reminisce.

5. Sakura-Con

Image Credit: Sakura Con.

The largest anime convention in the Pacific Northwest, Sakura-Con, holds a “for fans, by fans” motto, which means you don’t have to spend an extra dime when you enter the convention. That’s right! All of the performances, autographs, meet and greets, and cosplay parades are free. You need to purchase a membership beforehand, but that’s your ticket.

6. Tokyo Games Show

Image Credit: Sergey Galyonkin – CC BY-SA 2.0/Wiki Commons.

The Tokyo Games Show is where you should be, specifically for those who are fans or are interested in the Japanese gaming industry. The first two days are typically for industry professionals, but the others are open to the public. It showcases Japanese gaming culture, games, and technology as well.

7. FanimeCon 2024

Image Credit: John Brence/KawaiiGuy.

Another fan-run anime convention, FanimeCon’s main highlight is its fan panels, where fans get to talk about their theories with each other and geek out. It is an excellent event for fans who want to connect with others who share their ideologies and theories. It’s not a convention for those who want to meet celebrities or big names in the industry if that’s what you’re interested in.

8. PAX East 2024

Image Credit: RELX, In.

Also known as the Penny Arcade Expo, this is more of a series of gaming conventions held across several cities in the United States. PAX East is the East Coast version of the convention, but there’s also PAX West. The East one is known for its vast cosplay scene, and you can expect to check out new games and attend panels alongside some fun workshops.

9. Anime Expo (AX)

LA Convention Center's South Hall during AX
Image Credit: CC BY-SA 4.0/Wiki Commons.

One of the most hyped anime conventions set in downtown Los Angeles, Anime Expo brings the crowds and the most prominent names in the industry. They have many events for you to join and have fun. Be warned that the crowds are no joke and can be intimidating for first-timers.

10. DreamHack

Image Credit: DreamHack.

Here, we have a gaming convention focusing solely on the eSports scene. One of the largest “Bring Your Own Computer” parties was at DreamHack, so join in if that’s your cup of tea! The convention focuses on the gaming lifestyle and features gaming tournaments, indie games, cosplayers, and streamers.

11. Ai-Kon

Image Credit: Ai-Kon.

A Canadian-based anime convention that started as a simple open-house event for a university’s anime club. Now, Ai-Kon is one of the biggest anime conventions in Canada and North America. Some of its event highlights include maid cafes, 24-hour anime screenings, and game tournaments.

12. Comic-Con

Comic Con Convention Center Pheonix, Arizona
Image Credit: Gage Skidmore – CC BY-SA 2.0/Wiki Commons.

It would be foolish not to include Comic-Con on the list as one of the most long-standing fan conventions of all time. With Comic-Con, we might not have had other fan conventions. This convention is all about comic book appreciation and pop culture, expanding into the realms of movies, games, books, etc.

13. Anime Matsuri

Anime Matsuri
Image Credit: Anime Matsuri Convention.

Anime Matsuri takes it up a notch as they add live sumo competitions to their convention events. They have typical panel offerings, anime exhibitions, and cosplays, with the inclusion of some K-pop events as well.

14. BlizzCon

BlizzCon Anaheim Convention Center
Image Credit: CC BY-SA 2.0/Wiki Commons.

It’s all in the name. BlizzCon is Blizzard Entertainment’s annual fan convention for those who enjoy their games and media. This includes Overwatch, World of Warcraft, and Diablo. The convention features new game announcements, panels, meet and greets, and exclusive merchandise.

15. Super MAGFest

Super MAGFest Sayakat Cosplay
Image Credit: MAGFest, Inc.

With a unique blend of music and gaming, Super MAGFest combines two categories, producing a wonderful fan convention. One of its highlights is the console hall, which is open for 24 hours, with hundreds of screens and consoles for everyone to play.

+ posts