Not a book in sight

Although the Games Convention was going on in Germany at the weekend, I chose to keep an eye on the world of video games from the less obvious surrounds of the Reading Festival. But amongst the teenagers who’d written on themselves and students with glowsticks, there was a reasonable amount to keep an eye on.

With Metallica headlining the Sunday night, Activision didn’t miss the opportunity to expose potentially interested parties to Guitar Hero, sticking a stand dedicated to the game just outside the main arena. It looked busy whenever I passed by, which is why I didn’t go any closer. That, and I’m bloody awful at the game. There was also at least one Guitar Hero flag around the festival, blocking everyone’s view of the stage. