It took some time, Singapore, but we finally have a myriad of conventions and exhibitions on our shores to cater to various dimensions of geeky fandoms.
Now hitting its sixth year, GameStart Asia has been one of the conventions that helped usher a new age of local nerd culture here. Since its debut in 2014, the convention has grown by leaps and bounds, playing host to premieres of triple-A titles, gaming tournaments, cosplay contests, among other pop-culture affairs.
Alas, this year would mark the end of GameStart Asia as it sets the stage for Gamescom Asia in 2020. Sad as it may be, but GameStart founder Elicia Lee promises to work closely with the Gamescom team to build on the current gaming community that GameStart has already established since its inception.
With a theme revolving around Asian Mythology, GameStart 2019 promises a killer line-up of buzz-worthy personalities and exhibitors to the ever-increasing number of visitors for yet another weekend of gaming goodness. To help you make the best of your weekend, here are the ten things that you should watch out for when the convention rolls into town.
Hands-on with Disney Interactive
After showcasing Singapore-made mobile gaming title Disney Epic Quest last year, Disney Interactive returns with brand new and upcoming games on the horizon. Similarly, attendees will be able to get a first-hand experience of some games coming soon from the House of Mouse... including one very highly-anticipated title. Ok, we can't hold it in — you'll be among the first to play Marvel's Avengers, Square Enix and Crystal Dynamics' foray into the world of Iron Man, Thor and... Ms Marvel!
Dive into the fascinating world of analogue games as the Open Gaming area returns to entertain tabletop fans with carefully curated selections. Gamers will get to discover both old and new worlds with tabletop games like Horrified, Arkham Horror Final Hour, Terror Below and Undaunted: Normandy. Be sure to sign up for your spots here.
Oh, a tip for all you board game hoarders, there will be a limited number of copies of each title being sold at their GameStart store.
For the first time, fans of themed adventure game rooms will be treated to the debut of The Castle, which will only be accessible during the gaming convention.
It's an experiential and immersive adventure game where a team of four players will go through only one of two available paths.
- The path of the Moon Clan, a puzzled-based path, where you and your team will be tasked to gain the powers of a demon which lies sealed in an abandoned castle.
- The path of the Sun Clan, an activity-based path, where you and your team will be tasked to prevent a demon from creating chaos on the world by strengthening its seals.
Separate tickets are required for this experience, and they are currently on sale.
FIFA 20 Championships
In collaboration with local FIFA veteran Mohamed "Xtr3me3" Phirkhan, Gamestart's FIFA Championship returns yet again. With sponsorships from both MyRepublic Gamer Arena and Armaggeddon, there's a $3,500 prize pool for the championships.
Registration for participation is open until Oct 9. Separate tickets are required to enter the tournament and they are currently on sale - get your tickets here.
With four years under its belt, Doujin Market x GameStart Artist Alley is set to bring an extensive line-up of over 40 creators — both local and regional — to Suntec City Convention Hall this year.
If you're an aspiring artist or video game enthusiast, you'll be stoked about the chance to purchase some of the best works, be it a print or trinket of your favourite video game character. Heck, you can even commission a custom piece for yourself if you like one of the creators enough.
D&D Adventurers League
For all you RPG diehards, get your dicerolls on and get up to speed with the latest Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) updates. This year, D&D League Singapore Community and homegrown dice curator Geekified will be hosting its third edition of D&D Adventurers League.
- Assault on Myth Nantar (Oct 12)
- Infernal Pursuits (Oct 13)
Curious or aspiring D&D players get to join in the fun too! Swing into action with the help of the introductory games and wise guidance from Dungeon Masters on hand. Experienced players would enjoy sneak peeks of stories from the latest Adventurers League season.
Registration for participation is available here and walk-ins are welcome as well.
Indie games galore
Triple-A titles are fun and all, but the realm of indie games is where wild creativity congregates.
As with past iterations, the Founders Base at the gaming convention will have a line-up of local and regional indie games. This year, developers such as BattleBrew Productions, Gambir Studio, Cassel Games and many more will represent Singapore and beyond to showcase their works in various stages of development.
We definitely can’t wait to try out Barking Dog Entertainment’s VR horror outing: The Chinese Zombie Villa.
The Great Singaporean Sale
If there's something Singaporeans can't resist, it's shopping — especially when it comes to scoring a good bargain.
With kiasu-ness in mind, a group of 20-year-old creators came together to hash out a new card game to mirror the hilarious way of how Singaporeans would do absolutely everything for cash. The Great Singaporean Sale is designed to poke fun at our supposed culture of doing absurd things for money, so it should be a real hilarious time. Its crowdfunding campaign only hits Kickstarter later this month, but GameStart will be a good time to try it out for yourself.
Cosplay celebrity: Riiyuukii
When a gaming convention comes to mind, one would trust that there won't be any shortage of cosplay theatrics.
This year, attendees can look forward to meeting Riiyuukii, a talented Singaporean who has recently turned into a full-time cosplayer (!). Combining her love of games, anime, and fashion, Riiyuukii has been a constant presence in the world of gaming live streams, print and social media platforms.
SEA Major 2019
Returning for its fourth run, GameStart 2019 will be hosting the SEA Major, one of Southeast Asia's largest fighting games tournament.
This year, you'll be witnessing Street Fighter players compete at the Asia Finals of the prestigious Capcom Pro Tour 2019, with both prize money and a spot in the Capcom Cup on the line. If Street Fighter's not your jam, not to worry — the likes of Super Smash Bros Ultimate, Tekken 7, Dragon Ball FighterZ, Soul Calibur, and a whole lot more fighting game tourneys will be around too.
GameStart 2019 will hit the Suntec Convention Centre on Oct 12 and 13. Tickets are on sale at the moment — get your tickets on their official website.