Raleigh’s Growing Con Scene

playthrough games

Trae and I went to PlayThrough gaming con in Raleigh on February 25. When we first moved here four years ago, we didn’t realize Raleigh had a con scene, but since discovering it, we have become hooked. And lucky for us, Raleigh’s con scene is growing.

PlayThrough is a smaller con held at the Raleigh Convention Center. A significant portion of the con floor is reserved for gaming from board games to vintage Nintendo games. Another part of the floor is for vendors and game developers. Trae and I had a blast walking around and testing out games like Sausage Drop and Rocket League. We also attended some great panels. I really enjoyed Shawn Long‘s talk on “How to Start a YouTube Gaming Channel.” Honestly, the steps for creating a successful YouTube channel and creating a successful blog aren’t that different.


Last year’s OakCity was set up very similar to PlayThrough. The only major different was PlayThrough’s cosplay contest seemed to be a lot more organized. I honestly hadn’t even planned on entering PlayThrough’s contest, but a fairy told me I had to. Judging for Oak City’s cosplay contest took over an hour, which caused us to miss a lot of the con’s activities. Oak City’s judging did take place on the main stage area, so while waiting in line, Trae and I could people watch. However, PlayThrough’s judging was in a separate room and took like five minutes. Quick and painless!

Toad cosplay
Is it just me or does it look like Mario is giving me bunny ears?

In truth, the long wait for judging could be normal; I honestly don’t know. The only knowledge I have about cons comes from secretly stalking blog posts about ComicCon, drooling over cosplay pictures on Instagram, and the tv show Heroes of Cosplay. And being in the dark about this stuff is frustrating. A lot of the reasons Trae and I never went to cons was we didn’t know what to expect or proper con etiquette. We still really don’t know what we are doing, which is why I will be doing a series of posts leading up to Raleigh Supercon in July. By the time Supercon roles around, we all should feel fully prepared for it!

playthrough board game

One of my biggest tips for new con-goers is to go to a smaller con first.  Going to a smaller con can help you get used to the con scene and know what to expect at a bigger con. But don’t be afraid to go to Supercon if you don’t get a chance to make it to one of the smaller cons. Really, who wants to miss the opportunity to meet the voice of Belle or Amy Pond?!?

Some upcoming cons are


OakCity Comicon: Happening on March 18-19, this con encompasses all types of fandoms with the guests leaning more towards the comic book genre.  This year they will be hosting an 80s-cartoon themed dance party! Sign me up! I’ll be bouncing here and there and everywhere just like the Gummi Bears!


Animazement: Coming up in May, this con is everything anime. While this con is on the large size, it offers some great fun like Cosplay Chess!


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