Looking for something to do on Saturday or Sunday? Play Expo Blackpool 2017 takes place this weekend, July 15-16, with a range of wide gaming and related entertainment. It’s the sixth year that Replay Events have put on the weekend, and it takes place at the Norcalympia Exhibition Centre from 11am each day (you can get in at 10am by buying a ticket in advance via the site).
So what is there to do at Play Expo Blackpool 2017? Sounds like quite a bit. Including a panel with System 3, responsible for games including The Last Ninja, International Karate, Myth and more, which will see founder Mark Cale and several of the developers talk about their history and take part in a Q&A.
Also appearing will be Big Boy Barry (Alex Verrey) from 1990s TV show Games World, former Ocean Software Director Gary Bracey (Saturday), and also a ZX Spectrum Next talk and demo from Jim Bagley. Plus Pacman World Record holder Jon Stoodley attemping to play throughout the weekend and set a new record on the 20th Anniversary arcade machine.
Indie games will be well represented with various playable titles. Plus studios and games already confirmed to appear including; 1st Impact Games – All Contact Lost, Asobi.Tech – MaoMao Castle, Huey Games – Hyper Sentinel, JForth Designs – Medieval Steve, Moon Storm Studios – Shadow of the Beast, Sinister Soft – Sinister Soccer and Sound Cakes – Space Toads Mayhem.
There should be plenty for retro fans, with 20% more space for vintage gaming. Which means 150+ consoles, handhelds and computers including single and multiplayer classics, and 80 arcade cabinets in action will include sit-down Outrun and Afterburner cabinets. And a selection of retro pinball tables.
Modern, next gen gaming attractions include Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy, Halo Wars 2, Injustice 2, Tekken 7, WipEout Omega Collection, Yooka Laylee and indie titles including Rime and Snake Pass. Plus a selection of virtual reality titles on the PSVR, Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and Microsoft Hololens.
More gaming attractions include a LAN arena, a rhythm game area including classics like Parappa the Rapper and Taiko Drum Master, and a green screen for photo shoots within some of your favourite classic games.
Aside from videogame action, there will also be trading card game tournaments running on Pokemon, Final fantasy, Magic: The Gathering and Yu-Gi_oh, a selection of tabletop titles being demoed by Esdevium Games, a Cosplay Masquerade on both days with prizes for the best costumes, and some interactive puzzles to win a free session at Escape Room Centre in Blackpool.
Oh, and Play Expo Blackpool 2017 also has a shopping hall for you to blow your savings on retro gaming goodness. And probably loads more we’ve not mentioned.
If you do make it along, we’d love to know how your trip went, so do send us a report, photos or videos.