Gaming and corporate events organiser Replay Events will relocate its annual UK video games expo to EventCity in Manchester as part of a rebrand and expansion of the show.
The former Replay Expo has been rebranded to Play Expo for its third edition and will run from 13 to 14 October at the Trafford Park venue. The annual consumer event was previously held at the Norbreck Castle Hotel in Blackpool and attracted 4,000 attendees last year.
Replay Events business development director Gordon Sinclair told EN the organiser is expanding the focus of the event to include both classic and modern gaming platforms.
Play Expo will be divided into four events: re.play, now.play, pro.play and cos.play, with each including playable gaming hardware as well as well as exhibition space.
“We noticed over our last couple of events that we’re attracting younger gamers who are looking for more modern games,” Sinclair explained. “While we’re putting the classic gaming in a larger area, we’re also incorporating three other events at the same time into something that’s four times the size of our previous Blackpool event.”
Sinclair was confident the organiser could get 10,000 visitors to EventCity. The venue was chosen for its space, access, transport links and more comprehensive facilities.
“Outside of London, there aren't really any events of this size available yet we know there is huge demand for it from consumers in the Midlands, north of England and Scotland,” Sinclair said. “These guys want an event but find London too far away.
“Just by running the same event in Manchester, we felt we could have increased our attendance by 2,000. By offering one ticket to four events, we’re confident we can get 10,000 to the show.”
“EventCity had no hesitation in partnering with Replay when we saw the range and diversity of their event – I can honestly say that every section of the gaming world will be well covered and that there promises to be some unique activities taking place," EventCity MD Andy Orr said. "Personally, I am looking forward to trying some of the vintage video games and reliving a misspent youth.”
EventCity, which opened as an exhibition venue in 2011, claims to have secured 40 shows this year as well as bookings through to 2014.
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