EGX Rezzed 2015 – Highlights and Photos

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Taxi Entrance

Ying and yang. Fire and ice. Cheese and crackers…actually, no scrap that last one, they do go really well together. Why am I doing such a bad job of spouting off random pairs of antonyms I hear you ask? Well, that’s because I’m trying to think of a clever segue into my next paragraph about comparing…alright, look, so it didn’t work okay? Trust me, just keep going, it’ll all make sense in a few seconds or so.

In contrast to the standard EGX events which are traditionally more of a showcase for the latest big blockbuster triple-A games from big developers and publishers, EGX Rezzed puts indie developers and their quirky projects in the spotlight for a change.

So, last week, I hopped on a train and made my way down to London’s Tobacco Docks; presumably whilst an Indiana Jones style travel montage showed my progress south via a descending red line on a faded map of the UK. I was there for the Thursday and Friday sessions to mingle with game developers and game fans alike. The sun was shining, developers were smiling and…nope, still no decent third triplication point. So, without further ado, here’s my thoughts on a few games that caught my eye from the many excellent games on offer at this year’s Rezzed collection.

Bloodborne

Bloodborne

Okay, let’s start off my indie highlights of Rezzed with a big game that isn’t considered an indie game at all by pretty much any stretch of the imagination – Bloodborne. Great thinking I hear you say – you’ve fucked up the entire point of this article in only the first proper paragraph. But it was there in the Sony section and I thought, hey, why not? Got a problem with that? No, I didn’t think so.

For someone who didn’t really get all the Dark Souls hype, I have to say that Bloodborne looks pretty damn cool. I didn’t really give Dark Souls on the Xbox 360 the time and patience it deserved; even though I loved the heavy mood and mystery that permeated my brief adventure from prison cell to giant taxi- crow-thing, I never really found the will or self-discipline to keep going.

Having said that, I actually enjoyed my brief time in Bloodborne a great deal more than I was expecting to, which was a nice surprise. Perhaps it’s just something as basic as the dark gothic aesthetic of the game appealing to me more than the knights, dragons and trolls of From Software’s previous franchise, but it worked.

Being terrible at Dark Souls, I decided not to mess around with the unknown and opted to play as the standard class of character, who comes complete with a hideous scythe/giant barber’s razor blade in one hand a and a nifty blunderbuss musket/shotgun in the other. Of course, the way you build out your character’s weapons and equipment will impact on how they move and play, so it looks as though there’s perhaps a fair bit of variety in this game when it comes to player choice.

Though you’re dropped straight into this nightmare world with no introduction in this demo, the atmosphere still feels dark and heavy right from the off, and you feel suitably creeped out. It all looks great too, with atmospheric lighting and great attention to the audio – overall there seems to be a much greater emphasis on horror in Bloodborne in comparison to Dark Souls, which definitely appeals to folks like me.

In the scant few hours that I have spent in Dark Souls, that game felt more like a gloomy medieval mystery than anything particularly bone-chilling, but from what little I got to experience of Bloodborne at Rezzed, there certainly could be some nasty scares to accompany you on your swashbuckling way. One particular moment was hearing what could only have been a massive bird (perhaps the giant Dark Souls crow/taxi/thing maybe?) shriek incredibly loudly into the night as I was halfway up a tall ladder. Needless to say, I got back down onto terra firma as fast as possible.

Bloodborne Monitors

There’s this horrifying Wicker Man feeling you’ll get when playing that pervades pretty much every moment. Alone and isolated, and with apparently the entire population of this town against you, it feels pretty intimidating to say the least. Seeing a long line of the wretched townsfolk marching through the streets in an ominous and slow procession before branching off to gather around a huge burning effigy (presumably containing lots of cattle and a screaming policeman) felt chilling to the core. The game manages to evoke a similar feeling to the one you get when playing the monster in the early stages of Evolve; everyone’s out to get me, I need to fucking run!

