The game is a co-organiser and the conceptual sponsor of gamescom, the highlight of the interactive entertainment industry’s annual event and trade fair calendar. Major innovations from Germany, Europe and the rest of the world are showcased at gamescom, where they often celebrate their premiere. gamescom is both a trade fair and a public event, making it a unique entertainment experience for all visitors. It is hosted by the city of Cologne, where it has taken place in August of every year since 2009. Koelnmesse GmbH is the service provider responsible for organising and running the event; it owns one of the largest and most modern expo centres in Germany, with 284,000 square metres of floor space. In 2017, over 355,000 people attended the event, visiting booths run by 919 exhibitors – more than ever before.
gamescom: the concept
The success of gamescom is due in large part to the idea behind it. The event brings together representatives of every link in the industry’s value chain, from developers and publishers to retailers and consumers, and creates forums for discussion at every level. The entertainment area is aimed at games fans from the general public. It comprises four modern exhibition halls with a total of about 80,000 square metres of floor space and both an indoor and an outdoor area. Here, gamescom attendees can try out the latest gaming software and hardware. The business area is an exclusive space for exhibitors, trade professionals and the media. The exceptional infrastructure in this area makes it an ideal forum for successfully conducting business and holding in-depth discussions. The business area is a top meeting spot for the more than 33,200 trade professionals who attend the event.
The gamescom congress is Europe’s leading conference on the potential of computer and video games for society as well as the economy. This year’s congress on 22nd August 2018 provides visitors with an impressively wide range of topics, and will demonstrate that gaming technology will be helpful in mastering digitalisation in almost all economic and societal fields. The congress will be held for the tenth time in 2018, as part of gamescom, the largest event for computer and video games worldwide.
How can games impart knowledge? Where can industry benefit from games? How do games influence how we coexist? These and many more questions will be answered during the schedule of over 30 events.
The congress will be hosted by Koelnmesse GmbH and game e.V., the German Games Industry Association. The gamescom congress is sponsored by the State of North Rhine-Westphalia and the City of Cologne.
The third pillar is the devcom, the largest developers’ conference in Europe. The two-day event starts two days before gamescom and is also held at the Koelnmesse expo centre. The conference is the most important platform for European developers; the latest trends in game development are presented and discussed here. The conference is characterised by its international orientation. When devcom premiered in Cologne in 2017, it already hosted over 2,850 participants and was heralded as a complete success.
In addition to these three main pillars, gamescom offers a multifaceted programme of other events. The gamescom city festival features concerts, music and entertainment in Cologne’s city centre, which always takes on a festive atmosphere for the entire duration of the event.
The gamescom award is presented every year to honour the best games at the event. All companies exhibiting at gamescom can submit their games for consideration. Games are eligible if they were not published in Germany before gamescom and are available in the entertainment area for attendees to view and play.
Youth protection and media literacy
At gamescom, the games industry also acknowledges its responsibility to help protect minors. The provisions of German youth protection laws are consistently observed throughout the exhibition area, and comprehensive measures are in place to protect young attendees from harmful content, including age verification at exhibitors’ booths.