LsCON 2022: Celebrating Nerd Culture
In the heart of Lusaka, our vibrant and diverse community came together at Nakatindi Hall to celebrate a shared love for nerd culture, comics, art, video games, and all things nerd. LsCon (Lusaka Comic Convention), organized by the amazing and passionate volunteers of Nerd Otaku, became the focal point for enthusiasts from across the country. It showcased the power of unity and the beauty of embracing diverse interests, making it an unforgettable Zambian celebration of nerd culture. From captivating cosplays to engaging artist panels, LsCon 2022 left an indelible mark on the local nerd community, fostering its growth and supporting the creatives within it.
Yande (LsCon Volunteer)
On the day of the event the weather had other plans but the show must go on. The event itself was full of festivities like panels, video games, table top games and so much more. One of my favourites was the artist alley I really enjoyed seeing different versions of art on display. I also enjoyed the vendors alley, the only thing that made me sad was that I barely found any bleach merch.
Another highlight was the panels, like Tikula who shared their message on youth empowerment, I already love their stuff therefore it was amazing seeing them advocating about youth positivity on stage. Noob Support was another amazing panel, one thing I really loved about it was she prepared a starter guide anime watch list for that newbie Otaku who is still trying to find their way into anime, I might not be a newbie but that list surely helped in increasing my watch list.
The actor’s roundtable was one that was insightful and really enjoyed it. I mean we get to see these individuals on a screen and it gets you wondering what it like is for this person to prepare for this particular role. I enjoyed this roundtable particularly because it gave me an insight to the actor’s journey into the industry and hearing such stories from people you look up to, really helps you connect with them on a human level.
What is LsCon without cosplay? Well I do not know but it definitely wouldn’t be LsCon without cosplay. I am such a huge fan of cosplay so seeing people dressed up as some of my favourite characters really brings me joy. The cosplay parade was definitely a favourite for me, there’s a lot of creativity that goes into creating a costume and having a platform that appreciates that effort and allows you to showcase it, is something that every cosplayers hopes for.
I also enjoyed the musical performances, the table top games and watching people play video games, maybe in the next LsCon I’ll actually participate and not only watch. All in all LsCon 2022 was an event I really enjoyed and I am definitely looking forward to the next LsCon.
The convention hall was filled with a vibrant display of artistic talent. Artists showcased their creations, ranging from awe-inspiring paintings to intricately drawn characters to uniquely inspired stickers. The diversity and skill on display were simply breathtaking, showcasing the rich artistic tapestry of Zambia. Visitors had the opportunity to interact with the artists, learn about their inspiration, and even purchase unique pieces to take home.
What made the artist stalls at LsCon 2022 truly remarkable was the diversity of styles and mediums on display. Attendees could witness the fusion of traditional and digital art, witness the mastery of various painting techniques, and appreciate the attention to detail in every pencilstroke. The artists themselves were present, engaging in conversations with visitors, sharing their creative journeys, and offering valuable insights into their artistic process. These stalls were a testament to the incredible talent within the Zambian nerd community and provided a platform for artists to showcase their unique creations and connect with like-minded individuals.
Patrick (LsCon Volunteer)
My experience with Nerdotaku/Lscon was tiring but an amazing time, learning with my supervisors and meeting great people helped in getting over my introverted nature and help me make new friends in the community.
The experience with other people encouraged me to try new things and explore a little more.
10/10 would definitely (do it) again
My name is Chimora also known as MO, I was one of the artists at Lscon 2022. I’ve been displaying my art since the 2014 Lscon but this year was very amazing for me as I got so many followers and sold out on all my art. My art pieces range from to animations to emotional art to silhouette art as I feel artists should have artistic freedom and shouldn’t be confined to one type of art but rather do what they feel resonates with them. To me as an artist my go to moto is “the only magic that’s left is art” and with that being said, lot of magic happened for me at Lscon as I made new friends who would love to be artists which gave me a chance to encourage lots of upcoming and shy artists. The inspiration to believe in themselves and participate in the upcoming Comicon/NerD|Otaku events because we all start from somewhere and for me LsCon has been a huge platform for me throughout my art Journey.
