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Gaming will rAge on in SA

Last weekend, the rAge gaming event attracted 31 254 visitors, over 100 exhibitors and 2 370 NAG LAN gamers on 19 553 square meters of exhibition floor space, underlining the fact that gaming industry remains a large industry in SA.

Research confirms expected expansion. The latest PWC Media and Entertainment Outlook South Africa1 states that SA’s video games market was worth R2.4 billion in 2013, up from R1.6 billion in 2009, and revenues are forecast to grow to reach 3.7 billion by 2018. All good news for those who participated in rAge 2014 and for those keen to experience the landmark event again in 2015.

This sentiment is echoed by exhibitors.

It is a privilege to have an expo of this scale in South Africa dedicated to gamers on all platforms. rAge 2014 was a great success in that it appealed to over 31,000 fans. The Xbox One stand had over 34 consoles with over 14 different games to choose from and all of these stations were so busy the whole weekend that Xbox One fans had to queue to play their favourite games. We look forward to an even bigger and better rAge 2015!” said Zen Finlayson, Xbox category manager, Microsoft SA.

We have taken part at the rAge expo for over ten years now, and every year is a new and positive experience for us. The organisers keep polishing and refining their formula, and adding more and more value to it! In particular the concept of the home_coded stand where local game developers have the opportunity to showcase their games to the general public has proven to be a wonderful platform to display our South African talent in the field! I look forward to the next ten years sharing the fun and excitement of this industry!” added Gustavo Edward de M√ªelenaere Corr√™a, owner, Learn 3D.

rAge is the No. 1 event on our calendar, it’s always stressful and challenging to make sure that we can get developers, stage presentations and early code for fans to see and play. In the end it’s all worth it, as we see how much people appreciate and enjoy their experiences at the show” commented Devon Stanton, PR & promotions manager, Megarom Interactive.

rAge was a huge success for Celestial Games. We recruited many testers for Battle Arena Drones as well as receiving valuable feedback. The feedback allowed us to make adjustments each evening and test the changes the next day.” concluded Travis Bulford, Co-founder, Celestial Games.

These weren’t the only people pleased, the gamers in the NAG LAN and the sponsors for the NAG LAN gave great feedback and were happy to support the events 12th year in existence. The technical support of the area was impressive as is evident in HP’s contribution.

For the 5th year HP sponsored the switches required for the NAG LAN. This network gets setup and configured in less than a week to provide connectivity to the users. Providing a total of 94 switches, at a value of just over R2,000,000.00, to connect the users to one another.

The switches used were the HP2530, HP2920, HP3500 and HP5400 series. Monitoring the LAN with HP IMC (Intelligent Management Centre), HP and the LAN admin staff were able to immediately pin point any irregularities on the LAN and remedy them proactively. HP IMC also had a user locator so that should the need arise, the LAN admin staff could locate a user to his exact location. For example if the user was performing DDOS attacks on the network. The LAN of 2014 was extremely stable with rarely an issue occurring.” said Martin Mohr, solutions architect, HP Networking.

The NAG LAN also experienced a record breaking 5.2gigabit per second Internet service thanks to Internet Solutions’ (IS) mega fast broadband connection.

This year we have seen record breaking speeds and traffic volume in the IS-sponsored NAG LAN area at rAge. Traffic downloads reached 99.64TB with 24.34TB uploaded over the three days of the expo. This is equivalent to each gamer having experienced the equivalent of a 100Mbps broadband service”, said Greg Montjoie, executive for connectivity at IS.

The figures and feedback from the same report1 also suggest that more social and casual gamers are contributing to the growth of gaming. No longer the sole domain of hardcore gamers, families, couples and friends enjoy gaming together. In addition the increased penetration of smartphones and tablets is expected to be a huge driver of the anticipated growth as many in SA still don’t have a PC or console but certainly have access to a mobile smart phone.

* Read Arthur’s Local gaming heroes rAge on column here.

* Follow Gadget on Twitter on @GadgetZA

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