Our Indonesian otaku makes the trip to Surabaya for the otaku culture celebration.

Earlier this month, our Indonesia-based otaku reporter Aqil Rahmansyah hopped on a train. His destination: Chibicon.

Though chibi is a Japanese word meaning someone or something small, the Chibicon anime convention was held in the second-largest city in Indonesia, Surabaya. From Aqil’s hometown of Malang, it’s about a 90-minute train ride to Surabaya, but Aqil wasn’t about to miss the event.

The fifth floor of the Galaxy Mall building served as the convention’s venue, with the doors opening at 10 a.m. on June 3. The event space quickly became so crowded, though, that guests had to line up and wait on the fourth floor, after which they were admitted in delayed waves.

Aquil purchased a ticket for the equivalent of about US$3, and once he was inside the event the first thing he noticed was the dealers’ section.

There was very much a by-fans, for-fans atmosphere to the event, with most of the vendors selling items they made or illustrated themselves, including Aqil’s friend Nanda (pictured below).

The dealer’s section wasn’t the only way for fans to show their artistic talents and creativity, though. Like any good anime convention, Chibicon also had plenty of cosplayers, representing a mix of new and classic anime series. Among the more modern characters were cosplayers ryuu and ceenta as Bocchi the Rock’s Hitori Goto and Ryo Yamada

Mikaela Dayu as Blue Archive’s Arona, complete with light-up halo…

Iji as Jujutsu Kaisen’s Yuta Okkotsu, and also as the cursed spirit of Rika Orimoto.

…and meru as Honkai: Star Rail’s Pela.

Meanwhile, more veteran fans got a kick of happy nostalgia from seeing Raven as Evangelion’s Gendo

…who as joined by Aqil’s friend Nanda as Kaworu

…and Mobile Suit Gundam’s Strike Gundam, who Aquil was unable to learn the identity of.

Also dressed up for Chibicon, while not cosplaying as any character in particular, was melody, sporting a gothic Lolita clown dress.

Back over by the dealer section, Aqil found more cute merch…

…a gaming section with big-name and indie titles both…

…a model gun display with recreations of famous fictional firearms…

…and a stage for musical acts and a live-talk session with Indonesian virtual YouTubers.

Compared to the anime convention at Aqil’s college campus that he went to last winter, Chibicon was a magnitude larger and livelier, and was well worth the train ride out and back. A big thanks to everyone who posed for our camera, and we hope to see you all again at next year’s event!

Photos © SoraNews24
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