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Gamescom Begins

Ben Parfitt
Gamescom Begins

Finally, it’s here. After months of waiting the inaugural Gamescom, billed as an improved German trade fair for all of Europe, takes place from August 19th. Through the link we offer you a guide to the event and profile the key exhibitors…

The inaugural Gamescom in Cologne is a five-day games expo for consumers and trade. Along with a mix of festival-style events, the show consists of content for both trade and non-trade attendees with dedicated entertainment, conference and business areas.

The exhibition centre consists of 11 halls with 284,000 square metres of potential exhibition space, four entrances via the boulevard, a sizeable outdoor area, more than 60 meeting rooms, two modern press centres and a spacious VIP area.

In terms of layout, halls four and five are reserved for trade partners and businesses. Meanwhile, halls six through nine are set aside for the entertainment areas, with 80,000 square metres of exhibition space. All of this is connected through ‘The Boulevard’, which also features food and non-food shops, a bank, a travel agency, telecommunications services including wireless LAN hotspots, a postal service and parcel delivery.



GAMESCOM: THE FACTS


Dates
Wednesday, August 19th to Sunday, August 23rd
(August 19th is a day for trade visitors and the media only; event opens to the public on the Thursday; business area will be closed on the Sunday.)

Location
Cologne Exhibition Centre

Opening hours
The business area is open every day from 9am to 7pm; exhibitors can access the entertainment showfloor an hour before and after its usual hours of 10am to 8pm.

Gamescom Business Area
Designed as a place for retailers, publishers, service companies and developers to do business.

Gamescom Entertainment Area
An E3-like showcase of upcoming product designed for both trade and consumer visitors. The organisers promise ‘jaw-dropping indoor and outdoor performances’. Individual gaming zones for specific genres such as sports, lifestyle, action and e-sports also ‘make this trade fair unique’.

Gamescom Festival
Runs from Friday, August 21st to Sunday, August 23rd. Starting with a music concert, the festival will stretch beyond the exhibition centre to include a number of different events to showcase the culture and variety of gaming.

Gamescom Conference Programme
There are two lecture-based events running alongside Gamescom. They are:

GDC Europe
Running ahead of the main Gamescom event, from August 17th to 19th, this developer conference promises a mix of keynotes, lectures, roundtables and workshops with speakers from across Europe and around the world.

gamesCompetence
Taking place on Thursday, August 20th, this is a special forum dedicated to discussing the issues around child-safety and age-appropriate content in video games. The forum is backed by the state of North Rhine-Westphalia (where Cologne is located).



GAMESCOM – THE KEY EXHIBITORS

1C Publishing (Stand: C021)
The Russian publisher will be showcasing a number of products including IL-2 Sturmovik: Birds Of Prey alongside King’s Bounty: Armored Princess, Men Of War: Red Tide, Rig’n’Roll, Captain Blood, Real Warfare: 1242 and Majesty 2. The company will also be offering a first look at an as yet unannounced title.

Activision Blizzard (Stand: H021)
The publisher will be displaying Singularity, Modern Warfare 2, Blur, Tony Hawk Ride, Bakugan and the trio of Hero titles: Guitar Hero 5, Band Hero and DJ Hero. A Lucasarts area will also host LEGO Indiana Jones 2, Clone Wars: Republic Heroes, Battlefront Elite Squadron and The Force Unleashed: Ultimate Sith Edition.

Bethesda (Stand: A011)
The firm behind Fallout 3 will be providing playable versions of its upcoming titles, including Wet, newly announced Wii racer Wheelspin and knightly mini-game collection Medieval Games. There will also be a demonstration of the publisher’s joint project with developer Splash Damage, Brink.

Bigben Interactive (Stand: D021)

A range of Wii and DS titles will be available at the company’s stand, including the latest Cocoto title. BigBen will also be guiding attendees through its fitness titles My Body Coach and Cyberbike, as well as Wii racer Mad Tracks. On DS, Maestro Jump combines rhythm action gaming with platforming.

