For three days (start 18th of May) Poznań turned into the geekiest place... well, maybe not in Europe, but for sure in Poland. This year there were around 38 000 people! 16 pavilions full of attractions and theme zones and still a lot of space between them. Truth to be told, after 3 days legs hurt as hell but you didn’t get claustrophobic and could really see all things around you. But we shall start from the beginning…
First Pyrkon festival took place in 2000 and since then is held annually in Poznań. As I remember the only time Pyrkon wasn't held was in 2005 when the organizers of Pyrkon and Polcon joined forces to prepare only Polcon. Probably all people reading this article are perfectly aware what this event is all about, but for all the noobies out there: Pyrkon is a fan convention dedicated to integrate all kinds of fandoms, even the weirdest ones, mostly sci-fi, fantasy, anime/manga and all the cool stuff you could imagine. For example this year there were following sections:
Beginners Section, Tabletop Games Section, Video Games Section, Kids Section, Integration Block, Movies & TV Series Section, Literature Section, Science Section, Comic Book Section, Far East Fantasy Section, Fantasium Suburbium, Fantasium Creatium, Role-Play Zone, Fantastic Initiatives Zone, Cosplay contest, Blood Brothers of Pyrkon.
So as you can see, there were plenty things to do! Ah, and I almost forgot about food and sleep sections, without them Pyrkon wouldn’t be Pyrkon.
I tried my best to write about all the aforementioned sections, but if I missed something, it’s probably because I didn’t want to make a book out of the article.
Tabletop Games Section
If you are crazy about board games you should totally see this… This was the biggest room full of games I’ve ever seen, really… You can play them, buy them and fell in love with them even more… There is nothing more to say! Also, some games have their separate stalls in the other halls.
Video Games Section
This was huge section for all the real computer geeks. There were almost everything you could wish for! From the newest games to the oldest ones. You could find consoles like Pegasus, Nintendo or Atari and play all day on them! There were also LoL (League of Legends ) or WoW (World of Warcraft) tournaments with amazing gamers and commentators. Even if I’m not the biggest fan of watching people playing (I would rather play) it caught my eye.
Literature & Comics
For starters, guests. In this edition we could meet with and get an autograph from Patricia Briggs (one of my TOP 5 authors), Robin Hobb, Orson Scott Card, Peter V. Brett, Andrzej Pilipiuk, Jakub Ćwiek and many others. One of the pavilions contained 8 auditoriums with lectures from both authors and fellow fans about literature, comics, movies and series and many more.
Movies & TV Series Section
There was a tent with a cinema in it. Only few seances per day but still… And from the visiting stars you could meet Jon Bailey (Epic Voice Guy) and amazing Felicia Day.
I remember, that when I was at Pyrkon for the first time, this place made the greatest impression on me. The huge hall with loads of villages like Old Town, Ennorath, Elfs (this one was a bit creepy… they were just eating all the time) etc. and they are full of people dressed accordingly. This is something that just makes you want to stay there forever. This year news was Naruto village, they looked adorable between post-apo and vikings.
Fantastic Initiatives Zone
To be honest, I don’t remember this section from the previous events, but I must admit it’s a pretty good idea especially if you are totally new to the convention world. There, you were able to find out more about upcoming events in other cities and decide if this is something for you.
Cosplay and Contest (Masquerade)
About cosplay… wow, just wow. Comparing to Comic Con… nope, you just can’t compare.
Variety, execution and the distinctive lack of army of Harley Queens. So, so awesome. Not going to write, when you can see the photos yourselves: here.
As it goes, not everything can be perfect and shiny. Masquerade, the cosplay show had the longest queue you could imagine. And the second queue for the special tickets with pre-acreditation. For the first 2h of standing in the queue nobody from the organization knew where is the media entrance. About 40 minutes before the start, I managed to find, supposedly, the main organizer, who said that media are coming in with pre-acreditation. About 20 min later, at the entrance to the shorter queue (you needed to prove that you could use that one), the second main organizer (WTF?) said that media should come in with the long queue (means, good luck and forget it). Best wishes for organizers!
So instead of watching the Masquerade, the best I got was official relation. Good relation, pretty frustrating situation.
Blood Brothers of Pyrkon
Going to the Pyrkon gives you an amazing opportunity to do something for others, even if you just came there for fun. Like every year, there was a huge tent where you could donate your blood, which I personally believe is a great idea. There is only thing I would mention as a bit annoying… the queue. It was enormous, honestly we spend 2h waiting in the line, but it was worth it even if there was full sun and 30 degrees… But cold beer after can heal all the wounds!
ExhibitorsThere were 175 exhibitors, so really a lot. In this pavilion, up from Saturday, you couldn’t breath from the sheer amount of people (we split once, it was scary) but the merchandise was just awesome. You could find something original even from the most popular themes, and there were actual differences between stalls (nope, it’s not that obvious). The most interesting were stalls of artists and craftworks: custom made jewellery, leather, clothes and even weapons.
Summing up, this was another amazing event and you can tell that many years of experience are showing up thru the way Pyrkon is prepared. To be honest, after being disappointed about what happened on third Warsaw Comic Con, I was really skeptical about Pyrkon, but totally needlessly. But seriously, that was only a little piece of Pyrkon attractions, 3 full days on more than 200 ha of a geek world can’t be sum up in an easy way.
I hope to see all of you on next one, which takes place from 26th to 28th of April 2019!
Official website you can find here.
Also, check out more photos from Pyrkon 2018 in our Album section!