Let's Play Gaming Expo 2019
For those of you who grew up in the 80's & 90's, enjoying the golden age of console gaming, do we have a treat for you! While the summer season is filled with all types of fun & nerdy conventions, there is one that has been quietly gaining attention over the past five years that has something to offer for the whole family: the Let’s Play Gaming Expo. Starting as a convention to celebrate the love of nostalgic video games, this convention has transformed into a haven for all nostalgic gaming. From consoles & PCs to table top & cards, classic games have found new life at this convention, giving all attendees the opportunity to jump in & play any & all of these fantastic games. To top it off, there are always some special events happening during the convention to add to the overall experience. This year attendees had three such things to choose from. First, the Elder Scrolls’ 25th anniversary brought in Wes Johnson & Jeff Baker to guest at the convention, where they both gave fans a special meet & greet experience with the Cheese & Madness Social. Johnson even topped things off by hosting a D&D adventure that fans could actually join in on!
Then, in celebration of the upcoming release of Borderlands 3, five of the voice actors from the franchise, along with the games’ creative director Paul Hellquist, were in attendance to raise the hype for the games! The voice actors even had two separate panels throughout the weekend to talk about their experiences working on the games, giving fans a behind the scenes look at what it’s like to be involved in making such a popular game franchise.
Not a fan of modern games? Then the third & largest event is probably what you’re looking for. In celebration of the 30th anniversary of The Wizard, the 1989 movie staring Fred Savage, Luke Edwards, & Jenny Lewis, the Let’s Play Gaming Expo held their own Wizard tournament, pitting competitors in head to head competitions on the NES, SNES, & Game Boy all weekend. Sponsored by Game Stop, Guitar Center, Alamo Drafthouse, & the Retro World Series, the tournament winner took home a plane ticket, hotel room, & pass to Universal Studios Florida! If you ever wished that the movie was real, this was your chance to experience it for yourself.
If this sounds like a lot to do, we’re only halfway through! There were not one, but five musical acts throughout the weekend. THE voice of Duke Nukem, Jon St. John, was there! The creator of the classic arcade game Rampage, Brian Colin, was there, not only to talk about his games & experience in the industry (which, by the way, was absolutely fascinating to listen to), but was also available to play against fans IN Rampage! Arkham Arcade had a quarter of the vendor room floor devoted to free-to-play arcade cabinets, ranging from Dig Dug to Mortal Kombat. And there were open play consoles taking up a third of the upper floor that had people of all ages joining in the fun!
What’s more is that the indie gaming scene has found a place amongst all the traditional games. From VR to Final Fantasy style RPGs, new video games were being introduced to the public through hands-on demos that kept people coming back for more all weekend. Even the indie table top creators were getting in on the action, showing off their D&D variants, card & board games, as well as hosting play sessions with everyone that was interested in trying them out!
If you haven’t heard about the Let’s Play Gaming Expo until today, now’s your chance to fix that! While you may have missed this year’s convention, they will be back again next summer. So, be sure to follow them on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram to stay up-to-date with the latest news about next year’s programming.