The enemy AI is just as smart and cunning as you might expect from a From Software game. Walking up behind a hulking monstrosity lurking round the back of a dark crumbling building, I promptly slashed away at the portly fellow, only to have him whirl round on me in a blur of speed and slash me with some giant axe-thingy. Battered and wounded, I retreated back a few metres to get some space and neck a health potion all the while desperately trying to remember what little information I could recall from my brief time playing Dark Souls.

Aha! I’ll get the brute to make a lunge for me, then dodge and get in some cheeky swipes with my giant retractable barber’s razor weapon-thingy whilst he’s recovering. Thus, I started to dodge back and forth in what I hoped was a patronising and annoying manner. To my horror, the giant toad like man-demon proceeded to leap forward into the air at me at such a speed that I could only watch in horror as he slammed down on my cloaked crusader, taking a great deal of my health away in the process. Ouch.

Retreating from this battle I’d surely lose, I scuttled back along the dark sidestreets in an effort to desperately survive for a bit longer. However, by this point, I knew that with my lack of skill my time would be rapidly drawing to a close any minute now anyway. Emerging into a large open street flanked by abandoned horse carriages, I tried to sneak along behind a gaggle of the mouldy townsfolk. Boom! A bleeding shoulder full of buckshot from an enemy’s rifle quickly let me know that I’d been spotted and that I needed to move. Fast.

Despite scuttling out of the range of the gunner, and managing to fell a few of my scarecrow-like assailants, I was inevitably cut down by the grimy hordes in next to no time. However, this time I finished with a big smile on my face.

One aspect to the combat that I’ve heard echoed by a lot of other critics is that the action and combat in Bloodborne feels considerably faster and less clunky and cumbersome than Dark Souls. I certainly found this to be the case myself from playing the demo; moves didn’t feel like they took an eternity to execute, and your character feels altogether more manoeuvrable, which personally definitely felt way better to me.

When I did attack when I should have blocked/dodged or vice versa, it didn’t feel like the end of the world and I could quickly right myself and keep going. Obviously, you can’t afford to make many mistakes at all, but the way the combat has been tweaked definitely felt much more palatable to me. It just feels a lot more exciting and way less gruelling than I expected things to be, which is surely only a good thing.

Salt; A Social Story

Right, so now let’s actually knuckle down and talk about indie games. Salt; A Social Story, by Holly Pickering of Indieful Entertainment, is one of the first I tried upon getting to Rezzed.

It’s a clever and interesting critique of social media and the way that it negatively influences a great deal of our interactions with others. Described by Holly as a “stalking simulator mixed with a choose your own adventure game”, you play as a woman following the messy break-up with her boyfriend, who’s subsequently wiped and reset her contact list of friends on her social networking site of choice, Mugshot.

The game plays out in the Mugshot interface, which looks like a chunky Windows 3.1 pixelated predecessor to Twitter/Facebook. The aim of the game is to restore your account by slowly adding back your previous friends one by one – you can only add one new friend per in-game day, and once you’ve reached a total of thirty friends, Mugshot will fully restore your account back to how it was before the break-up. The more friends you add, the wider the pool of potential friends and other social connections will become, giving you plenty of new connections to choosse from as the game progresses.

As the player, you can’t interact with these friends or actively participate in the networking, but rather you voyeuristically watch the interactions between your character and her growing network of contacts. It’s a fascinating playing experience, not to mention one that gets uncomfortably creepy at times; as you explore your character’s old social life through her and her friend’s social media posts, and reconnect with them one at a time, you start to get more and more of an insight into which friends she most values, which she doesn’t have much to do with, and just how this sprawling network of friends, work colleagues and near-acquaintances all fit together.

The conceit that you can only add one new friend per day means that you don’t feel overwhelmed by too many new characters too soon, giving you a chance to fully read up on their posting habits and attitudes over the course of the game.

Another interesting aspect of the game’s design is that there’s more than thirty friends that you can add to your friends list, meaning that you can’t get the full story and atmosphere on your first playthrough, giving you a cool incentive to go back and rediscover the connections and story details you might have missed the first time.

