For a week in October, the city you might previously have known as Nottingham will instead become GameCity. Within its bounds will lie the newly renamed GameCity hospital, GameCity gaol and GameCity Council, temporarily chaired by the Sheriff of GameCity. For eight days, two gigantic screens will display games developed specifically to be beamed down into the eyes of GameCity’s residents.
Remarkably, that last bit’s true.
The Two Big Screens, as they’re called, will shift between different positions and configurations in Nottingham’s Old Market Square every day from October 19 to 26. They’ll feature games from some “leading” UK developers – notably Thomas Was Alone’s Mike Bithell and Goldeneye 64’s Martin Hollis.
Organisers expect the spectacle to draw more than 50,000 people over the course of the week – and that’s discounting the grumpy ones just trying to get to the shops.
“With seven festivals behind us, we’re striving to make sure GameCity8 is the most exciting and interesting yet,” said event director Iain Simons. “Two Big Screens will undoubtedly be the public highlight, exploring different ways to play with games that have been developed especially for the festival.
“But it will be the scope and range of events throughout the week that will combine to make GameCity a real cultural highlight for anyone interested in videogaming and one of the friendliest and most fun festivals on the scene.”
Smaller events will include an Antiques Roadshow-style affair run by the National Videogame Archive on October 22 – where visitors can bring tattered games and assorted memorabilia to share their memories – as well as industry conference GameCityLimits on October 23 and the annual GameCityPrize award ceremony on October 24.
“I am disgustingly excited to be taking part again this year,” said Bithell of his contribution. “The event we’re doing on the Friday is still top secret, but it’s going to be fun and I’m looking forward to revealing stuff for the first time.”
Check the official site for more and further details as October looms. Have any of you lot attended before?