I went to Dreamhack Valencia yesterday.
I am not into gaming, besides a brief time where I spent too much time shooting with Duke Nukem 3D, Doom, Quake, and the classics before those, I have only been addicted to Plants and Zombies. I have never sat in front of a PlayStation and barely played with the WII, so I am probably not the best person to write about the Dreamhack.
That said, I do want to share here the comparison of my past visits with this one. I have been to 3 past editions of the Dreamhack in Valencia, the last one in July 2018. Yesterday was my fourth time assisting.
What surprised me, and the reason for this post was the monotony.
I found a lot less people than in past editions. This may be due to the day I went as this year I went on the last day of the event, but we barely had to stay in the queue at the few places where we could play.
No merchandising. In the past editions, I left the event with some bags and pamphlets about all sorts of services and products. This time the only person who pushed me anything was a very friendly guy pleading with me to play his game as he only had two people in line and the basketball team looking for people to play with them. Again, this may be because it was the last day, but...
Cosplay was awesome. There were a lot of people in the role, a lot of star wars. Lara Croft was attractive and Ahsoka was very very well done! This was nice!
Lack of innovation. I spend a large part of my time reading articles about things that are happening in the (technology) world and trying software applications. I see advancements of all types in many fields, and, lately, with all the LLM hype it seems that the world is changing in gigantic steps. Yet, here, 5 years (!) later, it looked all the same; counter strike, Fortnite, GTA, brawlhalla, and League of Legends. Seriously? Still?
I mean in 2018 there were at least two stands with Virtual Reality glasses that immersed you into another world. Meta is pushing those today, yet there was only one stand and nobody was there. It was so empty that we just walked by and didn't even dare to ask.
And, augmented reality? Where is that? When the Pokemon Go boom happened in 2016 (!) I was convinced that AG was going to be predominant and ubiquitous. Fast forward 7 years (!) and it is nowhere to be seen. What happened? What is blocking that technology?
As I said at the start, I am not the right person to talk about this subject and I am, for sure, missing a big part of the picture, but it all seemed like they are living off of past work, as we do it once, get lucky and then just leave it there generating money. Not that that is bad, but it seems far from the reality I work in, where we fight hard every day for very little.
The price was too high. Not that the 15€ was expensive, everything is expensive nowadays, but for such little content and lack of entertainment, it seems like a waste of money. We arrived at 12 and had seen everything at 14h. Had lunch, walked around again, and left. So...
All in all, we had a nice time and got to spend some time together, I'm glad we went.
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