Lscon is such an empowering event for many people especially creatives as it provides a welcoming environment to all personalities which is a great place for any artist. With LsCon you get to actually put yourself out there for many people to get to know you and in my past few years of having an art stand I have come to make good friendships with some of Lusaka’s amazing artists like ( Mili Chavda, Chuck, Sabi arts, Mwelwa Tax, Benny Blow, Mike Mufana, Antony black bunny RIP etc) and all these people have helped me grow as an artist in terms of ART diversity.
To every upcoming artist who I met and haven’t met who would like to showcase their talent and feel a little shy and scared my word of advice is to take a chance and be a part of our community and who knows you could have just a great experience as mine and even more. To artists who are already established no publicity is too small or too big for you so take some time to come be a part of the NerD|OtakU events to be a form of inspiration to those still learning.
Let’s all spread magic because the only magic left is ART and it starts with you!
The cosplay competition at LsCon 2022 was a highlight that drew in crowds eager to witness the transformation of passionate enthusiasts into their favorite fictional characters. The level of craftsmanship and attention to detail displayed in the costumes was truly awe-inspiring. From meticulously tailored outfits to intricately designed props, cosplayers went above and beyond to recreate the essence of the characters they embodied.
What made the cosplay competition at LsCon 2022 particularly remarkable was the diverse range of characters portrayed. Attendees were treated to a colorful collage of superheroes, anime icons, video game protagonists, and characters from a multitude of genres. This inclusivity allowed attendees to connect with characters they resonated with and showcased the vastness of nerd culture, bringing together fans from various fandoms under one roof.
Being my first LsCon it met and surpassed my expectations. The organizers made sure there was no room for boredom, because there was so much to do, so much to see and experience!
The highlight of my day was hunting down my fellow Batmans for a picture because “We are Batman”. Soooo I hope to see you all there next year. And here’s an idea why don’t we all go as characters from the Office!
When I woke up on Saturday morning, it was with a bit of trepidation: it had been raining all night and it didn’t look like it was letting up. Would LsCon still take place? I had been looking forward to it for weeks! I need not have worried: not only was LsCon still on, but it turned out to be even more fun than I had hoped it would.
My wife Lia and I arrived early. After a tiny bit of initial confusion (“Wow, there are a lot of people here already. But they look suspiciously like they’re all cosplaying being in a wedding party!”), we found the right place. We were welcomed right away with open arms by the Nerd Otaku team.
Having learned about Nerd Otaku and having met some of the team members at an earlier board game event, we were excited to attend LsCon. We wanted to learn more about the local “nerd” scene and share our love of board games. To that end, we brought some board games with us and lots of enthusiasm!
It didn’t take long to kick off some games. We learned how to play Dutch Blitz, a fun, real-time card game. The laughter and good times continued when I introduced and led a few rounds of Ca$h ‘n Gun$. The “gangsters” dove right in: sometimes shooting their way to the loot and sometimes diving under the table for cover (all figuratively, of course). We then transitioned to Bohnanza, a more strategic, but no less riotous game. “Bean farmers” tried to plant and harvest their beans for the most profit – and to get others to take their unwanted “black-eyed beans” off their hands, while grabbing as many “stink beans” as possible. (No beans were harmed in the playing of this game.) There were several other tables around us that had board games going on as well. It was wonderful to see so many people having so much fun!
One of the highlights of the convention was the costumes, of course. We were very impressed with all of the creativity and talent that people put into them. I also really appreciated Olga’s comments about cosplay not implying consent. It clearly showed that the organizers cared about making this a safe environment for everyone.
And if all of that weren’t enough yet, there were also video games, vendors, amazingly talented artists, a photo booth, panels with presenters, and so much more! The Japanese Embassy was there, with an impressive and fun display. Their presentation about kimonos was both entertaining and educational. There was so much to do and to see that everyone was sure to have a fantastic time.
