I attended EGX 2015 on Thursday and if you were there you already know there’s so much to talk about. I was only able to attend one of the days but you definitely need to spend an entire weekend there; I didn’t have any time to ogle the merchandise stands, photograph the creative cosplayers, or hunt down the Eurogamer team for embarrassing selfies.
I’ll cover all of the terrible shit at EGX 2015 in Part One. Part Two will surprise you; it will be filled with joy and compliments. Until then though…
Hear me moan,
EGX 2015 Birmingham NEC
Let’s get the obvious complaints out of the way – EGX can be a strain on your wallet, your patience and your nostrils. I had to pay for fuel, parking, train fare and food before I even reached the NEC. Then once you’re inside snacks and drinks are overpriced. If you’re not financially prepared you will have no cash left for T-shirts, plushies and Funko figurines. I don’t pepper my house with pointless displays of fandom so it didn’t bother me but let this be a warning for those of you who still buy toys.
Queueing is a real ball ache. I had a Press Pass Early Entry ticket but I was hustled along into the same queue as everyone else. I don’t want to put my ‘pussy on a pedestal’ but I expected a separate queue – maybe there was one and the NEC staff were poorly trained. Regardless, this was only the first queue – Once you’ve queued for your wristband you have to queue at the entrance. Then once you’re inside you have to queue for at least an hour to play a game. I was pleasantly surprised that I didn’t have to queue to use the toilet – Sorry Chris Tilly, nowhere to hold your interviews I’m afraid.
Then there’s the cacophony of smells. Some people smell. It’s a harsh truth but it’s a truth none-the-less. I definitely put deodorant on but I’m positive someone near me thought I stank because everyone is sweating and farting and everyone tolerates it because we all want to fucking play Battlefront. EGX is an assault on the nose – everywhere smells of food, Lynx, sugar and hot plastic.
Onto the games!
I wouldn’t advise anyone to avoid a particular game. That wouldn’t be fair. You might enjoy something I found agonising to play. There were definitely games I sat down and played and questioned why I even bothered, especially when I’m only there for the day. Rather than slag off the games I’m going to highlight areas of improvement instead.
Presentation. Don’t bring your demo to EGX if it doesn’t look or feel finished. Otherwise everyone walks away with a bad taste in their mouth. I played a quirky click adventure game set in an amazing world. The story was definitely its strength but because the gameplay wasn’t responsive enough it was difficult to appreciate – there were numerous technical hiccups which pissed me off.
Instructors (or assholes, as I call them). You will sit down to play a demo and some representative will instruct you how to play and will feign sympathy every time you die, or they will dictate how your experimentation is redundant. It’s the equivalent of someone screaming, “You’re playing it wrong” in your ear. It’s really fucking annoying and it’s a cold reminder why I like to play alone. Can companies please leave these assholes in the office please?
Passion. This isn’t an obvious one and it’s not a technical or creative issue that can be addressed but sometimes if feels as if the developers don’t give a shit. I actually didn’t encounter an uninterested rep or dev at EGX but I thought it was worth a mention based on prior conventions. If you’re not enthusiastic about your game or willing to talk about it then the player isn’t going to care either. Taking none of that into account, here is a brief list of games I didn’t enjoy.
• Aaero • Extreme Exorcism • I Want To Be Human • Tango Fiesta
It’s hard to moan about a huge room full of video games, especially when most of my annoyances rely on my personal taste of games, but because EGX is varied everyone can find something enjoyable. I didn’t play any board games because I’m not a boring twat and I didn’t check out the Retro Arcade because why the fuck would you? I genuinely felt sad when I ran out of games to play but I can’t wait to do it all again next year.
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