The People Of rAge
Gaming conventions always have their stable characters to look forward to. You know, people that are bound to be there no matter what. The same can be said of our own local annual gaming circle-jerk, rAge. With more than the population of Mozambique walking through the crowded hallways of gaming related magic, there are bound to be a few stereotypes. With this being my fourth consecutive year at rAge, I’ve had a fair amount of time to analyse the horde that tramples through the sacred gaming calling grounds.
Without further ado, here are the people that you will most likely see or have seen in our little corner of paradise.
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Only There For Free Stuff
Hey, I also appreciate getting my crummy hands on stuff I don’t have to pay for just as much as the next person. It’s a basic human instinct really. Something gotten for free is much sweeter than something you had to pay your hard earned money on. But these people decide to go all out with this philosophy. Lanyards, badges, magazines, t-shirts, you name it, they want it. They jump up and down with glee if they so much as receive a free pen from some out of place university stand. Then you get the Giveaway Vultures.
The Giveaway Vultures are those people that crowd around a company throwing t-shirts and random bits of often useless things. The pure chaos that I have witnessed over something as trivial as a poorly printed t-shirt is enough to make me shed a single Indian tear (racist joke not intended). I think a Lamb of God moshpit is more tame than a group of people clamoring over a t-shirt. Oh well, whatever makes them happy.
The Severely Out Of Place
You know, those people that are just there to be … there. They have no idea what gaming is and probably don’t even care, but they just pitch up at the joint for shits and giggles. I commend them for at least making the effort to learn about something they don’t know about. It still doesn’t stop me from getting a tad impatient when someone who has clearly never touched a controller has been jumping up and down the same ledge for about 30 minutes in a game I want to try out.
Other people associated with this category are the obvious parents that rocked up with their son or daughter just to “see what the fuss is about”. I remember my dad coming to rAge in 2009 and he was as lost as a level 80 orc warrior at a singles bar. He had no idea what was going on and he just stood there staring at random things.
I love these people because they get to see our world through virgin eyes and if a few of them can adopt our wonderful way of life because of this exposure, then more power to them. I’m still a bit unsure how to explain Japanese love pillows to my dad though.
The Do ALL The Things
In order to get into rAge, you have to pay a little money to get inside. Some people see this as an investment and want to experience absolutely everything there is, regardless of sore feet and overwhelming sweat. They will go into each and every stand there is even if they don’t have any interest in it. They don’t care if they have to wait 2 hours in order to play the BF4 demo, they will stand there until Ragnarok comes. I commend these people for their mind blowing endurance if nothing else.
rAge has always been about the exhibition of what gaming has to offer, but in recent years it has also evolved into something of a flea market. Some people loath that this is happening, but I think it’s rather nice. I live in a small town where there’s one game shop and nothing else so it’s nice to be able to buy figurines and trinkets that I would otherwise never even see. With that said, you get people that exclusively go to rAge to purchase as many crap as possible. I’ve seen people walk around with nearly an entire shopping trolley worth of stuff. Bobbleheads, comics, t-shirts, posters, board games, hardware, figurines, keychains, Japanese love pillows and much more. There’s something for everyone.
More power to the people that choose to buy things for the hobby they love so much. Or just other things that looked cool at the time.
The original target market for this expo. Those gamers that are passionate about their hobby so much that they travel hundreds of kilometers just to go to a massive dome like place and revel in the advancements and new developments of their favourite hobby. I should know, I’m one of them. The main reason why I go to rAge is that I need to consume all things gaming. Even if I have to traverse seas of sweaty people and wait in lines that would make Home Affairs jealous. rAge is not just an expo. It’s a display of everything we love about gaming and by Cthulhu, we will not miss it for anything in the world.
Diehard gamers rejoice, because we now have a place of belonging. Our people.
rAge has transformed from a simple exhibition platform to a cultural phenomenon in recent years. We have our favourite things under one roof. We have a place where we may dwell with people cut off the same cloth. And we have people that just roam around, buying things and struggling to play Super Mario. So, what type of rAge goer do you believe you are?