A brief (ish) run down of Adam and Elaine’s three day, magical adventure at The UK Games Expo 2017, held at the NEC in Birmingham and The Hilton Metropole Hotel, Birmingham. This is our third visit now to the Expo and the experience has been different each time.
Sunday 4th June
Last day 🙁 Only 363 days to go until the next one! We had a nice, relaxed stroll around the trade hall in the morning. Sunday is a great day for this, as much quieter than the Saturday, where it can be very hard to find space on a demo table (unless you are as determined as Kenny!) and you can also get some last minute bargains from stalls wanting to shift their stock. I managed to haggle a whole £2 off ‘Anomia’ which is really good for me as I hate haggling! https://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/67877/anomia
We also managed to squeeze in a quick chat to our friends at Basically Wooden who have donated some awesome prizes for our charity days. Their stall was twice as large as last year and looked amazing. http://www.basicallywooden.co.uk/
We managed to get a demo of ‘Dice Hospital’ by Alley Cat Games (on Kickstarter at the moment) at the request of our friend Griff, of ‘doing a Griff’ infamy.This was still in proto-type form which is another first for us as, never having played a unfinished game. It’s a dice/worker placement game, where the dice are patients and you compete to cure the most patients and thus score the most points. You each have your own hospital player board with some standard treatment rooms and you can recruit extra specialist doctors and acquire additional treatment rooms, in order to help you with this. I don’t think we would necessarily purchase this, but it was an interesting experience. Ad also made the suggestion that they should think about a negative score track as the poor chap we were playing with had a very full morgue, so it would be interesting to see if they incorporate this into the finished game.
We then stumbled upon what must be the most bizarre game of this year’s Expo, ‘Bongers’; a game whereby you throw pine cones at a small trampoline, scoring them based upon were they land . Ad and I were sold and ready to part with cold, hard cash! We thought this would be a great game for our wedding but then the ‘Bongers’ chap tells us that the game isn’t for sale! He was just there trying to spread the folk- lore legend of ‘Bongers’! Don’t worry though folks, we will be making our own set of ‘Bongers’.
“Where am I?” “You’re in a room……”. Our Expo experience was nicely rounded off by attending a performance of ‘Knightmare Live’. Those of you of a certain age may have fond memories of this ’80s and ’90s TV classic. This excellent show brought back warm, waves of nostalgia for Ad and I, but also made us question stuff which made so much sense back then, but was totally baffling now, such as why are dungeon lords obsessed with really easy anagrams? I would highly recommend this show and hopefully they will be back next year. N.B it is also worth mentioning that the other yearly offering by the Expo, ‘The Dark Room’ by John Robertson (a live, text based adventure game where everyone is called Darren) is also excellent. We saw it on our first visit to the Expo in 2015.
We have already booked our hotel for next year and hope to see lots of you there. Bring on Expo 2018, we’re ready for you!!!!!