There are some incredible video game expos out there, hosting talks, reveals, and demonstrations from all the biggest and best in the industry.
While most people have heard of E3, there are other great gaming events that showcase the latest gaming news, releases, and hardware. Let’s take a look at four annual gaming events you shouldn’t miss.
Gamescom takes the title of the largest video game event, boasting an impressive 370,000 visitors and over 1000 stalls in 2019.
Taking place in August, this four-day video games fair covers everything from cutting-edge hardware to boundary-pushing video game engines. During the online event in 2021, it accrued over 63 million users and 5.1 million hours watched.
In 2022, after a two-year hiatus, the event will be back in its physical location in Cologne, Germany, rather than all online. Tickets for the event range from $32 for a day to $10 for just a single evening. Of course, there is also live-streaming of the more significant parts of the fair, but for the full experience, a visit to its host city of Cologne is necessary. If the distance is too far, then the event is live-streamed across its YouTube channel as well as a number of others, such as Xbox and IGN.
This monster of an event is no doubt the king of the shows, but making the pilgrimage may be a little too far for some. For those who make it to the actual event, there are both sections for the business side of the convention for a chance for developers to rub shoulders with potential industry contacts and a much more hands-on area.
For the average visitor, this entertainment area will be the main reason for a visit, being able to try out all the newest games and tech while speaking to the people who develop it is an unmissable opportunity.
Originally called Penny Arcade Expo, this event was started in 2004 as a means to have an expo dedicated to all things games. PAX shares its focus across tablet, arcade, and video gaming, so has a slightly wider range than the other events on this list.
PAX is held over a number of locations around the world over multiple dates throughout the year. PAX East starts the year in April taking place in Boston, MA, a few months later PAX West is in Seattle, WA during September. Melbourne, Australia hosts the third event of the year during October, and the final event, PAX Unplugged, finishes up the year in Philadelphia, PA.
PAX East, West, and Australian ticket prices range from $235 for a full four-day ticket down to $62 for just a day ticket. PAX Australia is the cheaper option, but PAX east is by far the more popular event. All events can also be streamed on its Twitch sites. Find out how to watch the event on Twitch with our handy guide on how to use Twitch effectively.
PAX Unplugged is an event slightly apart from the rest, it was started in 2017 when the organizers recognized the demand for the more manual side of its fan base. Unplugged focuses entirely on the tablet, card game, and role-playing side of the event.
The other three events focus on all things gaming with huge showcases of the newest tech, platforms for indie studios to really exhibit their work to potential investors, and massive tournaments. A weekend of music, demos, and talks will satiate any video game enthusiast.
After the cancellation of the in-person event in 2021, the Tokyo Game Show, commonly referred to as TGS, now takes place in person in the Makuhari Messe convention center.
This event takes place over four days, showcasing the very best from mostly Japanese gaming companies with a number of companies from outside the country permitted when announcing the bigger releases. Starting as a bi-annual event in 1996, this Japanese game fair now runs only once yearly and attracted over 280,000 people in 2018.
This event runs slightly differently from the previous two, with its four-day run time split into the first two days exclusively for industry and the second two days open to the public. This gives time for publishers to really spend time with the people who keep the money moving around the industry before putting on the big show for the public.
Japan is without a doubt a front-runner in the video game industry, with huge studios like Konami, Square Enix, and Capcom all stemming from the island. There will always be some big announcements from some of the most prestigious and longest-standing studios, with new IPs announced and new additions to some long-running favorites that keep the industry alive.
In 2022, after a two-year break from the in-person expo, the event will take place both online and in person. It advertises a highly enhanced online experience and has all 46 programs live-streamed across YouTube, Twitch, Facebook, and Twitter.
If you feel like you’re missing out on the group experience, you’ll be glad to know you can watch YouTube with friends. Tickets for the event can be bought for $7.50 online or $9 on the door.
Started in 2014 by host and producer Geoff Keighley, this show focuses on game awards, as the name suggests. There have also been many game announcements during the show and further looks into previous announcements. A key moment for video game news seekers came in 2014 when Legend of Zelda: Breath of The Wild showcased its first-ever gameplay revealed at TGA.
The Game Awards runs for only one day and is live-streamed for free over the whole world. It can be watched via almost every streaming platform including Twitch, YouTube, Facebook Live, and Steam. Boasting an impressive 85 million viewers in 2021, this show streams every December to higher audiences each year.
This event may not be at the forefront of gaming news and announcements, but there is usually guaranteed to be one new, exciting event that will keep the video game industry talking for a few weeks. This free one-day event is worth tuning into just to find out who has won Game of The Year, so you know what to add to your collection if you haven’t already.
What Will Be Your Next Gaming Event?
There are plenty of opportunities to stay abreast of what’s going on in the ever-changing world of video games aside from E3.
With a broad choice of events ranging from the awards based events such as The Game Awards to Gamescom, the huge four-day event in Germany, there is something for everyone. Which gaming event will you keep an eye out for?