Lucca Comics & Games
Cosplay, games and comics in the most famous festival in Europe!
Before we explain what the Lucca Comics and Games is, we need to ask a few questions. So, how many of you have your own favourite superhero? For those who were unable to answer, how many of you have your own favourite cartoon? Fine. No problem: who said that such pastimes are just for children, if so, they were wrong. What is Lucca Comics? The Lucca Comics festival is a demonstration of the fact that, firstly, there is no age limit for fun and fantasy.
Returning to our questions, let's step back for those still not convinced: how many of you love the stories? Everyone, of course. The stories give us a vital boost and allow us to explore our imagination and creativity. You will see that, every year, at the Lucca Comics (see program) you can discover many stories and get to know the authors of images and words that range from medieval or fantasy scenarios or the latest science fiction!
Finally, our last question is this: how many of you have dreamed, at least once, of being a character in his or her favourite movie or story (or comic book)? None of you can answer 'never' because, at least once, it happened to us all. It would be like saying that you have never had a dream! You might reply that it just children’s wishes, but this is only a confused idea of your childhood and dreaming.
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Where are we heading? To the Lucca Comics & Games Festival where there are no age barriers and limits to the imagination: the Lucca Comics! Cosplay and costumes are an integral part of the game and the event, without any judgments being made! Now, are you ready to finally put on the red shirt of Dylan Dog that you kept hidden in the closet for ages? Discover with us the history and curiosities of the Lucca Comics & Games Festival, the most loved and most visited by those who, like you, love fantasy!
WHAT IS THE LUCCA COMICS? For those who still have not heard of it, it is a huge exhibition of comics and games that takes place for about four days between October and November in the beautiful city of Lucca.
The correct name 'Lucca Comics & Games' indicates the presence of the 'games' in addition to 'comics' - comic books of various kinds - among which there are fantasy and science fiction. The 'games' are the games in every possible representation: board games, card games, role playing games and even video games.
Consider that among the events in this area, the Lucca Comics is in first place in Europe, surpassed only by the worldwide famous Comiket of Tokyo and the Comic-Con in San Diego (California). So, you know that during your tour of Tuscany, it would be worthwhile to spend some time to visit this festival of games and ‘comics'!
In addition, Lucca is not only one of the most beautiful places in the region but it is also very close the wonderful capital city of Tuscany, Florence, and to the city of the famous Leaning Tower, Pisa.
Returning to explain what it is about this event, described by many as a 'paradise' or a happy period of escapism, you have to imagine a situation a bit like a carnival and a bit like a book fair. Both descriptions are simplistic compared to the atmosphere that you will experience in these magical days, but they help to explain two important concepts of the Lucca Comics and Games.
The carnival character lies in the fact that everyone, adults- children –elderly, -collectors,- newcomers, - visitors, is wearing something unusual or is in disguise in order to live an experience out of everyday life. There is no room for judgment because all the attention of the moment is towards fun and the desire to change the reality of everyday life!
Lucca takes the profile of a metropolis, it becomes a small London or New York, and the streets are filled with superheroes, knights, monsters, fairies and characters of all sorts who let themselves be photographed, happy for a day to be someone else. Being out of oneself is a great opportunity offered by the Lucca Comics Games that is worth living, at least once!
If you are travelling with your children, it will be a holiday with a magical place all to themselves, different to the usual and where they can play surrounded with fantasy!
The atmosphere of Lucca Comics, along with the large number of enthusiasts, is crossed by a common desire to make new friends and share one’s passions. The desire to celebrate meets the expectations of thousands of visitors who are ready to share ideas, tips and be in a group photo to remember the great day. True fans gather each year to compare new costumes and new ideas. Bearing in mind that for every edition of Lucca Comics there are prizes and performances not to be missed!
As for the book fair that we mentioned earlier, the other 'side' of the Lucca Comics and Games is characterized by avid comic readers and collectors of special editions and rare copies.
The various stands at the Lucca Comics display a specific genre or author in particular, and are waiting for you to offer you all possible choices of traditional and contemporary comics on the market.
Get ready to see the graphic novel of the latest generation, stories of classic literature translated into images and clouds of dialogue, Japanese manga, magazines, posters, postcards, television series, movies and endless amounts of gadgets.
Lucca Comics is an oasis for those looking for a long time for some rare copies and for those who want to learn new stories made of funny and suggestive pictures.
WHAT IS THE HISTORY OF LUCCA COMICS? The Festival was launched in 1966 when the city decided to host the International Exhibition of Comic book convention in Italy. After the experience, Lucca decided to found a cultural association of private Iconographic Studies (Image-Centre) by linking to the University of Rome.
In the following years the association decided to give life to an event every two years that had some success until the late 80s, during which the first economic problems to cover the costs emerged of what, year after year, was becoming a large demonstration. After a lull, an independent association was set up which brought together under its organization also the Centre for Study founded in the sixties.
In 1990 an exhibition of the Lucca Games Comics was opened in the spring which followed the traditional autumn exhibition. The event changed radically, passing from a free public event and then to become a paid event with admission tickets.
