The global event that took place at the top of 2019 and into 2020 understandably put an end to all public events for quite a while. However, a part of the world is slowly moving away from staying at home and avoiding social gatherings, returning at the very least to some normality. As someone who loves teaming up with other geeks and gamers, I, for one, was thrilled to exit and eventually do it again. It’s been great and I’m now looking forward to attending more gaming events in 2023.
The show that reignited my excitement for IRL gaming events was DreamHack Atlanta 2022. This is for sure the largest recurring gaming event in my neighborhood, having attended over and over before. DreamHack is sort of an enormous name on the subject of gaming events, so you might already be accustomed to it. It offers live esports tournaments and card games, a LAN space where you possibly can bring your personal gaming PC, demo booths for all forms of things like racing and VR setups, gaming star meetups, cosplay, and vendor booths amongst others. That’s rather a lot, often packed in a single weekend.
Before the pandemic, hundreds of individuals showed up every yr. Going into the 2022 event, I had cautious expectations; I used to be expecting a much smaller show. You can imagine my surprise after I arrived to search out popping. Maybe not as crowded as in previous years, but still bustling. And despite years of cancellations, it was exactly as I remembered.
Now being a tech geek and author, I had a distinct agenda than my previous visits as a daily visitor. I went out to fulfill people, network and have hands-on time with the whole lot I could. Luckily for me, that is exactly what happened.
I didn’t expect the plot of the Alchemist
Getting to see the Intel Arc graphics was a highlight as there continues to be a variety of skepticism about stability and performance. Intel had open booths with many games available for demonstration. I tested CS GO, Ghostwire: Tokyo, Apex Legends, Ring of the Elden, plus a number of other titles and didn’t encounter any weird visual glitches or technical issues. Now that ought to in fact apply to Intel’s own test systems, nevertheless it was reassuring to see the A770 playing 1080p 144Hz gameplay on high settings in a few of today’s popular games.
I also spent a great deal of time talking to the Arc team about products and future plans, and got here away feeling far more optimistic about Intel graphics than I expected after I first showed up.
Personal contributions repay
The second highlight was surprisingly personal and rewarding. The beauty of big events like that is that you simply never know what is going on to occur, especially for those who’re putting yourself on the market and talking to people. System builder CLX has sponsored DreamHack’s open section where anyone can come up and play some games. We reviewed a custom gaming PC from CLX last yr, and I corresponded with CLX throughout the method.
Perhaps it was fate, but I bumped into the identical person whose job it was to assemble feedback on things that might be improved and replying to my review. The opportunity to fulfill them and the remaining of the CLX team led to interesting discussions about hardware and a few fairly nerdy conversations Destiny 2 game balancing. It showed that there have been some really competent and open-minded people working there who were also committed players.
You can bump into anyone and make your personal plans
In addition to this stuff, I used to be capable of personally check out hardware and peripherals, give helpful feedback to corporations, and meet recent individuals with common interests. DreamHack Atlanta 2022 was a really skilled endeavor for me. But previous visits to DreamHack and even E3 have included meeting friends online, watching big upheavals in esports tournaments, and even meeting some big names within the industry. In addition to people from various corporations at DreamHack, I also had the chance to fulfill Dr. Lupo. At E3, I had the pleasure of meeting Jack Black, Hideo Kojima, and Ryan McCaffrey from IGN.
There really is not any substitute for going to live events, and my last experience felt long overdue, practically the moment I walked within the door on day one. The challenge for organizers in 2023 will undoubtedly be a shift in perception to imagine that we are able to host live games safely again.
In fact, I used to be surprised that DreamHack Atlanta 2022 actually took place. There have been so many cancellations of live events over the previous few years that it has turn into almost the norm to listen to about shifts to digital tradeshows. However, it looks like that can eventually change.
We had the chance to talk with members of the DreamHack team concerning the challenges they faced re-engaging with live events. This definitely sheds some light on how uncertain things still are regarding participants’ confidence.
“The obvious challenge was that we didn’t know what the behavior for visiting live events after the pandemic would appear to be, each from a show design and operational standpoint,” said Shahin Zarrabi, vice chairman of strategy and growth. “It was far more difficult to gauge the interest in our festival until very late. Finally, the community showed up. And they turned out big!”
Without the crowds, it simply won’t be possible for private events to return, but enough people appear to feel confident popping up now to start out rolling again. Word of those wonderful experiences will spread over time, but there continues to be a variety of compelling stuff that hasn’t happened yet. Of course, staying at home and having fun with your online social experience is safer and more convenient than ever before, but there is no such thing as a substitute for a novel live event experience. 2023 might be the yr of the return of live gaming events, with big shows like E3, Comic-Con, GDC, PAX, TwitchCon, DreamHack, and more looking set to make a comeback this yr.