PSS: generic convention twenty-six

THE DARRIN COMMUNICATIONS CENTER AND LOW CENTER FOR INDUSTRIAL INNOVATION FILLED to beyond the brim last weekend as Genericon XXVI came to Rensselaer. Anime showings and panels on a myriad variety of topics such as card games, Japanese culture, anime, science fiction, voice acting, and more brought crowds to the buildings’ lecture halls. The DCC’s Great Hall was jam-packed with cosplayers, vendors selling everything from Blu-Rays to comic swag to trading cards and gaming paraphernalia, and gamers. Genericon expanded this year into the upper floor of Russell Sage Dining Hall, where the majority of the vendors were located, allowing more rooms to be used for video gaming and traditional board games. The anime showings and panels were not limited to mainstream topics, but included obscure and 18-plus material. There were even some more exclusive events, including an inflatable TARDIS from BBC’s Doctor Who , a “panel of madness” (essentially all of [adult swim] condensed into 2 hours), talks on various aspects of the popular card game Magic: The Gatheirng , a Pokémon LAN party, and belly dancing from a group known as Antipode. Entry badges to Genericon cost $10 for RPI students, $15 for non-students who pre-registered, and $25 for non-students at the door. (Strangely, the check-in line for pre-registered attendees stretched through three-quarters of the DCC, while there was barely any line for at-the-door attendees.) The con started at 5 pm on Friday, March 1, and continued uninterrupted for 48 straight hours, ending at 5 pm on Sunday, March 3.