The Singapore Comic con 2023 (SGCC) once again unfolded as a vibrant celebration of pop culture, cosplay, and toy collections in the heart of downtown Marina Bay. As the 14th edition of this annual event, SGCC has evolved from its humble beginnings as a marketplace convention to a colossal convention showcase with over 300 booths sprawling across 200 thousand square feet over two hall floors at the Marina Bay Sands (MBS).
The convention’s venue at the Marina Bay Sands and convention center was familiar, but this year’s SGCC presented a dynamic mix of toys, pop culture, and captivating events spread across two floors of the basement of the Sands Expo & Convention Centre. Navigating through the halls, it was evident that SGCC continued to be a mecca for enthusiasts of toys, collectibles, merchandise, and art galleries.
Toys and collectables
Furthermore, on the convention center ground floor and top level of the Sands Expo & Convention Centre, you immerse themselves in the world of toys and collectibles. Notable participants included XM Studios. They are renowned for their large and intricately detailed figures from both Marvel and DC universes, with a price tag to match.
Also, local favorites such as Tokidoki, alongside toy shops like Simply Toys and Collectors Base stores showcasing Funko pops and Anime figurines. There is also an emphasis on Teenage Mutant Ninja turtles this year with a booth area with several standing models for photo opportunities.
We also see the return of Royal Selangor also had their presence known in the industry providing detailed pewter pieces in modern pop culture incarnations.
Also, a standout was the adorable Bluey, who not only made a return appearance but also had a dedicated booth with its own merchandise for sale. Additionally, Might Jaxx and Lego by Brick Shop commanded sizable booths, adding to the diverse array of offerings.
A pop culture reunion
One of the highlights of SGCC was the extensive invitational guest list, featuring pop culture heavyweights and fan favorites like Stanley “Artgerm” Lau, Marvel and DC illustrator Inhyuk Lee, Julian Mok with his D&D works, and James Mulligan. Also, we see the return of local comic heroes such as Sonny Liew with Mr. Kiasu added to the star-studded lineup.
Moreover, there is an art gallery showcasing a 60th-anniversary original art exhibition of Tony Wong. It further enhances the celebration of pop culture. Also, you can meet and greet with renowned Asian artists and personalities such as Fung Chi Meng artist such as Andy Seto, Tong Wong and Jerry Cho.
Also, there is also a section devoted to Diversity in Comics, with illustration from mainstream comics like X-men behind glass on the topic of inclusivity.
Additionally, SGCC’s commitment to curating the best of toys, comics, and gaming from across the globe was evident in new and exciting activities. Fan-based zones, cosplay competitions, and an E-sports arena featuring local and regional leagues brought enthusiasts together for a two-day extravaganza.
Moreover, the main stage on the left of level 1 and the artist alley on the far right offered a dynamic experience, with the artist alley spans two floors on both floors of the convention this year. It also boasts wider walking paths to accommodate larger crowds.
Interesting store is the Singapore boardgame design booth with their locally inspired quirky games and the Singha bus character with a transformers depiction of our favourite everyday transit buses, as well as a model collection to the delight Singapore transport otakus.
SGCC Cosplayer galore!
No SGCC is complete without the vibrant presence of cosplayers. This year, the cosplayers took inspiration from the movies released in the past year.
Here, you can find characters like Rocket Raccoon from the last Guardians of the Galaxy movie making appearances. Security screening lines were efficiently managed on each floor, and the return of internal elevators connecting the basement and first floors streamlined access without the need for additional security checks.
In addition to the main SGCC hall housing toys, games, and comics, gaming-related and anime entities occupied their designated sectors. Notably, there was a shift in emphasis, with and evolution and less focus on named sectors like the Gaming Experience Zone and the Japanese pop culture Akiba Zone observed in previous Singapore Comic conventions.
Stage event also includes demonstration of Light saber sellers, such as those brought to you by Fightsaber and Sabermach at the convention itself.
Table gaming and Basement floor
Moreover, the basement floor, with its more informal setting, featured a miscellany of tabletop gaming and in-house food stores. We also see the return of the pop culture food zone, home to about 16 stores here. Here you can find the aroma of carnival food filled the air, providing a micro Artbox market feel reminiscent of the earlier Artbox 2023 we visited this year.
Moving on, venturing to the lower basement floor, a community-based and tabletop gaming haven awaited attendees. Also, Warhammer 40k enthusiasts could engage in figure painting, tabletop gaming, and figurine painting workshops allowed participants to try their hand at intricate figure painting.
Also, other notable areas of interest here is a Transformers Cybertron fest walk-through booth here with a display of comics and first generation and current line of toys from Hasbro.
In conclusion, the Singapore Comic Convention 2023 at the Sands Expo & Convention Centre remained Southeast Asia’s ultimate celebration of Western and Asian pop culture. From toys and collectibles to comics, esports, and cosplay, SGCC continued to offer something for everyone, beckoning friends and families to don their favorite superhero or video game character costumes and soak up the bustling atmosphere. Can’t wait for next year’s event!