The Foostival will take place on March 22 with France and Germany having it in a physical location and Romania hosting it in Guild Wars 2. The event is fully organized by fansites. The “what?” part is easy enough to explain: This event is not just about sitting together in a room playing Guild Wars 2 together – although this will be part of it, too – most of all, it’s about meeting other players and the people who are usually the ones writing news, guides etc. on your favourite fansites.
At some point, you just want to see and meet the people behind the nicknames of your comment section. We have several readers who comment on our blog posts regularly and when those people are quiet for a while, I do begin to wonder how they are. Sometimes, I just wish I was able to meet them all in person! The Foostival will give the attendants the opportunity to talk about the game and meet lots of other great people. And of course, we hope everybody will have lots of fun! That was the “what?” part now and a bit of the “why?”.
So who is behind the Foostival? As I wrote above, the organizers are the people behind the various fansites. That is, those fansites that wanted to participate, of course. Nobody gets forced to do anything here! ;) ArenaNet or even NCsoft did not organize any of this… although, they do support us and will even have a community manager present! And let’s not even speak about the possible prizes… ;)
Last year, it was only French fansites and the Foostival took place in Paris exclusively. Most of those fansites I only know by name which is probably due to me not being fluent in French. This year, it was planned to have the Foostival in lots of European countries, but unfortunately, it didn’t work out for many of the others. Only France and Germany managed to organize a “physical Foostival”. Romania will organize it in-game. Hopefully, we’ll be more next year then.
But let’s look at the other part of the “why?”: It doesn’t happen that often that fansites work together for a project. I just ask myself if maybe, we sometimes see each other more as competition who reluctantly link to other fansites or even promote them… after all, it could be that your own readers rather go to the other site and increase their page views instead of yours. Do we rather act as if there were no other fansites? Or… do we rather look at it this way: We are all a bunch of nerds and geeks with common interests. Not only do we share the passion for a video game, we also spend a good chunk of our free time writing about it! And that is what Foostival is about: Fansites acknowledging each other, organizing something together and getting to know each other!
Last year, there were 9 French fansites and this year, the number has increased to 11 fansites, that are organizing the French Foostival together. Here in Germany, we can only look across the border longingly… In Germany, it’s only Guildnews, us, as well as fzninuse and Lord Walek who both helped with the organisation (especially in getting a possible location) and promotion of the event!
I still remember last gamescom where we had asked Ramon, the German community manager, which German Guild Wars 2 blogs there are. His answer was something like: “Guildnews probably comes closest.” After that, their site was bookmarked and read regularly, but we still had no idea who’s really behind this site. Thanks to the Foostival, I got the chance to get to know the chaotic, but nice bunch around Guildnews.
Unfortunately, real life is kicking me and bookahnerk as we’re not actually able to drive to Hamburg and be there for the Foostival. We hope that we can meet everybody during the next Foostival then! And if you want to be present for the Foostival, at least in some kind of way, you can watch the livestream. Romania is hosting one of their in-game activity here.
Last but not least, a big “thank you” to all the sites that are organizing the Foostivals: Guildnews, Dragon Season, Guild Wars 2 Romania, Esprits d’Orr, Fureur, Game Guide, GW2.fr, Le Bus Magique, Luna Atra, Mondes Persistants, Oh my games, Origine Online, Panthéon and Univers Virtuels.