HoYoFEST is switching things up with its 2023 iteration, having made stops in malls across Indonesia, Vietnam, Malaysia, Thailand, and the Philippines. Instead of last year’s themed café effort, the final leg of celebrating all things HoYoverse will conclude in Singapore as part of Anime Festival Asia (AFA), taking place from 24 to 26 November at Suntec Convention and Exhibition Centre.
The excitement is palpable right off the bat. Once visitors enter the event hall, the first thing in sight is the HoYoverse booth, with zones dedicated to four of its titles: Genshin Impact, Honkai Impact 3rd, Honkai: Star Rail, and the upcoming action role-playing game (RPG) Zenless Zone Zero. Each space is themed accordingly, and features different activities that fans can complete in exchange for rewards.
The Genshin Impact sector, for instance, comes decked out with a glorious recreation of Neuvillette’s throne, serving as the perfect photo spot. An adorable Anemo Slime plush sits on a nearby table, where laptops are set up for public hands-on sessions. Enthusiasts, meanwhile, can take part in a dice-rolling activity inspired by the game’s Genius Invokation TCG, and a character quote quiz. A quick word of advice? Be sure to update all HoYoverse apps beforehand, as the on-site staff sill need to verify your UID.
Over at the Honkai: Star Rail booth, fans stand a chance to walk away with a free brochure, postcard, bookmark, and hand fan. Here’s what to do:
- Free brochure – Show game UID
- Free postcard – Follow Honkai: Star Rail official accounts on Facebook and TikTok
- Free bookmark – Share game-related photos on social media platforms with the hashtags #HonkaiStarRail and #HoYoFest
- Free hand fan – Use Jingliu to clear a selected Memory of Chaos stage
With its cousin of sorts, the experience is carried over to the ROG Ally. Playing Honkai Impact 3rd on the handheld console rewards a poster (only 300 pieces per day), while showcasing the in-game bridge with your phones or other devices yields a set of visual character tattoo stickers (only 500 per day).
Many, however, will be eyeballing Zenless Zone Zero, which lacks a firm release date but has stirred up hype within the community. Those raring to give it a go can do so at the demo booth and earn a free poster, alongside a temporary tattoo and postcard – obtainable only by completing various social media activities.
Now, on to the true star of the show. The merchandise store promises exclusive items for all HoYoverse titles, taking the form of chibi acrylic stands (S$10) and cardholders (S$15). There are other goods to check out as well, with the two-piece Pom-Pom plush set being a standout, but there’s a catch.
Similar to the Nintendo pop-up store at Jewel Changi, a queue system has been put in place here. It works on a first-come-first-served basis, which means early birds will get earlier time slots. Once capacity is met, the visiting window rolls over to the next until all slots are taken up. As there’s a time limit of 10 minutes, it’s best to check out the full catalogue on the official website and lock in your choices beforehand.
Linger long enough, and fans might just encounter Pom-Pom on the show floor. The adorable Astral Express conductor will have mascot appearances at various timings across all three days, so do keep your eyes peeled. Rounding out the HoYoFEST 2023 experience are the stage events, which spotlights a different game (Honkai Impact 3rd, Honkai: Star Rail, Genshin Impact, and Zenless Zone Zero) at specific timing intervals.
Just like the far-reaching genre of its titles, ranging from open-world RPG and turn-based action to even otome, there looks to be something in store for every HoYoverse fan. There’s no need to fret over missing out a day of celebration – HoYoFEST 2023 spans three days, with 26 November being the last.