While the weather is hot and the sun is shining with nearly everyone down at the beach, we decided to put all that aside and go to a gaming convention by the name of 'PLAY Margate', which is at the Winter Gardens all this weekend. You probably read of our disappointment of GEEK earlier this year with all those yukky modern systems, but PLAY Margate is what GEEK used to be! Oodles of retro hardware and games going back in time as far as possible. From the Amstrad to the C64, from the Intellivision to the Dreamcast and Neo-Geo, this was a gaming convention we had to be a part of.
A Beads C Start
Unlike earlier this year this gaming show had far more stalls for you to spend your hard earned money on, for goodies such as retro toys, retro games and retro hardware. We even came across not just Comics and Collectables from Chapter 12, but also plushies and retro games from Level Up, lots of retro computers and games from Console Passion, amazing colourful designs from A Beads C Start, and Famicom Disks with even more games from RetroVideoGames. Sufficed to say were blown away by the vast choice from each of the stalls.
Level Up Games ( The Golden Joystick! )
Chapter 12 ( Harley Quinn Pop Heroes! )
Retrovideogames1999 ( Famicom Disks! )
In regards to Console Passion, this was a new stall arrival for PLAY Margate with lots of console games packaged up and ready to be sold, but what really grabbed our attention was the Commodore 'Night Moves' pack, so we had to take a closer look. We did ask about the Amstrad, C64 and ZX Spectrum games, but that was a no show, shame really!
Moving on from the stalls, we went downstairs to see for ourselves if the layout was far better than GEEK and if they stuck true to their word of remaining retro. As soon as we went down stairs, our jaws dropped! It wasn't just more opened up allowing for easier access, but everywhere you looked was an old retro computer to be played. Amstrad, PC(DOS), C64, ZX Spectrum, Dreamcast, Neo-Geo, Jaguar, Vectrix, Amiga, BBC Micro, MSX 2...... I didn't know where to begin as it was retro gaming heaven! Just take a look at these great systems below and some of the people enjoying them!
Next we moved on to my personal favorite and what was severely lacking all these years, the Arcade Machines and the Pinball Machines! Well they are back, and they are back in force. The entire area of the show which was once surrounded by Minecraft were now all Arcades and Pinball Machines. I didn't know where to start! Should I bang some balls (ahem!) or should I try my hand at Blasteroids or Dig Dug. I pretty much played them all in the end, but lets share some of the other guests who were equally having a great time!
For anyone concerned about us showing no Minecraft, don't worry that was still there and we even found indie games and modern consoles too! That's right you modern gamer's are being thought of as well.
But alas all good things must come to an end, believe me we could've stayed all night if we were able too. But before we depart, lets show you the last part of the gaming show, the cosplay by Thanet Cosplay! We met some lovely people today all dressed up in different costumes, from Princesses to Warriors, each one with their own character personality.
And that for us is the end of the show! But if you want to come along and visit what we feel is the BEST retro gaming show this side of the UK, then come along to the Winter Gardens in Margate tomorrow (Saturday) and Sunday, trust me you'll have such a great time you'll not want to leave!
Tickets are still available to buy from the main website
Links : 1) Facebook Group 2) Twitter 3) Website
( Photography by myself and David )