Gamescom, GDC Europe adopt new security measures

In wake of attacks, organizers forbid cosplay weapons, ask attendees to leave bags at home

After a rash of attacks throughout Germany last month, the organizers of Gamescom have adopted new security measures for the open-to-the-public event that will also apply to the co-located Game Developers Conference Europe. The two big changes from previous years are that attendees will not be permitted to have cosplay weapons, and they are asked to leave bags at home.

"In the present days, the need for safety is a major issue for all parties involved," said Gerald Böse, CEO of the Koelnmesse exhibition center where Gamescom is held. "It is our aim to meet this requirement by adapting the safety measures and at the same time limiting Gamescom in all its facets as little as possible. We hope for the understanding and support of all participants..."

Not only are cosplay weapons and any weapon-like elements on costumes prohibited at the show, but organizers have asked people not to wear them in the city at all, "in consideration for the inhabitants and visitors of the city of Cologne." While bags aren't banned outright, attendees are warned that bag checks will be carried out before they're allowed into the venue, so they should expect longer queuing times than in previous years.

Gamescom is set for August 17 to 21, and will be preceded by GDC Europe August 15 and 16.

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Latest comments (4)

Connor Martin Aspiring game designer/tester 2 years ago
I can see it now, "please leave your buster swords at home".
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Daniel Trezub QA Analyst, Ludia2 years ago
We all know these policies are dumb, and they cannot make sure there will be nothing harmful inside one of the bags people will bring with them, even with searches. Let's not even start about the cosplay weapons.
Going for a game convention without a bag or backpack is just annoying. I take my backpack everywhere, it's like my "man's purse": wallet, keys, my kindle, water bottle, powerbar, cables... And where are you supposed to stuff all the swag you are getting?
Last time I attended a concert here in Montreal I was told backpacks were forbidden, even tho women's bags double the side of my backpack were allowed without even a search. Their definition of backpack was "anything that goes attached to your back by two straps", although purses and women's bags with two straps were allowed, again without a search.
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Benjamin Crause Supervisor Central Support, Nintendo of Europe2 years ago
I think this was very poorly communicated and added nothing but panic and fear-mongering. Asking the young audience to come without bags is contra-productive. They need the ability to bring water, personal necessities and forcing them to buy the overpriced drinks at the gamescom is just not possible for some considering the amount you need to drink.
There were never any incidents at gamescom and security thus far was already good and understood cosplayers very well.
100% security is not possible. Sure they shouldn't ignore it but this looks like it could go too far and cause problems rather than help.
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Alfonso Sexto Lead Tester, Ubisoft Germany2 years ago
"There were never any incidents at Gamescom and security thus far was already good"

That is true, indeed, but also was for Bataclan Club. Not trying to bedramatic here, just saying that given the current situation is understandable that stakeholders want the place to be safer.
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