Exhibitors

Please check back in June 2022 for info on how to join us in 2023!

Changes in 2022:

  • New space. We have moved to the Fayette and Morrow rooms on the second floor of the Hyatt. We will be part of the Gaming Hallway, which will contain the Console, PC, and Indie Gaming departments, plus a large Extra Life charity installation.
  • Branding. While our new location is larger and in a more “central area”, we still expect some attendees to have a little trouble finding us. We’re working with the rest of the Gaming department to emphasize our position in the Gaming Hallway with new banners and generally improved wayfinding throughout the con.
  • New art. We’ve worked with 2 amazing artists this year on our incentive poster for attendees. GDEX’s official artist Elentori has done a new piece commemorating our continued partnership with GDEX, as well as fitting Ohayocon 2022’s larger theme of Mythical Creatures. As if that wasn’t enough, our original #OhayoIGS artist Pocketbee has revamped her 2019 piece ‘Throne of Games’ in full color with an evergreen feel. Attendees will have to play every game in the #OhayoIGS to take home one of these deluxe double-sided art prints. When we debuted this concept in 2019, attendees were so rabid about playing games that our full print run ran out by mid-day Saturday.

What you should expect at Ohayocon:

  • Fresh eyes and perspectives. Our attendees are, primarily, anime fans. While we definitely have a healthy population of “gamers” and the crossover is very large, many of our attendees simply will not attend gaming-specific events. This means you won’t see many repeat customers from other events. It has also been made clear to us that Ohayocon attendees ask more questions about/express more interest in story, character design and development, and diverse representation than attendees at gaming-specific events.
  • Engagement. We’re proud to say that historically, the #OhayoIGS is at full capacity for the grand majority of our operating hours. Despite not being the “main event” of Ohayocon so to speak, we pull crowds from open to close every single day. Our “Indie Passport” program debuted in 2019 to encourage attendees to play more games than they might otherwise through prize giveaways. The Passport was cited in over 60% of developer feedback specifically as a positive addition that resulted in increased engagement.
  • Shiny trophies. The 2019 #OhayoIGS debuted the Indie Gaming Showcase Awards, featuring both attendee-voted and judged awards. Since 2019, we have been lucky enough to award one developer the GDEX Golden Ticket annually, which entitles the winner to a free booth at the next GDEX, the Midwest’s own game development expo.
  • Collaboration. We like to work closely with our developers to create new and unique experiences for our attendees. For instance, at the 2019 #OhayoIGS, we featured the public debuts of multiple game modes and tournaments from our developers. We also commissioned Throne of Games, the first official #OhayoIGS print from Pocketbee, featuring references to all 11 of our exhibiting companies. Attendees could earn a signed print by demoing all 11 games in the #OhayoIGS (a process that took at least 3 hours, on average), and our entire print run ran out by mid-day Saturday.

We also worked with Galatune to create a branded promo card, free with any purchase at their booth. We’ll let their lead developer tell you how that affected his engagement:

“Gaming with Ohayocon has been a blast! They are incredibly supportive of our local indie game community and they’ve helped Galatune make lots of new friends and strong game sales .”

Adam Wik, Galatune

In 2020, we created a demo incentive inspired by the pinnacle of collectibles: trading cards. Every attendee who checked out games at all 16 exhibitor booths got an exclusive pack of #OhayoIGS trading cards! We made sure every developer went home with a healthy stack of extras too.

 

Check out what some developers had to say about the #OhayoIGS back in 2019…

“Great job with the demo passport. Had a ton of people stop by and check out the game. Saw people run into certain issues that they didn’t run into at previous conventions/expos. Good feedback.”

digital developer, exhibited twice

“The Award Ceremony and Voting System were brilliant ideas to boost engagement from attendees. I loved the fact that you alternated tabletop with digital games, as it was a phenomenal idea to improve the level of distinction between products.”

tabletop developer, first-time exhibitor

“Great community vibe. This showcase is evolving very quickly each year and it’s so exciting to see Ohayocon doing more to support our local independent creators.”

tabletop developer, exhibited twice

“It’s my favorite event and my team goes to a lot of them each year, big and small.”

digital developer, exhibited twice

“I’m starting to think the “niche adjacent” cons are better to go to than the board game focused ones. By far, the best experience I’ve had at a con.”

tabletop developer, first-time exhibitor