What’s really awesome is that in between each day, the game displays ominous short messages on the nature of social media, and prompt you to consider just exactly how we’re using the internet to communicate with each other. In particular, it makes you question just how ‘social’ social media really is. Having this quiet but powerful dissenting voice of critique in amongst all the vain nonsense and digital conversations of the characters is really effective.

It’s a really cool juxtaposition. As you get more and more involved in these character’s lives, stalking and probing deeper into their intricate connections with each passing day, getting these stark reminders about just how vain and and pathetic a lot of these interactions really are. It makes you question just what you’re doing snooping around in these characters lives and why exactly you’re enjoying cyber-stalking them?

As a result, there’s this strong sense of loathing that comes over you whilst playing – a feeling directed at these vacuous airhead characters who prattle on about their apparently awesome lives, and also at yourself for recognising your own personal desperate and pathetic social media habits in and amongst these fictional characters.

I played through the first eight or so days as I didn’t want to hog the booth for too long, but I can’t wait to play the full thing and carry on stalki-I mean observing. Just observing. Not that I do that normally of course…ahem. Let’s move on.

Monstrum

Monstrum

Okay, so this is a big one. Playing Monstrum at Rezzed was the first time that I finally managed to don the fabled Oculus Rift headset. Unfortunately though, whilst the game itself was good, my virgin-run with the Rift really didn’t work for me. Within only a few minutes, I started to feel very queasy, very fast – and that was before I fell prey to an impromptu mauling from my shrieking slimy alien pursuer.

Don’t get me wrong though, the Rift was certainly immersive up to a point, even when playing in a noisy, packed room swarming with excited gamers milling about all around me. It’s a clichéd turn of phrase I know, but it really is an incredibly cool experience to feel like you’re actually in the game world yourself. This of course is particularly helpful when playing a horror game where immersion is an essential pre-requisite to setting up any decent sense of tension and fear.

An incredibly basic thing that took me a long while to unlearn while playing was that when you’ve got a VR headset on, the right analog stick on your controller becomes redundant. In fact, I even asked the devs helping me with the Rift if they could invert the sticks for me, before I was politely reminded that it didn’t even matter – d’oh! Once you do get used to it though, it gradually starts to feel more natural to turn your head to look around you.

It makes me think that if this current bunch of VR headsets takes off whether we will just dispense with the right analog stick on our future console/PC controllers. The space could instead be given to more buttons or touch pads, or who knows whatever other new-fangled gadgets and gizmos we’ll be slapping into our controllers in the future.

Unfortunately though, as cool and immersive as playing with the Oculus Rift was, it was probably just way too much for my simple brain (and stomach) to handle. After years of ribbing non-gaming friends and family members when they got nauseous after only a few minutes of playing split-screen shooters of the past such as Timesplitters 2 and Goldeneye 007, I felt that perhaps I’d finally been given my karmic just desserts with the Rift.

Maybe I’d just overhyped the moment too much in my mind, but it certainly felt a bit underwhelming having to fight the feeling of motion sickness on my initial Rift experience; I didn’t quite have that glorious moment of digital euphoria that I’ve heard so many other people harp on about when they describe the potential of this exciting wave of VR tech.

Monstrum Booth

However, that’s just my thoughts on the Oculus Rift itself. Thankfully, Monstrum itself didn’t disappoint. Having seen YouTube’s Markiplier shout his way through the game online, I was definitely interesting in giving Team Junkfish’s randomly generated monster maze a go myself.

Monstrum places you in the unfortunate shoes of a poor soul who’s trapped aboard a 1970s derelict tanker ship way out at sea. Like many horror games, your goal is simple – you just need to survive and escape. However, Monstrum is interesting in that it offers various possible escape routes for you to consider – do you try and patch up the escape raft, re-jig the helicopter or slink away on the sub?

Every playthrough, all the items you need are all jumbled up around the various rooms and cargo holds of the ship, meaning that you’re not sure exactly where the components you need are located.

