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Gamescom – Behind-The-Scenes

Gamescom – Behind-The-Scenes

We’re back from Gamescom! It’s been emotional, it’s been hard, it’s been fun but most of all, it’s been bloody tiring. So much so I accidentally overslept and got an angry phone call jolting me into life and work this morning. Oops.

We went straight to the Sony press conference from the airport. The Sony press conference was a bit like this – wait outside for half-an-hour. Wait inside for half-an-hour. Wait upstairs for 10 minutes. Wait inside conference hall for half-an-hour. Watch journalist with tongue hanging out of his mouth walk up and down confused during that time. PRESS CONFERENCE BEGINS!

You’ll know what happens next if you’ve seen it – price cuts, PSVita, Infamous 2: Blood Festival, Diversity, Uncharted 3 trailer. After this, a downstairs room with PSVita games on show was opened up. It was too busy to play everything but I managed to play Frobisher Says, Hustle Kings, Resistance: Burning Skies and F1 2011. All pretty good fun.

Inside info: Frobisher Says will eventually use the GPS function but mini-games telling you to turn off your PSVita weren’t allowed by Sony. More inside info: Resistance: Burning Skies developer refused to comment about co-op (“we’re only talking about single player today”). Oooooh.


We got there the next day, about 8am. Gamescom is split into business areas (Hall 4.1, 4.2, 5.1, 5.2) and consumer areas (Hall 6, 7, 8). There’s also a food area (Hallo 10) and miscellaneous areas that who knows what they do (Hall 1, 2 and 3).

The Imagine team out there covering it included Simon Miller of X360 and Dave Cook of NowGamer.

Appointments were booked in 30 minute slots. During Gamescom, I saw Borderlands 2, Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, Call of Duty: Elite, Joe Danger: The Movies, FIFA Street, Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3, Asura’s Wrath, Dragon’s Dogma, Sine Mora, Black Knight Sword, Skydrift, Amy, Jurassic Park, DmC, Tekken Hybrid, Tekken Tag Tournament 2, Sound Shapes and Skull Girls. I also had to see some Microsoft stuff (boo!) owing to the fact I was covering it for NowGamer and some PC stuff too.

The Namco stand (pictured) was probably the nicest, as any booth with a massive Red Bull container would be, but it still loses points for making it look like I have a bald spot. I’M 28 GOD DAMMIT.

But anyway. The other thing worth noting is that there are a lot of stands in the business area for games you will likely have nothing to do with. Ever. There’s a whole row of games dedicated to Korean free-to-play MMOs. Another for Iranian games. And, of course, Farm Machines Championships.

It’s definitely not as much of an ‘event’ as E3 is. With E3, it’s an assault on the senses, it’s where the big announcements get made, it’s where you get to gauge how well the industry is doing and what state it’s in. Gamescom feels like here’s-more-of-the-stuff-you-know-about in comparison, and while it’s bigger in terms of floor space and getting from one and to the other, it definitely doesn’t register as strong an impact as an event.

I’ve been asked what my favourite games of the show are. Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception blew me away and it’s just about over-taken Batman: Arkham City as my most anticipated game. Likewise, I caught a glimpse of Battlefield 3, and it looking amazing. Finally, Amy is my sleeper hit choice, a survival horror game that puts the emphasis on survival and horror. You know, like survival horror games should.

Questions you asked on our Facebook page! (www.facebook.com/playmagazineUK)

How much of it is in German compared to English? And can people not doing press get in?
Almost all of it was in English. The only thing I remember being in German was the Call of Duty: Elite demo. We were asked if any of our 8-strong group was in German – one raised hand – then they played a German version of the Call of Duty: Elite trailer. While we all, erm, did… nothing.

People not doing press can get into the consumer halls (hall 6, 7 and 8 as well) on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Saturday was a huge crush though and unlike the business halls, a lot of the consumer halls are in German (announcements, demos and so on).

Any pandas wearing clothes?
No. The only panda was the one at the end of the Tekken Hybrid trailer.

What was the food like?
Didn’t have a lot of time to eat because I was either walking, emailing, transcribing or panicking so we usually just ate when the day was over at 7pm and in town. There were lots of food stands about though. If you’re ever in German and you get a pretzel and you’re asked “mit kase?”, say yes. You’ll have an inhuman amount of cheese served with it.

Did you get any free Red Bull and did you go to only booths for games on PS3? Or did you go to PC games booths and 360 games booths?
Free Red Bull from the Namco booth and 2K booth, yeah. I did see some 360 and PC games. Had to sit through a Kinect demo for the former, with a woman pretending to throw snowballs at the screen for half-an-hour, and saw Warhammer Online: Wrath of Heroes, which was a PC MMORPG and was actually pretty cool. Not my thing but it was good fun and the producer, Graham Bennett of BioWare, was a good guy to talk to. It was mostly PS3 stuff though.

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  • Scrum

    Disappointing lack of umlauts :/

    Kidding. Gamescom looks really good, I definitely want to go next year!

  • Ryan King

    Go on the Thursday or Friday if you can, Saturday was soooooooo busy

  • kevin

    I can’t really be bothered to travel to Germany, can you bring gamescom to England?