By the time we had to leave, the sky had cleared up and the sun had come out. Cosplayers were posing for photos on the lawn, showing off their creations. We left with huge smiles on our faces, grateful for the amazing time we had spent with incredibly friendly and welcoming people. We can’t wait for next year’s LsCon!
LsCon featured a dedicated area where enthusiasts could gather to indulge in their love for board and card games. This space was a bustling hub of friendly competition, strategic thinking, and social interaction. Attendees had the opportunity to discover new games, engage in intense competition, and forge new connections with fellow gamers.
One of the remarkable aspects of the board and card game area was the inclusivity it fostered. Gamers from different backgrounds and experiences were welcomed into the space, breaking barriers and forming connections through their shared passion for tabletop gaming. Players engaged in friendly banter, shared strategies, and exchanged laughter, creating an atmosphere of camaraderie and belonging.
Having attended Last year’s mini LsCon, I knew this year’s was going to be bigger but I did not know just how big it was going to be.
The whole event made me envious of Naruto’s Shadow Clone jutsu cause being everywhere at once would have really helped, LsCon did not meet my expectations it, exceeded them never have I wished I could replay an event as much as this one. I recall seeing 3 kids who were looking around unsure of where to go or what to do, I noticed them staring at the PS5 and they were soo happy to know they could just start playing with only the precautions they already take with their own consoles at home.
The cosplayers, oh man the cosplayers really went all out on this one, seeing people dress up as who they want with people actually being excited to see characters being potrayed, overrall an amazing experience.
The merchandise, people’s wallets were begging them to stop and what I imagine went through their heads was “They will come a day when I will listen to you….that day is not today” and immediately got themselves that Batman painting and wallpaper.
The Japanese Embassy taking their time to be part of the event was fantastic, got to make my own Shuriken step by step, proud of myself for that one. Everything they offered was amazing from trying on their traditional clothing the Kimono, to magazines about their cultures and scholarships they offer, definitely want to visit Japan.
I really wish I’d invited more people for LsCon and while writing this, it dawned on me that I need a dictionary or thesaurus cause I definitely do not have the right words to describe just how amazing this and fun LsCon22 was, I hope everyone had as much as I did and by looks of the photos I’ve seen, it looks like others had more fun, but fun is fun and fun was had, really looking forward to all upcoming NerdOtaku events.
LsCon provided a platform for competitive gamers to showcase their skills, engage in thrilling matches, and foster a sense of community within the fighting game scene. The video games section dedicated to console games buzzed with excitement as players, spectators, and enthusiasts gathered to witness the intense battles between skilled competitors. Popular fighting games featured included Street Fighter, Tekken, Super Smash Bros., and Mortal Kombat.
The competitive spirit in the esports area was palpable, as players showcased their mastery of intricate combos, lightning-fast reflexes, and strategic decision-making. Attendees were treated to a display of skill and expertise as players navigated the virtual arenas, executing breathtaking moves and mind games to outwit their opponents. Each match was a spectacle, drawing in a captivated audience who cheered, gasped, and celebrated the skillful maneuvers and unexpected comebacks.
LsCon was my first nerd culture-centric convention and my very first experience with cosplay, and it was admittedly so much more fun than I could have imagined. I didn’t realise this culture and community existed in Zambia and it was amazing to experience first hand. It was such a warm and welcoming space. Everyone wanted to talk and take photos with everyone else, and I was blown away by the talent showcased by the artists at the event. Can’t wait for the next one!
LsCon 2022 was more than just a convention; it was a celebration of inclusion, acceptance, and belonging. The event transcended traditional boundaries, welcoming individuals from all walks of life, irrespective of age, gender, or background. Through captivating cosplay, cultural exchange, gaming delights, and artistic showcases, LsCon 2022 provided a safe and nurturing space for individuals to connect, share, and embrace their love for nerd culture. It is a testament to the power of community and the indomitable spirit of the Zambian nerd community and the passion of our volunteers, united under the banner of Nerd Otaku’s unwavering commitment to fostering an inclusive and welcoming atmosphere.
REFISTRATION IS OPEN FOR 2023!
Mulungushi International Conference Centre - Lusaka
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