On top of that, there’s also a randomly generated monster pursuing you through the bowels of the dark ship. There’s currently two creatures in the early access demo at the moment; a giant red molten rock man, and a slithery see-through creature (the one that eventually ate me) with a yet to be revealed third critter to come in the future. Each creature brings its own different mechanics into play, so you have to learn how they operate and how to throw them off your scent as you scramble around the ship.

If you’re a fan of escape-based horror games such as Slender or Vanish then I definitely recommend giving Monstrum a go. It’s perhaps not the most unique experience in horror gaming, but the game’s randomly generated elements and monsters mean that it has some interesting and unpredictable tricks up its slimy sleeves.

Her Story

Her Story

Her Story is the new game from Sam Barlow – one of the designers of Silent Hill: Shattered Memories and Silent Hill: Origins – and while there’s no bubble head nurses or other such fog-shrouded nasties in sight in his latest game, there’s certainly a similar sense of the mystery, intrigue and introspection that the Silent Hill series is known for.

It’s an interesting mystery/puzzle game which places you in the shoes of a police officer in the ’90s who’s investigating evidence and video files from a woman who’s husband has gone missing.

The game plays a simulated PC desktop experience (meta); you’re an investigator who’s using the police database to retrieve appropriate video files to the case by using specific search terms.

Wait, how is that interesting then I hear you ask? Well, the compromise with this database is that it can only list the first five video clips results for any search term, meaning that you need to vary up your linguistic choices and delve more into the nitty gritty specifics of the case if you want to make progress and access new clips.

What’s particularly interesting is the idea that the whole game is pretty much an open ended non-linear experience. According to what you search for and the order in which you come across the video files, there’s a plethora of different ways that you could theoretically proceed through your investigation, and in what order you view the clips.

Her Story Monitor

While trying to solve the case is the main overhead objective if you will, what really came across to me was the way the game makes you empathise with the eponymous woman (played by Viva Seifert) of the title. While I didn’t get to spend as much time playing the game as I’d have liked, the range of emotions you see her go through as she’s relating evidence and, from the angle the trailer takes, denying that she’s killed her husband looks to be really intriguing.

All the while, the cold interrogation room she’s siting in, the grainy fidelity of the video files, and the moody ambient soundtrack that underscores your keystrokes and mouse clicks all contribute to this tense and mysterious mood the game manages to evoke so well. Definitely another fascinating title to keep your eye on.

So, those were just a few of the games I got to play and see at Rezzed this past weekend; stay tuned for an upcoming interview with the developers of Beyond Flesh and Blood, and in the meantime, here’s some of the other groovy games that were on display – prepare to feast your eyes on my mediocre camera work! Mwa ha ha ha ha ha!

Retro Collect: Video Game Market 2 – Leeds Town Hall, 7th February 2015

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Leeds Town Hall

Today, it’s really easy to take for granted just how far the games industry has come, and in such a relatively short period of time too. While it’s cool that our shiny new always online modern consoles are busily purring away, automatically downloading the latest patches, system updates and all manner of other digital shots in the arm that are part and parcel of today’s gaming landscape, it’s a really nice change to once in a while step back in time and blow the dust out of the thick plastic cartridges of yesteryear.

This is exactly what a lot of West Yorkshire retro gaming fans did this past weekend. Retro Collect’s Video Game Market 2 took over Leeds town hall on Saturday 7th February, transforming the stately civic venue into a vintage gamer’s dream.

I popped down to the event to grab a few cheeky snaps and peruse all the lovely old school gaming delights on offer…and, of course, to snag some sweet loot along the way.

Retro gaming fans flooded en masse to the event to buy, browse and button-mash their way through over 40+ shop stalls spread out across the main room and off into the twisting passages and corridors of the town hall. There was an exciting  and at times almost mysterious buzzing atmosphere in the air, like you’d stumbled into the gaming equivalent of Aladdin’s Cave; was that a NES Zapper over there or is it just my eyes? Is that a copy of Zool for the Mega Drive I spy with my little eye? What’s that – An Altered Beast t-shirt? Wow, look, a pimped out Game Boy Colour! Oh hell yes.

