2007/10/10 - rAge 2007 Report Back
Recently, tinysquishy joined forces with spineFORGE and Inky3D to exhibit at the Tidemedia rAge exhibition 2007, held at the Coca-Cola Dome, Northgate, in Johannesburg, South Africa.
The event took place over the weekend of September 28th to Sept 30th. All sorts of technological goodies and entertainment titles were on display.
Other than Jean-Pierre, none of us had seen or set foot in this massive construction - we were in awe of the mothership-like interior that would house us for the weekend. This was to be the perfect environment for a digital extravagance of overwhelming proportions...
The expo is marketed as a "computers, entertainment and gaming" show.
A major draw-card every year has been the New Age Gaming (NAG) LAN.
This year, half the entire floorspace of the Dome was devoted to rows and rows of tables prepared for gamers to bring their own PC's and engage in all sorts of digital sparring with fellow players.
Apparently, the 1500 tickets were sold out very fast:
Apart from the LAN (separated by large prison-like gates)...
...was the expo floor, where vendors of all kinds strutted their stuff and displayed their wares:
The crowd was divided for attention between two new mainstream game consoles, the Xbox 360, and the Nintendo Wii with it's interesting "VR" controllers. Each console seemed to draw different kinds of people who want different kinds of gaming experience, so it was great to see some variety and competition. Meanwhile, we did our best to keep people informed as to the advantages of that ever-present (and much more open-ended) platform, the good old PC.
A big media splash this year was focused around the latest installment of the Halo video game - Halo 3. It was difficult to find a piece of real-estate without a large poster or plasma screen showing clips of it's highly polished action - making sure we 'believed' it was coming to stores near us.
Much to the delight of fans, Master Chief himself made the rounds, inspecting the Dome for weaknesses in case of possible Covenant invasions.
This particular rAge event, helped along by the Game.dev crew, was set to be a milestone for the visibility of local game development.
So of course, tinysquishy had to be there - and thanks to an increasing interest in the gaming market here in South Africa, we had a very enthusiastic response.
Our group of Tinysquishy, SpineFORGE and Inky3D attended the event to let the world see what we are up to and to meet (in physical reality) some people that we knew only as forum handles thus far. It was a remarkably busy, energetic and entertaining time. Some tinysquishy demos got some heavy play-testing and we met lots of people very supportive of local development.
Each day, we managed to get our stand ready just as the doors opened - and the interior of the dome was flooded with excited people. Friday was the first, and quietest day of the event - and it gave us some time to adjust to our surroundings:
We had only just sorted out our computers and posters when suddenly TV cameras and microphones were jammed in our faces for an interview by IOL technology - we answered questions about our reasons for being there as well as what to expect from local game development in the future. We were told by the crew that we would see ourselves that evening via online streaming video, but it appears they forgot to upload us -
maybe next time...
The next day, Saturday, was packed with hordes of game-hungry patrons the moment the doors opened. There was not much breathing (let alone walking) space. For reclusive computer geeks this was a rare day of non-stop human interaction - it was exhausting - but inspiring to see the interest in our work.
The Quake Wars - Enemy Territory stand was right next door to ours, so we were bombarded with the sights and sounds of non-stop alien Strogg action. The stand also showed demos of the new Call of Duty game - which had the most realistic urban scenes we'd ever laid eyes on.
We noticed there was quite an even distribution of male and female visitors and people of all ages. rAge had something for everyone:
On show were demos, sneek peeks, videos, and presentations by industry professionals and hobbyists alike.
A couple of brightly decorated Segways were zooming around the show floor. We didn't get a chance to try them out unfortunately - but it does look fun.
Tinysquishy hopes that they do start "revolutionizing city transport" one day...
On the Saturday we finally managed to adorn our stand with the "local game development" flyers organized by SAGD forum member Grigi, who did a sterling job getting all our logos and details onto one comprehensive document. We handed tons of these out and they had all but disappeared by the end of the event.
...All the while, the LAN participants kept up their sweaty, high paced combat of all kinds.
While some fired rockets at eachother, others slept under their tables, working off the shellshock, no doubt.
With our stand looking truly colorful, we started attracting the crowds.
Gleeful kids from age 10 to 50 had a chance at playing our older multiplayer first-person-shooter demo, as well as examining our latest 3D models:
And so after three very busy days, rAge 2007 was over.
The tinysquishy team had a great time!
Thanks to all the organisers and of course all those very supportive people we chatted to.
Hope to see you all again next year - this time with our first official release: [Deep Pressure].
2007/08/31 - rAge 2007
tinysquishy are still preparing for rAge 2007 - the epic digital exhibition and monster LAN event hosted by
There is a lot to do. Exhibitions are a serious life administration tax (for an exhibitor of course, its all eyecandy for visitors) - but this event will be great.
Tick tock Tick tock Tick tock...
2007/08/29 - rAge 2007
tinysquishy are planning our first official public appearance at rAge 2007.