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Published on August 18th, 2018 | by Krystine

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Quakecon 2018

With this being my second year attending, I was excited to see what Quakecon had in store. Held at the Gaylord Texan Resort and Convention Center in Dallas, Texas, the drive seemed well worth it. With lots of rain on the way, I was curious to see how this would affect the event, if at all. Every year the event attracts more and more people, partly due to the free entrance, but also for the massive BYOC area and keynote reveals. I was extremely pleased with how easy it was to park. There was a long line going in, but that’s to be expected when the hall is about to open. The parking was cheap, easy, and the buses arrived quickly, keeping the long line moving. The only downer was the weather, having to wait in the rain isn’t too fun. Good thing I didn’t have to wait long.

Into the expo hall I could see the long line of people waiting to get their badges and wristbands. It was fairly easy to see those that had been coming for years, versus the fledglings like myself. I saw everything, from Quake leggings to Fallout masks, the energy coming off of the crowd was palpable.

Walking in, the first thing I see, and have come to expect, was the Bawls booth. I was lucky that I remembered from last year that it’s easier to use cash. With my two dollars in hand, I bought myself a nice cool root beer Bawls. This booth is, in a way, a big part of Quakecon. You see many people carting around cases of the stuff, tons of people drinking them, and of course, you have the Bawls chugging contest. It’s interesting to see how iconic it is at this event.

Right at the front, there was also the arena. During the day, various matches would be played. It was nice to be able to walk around and then have a place to sit and enjoy a game of Elder Scrolls: Legends. Personally, I think that the placement left much to be desired. With all the stuff up front, it created a chokepoint that, during busier times, made it hard to get around.

One of the highlights, at least for me, was the keynote. There were many exciting things that were being announced and released. Hearing that Quake Champions will be free-to-play.  Forever. With the open beta being free, I was eager to hear that it would stay that way. Now, there are still some features you can pay for, as in every free game, but it is in no way necessary. This addicting, arena style, fast paced shooter has been gaining much popularity after its announcement last year in march. We will also be seeing the addition of Death Knight to the game.

There were many other games to see and try out. I got a look into Elder Scrolls Online’s newest expansion. The story will revolve around werewolves and the daedric prince Hiricine. The expansion dropped Aug. 13th for PC and will come out Aug. 28 for consoles. Rage 2 was up next. It takes place 30 years after the first game in a world that has started to recover. It introduces many new biomes and factions, while keeping true to the game. Depending on what faction you are fighting, you will see different attack styles and even different vehicles. Overall, very exciting.

Finally there was the gameplay footage of the highly anticipated Doom Eternal. The gameplay showcased many new weapons and gameplay mechanics. With this game, we’re going to see much of the backstory I’ve been wanting for. As they said, “We’re not just making a Doom game anymore, we’re making a Doom universe.” We can see this even in the form of one of the enemies. The Marauder, who looks uncannily like the Slayer, is said that “there’s a story behind that.” Adding another layer to an already fantastic franchise will have me checking up on this game often.

Overall, the Quakecon was fun. With plenty of vendors and booths to check out, I enjoyed the time spent. Although I’ve only been for two years now, I see this as something I’ll definitely be attending from then on. Another side of the convention that many people don’t talk about are the booths out there that support our fellow games. Some of the non-profit partners were 1UpOnCancer, Extra Life, GameChanger and many others. It’s nice to sometimes remember that us gamers are people, and we can truly make a difference.

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