PlayExpo Manchester 2019 – What’s On
I’m a massive fan of the biggest local Expo in Manchester for us gamers so I decided to start a rolling post. I will be updating this via all the site collated info as well as info obtained by email with the amazing director of the event – Andy Brown – who I am in contact with quite a lot and have been for years.
If you are new to the event, the last few years have been hosted by Event City in Trafford Park right near the north-eastern wing of the Trafford Centre. In 2019 though, it’s moving to Manchester Central i.e. G-Mex Centre which is located right behind Deansgate Station, literally cross a walkway bridge and a commuter crossing for Metro users and you are in the rear car-park. Keep left and head to the main road and turn right then look for all the crazies on the steps. It’s the same place as Manchester Comic Con is held if that helps?
So firstly let me tell you a little story of recent events.
I know a lot of people on Twitter and a cool group of guys that play Steel Drums (like you expect in the Caribbean) hit my gaming radar about a year ago and I was flicking through their videos on YouTube a few days ago and their subscriber rate was fairly low. I kinda put 2 and 2 together what with the new venue and thought it would be a good idea for them to attend as an act. We had a chat and decided that a lobby greeting band playing retro gaming music would be a cool idea. That’s right, they play gaming music on steel drums like Mario and Zelda based music. Would be pretty cool to be greeted with that friendly fun music right?
So I put them in touch because Andy seemed really interested in the email reply. Now understand, from that point in, it’s between the two groups but they both seemed exceptionally interested so hopefully they can do a deal that becomes win-win. Stay tuned for confirmation!
Let’s go straight into what is possibly the highlight for collectors or fans of a particular game. We’ve previously had the Eidos Devs from Tomb-raider celebrating their 20th Anniversary and more recent, the Rare developers of Goldeneye (albeit only two), however, I was lucky enough to get both games signed with Tomb-Raider for PS1 having nine signatures and a photo of one of the Dev’s holding the game in the air just after completion. For me, it was a glorious moment sincerely!
As I’m privy to Press passes, I tend to be able to get where the general public cannot so I tend to get my games signed earlier or later than the actual event so I actually have no idea if there is a signing table for those people. I imagine there surely must be, but have asked for clarification. Personally I think it would be a great idea on the day to have X amount of pre-order tickets available on the website plus a limited amount of day visitors. I’ll need more info on the current routine before I can comment further.
Personally, I have always wanted another ‘Film and TV’ section because apparently it was a loss leader in 2015 and Andy disregarded it. Knowing that however, new venue, new rules right? Maybe see how 2019 pans out and send another request in 2020? I’ll never forget when Kenny Baker (R2D2) stuck his tongue in my girlfriend’s mouth when she went in for a cheek kiss, what a dirty legend he was or me and Craig Charles from Red Dwarf chatting whilst smoking outside. It opens those kinds of possibilities so it makes a day either surreal or funny or both.
I will update from the top so no need to read this all twice. Will date it also so you know what’s what.
PlayExpo 2019 will start on Star Wars day in Manchester, UK at Manchester Central from 10am for early-birds, normal tickets are 11am and afternoon tickets 2pm (if still available).
Manchester Central is located at Deansgate Train Station in Manchester and can be accessed via the overhead bridge.
The address is as follows:
Manchester Central Convention Complex,
Modern Gaming, Indie, Retro, Arcade, Pinball, Minecraft, VR, LAN, Guests, Merchandise, Cosplay, Tournaments, Education, Communities, Tabletop Gaming, Photo Shoots and More!
PLAY Expo will help you relive memories like these and with a selection of classic arcade machines for you to play on, with every one set to free play. Finally, no pockets weighted down with ten pence pieces! Amongst the titles on show will be some of the must-have classics like Pac Man, Donkey Kong and Space Invaders as well as the more modern favourites like Street Fighter, Mortal Kombat and Daytona USA. A full list will be confirmed closer to the event…
The arcade cabinets are supplied by Retro Games Party.
Matthew Smith, the creator of Manic Miner and Jet Set Willy, will be joining us for a post-screening audience Q&A, hosted by Retro-Gamer magazine regulars Paul Drury and Martyn Carroll. The event will also include a ‘Best Jet Set Willy mod’ award and a quiz with some very special prizes. (That’s Manic Miner signed then lol)
Join our battle of the polls here quick. I think Manic Miner will run away with this one but you never know (24hrs)
See you there maybe?
PlayExpo Manchester will be returning to it's new home Manchester Central May the 4th (be with you)
One Special Guest is Matthew Smith author of Jet Set Willy and Manic Miner 35th year
but.. if you could only pick one game or the other, which would it be?
Let's finish this!
— GaminGuys (@Gamin_Guys) November 24, 2018
so, as the drops come in, I’ll be sure to update the post and for one, I am looking forward to PlayExpo Manchester and hopefully there will be some steel drums playing as I hit the entrance (fingers crossed). Come have a beer with us and see you soon!
Couple of previous Play pics for nostalgia purposes. I’ll see you either at the event or back here with an update week by week.
We have another great guest confirmation for PLAY Expo Manchester today: Video Game and Knightmare the TV series’ artist, David Rowe!
Known for his gorgeous cover arts for games such as Populous, James Pond 2, and Shadow of the Beast 3, David provided airbrushed backdrops for use in Knightmare; sometimes doing 20 hour days to ensure the audience and participants had new and exciting dungeons to explore.
David will be taking part in our Knightmare TV Show Panel – more of that to follow soon! He will also be exhibiting and selling some of his amazing artwork, so if you’re a fan, you’ll want to be at PLAY Expo Manchester!
You can find his work over on his website – www.davidrowe.net
Tickets – www.playexpomanchester.com/tickets