Platform Expo

March 27, 2011

As an experience in connection with my studies, the college rather kindly bought me a ticket to the local Platform Expo so today I took a stroll down to Hull’s KC Stadium to check it out.

I didn’t do much actual gaming there given the domination of ‘pods’ by sweaty 14 year olds – a grown man wrestling for a controller is not good look –  but there were enough interesting stands, talks and examples of bizarre cosplay to keep me preoccupied regardless. Initially looking into the concept art section I flicked through a few of the portfolio’s and was pretty awestruck at both the quality and sheer quantity of the art within. It’s a little daunting to see such rigorous work processes laid out like that, and while it was inspirational it also made me question whether my own output is below what it should be. Either way, for better or worse I’m glad I saw them.

Squeezing past the Master Chief, some storm troopers and a particularly eye catching Princess Peach I dropped in on a talk about copyright and trademarking. I’ll confess to having limited interest in the legal side of the creative industries but this lecture was something of an eye opener, giving a rundown on the dangers of pitching a new concept and how to protect it in turn. I’m not saying I’m going to be putting a ‘TM’ after my updates anytime soon but even if this isn’t of immediate use to me, I’m certain it will be in the future.

I finished up with a visit to the 18+ section – again this was seemingly populated by 14 year olds, again I was unable to wrestle a controller free. What it did make me realise though was that despite being a longtime gamer at an expo focused on the games, they weren’t necessarily the most interesting aspect. Rather it was the workings and planning behind the industry that really fascinated me.

It was nice to escape my desk for a while and recharge my inspiration batteries. All the same, I’m glad I don’t have to battle for a go on my console at home…