From 2 - 4 October computer and gaming fanatics flocked to the rAge Expo at the Coca-Cola dome in Northgate to feast on a showcase of the latest in gaming, technology, gadgets and lifestyle entertainment products. Oasys Innovations supplied a range of infrastructure for the event.
Says Carl Woodland, chief operating officer for Oasys Exhibitions, “We supplied a total of 610m2 shell scheme, 5702m2 of carpeting as well as electrical infrastructure and furniture. Furthermore we were involved with building some of the design stands for the expo.”
Michael James, director and organiser for rAge 2009 is very pleased with the success and growth of the show. “The fact that we had an extremely successful show mirrors our earlier feeling that the South African technology and gaming industry has the ability to be recession-resilient.” He further explains that featured products at this year's expo sold like hotcakes and the cost of certain items did not seem to faze buyers. “It proves that the South African gaming industry is maturing and shows that gamers have access to disposable income,” Michael concludes.
rAge attracts a wide variety of visitors, from gaming and technology junkies, to computer enthusiasts and even families just looking to spend some quality time together on a fun day out. Visitors enjoyed previews of new games as well as product launches, special offers and prize giveaways. To ensure that the exhibition catered for all visitors, it also featured a wide selection of computer hardware and software, mobile technology, comics, anime, figurines, trading cards, board games, movies and music.
A major draw card to this year's rAge was the NAG LAN - a 53-hour gaming event that enabled 2162 gamers to connect to one network for a weekend of dedicated gaming. The LAN was so popular that organisers had to remind gamers that no tents were allowed, as some people tried to camp on site.
The first video games made their appearance during the 1950's in the form of ‘Pong,' ‘Space Invaders' and ‘Tennis for Two'. This was followed by the development of the first personal computers and computer games. Since then computer and gaming technology has evolved into a multi-million Rand industry with global video game sales recently surpassing DVD and Blu-Ray media sales.
Concludes Woodland, “The gaming industry provides a form of entertainment that demonstrates the ability to extend beyond social differences such as age, gender, race and culture and it will be interesting to see what developments will make their way into this arena in future.”