Train2Game News Manchester Gets Gamey

Mancunians using the Metrolink were left puzzled as the city centre’s busiest tram stops were renamed by a team of mischievous computer game characters.

Led by Mario, the horde of costume characters wreaked havoc on tram stops, replacing signs with famous game locations and names.

Piccadilly Gardens was renamed Rainbow Road after the iconic Mario Kart level with the help of Mario and Luigi.

St Peter’s Square was renamed Tetris Square with onlookers stopping to capture the characters causing mayhem and take a picture.

Commuters were left in shock at Shudehill when greeted by the gory Nurse from Silent Hill getting off the tram.

The activity was in celebration of the North’s biggest gaming event PLAY Expo which takes place at Manchester Central on May 4 and May 5 – the entire Metrolink network has been renamed.

Other stops given the computer game treatment included Market Street which became Hyrule Castle from The Legend of Zelda and Exchange Square which was renamed Raccoon City from Resident Evil.

PLAY Expo will feature almost 1,000 free to play gaming screens with a huge range of games to play from retro favourites like Pac-Man and Mario right the way up to current blockbusters like Fortnite and Minecraft.

The show also celebrates all elements of the gaming industry with a host of cosplayers, tournaments, industry guests and even careers advice for those looking to work in the world of gaming.

For more information and to buy tickets visit playexpomanchester.com.

Tickets to PLAY Expo cost: Adults £20, Child £14, Family (2 adults, 2 children) £58 per day or Adults £34, Child £24, Family £96 for the Weekend ticket and can be bought from playexpomanchester.com.

Train2Game News PLAY Expo Manchester 2019

PLAY Expo, the north’s biggest videogames event, is returning to Manchester for the seventh time on May 4th and 5th.

Taking place in a new, bigger venue, PLAY Expo will be held at the Manchester Central Exhibition Centre and will welcome over 25,000 videogames fans through the doors for two days of gaming brilliance.

The perfect day out for games enthusiasts of all ages, with everything from blockbuster game previews to indie games, retro classics, eSports, cosplay, escape rooms, education, live shows, industry panels and YouTuber meet and greets.

PLAY Expo Manchester boasts nearly one thousand gaming consoles, handhelds, PCs, arcade and pinball machines, all playing the very best in new and classic videogames – and all set to free to play! The event also features a huge Minecraft zone, a Fortnite zone, a dedicated VR area and a selection of the best and brightest indie games from recent years.

On the Expo stages, you will find talks from gaming celebrities, cosplay displays and tournaments for gamers of all skill levels. You will also find immersive live experiences, including John Robertson’s critically acclaimed ‘The Dark Room’ and ‘Knightmare Live’, the celebrated stage adaptation of the 80s-90s cult TV show Knightmare.

Twitch channel ‘Streamers Connected’ will be broadcasting live from the show across both days, bringing viewers at home the best content, interviews and action from the north’s biggest gaming event.

Andy Brown, Managing Director of Replay Events said: “We are super excited to be bringing PLAY Expo back to Manchester at an even bigger arena. The PLAY Expo community is incredible, we know that 80% of our visitors do not visit any other gaming event in the UK. Our attendees love the mix of new and old games, stage talks, special events, cosplay and competitions. If you love games, you can’t afford to miss PLAY Expo Manchester.”

Industry trade body UKIE will be hosting ’30 Years Of Play’ at this year’s show. Inviting visitors to remember the British games that have shaped the industry over the last 30 years, including a retro gaming championship featuring classic British games from years gone by.

George Osborn, Campaign Manager, 30 Years of Play said: “We’re excited to be partnering up with PLAY Expo for its retro gaming championship. The video games sector has always been defined by a close relationship between players and developers. The retro gaming championship offers a brilliant opportunity to do just that, while also celebrating some of the best of British videogames from the past 30 years.”

Publishers and developers who wish to exhibit their games at PLAY Expo should contact Andy Brown now on andy.brown@replayevents.com.

Tickets cost: Adults £20, Child £14, Family (2 adults, 2 children) £58 per day or Adults £34, Child £24, Family £96 for the Weekend ticket and can be bought from playexpomanchester.com.

Train2Game News Power Up Manchester

Retro gaming festival Power Up is set to return to Manchester with more consoles than ever before.

The two-week extravaganza will be at the Museum of Science and Industry from August 3rd.

Household names PS4, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch sit alongside iconic retro consoles including the SNES, SEGA Dreamcast and the original educational computer, the BBC Micro. There are also specialists areas for Pacman, Minecraft and – for the first time in Manchester – multiplayer online game Fortnite.

