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Geeks invades the Tent at Solaire as ManiPopCon opens

It has been said that we are currently living in the golden age of the geeks and the once niche interests and hobbies are now mainstream. As this year ends, so does the twin suns of Tatooine set on the Star Wars epic. Game of Thrones, Marvel’s Avengers Saga, and the Walking Dead take their last curtain calls in 2019. These massively huge geekdoms have ventured into the collective consciousness of the majority, thanks to social media.

The Manila Pop Culture Convention, or ManiPopCon, will host different geekdoms under one convention. Producers Marco Aventajado and Freddie Tan are hoping that conventioneers can geek out for two days in the 2,400-square meter Tent at Solaire Resort and Casino, starting November 16 to November 17.

“One does not simply walk into ManiPopCon and just try one thing,” to paraphrase a popular meme. The convention will have tabletop games, collectible card games, Dungeons and Dragons (D&D), miniature wargames, geek sundries, Toys, Funko Pops, adult collectibles, comic books, science fiction, eSports, VR games, midway games, cosplay, mascots, and celebrities you didn’t know were geeks. “We’re hoping for a ‘cross pollination’ of geekdoms so that the individual geekdom communities will grow,” said Aventajado. “ManiPopCon is a convention first so as event goers, you can go to most booths and get something for free, you just have to ask.”

ManiPopCon is divided into sectors. Laro will be the center of all the games. Concourse de Geek will have ManiPopCon event partners and sponsors’ booths as well purveyors of toys and VR games. Artist Alley will be the place to go to for the adult collectibles, comic and science fiction, and other geek sundries.

“While ManiPopCon is mainly an event for geeks by geeks, we have made it very family-friendly. This event was something I have always wanted to do because I want to expose my kids to these enjoyable activities and make them see that there are so many fun things to do, away from their gadgets. I grew up playing board games such as Monopoly, Game of Life, and Game of the Generals. I have such fond memories and picked up a lot of life lessons, I want my kids to experience that too,” Aventajado added.

ManiPopCon co-Presentors are bringing the heat for convention goers’ excitement. Cignal’s booth will be where the eSports geeks will be congregating with tournaments for Mobile Legends, Tekken 7 and DOTA VR for in game prizes and gear. ABS-CBN will be bringing the Ravelo Komiks Universe heroes so line up for selfies with Darna, Lastikman, and Captain Barbell. Don’t forget to check out the Sky Cable and other sponsor booths to see what they brought.

Highlighting the 680-seat Laro sector of ManiPopCon are the Magic: The Gathering (MTG) National tournament, Gold Rush 2019 presented by Ludus Distributors and the Epic Dungeons and Dragons event, the Conclave 2019 presented by the Greasy Snitches.

Gold Rush 2019 aims to have more than 500 participants while The Conclave will have 100 and 200-player Epic Adventures. There will also be tournaments and demos of Warhammer 40,000, Transformers TCG and KeyForge, not to mention dozens of tabletop games including the Filipino classic, Game of the Generals. There will also be side events for MTG and D&D.

Big Boy Toys will be front and center for the toys and adult collectibles with a convention exclusive collaboration between artists Quiccs x Markdwin as well as special deals for ManiPopCon attendees. Mox Gen Merch will have a good selection of current and nostalgic toys that even the most discerning geek would be happy to get a great find.

Artist Alley will have something for every geek who love supporting local artists. Up-and-coming vinyl toy artists Milo San Luis and Creon will be on hand to exhibit their newest drops and ManiPopCon exclusives. Event-goers that are lucky enough to get their hands on them would be extra lucky as the artists could sign their work for them. Berlin Manalaysay will be debuting his continuation of the Combatron final saga as well as the expansion of the Combatron tabletop game. Tablay, a Filipino sci-fi novel by Katrina Olan which brings together the edge of futuristic mecha and the mysticism of Philippine folklore will also be featured.

On top of all the fun activities during the convention, there will be also an after party called ManiPopCon After Dark. At 10:30pm on Saturday, Latin-inspired restaurant, Waterside will be featuring premier stand-up comic Mike Unson, disco music by DJ Boyet Sison, and spoken word by the artists of Collaboratory Ph. Tickets for ManiPopCon After Dark is Php 500 with a drink and will be available at the Waterside.

ManiPopCon is on November 16 and 17 at the Solaire Tent, Solaire Resort and Casino, Pasay City. Doors open at 10:00 am. Tickets are available at the entrance or through ticketworld.com.ph. Php 400 for adults, Php 250 for teens (student ID required), kids below 10 years old get in for free. Social media for the event is Facebook.com/ManiPopCon and @ManiPopCon on Instagram.

ManiPopCon is co-presented by Solaire, Cignal, and Ludus. Media partners are ABS-CBN, Myx, Sky, Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network, Warner Brothers TV, Fandom, Tabletop Philippines, Variable Play, and Quit Stalling.

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