GamesCom 2023
#GamesCom #Cologne

GamesCom 2023 from a visitor's perspective

For many, GamesCom in Cologne is the annual highlight of the gaming world: a huge trade fair that impresses with its sheer size and variety of exhibitors from all over the world. But GamesCom 2023 was an experience of contrasts. While visitors entered the exhibition halls with great anticipation, they were initially surprised by unexpected challenges such as heavy rain and admission problems.

For many, GamesCom in Cologne is the annual highlight of the gaming world: a huge trade fair that impresses with its sheer size and variety of exhibitors from all over the world. But GamesCom 2023 was an experience of contrasts. While visitors entered the exhibition halls with great anticipation, they were initially surprised by unexpected challenges such as heavy rain and admission problems. Despite the adversities, this year's trade fair once again offered exciting insights into the latest trends in the industry, albeit with a few stumbling blocks.

GamesCom 2023 - Part One: Friday, 25.08.2023 (9 a.m. - 8 p.m. 27 euros), all ticket types still available

Literally left out in the rain.

Arriving at the North Entrance at around 10.30 a.m., we could already see the numerous visitors who were delighted. Finally another GamesCom without restrictions. But why are we all standing outside and can't get into the entrance hall? Anyone who has ever visited the trade fair knows how spacious the entrance area is.

Just at that moment the heavy rain came. The GamesCom organizers had probably planned this as a clever concept that visitors are only allowed to enter the fair in batches. But with what background? After finally arriving inside after 15 minutes, you are greeted by the smell of wet clothing and transpiring bodies. Dripping wet, resentment slowly grows. Perhaps this was just a clever marketing move by the trade fair operator? That you swap your soaked shirt for a dry merch T-shirt right at the start?

Next hurdle ahead, the ticket scanner. The decision was made to only allow visitors to enter in batches, even though the scanner is already regulating them...

GamesCom's hall hopping

The first exhibition halls are finally in sight. You quickly realize that this year, too, there are not nearly as many exhibitors on site as in the years before Corona. Advantage: the sardine can effect is more bearable due to the wider walkways. However, the tried and tested bottlenecks remain. We all know THE stairs. Caution: lots of physical contact is inevitable. But nothing can be done about this in a hurry.

One thing that does not stand out positively are the exhibition stands. Dear exhibitors, where has the attention to detail gone? Sometimes huge stands that are only green or blue. A stand with the most "hyped" game of 2023which houses a small simulation chair with a gameplay demo tucked away in the far corner. Apparently computer-savvy people don't like bells and whistles? Is that really the case?

All in all, it's an average performance this year, dear GamesCom organizers and exhibitors. You are the professionals after all these years! But we all know that feeling when suddenly, all of a sudden, the last weekend in August is just around the corner.

To end on a positive note: The status of a NThe presentation of the new streaming service (unfortunately one of the few) was really a feast for the eyes. The goodies that were offered there were a lot of fun. Thank you very much!

GamesCom 2023
The escalator becomes a bottleneck - like every year.

GamesCom 2023 - Part Two: Saturday, 26.08.2023, evening ticket (valid from 4-8 p.m. 9 euros), tickets sold out

This time, Peter, the weather god or whatever you want to call him, was at least merciful to us. It was still warm and humid, but the sky wasn't weeping.

Unfortunately, the admission problems continued on Saturday. This time we wanted to use the south entrance. Just like the day before, there was a considerably large crowd of people in front of the ticket scanners. To be fair, it should be mentioned here that the south entrance is directly at the Rear exit of the station Cologne Trade Fair/Deutz.

To avoid the huge rush, we wanted to test how successful we would be at the West/East entrance to the fair. Surprisingly, despite the streetcar stop (Kölnmesse), the afternoon rush here was bearable and we made good time. You quickly realize that Saturday is the day with the most visitors. With highlights like Gronkh's autograph session or Lara Loft's meet and greet, it's not surprising.

If you want to play one of the popular games, you have to be prepared for long waiting times (especially on Saturdays). Here you can the coveted folding chair Remedy. Transporting the chairs can be a challenge for other visitors. Carried like a Surfboard under the arm, you should be careful not to get the frame in your face.

We spent most of our visit on Saturday in the merch area and bought a few little things for our shelves, as we had already spent the previous day exploring the other exhibition halls. under the microscope have.

GamesCom 2023
The merch area was once again one of the most popular spots at GamesCom this year.

My conclusion on GamesCom

The character of the games fair is being pushed more and more into the background by the now immense influx of influencers. Anyone who would also like to see or meet a (gaming) celebrity definitely has a very good chance at GamesCom, because you don't just see familiar faces behind barriers. The admission organization and the exhibition stands, which sometimes felt carelessly arranged, should be reconsidered. The GamesCom is still a nice way to meet people you usually only interact with in stream chats.

By the way: The health app / fitness tracker is happy about the countless steps that have been collected.

Disclaimer: If you're wondering how the journey was on the respective days: We traveled by car both days, as Tommy got a press ticket again this year and thus a free press parking space. So, thanks to the really cool gimmick from Kölnmesse, we parked in the press parking lot at the North Entrance of Gamescom 2023 - at least on Friday.

Unfortunately, the press parking lot was already full on Saturday afternoon and we parked in parking garage P22, which is about a 10-minute walk from the trade fair. But there is also a commendable note here: A shuttle bus runs between the parking garage and the North Entrance approximately every 10 minutes. Unfortunately, however with a small hookbecause a daily fee of 20 euros, regardless of the parking duration, is steep. Sure, we're in Cologne, everything here is somehow overrated and trade fairs and trade fair prices are generally not cheap (especially when it comes to food and drinks), but it shouldn't go unmentioned. But we were lucky and didn't have to pay the parking fee thanks to our press pass.

Sandy

Sandy

Hi, I'm here to live it up as a part-time writer. I'm trying to focus on the area of "events".

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