Visitors will be able to relive the 80s and 90s with classics including games from the Mario Brothers and Sonic the Hedgehog series, plus movie games such as Batman, Robocop vs Terminator, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade and Lord of the Rings – Fellowship of the Ring.

For those who love driving games, there’ll be Destruction Derby and Road Rash, or players can try their hand at the ever-popular Lego series, a host of football games and – of course – Pac-Man.

It’s not all about solo play – visitors can tackle multiplayer classics of the retro and modern era like Goldeneye, Mario Kart 8 and Minecraft; immerse themselves in the world of virtual reality; play on the latest big releases, or tackle some arcade classics on special bartop arcade machines like Metal Slug, Frogger and the Street Fighter series.

Visitors to Power UP can see for themselves how far gaming technology has advanced in the four decades since early games like Pong carved out their place in pop culture. Modern innovations like PlayStation VR will provide a glimpse into what the future may hold.

Evening-only sessions will take place on Friday, August 10 and Friday, August 17, giving the opportunity to play 18-only games including DOOM, Resident Evil and Grand Theft Auto.

Ticket prices vary, visit msimanchester.org.uk/powerup for more information.

Train2Game News Retro Gaming Festival Hitting Manchester

Retro gaming festival Power Up is set to return to Manchester with more consoles than ever before.

The two-week extravaganza will be at the Museum of Science and Industry from August 3.

A limited number of early bird tickets for daytime sessions go on general sale on Thursday, May 24. They are available until June 21 – but once they’re gone, they’re gone. For access to priority booking from Tuesday, May 22, sign up to the Museum of Science and Industry mailing list at msimanchester.org.uk/powerup.

Household names PS4, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch sit alongside iconic retro consoles including the SNES, SEGA Dreamcast and the original educational computer, the BBC Micro. There are also specialist areas for Pacman, Minecraft and Fortnite.

Visitors to Power UP can see for themselves how far gaming technology has advanced in the four decades since early games like Pong carved out their place in pop culture. Modern innovations like PlayStation VR will provide a glimpse into what the future may hold.

Evening-only sessions will take place on Friday, August 10 and Friday, August 17, giving the opportunity to play 18-only games including DOOM, Resident Evil and Grand Theft Auto.

Ticket prices vary, visit msimanchester.org.uk/powerup for more information.

Train2Game News PLAY Expo Manchester gaming stages

PLAY Expo Manchester, the largest video game expo in the North of England, announced today a series of specialist gaming stages that will feature for the duration of the expo and provide visitors with a weekend of non-stop gaming attractions!
Taking place at EventCity, Manchester, October 8th and 9th, PLAY Expo will have the gaming stages running in addition to the latest games to play, the Red Bull 5G Tournament, VR attractions, merchandising stalls, table-top gaming area, retro-gaming action and so much more, providing a packed schedule of entertainment, with unmissable, interactive attractions for gamers everywhere.

Powered by WiFi Wars and Gamerdisco, the Main Stage will play host to an unrivalled array of industry panels, talks, and perhaps most exciting of all, visitors will have the opportunity to take part in the legendary, multiplayer live show Wifi Wars! Winner of the Time Out coveted ‘Not to be Missed’ award and hailed as a Top Ten ‘Geek Night Out’ by Metro, WiFi Wars is hosted by Steve McNeil (Dara O’Briain’s: Go 8-Bit) and Chris Slight (Sky News) and promises a mad-cap show full of comedy and interactive gaming for all ages!

The Fighting Stage powered by MBA (Manchester Battle Arena) offers a chance for visitors to take part in fighting game tournaments throughout the weekend. With exhibition and casual play available, gaming pugilists can practise to their hearts content and if they’re feeling brave, for a small entry fee of just £5, enter the tournament for their chance to win a share of the £500 prize pot available!

Powered by the prestigious online audio magazine and podcast, The Sound Architect, The Sound Stage plans to offer a fascinating insight into the world of gaming audio, with an eclectic mix of panels, presentations, Q&A’s and much more. Guests to the stage include the award winning, BAFTA nominated composer David Housden, Voice Actor Jay Britton (heard recently in The Turing Test), Sound Designer for the VR phenomenon Eve: Valkyrie, Ash Read and Matt Griffin, composer of Unbox from Prospect Games.

