The lights are on
This year's Gamescom in Cologne, Germany continued its reign as the world's largest games event, exceeding last year's enormous attendance estimates. It's no surprise that in a major console transition year that fans flooded the city's enormous Koelnmesse convention center, but the lines facing some exhibitor booths were evidence of extreme dedication.Over 340,000 attendees in the sold out crowd filled the seven huge halls dedicated to Gamescom 2013 (the facility has a total of 14). Two of those spaces were reserved for trade visitors (retail and press), with the remaining five public spaces to experience games and hardware. 2013's census beats the 275,000 attendees in 2012 by 23.6 percent.
Included in that attendance number are some stunning statistics about the volume of developers and publishers showing their projects to the media and public. 635 exhibitors representing 40 countries were responsible for more than 400 world premiere titles. Journalists numbering 6,000 (a 15 percent increase) from 61 countries brought the news back to their readerships.
We polled publishers and found out that EA and Respawn's Titanfall had lines over four hours long before they were cut off. Fans queued for over five hours for Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag before Ubisoft reluctantly turned people away. High-end computer and peripheral manufacturer Razer boasted lines of over six hours, filled with fans waiting to play a popular European shooter and get a shirt.Gamescom 2013 is a major event for one of the largest unified markets. Europe is crucial to the success of both the Xbox One and the PlayStation 4, and it's no surprise that both Microsoft and Sony pulled out the stops to make this year's show one of the most memorable in ages.