EB Games Expo 2013: What to expect from this year's show
30th Sep 2013 | 23:45
Hands on with next-gen consoles for everyone
With the dust finally settled after the inaugural PAX Australia Expo in Melbourne back in July, excited gamers are already casting their eyes to the future to the next big gaming event, the EB Games Expo in Sydney.
Setting up shop at the Sydney Showgrounds at Olympic Park this weekend between October 4-6, the third annual event is destined to be the biggest one yet for the games retailer.
With more than 30,000 fans gracing the show floor in 2012, EB Games is planning on breaking that record in 2013, thanks to some help from the next generation of consoles.
Already, the show is off to a massive start, with the most expensive ticketing option, the Ultimate Gamer Pass, selling out within three hours of going on sale.
While there are still some tickets to the event on sale, they are selling out quickly, so buying passes sooner than later is a smart option.
With that in mind, here's everything we know so far about the event, and what you can expect to see from the show when it kicks off in early October.
1. Microsoft Xbox One playable
Microsoft's Xbox One presence at PAX Australia was pitiful. Fortunately for those looking to attend the EB Games Expo, things are looking much more positive.
Announced during a keynote at PAX, Microsoft is bringing more than a hundred Xbox One consoles to the Sydney event, all available to play for the gamers at the show.
This will be the first time the console will be made available to play on Australian shores, making it a must-attend event for anyone wanting to experience the next-gen in the flesh prior to launch.
Despite the massive numbers of consoles available, we still anticipate long lines. If only there was something else to keep us distracted…
2. Sony Playstation 4 playable too
Anything Microsoft can do, Sony can do as well. Weeks after Microsoft confirmed its presence at the EB Games Expo, Sony did the same, confirming that the PS4 will also be playable at the show.
There's no indication of just how many consoles Sony is bringing to this next-gen console battle though.
If they really want to take the fight to Microsoft, expect a similar number on the floor so plenty of people can get their hands on it.
With both consoles getting their first public outing at the expo, expect plenty of bells, whistles and shiny things as the gaming behemoths do their best to draw the gaming hordes' attention to their own stands.
3. Nintendo rounds out the hardware trifecta
While Nintendo doesn't have too much in the way of new hardware to unveil at the show (although we'd be disappointed if we didn't see the Nintendo 2DS somewhere), the family-friendly gaming company has confirmed it's bringing along plenty of software.
3DS gamers will be able to get their hands on The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, Sonic Lost World and Professor Layton and the Azran Legacies.
There will also be a chance to get fingers on Pokemon X & Y for the first time.
Wii U gamers will get to experience The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker HD, Super Mario 3D World, Wii Party U and Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze.
4. Battlefield 4 the masses
Despite not rocking up to PAX Australia, Electronic Arts is bringing its war fighting Battlefield 4 to Sydney in October.
From all accounts, you should be able to get hands on the next-gen game on a next-gen console, with Microsoft's Xbox One showcasing the fighter.
Whether the game is going to be single-player or multiplayer is as yet unknown, as is whether it will be available on current-gen hardware at the show as well.
Either way, it's going to be playable, which should make plenty of FPS gamers happy.
5. Call of Duty: Ghosts with a chance to win the Prestige Edition
Not only is Activision bringing its latest version of Call of Duty to the EB Games Show, with five multiplayer sessions running across the three days of the expo, but it's also giving away 500 copies of the Prestige Edition of the game.
Players who line up and get some hands on time with the canine-starring game can scan a QR card as they leave the booth to enter the competition. 100 copies of the Prestige Edition are available to win from each session.
Sessions run between 9am to 3pm and 4pm to 9pm Friday and Saturday, with the final session running between 9am to 4pm on Sunday.
Winners will be notified immediately, and will receive the game when it launches in November.
6. Assassins Creed IV: Black Flag
A title that will definitely be playable at EB Expo 2013 in October will be Ubisoft's Assassins Creed IV: Black Flag, which is due for release on October 31.
EB Games assures us that there will be someone from the title's development team to share some insight into the game's creation.
And in case you weren't able to tell that the new Assassin's Creed installment will be taking place on the high seas, Ubisoft will also have a pirate ship ride outside the convention hall to help you get excited about the game - or nervous about expo food.
7. League of Legends
Joining Battlefield and Assassin's Creed will be Riot Games' League of Legends, with EB Games announcing that it will be playable for fans throughout the duration of the expo.