The official date of the new 'Lucca Comics and Games' was 1995, when it was given its new name that has remained until today. From then on, Lucca Comics has grown from year to year to become one of the most important Italian and European events.
The introduction of the Lucca Comics & Games Festival has created the opportunity to go beyond the object of the paper 'cartoon': with the passage of the issues, in fact, new ideas for events such as contests, tournaments of role-playing games, exhibition areas for Lucca Comics Cosplay, workshops, exhibitions, performances, debates and meetings with authors have formed. The success of the Lucca Comics, therefore, is the result of the union between the reading and the construction of temporary and playful stories and imaginary worlds.
Since 2006 the Lucca Comics & Games Festival has taken place in the beautiful old town of Lucca! Just imagine the Renaissance squares occupied by the members of the Fellowship of the Ring (The Lord of the Rings) or by the troops of the imperial army of the Death Star (Star Wars)! How would you react, in a cafe, surrounded by characters of videogames in tights or seeing Wolverine (X-Men) ordering a cappuccino and a croissant?
What would you say, instead, of the fantastic Japan Town, an area exclusively dedicated to the Japanese? Get ready to take pictures in the company of amazing characters!
During the Lucca Comics and Games the town is completely transformed and parades pass at every hour of the with cosplayers and extras, the engaging music and shows never stop.
Lucca Comics and Games is more than a trade fair thanks to the activities that are included in its annual program. The Lucca Comics & Games Festival offers many moments where fans can compare their skills and compete in tournaments with prizes. The awards are dedicated to professionals with awards like the Best unpublished Game, the Grog Trophy for thumbnails and the New Generation Kit dedicated to modelling.
For fans of role-playing games the Mastering tournament takes place: if you are good storytellers you can test yourself and sign up! If you prefer something more dynamic you can instead take part in Ruolimpiadi where teams of players and makers of stories compete in what is considered the national championship of RPGs.
Visiting Lucca Comics might make you want to participate in the next edition, but you have to train your imagination! If you are simply curious, the Games Pavilion is the place where you can find miniatures, board games, cards, gadgets, video games, all the people on the stands will be ready to answer your questions and give you advice in choosing a game that you do not know! You will see huge tables of young (and not) intent on waging war with toy soldiers and launch malicious spells with Magic cards. Much more than a room with toys! At the Lucca Comics challenges are taken very seriously!
Another interesting feature of recent years is the Educational Lucca Games and Comics, a dedicated area for seminars and workshops where you can approach painting and other arts, but also where you can personally meet great guests and international artists.
Finally, an activity that is sure to please, is the Performance Space where body painting artists perform their art. if you do not feel like it then you can at least have a small drawing on your face to feel much more in line with the festival!
Do you like the world of D.I.Y. (do it yourself)? Go, to the Independence Bay to discover a world of fanzines, magazines, games and everything that can arise from DIY to give you a better idea of what it means to be passionate about something real.
As you can see, the program of the Lucca Comics & Games Festival continues to make space for freedom of expression with small areas dedicated to special interests and to the avant-garde.
The spirit of the Lucca Comics & Games Festival, in fact, is to ensure that every type of visitor, be it a big fan or an aspiring young player, will be at ease and enjoy the activities and themes proposed. In short, no matter if you have built a sword and a helmet, according to the descriptions of Tolkien or that you look like perfectly Sailor Mercury or Lady Oscar. The intention is to enjoy the opportunities that the world of comics and other fantastic stories offer.
There are also Peanuts fans who never stop buying new strips of Snoopy and Linus to add to the collection just for some more laugh!
SECTION COSPLAY. Lucca Comics for many fans is synonymous with Lucca Comics Cosplay. If you do not know this term, you should now that it is a contraction of two English words 'costume' (custom) and 'play' (play). The result in practical terms indicates the art of dressing up in masks in the shoes of a character known in the world of comics or animated film or imaginative film with the addition of imitating the behaviour, ways of acting and speaking of the chosen character.
In this sense, the more traditional forms of disguise such as the carnival or Halloween are less attentive to details compared to this event. Cosplay in fact, began in Japan in the 80s, and it has become increasingly important and popular. It is not enough to dress up in a wizard hat or a cloak, the real art is in the details: elf ears, elaborate earrings, well-rehearsed tricks, medieval saddlebags, swords, space suits and Disney princesses hairstyles.
Whatever the current fashion, the spirit of the Lucca Comics and cosplay contest is to strive for a character perfectly matching with the original! So follow our advice: imagine first of all which character suits you best, study in great detail the mask looking on the web and at images in books and on screen and then get busy!
Your Captain America costume could make that girl dressed as Wonder Woman who you saw in the queue at the entrance fall in love with you....
Do not forget to let people take pictures of you and exchange your tricks at Lucca Games and Comics in Italy!
Now that you are intrigued and a little tempted by the idea of being for a day Diabolik or Corto Maltese, do not wait to organize your trip to the Lucca Comics and do not forget to involve your friends!
Whatever you want to call this festival: Neverland, a paradise for entertainment, wonderland, carnival, time machine, enchanted suspension... in the area of Lucca Comics & Games Festival the only thing that matters is to play with the imagination!
Beware: the return to reality can be difficult!