MCM Expo London: That wasn't ages ago

Bank holiday Monday is for plans, plans, plans and then those plans getting totally scuppered by The Yesterday Channel (the past is always present) and back to back episodes of Nazi Hunters. Spontaneous thought for the day: when will games be able to 'do' the liberation of concentration camps with the due gravitas? Looking to the awful (single player) Modern Warfare 2 (awful game, awful story and awful schlock tactics) which in many ways is the (inappropriate) poster child for games if not gamers, I'd say not for another decade at least.

So instead of generating actual new content now that the bank holiday has been practically spent, I'm going to write up my thoughts of the MCM expo whilst they are still fresh in my mind.

MCM ExpoFirstly, the day involved at least five types of queueing but fortunately, impromptu games of identify the cosplayer made all the queuing a bit more palatable. For a ticketed event, you would assume that the venue would have been a little bit more prepared for thousands of geeks to eat lunch. Turns out this surprised the organisers a little leading to at least 2 hour long waits for lunch. Also interesting to see, was the hierarchy of meatspace geekdom up close. The obscure anime cosplayers looked down on the popular anime cosplayers who looked down on the video game cosplayers who looked down on the movie cosplayers who looked down on the people who had turned up in only slightly geeky t-shirts who in turn couldn't look the attendees for the martial arts expo going on in the same building in the eye. In fact, the mix of orange, veiny beefcakes with busty chicks on their arms and pasty adolescents dressed as final fantasy characters advertising 'free hugs' remained entertaining throughout the day.

Overall the whole event was rather British from the public announcements (can Tracey Johnson, the owner of a blue fiat etc.) interrupting the 'celebrity' panels through to the abysmal planning of events. Our party ended up queuing up four separate times for an event that turned out to be in another place altogether and ticket-holders only. We also got turned away from the handheld-world record attempt because we hadn't registered (it had been advertised as no need to register) meaning we were hulking around three DSs and a PSP all day for no god reason.

Secondly, it's a bit rich calling it a movie, comics and media expo when movies were represented by the odd poster or, if you were lucky, a TV showing a looped trailer. Nobody cares about comics anyway and judging by the floor space given over to 'media', media is 90% otaku stalls, 5% DF list stars from ScyFy, 3% Yu-Gi-Oh and 2% video games. Okay, we're playing it up a bit for the cameras but this analysis isn't far from the truth. We'd prefer it if all the stalls were in another room altogehter.

Lastly, before we eventually get around to the games we had a go on, we are being a tad overly negative. The atmosphere of the event was really, really friendly throughout and we struck up conversations with a number of strangers which you can't just do anywhere in London (without a 25% chance of getting randa-shanked). Also, as much as we'd love to hate the community there is that special feeling when you are surrounded by 'your' people. Even if your people tend to smell a little bit in the morning and a lot in the afternoon. Some of the cosplay was truly amazing. Of course we saw more than a fair share of Clouds, Squalls and Rikkus (she's 14 in FFX for god's sake) but it was good to see a Crash Bandicoot, a Spyro, a rather painful looking Bayonetta, four or five S.T.A.R.S alpha teams, a pyramid head, only a 'handful' of Chun Lis, an amazing big daddy, a big mummy, a not so amazing big daddy, an ace caterpie, a trio or tetroids, a number of TF2 characters who spontaneously fought each other, a few more Dantes than Vergils and a rather good Isaac Clarke. We would have liked to have seen a few more DoA girls and Zangiefs naturally but you can't get everything you wish for. There were thousands of anime cosplayers we couldn't identify which made us feel that maybe we don't watch enough (or maybe we watch the right amount?).

Back to the games. There weren't that many games on show, significantly less unreleased games, only Activision, Nintendo, Rising Star and Koei* bothering to put up stands with more than one game playable.

BlandGears-alike Quantum Theory was there. We had a go and if the first two minutes is anything to go on, the game is boring. Bland levels, the weapons lack punch, connecting shots don't seem to have any real impact, it is really really really like gears of war and on both playthroughs we died and our body realistically slumped through a wall.

Blur was on show in a nice little 8 player networked stand. The best way of describing the initial impression is that it is an HD Mashed or Micro Machines with a normal PoV which isn't quite as fun as Mashed or Micro Machines.

Super Mario Galaxy 2 was playable and had a healthy gaggle of people watching and playing it all day. Suffice to say as excited as we are about the game it is not really one that's best viewed in a sweaty noisy conference venue.

The Fist of the North Star dynasty warriors game was present in the form of a rolling video but if you can imagine Dynasty Warriors re-skinned with the Fist of the North Star cast with a sprinkling of new characters you didn't miss out.

Die and stay dead TransformersOther games there included the new Shrek game(!), No More Heroes 2, Warioware: Do It Yourself, Professor Layton and the new transformers game. As you can see nothing to set the world alight and nothing that isn't already out or that isn't a sequel*.

*The transformers game doesn't count because in our eyes at least the franchise died with the 2004 PS2 game before all that silly film business and the ridiculous version exclusives bots.


  1. rob_is_gay14:42

    glad i missed out on the queuing.
    I managed to get on two trains full of coskids anyway, even though i was in Germany. Maybe it was international cos day?

  2. Dr Wo00:41

    Glad it has been done, now I know I wasnt missing too much the previous years I couldnt go.

    Wrestling proved most entertaining, even though it was below par wrestling (damn our connisseur eyes) and that was only because we were running commentary.

    I will return if they advertise a DOA butt battle in a pool that doesnt require registration at the event, if they check the sex offenders I maybe registered there but thats a given for such debauchery.

    Speaking of such I got me a extremely sexist and nude Matsumato from Bleach, she sits under my Kasumi figure so when I look at Matsu's boobs I only have to move my eyes upwards and get the full on view of Kasumi's boobs, then down and up and down and up.



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