Gamescom sells out

All-day tickets for the weekend are gone, but organizers offering chance at Saturday afternoon admissions

Gamescom has been billed as "the world's biggest trade fair and event highlight for interactive entertainment," but it's still not big enough to accommodate the number of people who want to attend. Organizers today announced that weekend all-day tickets for the open-to-the-public event have completely sold out.

Those still determined to attend have a chance tomorrow, as Gamescom will be selling Saturday afternoon tickets starting at 1 p.m. Those tickets will cost €7, but holders will not be admitted until 2 p.m. Additionally, they may have to wait in line, as the number of people admitted is contingent on the flow of attendees and earlier visitors leaving. There will be no such tickets offered for Sunday due to the shorter exhibit hours (6 p.m. closing time instead of 8 p.m.), and people without tickets for the day have been told to stay away from the exhibition center.

Gamescom has not revealed any expected visitor numbers for the show. Last year's Gamescom, the fourth edition of the show, drew 275,000 visitors.

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Latest comments (7)

Rupert Loman Founder & CEO, Gamer Network4 years ago
Genuine question (because I have a vested interest): Do gamers who attend gamescom have fun? I know it sounds great [for a publisher] to have 4, 6 or 8 hour queues to play a game, but is it actually enjoyable? Is this really the best way of showing off videogames to consumers? And is 300,000 people better than 30,000 people if you have a finite opportunity to show off your products (i.e. number of consoles on your booth).

As I say - vested interest - but I spend a lot of time thinking about this stuff and I don't quite "get it".
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Chung-wei Kerr SEO Account Manager, Mindshare4 years ago
I'm currently sitting in the Twitch WCS arena at the moment, been here since Tuesday. It's definitely gotten more crazy over this weekend.

It was fun for the first few days, but the novelty quickly wears off when you realise there's little chance of realistically playing anything popular, even during the trade only days. I haven't been able to play anything really since Wednesday.

Unless you're able to access the trade zones or the VIP lounges, it can get tough here.
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Klaus Preisinger Freelance Writing 4 years ago
The consumer experience:
You drive hundreds of miles. You then stay in line to enter the convention and it's best to show up at least 2h before the convention opens. This gives you the edge to have a short queue on the one game you mainly came to see, but expect to wait another hour there as well, because Trade Visitors get let in one hour early and already formed a queue. After seeing that one game, you have enough time to walk around once and stand in line for one other game, but probably none of the big ones. Then the day is over.

The press experience:
You schedule an appointment with something you know will be there. You enter the business area and work off your appointments. You rarely can just walk in on something interesting you did not know existed and get a demo without appointment.

Both from the consumer and the press side, the convention is a train wreck when it comes to offering visitors the chance to discover a new product and interact with it. Under the stress of an incredible amount of visitors, the show has lost that ability. It is bursting from the seams and probably needs to be adjusted sooner than later.
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Show all comments (7)
Tom Keresztes Programmer 4 years ago
Indies in the trader section was fun. The normal area was a bit meh, but NVIDIA made a great show.
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Jakub Mikyska CEO, Grip Digital4 years ago
I really hated that they actually started letting in the "non-professionals" visitors on the first day (starting at 1pm, I think). The first day used to be relatively quiet, you could run around without bumping into people, even actually play some games in the Entertainment area without waiting. Now, even the business day was full of kids. Terrible. I hope they drop this again for the next year.
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Felix Leyendecker Senior 3D Artist, Crytek4 years ago
All of this queuing nonsense is simply due to the german age ratings.
The nintendo booth shows how it's done: Have demo stations on the open floor so everyone can take a look, and you only have to wait in line if you actually want to play.
There should be 18+ and 16+ hall with badge checks at the entry, so you can at least look at things without waiting for hours. Waiting 2 hours to see a trailer that's already on youtube is ridiculous.

I was there on press day and the lines were already horrible. If I hadn't managed to get fast passes, I wouldn't have looked at even one game.
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Anastasios Hatzis Community Manager 4 years ago
While the size of gamescom 2013 was 140.000 m˛, which is the same size as it was 2012, the visitor numbers increased from 275,000 to 340,000. I have attended gamescom every year since 2009 and in many ways, it was the best gamescom ever, but also the worst experience if it comes to waiting times at some of the booths or getting through some of the halls. Köln Messe and the big exhibitors really need to update their concepts so gamescom can meet its own huge success in a sustainable way.

Extremely crowded halls / hall-ways are not only displeasing but also dangerous. For example, the space between the two booths of League of Legends. You could barely move to any direction and it was a huge noise. I can't imagine what would happen in case of a stampede (just remember the death toll at 2010 Love Parade in Duisburg, Germany).

Furthermore, I agree with Felix that the waiting time is often too much. We discussed 16+ and 18+ halls, so people could at least get a glimpse at some of the main features of the show. Even if you attend gamescom with friends, you want to get your hands on the one or other thing with-out standing in a queue for 3 or 4 hours.

It was the best gamescom ever, but these two issues need to be addressed if they want to keep the visitor numbers up (or even higher).
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