In other words, to use a modern gaming analogy, it felt rather like walking straight into The Tower in Destiny, only way WAY busier, with far more interesting shops to browse and no miserly Cryptarch skulking about in the corner, doling out shoddy green engrams left, right and centre.

Video Game Market 2 had something for practically anyone who’s been even remotely interested in console and PC gaming of years gone by, and thankfully, unlike Destiny, the only currency to worry about was cold hard sterling, no fancy-schmancy marks or emblems and whatnot. The scope of gaming history packed into the town hall was really impressive, and between all the various shops and stalls displaying their wares, practically every era PC and console gaming was covered; with Atari 2600 games and Commodore 64 keyboard units snuggled up cosily against Xbox 360s and PlayStation 3s of this past console cycle.

It was a really cool sight to see, and this juxtaposition of the old machines alongside the new got me thinking about the retro scene with regards to this current console generation. Standing in amongst the buzzing throng of the eager crowd, fawning over the various treasures and trinkets on sale, I found myself pondering whether today’s consoles will have anything like the lifespan or legacy of their predecessors. My gut feeling is that no, they won’t…but I’d love to be proven wrong.

Food for thought, right? Personally, I think it’s hard to imagine just what sort of retro revisiting will be possible in the future, what with the current console generation’s reliance on online infrastructure as an integral part of their basic operation and the industry’s gradual move to more multiplayer-centric always online experiences in general.

Whether today’s consoles will still be able to generate the same level of fan appeal and interest once their time is up in the spotlight, and we’re all playing on our PlayStation 5s and our Xbox Twos etc. remains to be seen. In fact, will our current PS4s and Xbox Ones even work once the servers and the all-powerful omniscient ‘cloud’ finally gets unplugged? As the holiday attacks on Xbox Live and PSN by Lizard Squad unfortunately demonstrated, the inevitability of an always online gaming ecosystem is slowly but surely becoming a reality, and even a temporary inability to connect to online infrastructures can grind pretty much all activity on these consoles to a complete halt.

For a very real example of this, consider a game like Titanfall. Whilst it’s an awesome game (one that I’ve sunk an unhealthy number of hours into), it’s a completely online multiplayer title with no traditional singleplayer campaign component. Almost a year after its launch in March 2014 however, the game hasn’t really been able to retain its player base as effectively as we once hoped, and now the player population is a tiny fraction of what it originally was.

With the exception of the subsequently patched in Frontier Defence mode (Titanfall’s robotically-themed equivalent of Gears of War‘s classic horde mode), which albeit can be just about played solo (the mode doesn’t scale the difficulty according to party size, meaning you’ll have to slug it out on your own against near-impossible odds on some maps), Titanfall fundamentally requires an always present internet connection and a full set of active players in order to even function.

Due to its ever-dwindling player base, future players of the game on the Xbox One are essentially going to be left with an unplayable shell of the original experience. Once the last players have moved on for good and the servers are finally shut down, that’s it. Finito. No more Titanfall. All that remains will be an obsolescent global graveyard of cracked green plastic cases of the physical copies, with their sun-bleached covers caked thick with dust, and a community’s collective memories of smart-pistoling Spectres, gunning down Grunts  and rodeoing Titans to their heart’s content; all a long time ago in a virtual galaxy far, far away…

But hey, they will probably have Titanfall 2 or 3 in their greasy mitts by this point, so you know…swings and roundabouts.

Of course, I’d love to be mistaken, but I just doubt whether current consoles and their game libraries will be able to sustain themselves for anywhere near as long as their offline predecessors have been able to.

By its very nature as a technological industry, gaming is  a constantly moving and forward-looking form of entertainment. There’s almost always something new to get excited about, that next big thing that’s just around the corner; some elusive, flashy new carrot that’s provocatively dangled in front of you at an E3 show to keep you salivating and desperate to get your hands on, even though it’s still many months and sometimes years away.

With each new major release in the gaming calendar inexorably sweeping up the player populations of older titles, we’re no doubt going to see more and more examples of these types of gaming experiences; ones which require a buzzing hive of online players to keep the blood pumping through their virtual online veins.

