Video Game Expo, the upcoming Philadelphia-based consumer event is positioned to become an alternative venue for the game industry to communicate directly with their target audience: the consumer.
VGXPO, which is directed by industry veteran Ed Fleming, is a consumer expo "that celebrates the positive impact that videogames have on American culture." When gamers come to VGXPO, they have the opportunity to play and buy the latest games, and also have the opportunity to meet the people responsible for their creation.
"VGXPO organizers and its advisory board members lament that the videogame industry has matured past the need for a mega-event such as E3," says Fleming. "However, we see this as a transformation-catalyst for the industry - what the industry needs now is something that can be used to showcase products, promote game makers and celebrate the rich history of the industry directly with consumers."
Instead, the organizers and advisory board members believe in longer-lasting, consumer-focused events. "Be it the International Auto Shows, Comic-Con, TGS, or localized events such as hobby shows or home and garden conventions; these are huge events that have survived for decades and run the gamut of industry players. Direct marketing at events such as these are a proven return-on-investment."
Board member, and President of the AIAS, Joseph Olin adds, "As the professional organization that recognizes excellence in games among its members, the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences supports the efforts of America's VideoGame Expo to create a venue that promotes interactive entertainment directly to consumers. Providing game players an opportunity to see and experience the widest range of games possible benefits all of us who love great games."
"It seems we've come full circle..." says Board member David Perry of GameConsultants.com "I started making games over 20 years ago, back then the ONLY kind of expo was for gamers. I have very fond memories of being shoulder deep in gamers all eager to be the first to try a new game. The energy and excitement they generate fuels the passion that makes game development so fun"
"For NVIDIA," added Board member Bill Rehbock, Director of World Wide Publisher Relations and Consumer Awareness at NVIDIA. "Consumer events such as VGXPO are a great fit with our strategy, and will become more and more important for the industry as a whole."
Board member Bill Kunkel summed-up by saying, "It's time for a show that's about games and the people who play them, and not just a giant party where everyone's showing off their best pre-rendered video and earning kudos for best booth babes. It's time for an event where the smallest developers are considered just as important as the big publishers, and both groups get to show their wares directly to consumers and receive direct feedback from those same consumers. In short, it's time for a show like VGXPO."
VGXPO will take place from October 27-29, 2006 at the Valley Forge Convention Center, outside of Philadelphia, PA.