For the past three years the Eurogamer Expo has increased in attendance and size year on year. For 2011, organisers are hoping to top the 20,000 attendees.
Hosted and run by the creators of the phenomenally popular computer game review and news site Eurogamer.net, the expo boasts attendance from many of the biggest names in the computer game industry with displays from Nintendo, Sony, Microsoft and other big name developers like Activision and EA.
…first European outing for The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim…
At 11am on Thursday ticket holders were let loose into Earls Court exhibition hall, which was packed with some of the most eagerly anticipated games of the year. Among the goodies on show was the first European outing for The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim a fantasy epic RPG that’s not released until November but already has critics and gamers proclaiming it game of the year!
Rivalling Skyrim in terms of queue length was the equally lusted after Battlefield 3 which is in no way anything like Call of Duty at all, not in a million years, 100% different… you got that? The rivalry between the two modern war shooters may be hyped up by PR boffins but it’ll be the game ultimately that decides who wins this round of FPS shootout. Having played both it’s going to be a very tough call.
…beautiful and mysterious…
Huge medieval dragon hunting and shoot soldiers in the face games not your thing? Well try the beautiful and mysterious desert based adventure Journey which has you play as an androgynous figure making his/her way across the sands toward a distant mountain. Many aspects of the game are still under wraps but what we do know is that you’ll be able to join forces with people online to complete quests, interestingly you won’t know who you’re journeying with and the game doesn’t allow you to communicate. The game is stunning to look at and its slower pace and mournful soundtrack make it the perfect antidote to the all-frenzied bullet dodging.
New technologies were also being showcased; like the Sony’s new handheld console the PlayStation Vita. The graphical power of this little box is simply jaw dropping and the use of a touch-panel on the back as well as the front touchscreen make this a highly innovative and exciting approach to gaming. OnLive allowed people to sign up for their on demand game streaming service, then allowing gamers to rent or buy games that you can hook up to an HDTV. PC/MAC iPad users can sign up and have content sent direct to their format of choice and good news for Android users, the update is on the way.
…slightly demented but highly endearing…
Indie developers were able to strut their stuff in a special section dedicated just to them, so visitors got to play games as varied as the stunningly beautiful shoot ‘em up Really Big Sky to the slightly demented but highly endearing Molecat Twist where you control the eponymous molecat through a series of puzzles designed to test your poor mangled brains to the limit.
Other big name titles worthy of note are the sumptuous Assassin’s Creed: Revelations, dark and brooding Batman: Arkham City, the lovingly remastered 10th birthday bash Halo: Anniversary and the epic Mass Effect 3 all of which deserve high praise simply for being so bloody fun to play.
…you don’t have time to see it all in a day!
Add into this glorious stew of gaming goodness developer sessions where the people who create the games you’ve just been playing get to explain how they did it. Indeed you may find you don’t have time to see it all in a day!
The Eurogamer Expo runs until 25 September, advance tickets have sold out but there are a few on the door each day, but if you do miss out then there’s always next year…
Images courtesy of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Journey, Battlefield 3, PlayStation Vita, Molecat Twist, Assassin’s Creed: Revelations, Batman: Arkham City and Eurogamer