Anyway, with thoughts of all these extraneous online issues floating around, there’s something really delightful in being able to go back and revisit gaming’s past at an event like this. Even if it’s something as fleeting and momentary an experience as looking at the crumbling papery boxes and artwork of early cartridge games, or feeling the chunky controllers and garish peripherals of the past in your hands once again.

Resident Evil 2

Amongst all the delights on offer, a personal triumph for me was that I managed to find a Gamecube copy of Resident Evil 2 – the only game in the series that I (shamefully) haven’t been able to play…until now. I’d been searching for a reasonably priced copy of the game for absolutely ages, so I pretty much lunged for it like a crazed Black Friday shopper when I saw it on one of the stands, clutching it to my chest like my life depended on it. It did though, seriously, it really did.

I’ll absolutely be streaming Leon and Claire’s adventures through the wonderful tourist hotspot that is (or, perhaps more accurately after the events of Resident Evil 3, was) Raccoon City at somepoint in the near future on my Twitch channel – so stay tuned if you’re a fan of zombies, side-swept long blonde fringes and delightfully wonky dialogue from time to time.

So, as much as I love my modern consoles and this era of interconnected online experiences, there’s something particularly comforting in knowing that say in ten years time, I could dig out my treasured purple gamecube – itself already fourteen years old at this point – hook it up to an old CRT TV, pop in Resident Evil 2 and desperately try and escape Raccoon City one more time. Alone, anxious and desperately short of ink ribbons.

Alien: From Film to Game – Leeds College of Art, 14/11/2014

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Sigourney and CA

Xenomorphs and Leeds. The two words don’t often go together in the same sentence…which is probably a good thing, as even though I’m a big fan of both of these things in their own right, seeing H.R. Geiger’s nightmarish organism scuttling up and down Briggate impaling passing shoppers and punching holes in people’s foreheads willy-nilly would probably reduce me to a quivering pile of jelly faster than you could say “Jonesy the Cat”.

This evening however, Alien and Leeds did go together rather well indeed; as part of the 2014 Leeds International Film Festival, Creative Assembly’s Alistair Hope (Creative Lead), Dion Lay (Writer) and Will Porter (Writer) gave a talk about their beloved game, the brilliant Alien: Isolation, at Leeds College of Art.

The hour-long talk was hosted by Game Republic’s Jamie Sefton, who guided the panel of devs with interesting finely-tuned questions through topics covering all aspects of the games production.

The talk was absolutely fascinating, and hearing directly from the developers themselves about subjects such as the game’s design process, art direction, the AI design, the importance of keeping authentic to the original 1979 film, not to mention the challenges and creative/technical restrictions that the Creative Assembly team had to work with was absolutely incredible.

In short, it was great to get a peek under the black slimy vertebrae of this fantastic horror game, and really see what made it tick. Seeing how Creative Assembly were able to translate that authentic Alien experience from the big screen to home consoles was both enlightening and inspiring, and personally gave me an even greater appreciation of their survival horror masterpiece.

I was snapping away with my camera, so of course have a gander at the pictures below. Now if you’ll excuse me, all that camera flashing may have given away my position to the Xeno – time to find a locker and weep…

MCM London Comic Con – October 2014 – Photos

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CC14 - Foxy (Title Picture)

I’ve been to some pretty big gigs, events and festivals before, but nothing could quite prepare me for the wonderfully chaotic geeky exuberance that is London Comic Con.

Riding the Docklands Light Railway to the ExCeL stop and walking out into the main outdoor square was a delightfully insane experience. It was a fascinating and, quite frankly heartwarming sight to see such a large scale outpouring of love and enthusiasm for nerd culture. People had come from far and wide, representing their favourite characters from films, TV, video games, comics, manga – you name it, someone was probably cosplaying as it.

I was in London for the weekend, and snapping away with my camera on both Saturday 25th and Sunday 26th. The whole event was absolutely massive, and although I tried to get around everything on offer, I decided pretty early on to prioritise whatever games related stuff I could realistically get round to.

