SOFA, Bogotá’s annual geekfest, always has a lot to offer. We help you to find the best at this year’s fair.
The annual celebration of comics, games and all things geek is back to Bogotá for its tenth year. SOFA (the Salón de Ocio y Fantasia) has evolved from a small one-room event to one of the highlights of the capital’s events calendar, now taking up the whole of conference centre Corferias from October 10 to October 14.
With so much going on, it’s easy to miss out on something. We show you a few of the highlights so your quest will be a successful one.
It’s best to pick up your tickets online: day tickets go for $17,000 for Friday, and $22,000 for Saturday, Sunday or Monday
First of all, obtain safe passage: Make sure you can actually get in! As SOFA has grown, so have the crowds: expect huge queues to be lining up, especially from Saturday to Monday. It’s best to pick up your tickets online before going: day tickets go for $17,000 for Friday, and $22,000 for Saturday, Sunday or Monday. Doors open at 10am, and close at 9pm on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, and
The car’s the star: This year’s special SFX Garage event (D on the map above: Pabellón 6, 2nd floor) should be a success with many. An extra $7,000 (or $5,000 for the under 12s) will gain you entrance to this superb collection of 20 full-size film and TV vehicle replicas, lovingly created by an Ecuadorian fan. All are arranged for you to take photos with: The question is, how many do you recognise?
Quite the card: With so much on sale in SOFA, it’s easy to get lost in the mountains of comics, anime posters and katana-style umbrella. One item that’s worth a look though is Templo (C on the map above: Pabellón 6, 1st floor). This is the first ever Colombian trading card game, and a labour of love by games enthusiast Fernando Durán. Being launched at this year’s SOFA, and featuring lavish artwork by Colombian artists, as well as innovative and rewarding gameplay, Templo looks to be at the very least worth a try at their freeplay tables.
Back to the future: SOFA is also taking advantage of its ten-year anniversary to look back on how it all started and how far they’ve come. SOFA X (G on the map above) recreates the original SOFA event and gives you the opportunity to reflect on how big this has become as SOFA has grown along with its fanbase and participants.
Anime a-go-go: Of course, it wouldn’t be SOFA without a healthy (or somewhat less so, depending on what you’re into) dose of anime. Expect to find Japanese influence all over the fair, including everything from the plentiful cosplayers and language institutes, to fan groups and manga-themed clothing. Kawaiidesune!
Code & chips: It’s not all about leisure at SOFA though. It’s also an important platform for local programmers and industry movers and shakers to get themselves known. Bogotá Post favourites Tan Grande y Jugando, for example, are in attendance and doing their best to boost people’s awareness of the growing Colombian video games industry.
Balls in the air: A fascinating thing about SOFA though is that it’s not all about geekery. It’s made a name for itself over the years by giving space to a huge variety of urban subcultures, including rappers and cyclists. This year the SOFA circus is in town, so expect to see a good amount of jugglers mixed in with the cosplay Jokers (L on the map above).
Fair scares: It’s not all about the fun of sharing passions together though! The Quimera SOFA section (N on the map above: pabellón 8, 2nd floor) sets out to send a shiver down your spine, with scary props and displays from a number of Hollywood films – including one of the original Child’s Play movie prop dolls. There’s also homegrown frights in store with the Colombian folklore-themed ‘Llorona’ labyrinth: not for the faint of heart!