Gaming Conventions

Gamers who play online games (either the casino type of game found here at the Grande Vegas Casino or other online games) and those who play face to face competitions, generally try to keep up with upcoming game trade shows and conventions. These are the events where developers talk about the games, demonstrate new features and role-play characters and allow people to experiment with playing upcoming games.

Some people wait for the conventions and shows that take place in their locale but others actually travel long distances to participate in some of these events.

If you're thinking about attending a show or convention, we've reviewed some of the top 2018 Trade Shows and Conventions for gamers:

Nintendo Direct

Nintendo Direct is actually held on the Internet and pops up every two or three months. Nintendo fans look forward to these events to stay in tune with new game reveals and Nintendo-related announcements. The Nintendo Direct video-gatherings are gaining in popularity with 12 events (including 2 for Japanese gamers) held in in 2017. During these web-conferences attendees heard about the new games including Splatoon 2, Xenoblade Chronicles 2, Arms and Fire Emblem Warriors.

Dates for Nintendo Directs are revealed only a few days before they air.   At this point Nintendo intends to host a stream once every few months with airtime of approximately one hour. Participants can expect Nintendo Directs to focus on the future of the Switch in 2018 as the Switch platform enters its second year.

Consumer Electronics Expo

CES is held in the Las Vegas Convention Center (and in surrounding hotels) and is billed as the biggest event of the year for all things tech. The convention highlights the latest gaming laptops, headphones, keyboards, monitors, PCs and more. The convention does not focus on mobile gaming though you might find some mobile-friendly information.

PAX East

PAX East is held in the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center in April. The conference gives the gaming public access to information about current and upcoming games with a focus on exciting indies – an exciting development for the indie gaming industry. PAX East is where many small game developers build up buzz. Many known projects have been launched at PAX where they obtain funding and publicity.

Members of the gaming public have the chance to get up-close glimpses of soon-to-be-released titles that they might not see in other conventions and trade shows.

PAX South

PAX South 2018 took place in January but you can look forward to the 2019 event which is set to take place at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center in San Antonio, Texas. Since the event takes place in January, there won't be a lot of new game reveals featured but gamers can enjoy seeing some of the best of the previous year's newest releases.

PAX South is a new convention but it puts the Southern region of the United States on the map for gaming enthusiasts.

PAX West

The September PAX West is a fan-focused show. There aren't a lot of major news events at the conference but it draws large games and notoriety because it falls just before the fall review season starts. PAX West is a big draw for players who like indie games and extended gameplay sessions.

Dice Summit

Dice Summit is another early-year conference – it takes place in February at the Mandalay Bay Hotels in Las Vegas. Dice Summit was created by the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences. Attendees have the chance to see the presentation of achievement awards which are presented to major names in the gaming industry.

The conference focuses on the business side of creating video games and the artistic endeavors that are employed. Rather than focusing on the games themselves, the conference gives the gaming industry’s brightest minds a platform where they can discuss current game design trends and collaborate on future endeavors.

Game Developers Conference

The Game Developers Conference is another venue where game developers have a chance to interact, exchange ideas and collect new information that can help them in their work. This is one of the biggest conferences in the world for game designers. Some of the keynote addresses and roundtables focus on well-known games but others review games that the public may not yet have heard of, giving them the publicity that may push them forward in the marketplace. Attendees note that the talks often lead to fascinating insights on some of the world's most popular games, even years after their launch.

In addition to sharing information on game design, GDC highlights independent gaming developers and their games. Last year, Microsoft’s Xbox and ID indies program introduced 20 titles, including and Full Metal Furries and Observer. GDC is regarded as one of the best convention venues for gamers, developers and designers who want to explore innovative and exciting titles from smaller studios.

In addition there’s a steady flow of game news that comes out of the show. For instance, the 2017 conference featured Monolith Productions officially revealing the Middle-Earth: Shadow of War. Fullbright Company presented Tacoma. In 2016, a conversation between two attendees led to new information about the as-yet-unreleased PS4 Pro.

Comic-Con San Diego

Today there are Comic-Con conventions around the country but the first and largest is the Comic-Con that's held every July in San Diego. It's the biggest event in the world for mainstream film and TV, specifically media based on comic books and graphic novels. There's also a lot of information about gaming, particularly games based on the Marvel franchises. This is a great conference for fantasy-fans who enjoy melding comic book entertainment with movies and TV viewing. 

QuakeCon

Quake Con, operated by Bethesda Softworks takes place every August in Dallas. The fan convention showcases Bethesda Softworks' games and other releases that are under Bethesda's publishing umbrella (id Software, MachineGames and Arkane Studios). QuakeCon is a magnet for PC Gamers who enjoy the “bring your own computer” event where gamers display their custom hardware. In 2017 there was an esports component that was connected to the Quake World Championship.

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