The amount of new and upcoming games on offer to play was really good, and in fact, I was able to play a great deal of the titles that I didn’t have time to check out at this year’s EGX – Evolve and Mortal Combat X in particular were two titles I particularly enjoyed getting hands-on with.

So, you can expect a separate written impressions piece on all the games I got to play to go up on here shortly, but in the meantime, check out the sights and cosplayers from London Comic Con October 2014 in the gallery below.

Speaking of which, all these cosplayers and costumes have defintiely got me inspired to maybe give the ol’ dressing up thing a try myself. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got a Sabrewulf costume to make…where oh where exactly did I put that blue spandex?

Play Expo Photos – Manchester 2014

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Play Expo - Master Chief

“Do you feel lucky…well, do ya, Grunt?”

I spent a good chunk of this last weekend inside a box. But not just any box…

Play Expo took place this weekend in Manchester, at EventCity. As the venue’s official description itself reads:

‘EventCity is a box. A very large box. But it’s the magic that happens inside that really counts.’

I’m happy to say that both these facts are true. Yes it is essentially just a very large box, but yes, it did have that exciting magical atmosphere; the sort that you can only find at cool games conventions like Play Expo.

To move aside from all this talk of large magical boxes for one moment though, Play Expo was really good. The event was, as you might guess, about games, games, games; in all their glorious shapes and sizes, bits and bytes and bleeps and bloops.

The catalogue of games available to play was exhaustively comprehensive; going from the earliest pinball and arcade machines at the birth of gaming, right up to cutting edge PS4 games in all their shiny 1080p glory. It’s not often you can say this, but there really was something for every gamer here – even the cardboard varieties – no matter what your preferred gaming style and era.

Speaking of cardboard, I personally knew that once I saw the giant Abe and Alf cardboard cutouts and crates packed full of classic Sega Mega Drive cartridge cases, I was certainly in for a good time.

In addition, there was an immense number of Cosplayers happily wandering around, all dressed up in some painstakingly made and intricate costumes. The variety and detail of their outfits was pretty staggeringly awesome to be honest.

I managed to get some choice shots of these most ardent of fans, but there were so many that, unfortunately, unlike a true Pokémon hunter, I couldn’t catch them all. Oh snap…Pokémon Snap that is…

Anyway, whilst I mull over whichever cheesily-awful Pokémon gag to use next, let me recap; I was there at Play Expo snapping away with the camera on Saturday 11th October, so I thought I’d share my visual depictions on here. So, once again, feel free to click on the following thumbnails to see what I got up to, and the various games characters who pointed their guns/swords at me.

 

EGX London 2014 – Photos Galore

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EGX 2014 - Earl's Court

EGX 2014 kicked off at London’s Earls Court this week on the 25th September, so yours truly hopped on a train down to the Big Smoke to get hands on with some of the upcoming games I’m most looking forward to playing in the near future…and to buy as much Bowser related merchandise I could possibly carry (don’t ask).

EGX, formerly known as Eurogamer Expo, is a four day extravaganza of gaming goodness; jam-packed with exciting new games to try, cool cosplayers strolling around and heaps and heaps of gaming merch to buy…such as Bowser t-shirts, just saying.

I wanted to play everything, but there just wasn’t enough time – I was incredibly tempted to try and hide somewhere in the massive building and evade overnight capture in order to stick around for another day or two, but alas, I decided against this course of action. Next time though…

I’ll write up a separate piece later with my personal impressions of the games I did get chance to play – Halo: The Master Chief CollectionAlien Isolation, Dying Light and The Evil Within – but for the time being I thought I’d share some of the pictures I snapped whilst wandering around…erm, I mean steadily queuing inside Earls Court in a state of happily maniacal excitement.

EGX ran from the 25th-28th September this year, and I highly recommend getting down to see everything going on at future EGX events yourself if you get the chance. So, without further ado, click on the thumbnails to feast your eyes on these juicy .jpg nuggets!