Comiket doesn’t have to cost you a fortune! Take a look at what you can pick up for just the price of entry—in other words, absolutely free.

The excitement and fervour of Comiket, Japan’s largest doujinshi convention, is dying down after Comiket 89 ran from December 29-31. The highs of getting their hands on limited edition doujinshi (amateur comics), art books, and wearable waifus is probably starting to wear off for otaku as they open their wallets to see only dust and the odd Yoshinoya receipt. Entry to Comiket is free, but the real cost of the event can run into the hundreds of thousands of yen for hardcore fans. 

But it’s perfectly possible to enjoy the event without spending a penny a yet still not come away empty-handed.

As well as the legions of fan artists who aren’t necessarily there to make a profit, there are also plenty of corporate booths who set up shop to promote their brands. If you can get to them—the company booth area is usually the most packed out—these booths give away plenty of promotional material for free. Our intrepid reporter braved the crowds to see what free goodies he could get his hands on.


Comic Pool comic / Ichijinsha

Ichijinsha is a manga publishing company responsible for magazines such as Monthly Comic Zero Sum and Comic Yuri Hime. This booklet contains six short 2-3 page manga episodes and seems to a print version taster of the web magazine they’ve launched in collaboration with pixiv, the social site for artists. Apparently the stories are funny and heartwarming, and worth the read.


Kuma Miko stickers / Marui

Companies are starting to cotton on to the incredible spending power of otaku, as evidenced by more and more companies unrelated to anime looking to get in on the action each year. This year saw department store Marui setting up a booth for the first time and collaborating with upcoming anime Kuma Miko: Girl Meets Bear set to air in April 2016.

Our reporter actually ventured to the Marui booth to buy the Osomatsu-kun New Year’s decoration which unfortunately had already sold out in a flash, but these cute stickers were a decent enough consolation prize.


Mikasa no Usui Hon comic/ MIKASA

No, unfortunately this isn’t a sexy book dedicated to Attack on Titan’s hottest heroine. MIKASA is also a sporting goods store, and why it’s deciding to advertize at Comiket of all places is a mystery. The comic contains articles such as “About Hiroshima” and “The Volleyball Manufacturing Process”, further adding to our confusion.


Dengeki Hacka Doll Mobage magazine / Hacka Doll x Mobage

Hacka Doll the Animation aired in Fall 2015. As an anime based on DeNA’s news app for iOS and Android devices viewers weren’t expecting much, but the short five-minute episodes turned out to be surprisingly funny and cute. This magazine contains features on Hacka Doll and Strike Witches plus an Idol Master onsen special and also comes with a poster, making it not unlike the monthly magazines that usually set fans back a few hundred yen.


NHK no Usui Hon comic / NHK

The NHK is Japan’s national public broadcaster, a staple part of many Japanese people’s viewing habits, and an annoyance when they come around badgering you to pay your license fee. This is their second year at Comiket, and you could pick up this comic by answering the questionnaire at their booth. It contains a special on Nintama Rantarō, which has been running on NHK since 1993, as well as other manga and features.

These are just a selection of the free comics you can get your hands on if you’re willing to brave the crowds in the corporate booth section. Amateur circles also sometimes give away freebies, so check their websites and Twitter before you go and you could come away with a bag of swag without spending a single yen!

Photos © RocketNews24
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