GameCity8, the ultimate gaming festival, is running from October 19th to October 26th in Nottingham and will be hosting an Antiques Roadshow style event on October 22nd, inviting attendees to share their gaming memories.
Experts from GameCity – the World’s best loved videogame festival – are giving players the chance to take a trip down memory lane. And they want to add those memories to the National Videogame Archive – a collection of more than 6,500 game-related items held as part of a partnership between Nottingham Trent University and the Science Museum, London.
In an Antiques Roadshow-style event to be held during the GameCity8 festival in Nottingham, videogamers past and present (and people who live with them!) are being urged to bring along their Commodore 64s, Sinclair ZX 81s and Ataris and explain what they meant to them.
However, it’s not just the children of the 1980s and 1990s who are being asked to show up, according to GameCity director Iain Simons:
“We want anyone whose life has been touched by videogames to explain what they mean to them – from the early days of home computers to PlayStations and XBoxes.
“The National Videogame Archive is not just a collection of old games, it includes marketing material, fan art and spin-off toys. The archive isn’t just about preserving software, it’s about preserving what videogames mean to people now and in the past.
“What was it like back in the day when there was only one TV in the house and play would be interrupted by mum and dad wanting to watch the news, for example? Or how did friends and relatives react after you got your first Sega Megadrive and spent the whole of Christmas Day glued to it?
“Often, the best way to find out about a videogaming and its culture is not by playing the games but by talking to the player about what it meant to them at that point in their lives. We want to store these memories for posterity.”
The event will be held at Angel Row Library on Angel Row, Nottingham, starting at 11am on Tuesday October 22 during GameCity 8, the Nottingham city centre-based festival of videogame culture, which last year attracted more than 50,000 visitors.
Mr Simons added that particularly special memorabilia – consoles, disks, cartridges, artwork, packaging and any other game-related material – could be considered for addition to the archive. Many of the memories will form part of an event at the National Centre for Craft and Design in Sleaford, Lincolnshire, which begins in October.
GameCity is run by Nottingham Trent University’s School of Arts and Humanities to bring together the public and private sector to pioneer innovative thinking and deliver major research and inclusion projects.
Going beyond just playing games, GameCity8 will offer new ways to interact with videogame culture – art exhibitions, developers’ commentaries, re-creations of videogames, gigs, arcade trails and club nights – from Saturday October 19 to Saturday October 26.
As well as two giant screens that will be in different positions each day in Nottingham’s Old Market Square, this year’s festival will also include the unveiling of the winners of the Off the Map competition, a collaboration between GameCity, Crytek software and the British Library. Based on drawings and maps of Stonehenge, the Tower of London or the Pyramids.
To find out more about GameCity visit www.gamecity.org or follow the team on Twitter @gamecity and Facebook www.facebook.com/gamecity.nottingham