Come 15 to 18 October 2020, Singapore will host the first Asian edition of the world’s largest gaming festival, gamescom.

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed between the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) and global trade fair company, Koelnmesse, today (29 May) to mark a new partnership for the upcoming festival.

gamescom asia will comprise a two-day industry gaming conference and a three-day trade and public exhibition, including esports events, a showcase of emerging technologies in video games, as well as gaming workshops, meet-and-greet sessions, and cosplay theatrics.

Festivalgoers can expect the launch of a slew of global titles and gaming-related offerings.

Venue, publishers, and titles for gamescom asia are not confirmed yet.

gamescom has been held in Cologne, Germany, every year since 2009, and is now considered one of the highlights of the gaming world.

It’s the industry’s largest event, with 370,000 visitors and over 1,000 exhibitors from 56 countries attending the show last year.

So it’s no wonder that this partnership is described as an epic win for the video gaming and esports scene in Singapore, as the largely-sceptical industry here is only starting to open up recently.

Mr Keith Tan, Chief Executive of STB, revealed in a media statement that they have been in talks with Koelnmesse for two years, together with other stakeholders such as IMDA, Enterprise Singapore, associations, games developers, and local gaming and esports events organisers.

He hopes that gamescom asia will position Singapore as “the natural base for the development and commercialisation of digital and gaming content, which in turn will support our digital media industry.”

Event organisers added that the festival will be a platform for industry thought leaders, local and regional buyers, programmers, game designers, and audio professionals to network, learn, and exchange insights with their international counterparts.

Mathias Kuepper, Managing Director of Koelnmesse Singapore, said, “The region has been hungry for a Tier One gaming event and we now have all the ingredients to successfully cater to this need.”

“With strong partnerships with GameStart, the Singapore government, and the gaming ecosystem, we are expecting to attract over 30,000 enthusiasts and gaming industry professionals to the inaugural gamescom asia.”

gamescom asia will complement game-related events that are already present in Singapore, including the Singapore ComicCon, formerly known as the Singapore Toy, Game and Comic Convention, and GameStart Asia, said STB.

Founder of GameStart and gaming marketing firm Eliphant, Elicia Lee added that GameStart will be passing the baton to gamescom with this partnership.

Kuepper confirmed at the MOU signing that this year’s edition of GameStart Asia will be its last.

At gamescom 2016, more than a dozen Singapore gaming producers and platform providers had flown to Germany to attend the event, and some of them even launched products there.

However, in the following year at gamescom 2017, it was reported that Singapore exhibitors received a “rude shock” when they arrived at the low-effort and unimpressive Singapore Pavilion.

Well, this time, gamescom asia will be held on home ground, so perhaps we can trust that the organisers will pull out all the stops so we won’t paiseh.

Visit gamescom asia’s website here for more details.

Featured Image Credit: Singapore Tourism Board