We had originally planned to go to the Trion party on Thursday evening and I was looking forward to it, especially as they announced the new Primalist calling there. However, then we had received invitations for the Wildstar and Blade & Soul Event. Since we did not know anybody who went to the Trion party, but knew several who were also going to the Wildstar one (Tasha, for example), we decided to head there instead. Also, the food sounded too promising: Korean BBQ – and it lived up to its promise! I definitely need to find a recipe for that glass noodle salad!
I don’t know how good the Trion party was. I assume it went very well, because they had this great announcement, after all, and what seemed to look like a great location for the party as well (and vintage shuttle busses!). But what I do know is that we had a great time with the guys from NCsoft. The event location was also closer to the gamescom convention center. So, on Thursday morning we drove to a parking deck close to where the community event took place and walked to the gamescom convention center. In my gamescom-post I will show you a picture of the amazing view from the huge bridge that leads to the area where the koelnmesse is located which is where gamescom takes place every year. For now, enjoy the image on the left which shows a church and old colourful tiny houses. As you can probably guess, there are lots of pubs and restaurants in that area. It is also right at the Rhine which makes it even more beautiful!
So, let me show you some more pictures of the view as well as the community event and tell you what happened there. Just a heads-up: No, we were not told when Wildstar will go free to play and we did not receive any other insider information. ;)
People came in slowly. The event had started at 7.30 pm, but gamescom was open until 8 and I know that at least the guys from Guildnews came a bit later because they still had some appointments late afternoon at gamescom. While the pubs and restaurants aren’t that far away, when you walk, it’s about a 30 minutes walk – which bookahnerk and I had made, because the weather was so good and we just love walking through that part of Cologne. As I said above, the view is amazing! Anyway, on the right you can see a tiny part of the roof terrace of the event. You can also see the barbecue being prepared on the left of that picture, right inside the pavilion.
What we both really liked was seeing how the guys from NCsoft interacted with their guests and that they actually approached us and started conversations. We had quite a nice conversation with Omeed Dariani, the Director of Community and Social at NCsoft West. Of course, one of the topics was Wildstar, but the conversation soon switched to a more general “what is important to make people seriously try out a game and not leave within the first minute”. It was quite interesting to hear about his insights and experiences.
On the pictures, it actually looks like there weren’t that many people present, but the location was so big with the space inside and then the roof terrace, that this is misleading apparently. I had actually thought we had been fewer people than at the GW2 community event on the following day, but was told that there were more at the Wildstar one. I always find it difficult to judge numbers. I am more the “crowded / not-crowded” kind of person. :p So, it was not-crowded at the Wildstar event, but we were quite a lot of people there.
They had also set up PCs to try out Wildstar and Blade & Soul. We did not try Wildstar because we both own the game anyway. However, we tried out Blade & Soul. For those who don’t know: Blade & Soul is an MMORPG developed by NCsoft which originally released in South Korea in 2012 already. Other Asian countries followed, but no Western version had been released so far. Now they are working on the localization and we will get to play it at some point in Q4 2015. My main problem with the game was that we were thrown into it with premade characters that had a certain level already. I had no idea what to do. The combat seemed fast and action-oriented. The controls were easy and “fluid”, for lack of a better word. I am not sure Blade & Soul is my kind of game, but at least, I wasn’t terribly bored either. :p We both only played for a few minutes, because after all, we don’t go to such an event to play games. It is much more interesting to talk to others, especially those that you usually cannot talk to (like developers) or people who you know from online, but don’t have the chance to meet often.
A quite funny moment was when we realized that we knew Jan, the German community manager for Wildstar, from waaaay back when Warhammer Online was still up and running. He had been writing news about the game at that point and had generally been a very active part of the German Warhammer Online community. The (gaming) world is such a small one sometimes. Too bad we didn’t have the time to get all nostalgic about WAR with him – although at the same time, we did meet another guy who had been actively playing the game a few years ago and we talked to him for a bit.
I actually thought I had taken more pictures of the people there, but it turns out, I didn’t. I do have a few pictures of the view, though, so let me show you those first.
As I said, the food was also really great. We had a buffet and there were lots of really good things on there. My favourite was the Korean glass noodle salad. As I said above, I really wish I had that recipe! We will try to make it ourselves. Bookahnerk is actually quite amazing when it comes to figuring out which spices were used in preparing a dish. I can’t do that, so I just rely on his senses here. I did not think of taking a picture of the food. I was too focused on consuming it instead. ;) But I saw that Guildnews released a short video from that event. It’s in German, but the scenes you can see don’t really need words.
The video starts showing the masses arrive at gamescom on Thursday. Then Alex (the guy you can hear) introduces some people from Guildnews and shows the GW2 Twitch booth. At 3:15, they are on their way to the community event. At 3:50, you can finally see the location. Well, both the food and the location. It is probably much better to imagine what it was like with the video than with my few lousy pictures above.
But hey, even though I always intend to take more pictures, if, at the end of the day, I don’t have that many, it means that I had a great time and enjoyed myself or else I wouldn’t have forgotten to take all those pictures. :p I have said it before, but I will say it once again: Thank you, NCsoft and most of all, Jan, for inviting us! We had an amazing time at the community event and hope to see you again soon!
This post is part of Blaugust 2015.