PLAY Expo warmly invites Cosplay fans of Great Britain and beyond to the show! Powered by Rock BandTM Rivals from Harmonix®, the Rock Band Rivals Cosplay Stage will be hosting a number of events throughout the weekend including a masquerade on both days with prizes for the best characters as chosen by our panel of judges! In addition, guests to the expo will have the opportunity to build-a-band and take part in the Rock Band Rivals tournament, as well as previewing the new game before general release! Cosplay specialists Dark Cleo Productions will be organising the stage events and running the Cosplay masquerade. Bound to be the most eye-opening part of PLAY Expo, plenty of press and magazine photographers will be at the event, and the expo encourages everyone to come in character should they feel so inclined!

“As we get ever closer to PLAY Expo, gamers can see just how busy a weekend we are planning for the event, certain to be our biggest expo ever,” said Andy Brown, Director for Replay Events. “We’re so excited to be offering gamers the chance to play the latest games, but that’s only part of the picture. At PLAY Expo, we’re offering so much more to see and do, providing a compelling and truly unmissable weekend of gaming based entertainment for fans of all ages.”

Returning for its fifth year, PLAY Expo Manchester is a highly popular two-day video game event, ideal for all the family and offering visitors an unrivalled experience with features, tournaments, exhibitors, industry guests, panels and so much more. Celebrating gaming and popular culture, the expo uniquely caters for casual fans and dedicated gamers alike and promises to be an event not to be missed.

For more information on PLAY Expo Manchester 2016, please visit: http://www.playexpomanchester.com/

Train2game News Jamchester

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The UK’s biggest ever game jam for professionals is to take place in Manchester this May, bringing together more than 200 developers working within the industry across three days to create brand new games from the ground up.

The first major game jam of its kind to take place in Britain, ‘Jamchester’ is the brainchild of local games industry network Gameopolis and HackManchester, which has successfully hosted scores of 24 hour coding competitions over the last five years. Jamchester will also be supported by headline sponsors Microsoft, mobile publishing giant Chillingo and regional business accelerator Tech North.

Other sponsors lined up include PlayStation, Unreal, recruitment agency Amiqus, and local game development college SSR. Jamchester is designed to fly the flag for games development within the North West of England and the UK as a whole, highlighting its strength, diversity and, most importantly, its future.

“We’ve created Jamchester to have fun and to showcase Greater Manchester on the national stage as a great place to make games,” said Gameopolis chair Simon Smith of the event. “In the past year alone our local game jams have produced Titan Souls, Sublevel Zero, Unbox, and Super Rude Bear Resurrection with more on the way. We welcome everyone to come along and be inspired by the creative spirit of our fantastic city.”

Jamchester also has the support of UK trade association Ukie, with CEO Dr. Jo Twist claiming the body is “excited to support Jamchester as a new celebration of creative skills development in the UK.”

“Game jams are one of the best ways for devs to learn new skills, stretch their creative thinking, network within the industry, and ultimately have fun. We’d love to see as many Ukie members as possible taking part in this event, and I look forward to seeing some of the work that is produced!”

Teams of between one and four people will compete on a level playing field, with Jamchester’s defining theme set to be revealed at the start of the competition. Student teams will also be taking part, giving them the perfect opportunity to network with other studios and industry professionals in attendance.

Jamchester has also teamed up with Special Effect, with all ticket proceeds going to the charity to help gamers with disabilities. “We are honoured to have been chosen as the charity partner for Jamchester,” offered Nick Streeter of Special Effect. “It will raise vital funds and awareness of our work helping gamers with disabilities, both in the north west and across the UK. As demand grows for what we do, support from events like Jamchester really are a game changer for the charity.”

With a judges line-up that includes Gary Napper of PlayStation VR, Creative Assembly’s Catherine Wooley, Microsoft’s Technical Evangelist Lee Stott, local indie developer Alex Rose and PlayStation’s Claire Blackshaw, Jamchester will take place in The Studio, an events space right in the centre of Manchester’s Northern Quarter.

Prize categories will include (TBC) – Best Game, Best Audio, Best Graphics, Best Gameplay, Best Tech Achievement, Innovation Award, Best Company Game, Best Student Game.

You can find more information at www.Jamchester.org.uk , or contact jamchester@hackmanchester.com

Tickets are onsale at: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/jamchester-2016-tickets-21038079462?aff=es2

Train2Game News Dark Souls 3 at Play Expo

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Today Replay Events are thrilled to announce that Bandai Namco Entertainment UK will be bringing Dark Souls III, the latest game in the critically acclaimed Dark Souls series, to Play Expo this October 10th- 11th.

This will be the first opportunity for the public to play the already lauded action RPG title that sees the return of Demon’s Souls and Dark Souls director Hidetaka Miyazaki.