Blaze (Stand: D021)

Peripherals specialists Blaze will be unveiling its line-up of Wii sports and fitness accessories for the first time. Elsewhere, the firm will be showing off its extensive product range for all formats, such as the new DSi 3-in-1 Game Selector and Sega Mega Drive Handheld, as well as lifting the lid on new retro products.

Capcom (Stand: C024)

Expect Capcom to be focusing on its Wii line-up as the publisher revisits its flagship horror franchises with Resident Evil: Darkside Chronicles and Silent Hill: Shattered Memories. Other dead certs for Gamescom are Marvel Vs Capcom 2 and Spyborgs. And there’s certain to be a few surprises in store, we’re promised.

Creative Distribution (Stand: G021)

The distributor will have a 100 square metre area in the business centre. Creative is looking for new partnerships at the show. For more information, call Craig Lewis on 020 8664 3467 or +44 (0) 7949 609712 during the event.

EA (Stand: L002)
The publishing giant has lined up a range of almost 20 games to demo at Gamescom. Key titles include APB, Brutal Legend, Need For Speed: Shift and Nitro, Rage, The Beatles Rock Band, FIFA 10, Dante’s Inferno, and The Saboteur.

Focus Home Interactive (Stand: A041)
Showing off a healthy, varied line-up, Focus will be presenting titles such as Blood Bowl and a new TrackMania. Also on offer is Runaway: A Twist Of Fate, Dungeon Raiders, Pro Cycling Manager 2010 and Sherlock Holmes Vs Jack The Ripper.

Game Outlet (Stand: C009)

European distributor Game Outlet will be showcasing its pallet concept. The company will also hold presentations on how it can turn a profit via buying back old stock. Contact Mats Salomonsson on +46 702 24 07 21 for more information.

IQ Publishing
Publisher and distributor IQ Publishing will be doing the rounds at Gamescom in the hopes of making new contacts and partners, whether they are games publishers or peripherals manufacturers. For more information, contact Lech Buszczynski on +48 602 10 10 86.

Koch Media (Stand: B041)
Label Deep Silver will show Risen, Cursed Mountain, Sacred 2: Ice And Blood and Secret Files. Lost Horizon and The Whispered World also debut. Playlogic has Fairytale Fights, Obscure 2 and Infernal, while Kalypso is showing Tropico.

Localsoft (Stand: B051A)

Localisation expert Localsoft plans to meet new partners at the show. The firm will be presenting its list of services, with which it has translated more than 500 titles. Contact Randall Mage on +34 952 02 80 80 – or +34 699 940 811 during the event.

Logic 3 (Stand: B022)

The accessories firm will be showcasing a range of products new and recently released. A key item on display is the SoundStation range for Wii and DSi, which offers Nintendo owners a complete charging, storage and audio solution.

Microsoft (Stand: A011)
The format holder will be showcasing Halo 3: ODST, due for release just weeks after the show. The next instalment in the publisher’s Lips franchise is also likely to be present, and the company’s press conference is certain to reveal new titles.

Milestone Interactive
India’s leading distributor, Milestone Interactive will be in attendance, supporting its partners at Atari, Capcom, EA and Sony. The company will also be discussing its multi-tiered channel approach that allows it to reach consumers directly.

MPO Interactive (Stand: D051)

The European distribution and media creation specialist will be demonstrating the full range of services it offers publishers. From media to logisitics, MPO will present the benefits it provides for its partners and highlight recent successes.

NCsoft (Stand: A011)
The MMO expert will be guiding Gamescom attendees through its upcoming title Aion, which throws players into a war between deities. The publisher will have 32 demo pods available so guests can try out the game.