Although the hype for the expo surrounds the next-gen consoles, the availability of the game will be a welcome addition to those who prefer their desktop or laptop over the Xbox and PlayStation wars.
Based in the Pavilion section of the expo, though there won't be a theme-park type ride accompanying the game, the League of Legends World Championship Finals will also be streamed live for fans to watch.
8. Batman: Arkham Origins and Mad Max
Warner Bros is bringing its big guns to the show this year. And by big guns, we mean big franchises.
The latest instalment of the Batman Arkham series will be on the show floor, allowing show-goers to wrap their gauntlets around a controller and take the Dark Knight on a thug-beating spree in the new title.
Mad Max is also rocking up for the show. There's no word yet on whether the game will feature the updated Australian voice acting in its presentation, or if it will still be the American voice seen during the launch announcement earlier this year.
Warner's not resting on its flagship titles though. Also on the stand will be a wide selection of the publisher's upcoming games, including Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate, Dying Light, Lego Marvel Super Heroes, The Lego Movie Videogame, Lego Friends, Hot Wheels World's Best Driver and Scribblenauts Unmasked.
9. Titanfall playable
One of the highlights of the next-gen E3 2013 titles, Titanfall is making its first public Australian appearance at the EB Games Expo.
Even more exciting is that the jetpack-riding, Titan-driving shooter will be playable on the show floor. While the game is going to be running on PC hardware rather than the Xbox One console, it will be played using the new Xbox One controller.
Given this is one of the most exciting Xbox One launch titles, getting hands on time before the console's launch is a big deal.
10. Exclusive Skylanders toy up for grabs
Skylanders is practically a license for Activision to print money. And attendees of the EB Games Expo will be able to get their hands on an exclusive toy for the game.
Activision will be hosting a special showing at 10am on the Sunday to see Skylanders SWAP Force for the first time in Australia.
There'll be competitions and prizes for the kidlets, with a rare toy available. It's going to be pretty crowded, so it's worth getting there early on the Sunday if you want to get in.
11. Good Game Live
The hosts of Australia's most popular gaming television programme, Good Game, will be taking the stage at the EB Games Expo for Good Game Live.
Located at the EB Games Arena, the show is described as "a live quiz show for gamers by gamers; a multiplayer showdown of gaming goodness, trivia and LOLs with some very special guests".
The hosts of the show will also take part in the expo's Video Game Parade on the Sunday, should you like massive balloons, tanks and cosplay.
12. The best of Home Grown
If there's one thing PAX Australia taught us, it's that the Aussie indie dev scene is full of amazingly talented people. And they will have a home at the EB Games Expo in the Home Grown Gaming section of the show.
In addition to Aussie developers, the Home Grown hall will also feature local eSport competitions, as well as a tech zone dedicated to the latest gaming accessories to hit Australian shores (and even some that haven't arrived yet).
We expect more details on exactly what to expect from this area in the weeks leading up to the show.
13. Mega sales at the Mega Store
You didn't expect a gaming event hosted by a gaming retailer to not offer its own store, did you?
The EB Games Mega Store is set to be four times larger than the store at the 2012 Expo, and will officially be the biggest EB Games store in the world.
In addition to the latest games, the Mega Store will offer exclusive swag for attendees, the ability to pre-order games, as well as purchase some of the best accessories and hardware shown off on the show floor.
While the cynical part of us knows that this is what the show is really all about, we'd probably be disappointed if it wasn't there.
14. Sunday Family Day
Parents will be pleased to know that Sunday, October 6 has been allocated as the EB Games Expo family fun day.
In addition to a wide range of free activities for the kidlets, including face painting and magicians, there will be video game hero meet and greets, and a special family edition of the Good Game Live show.
There's even a family ticketing option for anyone looking to save on the cost of entry for the Sunday.
14. Panels and more
For the educated gamer (or the enthusiast looking to get into the industry), there will be a selection of expert community panels scattered through the event.
Topics are wide and varied, with panels ranging from a focus on how video games are good for you (with speakers from the Starlight foundation), to debates over whether retro or modern games are better.
Gaming with kids, Australian indies and how you don't need a degree to make games are all worth paying attention to as well.
On top of all that, there are plenty of other exhibitors and events scheduled over the course of the weekend.
TechRadar will be there to bring you all the latest news as it happens. Also, to try and embarrass ourselves playing TitanFall.