Dark Souls III brings the new Battle Arts system to combat which Miyazaki calls ‘an evolution’ as it builds on the series’ trademark sword and sorcery combat and adds a new layer to the combat system. The trademark online multiplayer functionality has also evolved to seamlessly integrate online interactions into the single player story.

Dark Souls III is a turning point for the series and will be released in April 2016.

So don’t miss out on the chance to be one of the first people to play Dark Souls III on PlayStation 4 and book your Play Expo tickets today!

Tickets are on sale at the website: http://www.playexpo.net/tickets/
With further information also available: http://www.playexpo.net/

Train2Game News PLAY it! Manchester 2015

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Get your game face on this summer at the Museum of Science and Industry’s first ever gaming event, featuring some of the most popular video games of the past 30 years.

Running from Saturday 25 July to Sunday 9 August, PLAY it! Manchester – in partnership with leading gaming specialists Replay Events – is a hands-on celebration and immersive gaming experience for fun-loving visitors young and old alike.

From Pong and Pacman to Minecraft and Halo there is a game to suit beginners and experts, dads and daughters, multiplayers, retro fans and everybody else in between. Over 120 games and consoles are available to play during each 90 minute pre-bookable gaming session, which run at set times throughout this family friendly 16 day event.

Split into 6 different zones, featuring the most loved and popular games linked by theme, content and brand – from Minecraft, Atari and Lego to Wii, Megadrive and Nintendo, PLAY it! Manchester offers a unique opportunity to experience the very best in contemporary and retro gaming culture within the museum’s historic Great Western Warehouse, part of the oldest surviving passenger railways station in the world.

PLAY it! Manchester also plays tribute to Ocean Software, one of the most recognisable names in gaming. Established in Manchester in the 1980s, this globally renowned software development company are responsible for some of the world’s most iconic games produced for the Sinclair Spectrum, Commodore 64, Amiga & ST, SNES and Mega Drive. A selection of these family favourites will be available to play throughout the event.

Visitors are also invited to experience life in the 1980s computer room, and take part in fun challenges, from freestyle BASIC programming to classic fondly-remembered educational games such as Granny’s Garden and PODD. Never before has a career in STEM, science technology, engineering and maths, promised so much fun.

Whether you’re a family dropping in for a 90 minute session, a seasoned gamer making the most of PLAY it! Manchester’s full-day pass, or a night owl visiting the twice weekly adult-only evening sessions, there are plenty of opportunities to test your skills, show off to your kids or play something new for the first time. So come along and PLAY it!

PLAY it! Manchester runs from Saturday 25 July to Sunday 9 August at the Museum of Science and Industry as part of the museum’s summer programme.

PLAY it! Manchester is recommended for ages 6 +

Tickets are available to book now via www.mosi.org.uk/playit .

Subject to availability tickets may also be available to buy at the museum on the day.

Train2Game News PLAY Expo tickets on sale

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Tickets for PLAY Expo, the North’s biggest gaming expo have gone on sale this morning. The show will take place at EventCity, Manchester on 10th and 11th October 2015.

PLAY Expo is in its fourth year in Manchester and has more than doubled in size over that time. Hundreds of screens of next-gen, indie and retro games as well as eSports, cosplay and stars of film and TV pulled 19,000 attendees through the doors of the highly-successful two day event last October.

Replay Events Director Andy Brown said “PLAY Expo 2014 was a huge leap forward for us in terms of scale and ambition but we delivered a knockout show that our attendees absolutely loved. The bar has been set very high for PLAY Expo this year, but we already have plans underway to smash all previous records out of the water.

Show features we introduced last year such as celebrity signings, our careers fair and Youtuber meet and greets will be expanded plus we are adding even more new content for 2015 including an area dedicated to the immensely popular Minecraft, where we will be running a Hunger Games tournament and a creative build server. Of course this won’t be at the expense of any of the other parts of the show – we know how passionate our attendees are about all aspects of PLAY Expo.

We pride ourselves on being the most diverse gaming expo in the UK – where else can you see so many of the latest games and technologies alongside arcades, pinballs, retro consoles and computers? The response we get from the gaming community is overwhelming, we’re immensely proud of what the show has become and we look forward to delivering yet another phenomenal event to our audience and partners this October.”

PLAY Expo 2015 will also feature the UK’s largest arcade and pinball display, industry speakers, movie props and vehicles, card and board games, merchandise plus a host of other features. More announcements will be made in the coming months. Further information and tickets are available from www.playexpo.net.