Namco Bandai (Stand: B040)
Under the new umbrella of Namco Bandai Partners, both the Japanese firm and Atari will be exhibiting a line-up that includes Tekken 6, Family Trainer: Extreme Challenge, Katamari Forever, Star Trek Online and Dead To Rights: Retribution.

Nintendo (Stand: C013)

Expect to see a line-up that caters for the widest possible audience at the Nintendo stand, as the company rolls out the likes of Professor Layton And Pandora’s Box, New Super Mario Bros. and The Legend Of Zelda: Spirit Tracks.

Nordic Games (Stand: J021A)
The up-and-coming games publisher will be announcing news on the next instalments in its Dance Party series for Wii. The company will also be lifting the lid on new franchise We Sing, its own entry into the singing genre.

OPM Response (Stand: M033B)
Recruitment specialist OPM will be demonstrating how it can help publishers, distributors and other companies in the games industry to find the ideal staff. For more information, contact OPM direct on +44 (0) 7837 222362.

Sega (Stand: A010)
The publisher will showcase all of its Q4 and 2010 titles such as Planet 51, Alpha Protocol, Sonic and Sega All-Stars Racing, Bayonetta, Mario & Sonic At The Winter Olympic Games, Super Monkey Ball: Step and Roll, plus Resonance of Fate.

Sitel
Though not exhibiting, Sitel will be at GamesCom and looking to meet new clients as it continues to provide phone, web and chat support for games companies. It will also inform potential clients on how it can help reduce costs and increase revenues.

Sony (Stand: F041)

The company will be showing  games across all its formats. PS3 titles include Uncharted 2, God Of War III, SingStar, Buzz!, White Night Chronicles and DC Universe. The PSPgo will also be present, alongside GT, Invizimals and LittleBigPlanet.

Southpeak (Stand: C011)
The main focus will be on Section 8 but a range of other titles will also be on show. These are Dementium II, Raven Squad: Operation Hidden Dagger, Sushi Go Round, Horrid Henry, Fast Food Panic and a new 360, PS3 and PC action game.

Square Enix Europe (Stand: G031)
Making its first public appearance under its new name, the company will be showcasing both Square Enix and Eidos titles including Batman, multiple Final Fantasy titles, the hew Supreme Commander, Mini Ninjas and Championship Manager 2010.

Sunflex (Stand: F040)
The German peripherals firm will be displaying its latest line-up. Products on show will include Xbox 360 memory cards and wireless controllers, Need For Speed Wii, PSP and DSi kits, Premium Wii controllers that are designed to include the new Wii MotionPlus, and its PS3 controller range.

Take Two (Stand: A021)
Take-Two will be showing playable versions of the latest entries in the NHL 2K and NBA 2K series. The company will also be offering a glimpse at Mafia II and Borderlands. The publisher’s Rockstar division will also be demoing its upcoming titles exclusively for retailers and distributors.

Techexcel (Stand: L033)
Providers of application lifecycle management software, TechExcel will be presenting two of its newest products at Gamescom: DevSpec 3.0, which lets studios define and manage a Wiki, and  DevSuite 8.0 which offers software designed to manage all phases of product development.

Testronic
The QA company is looking to meet new partners and demonstrate its resources to attendees. Testronic provides testing on all major formats and also offers translation and localisation services to its clients. For more information, contact Alastair Harsant on +44 (0) 7796 200946.

Ubisoft (Stand: H011)
Covering every market imagineable, Ubisoft will be showing off a strong line-up that includes Splinter Cell: Conviction, Assassin’s Creed II, James Cameron’s Avatar, Rabbids Go Home, Academy Of Champions, C.O.P: The Recruit, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Smash Up,  and Combat Of Giants.

Warner Bros (Stand: D031)
Catering for families and younger gamers, Warner Bros Interactive Entertainment will be exhibiting its Christmas line-up. Titles include LEGO Rock Band, Where The Wild Things Are, Scooby Doo: First Frights, Teen Queen: The Clique and the highly anticipated Scribblenauts for DS.

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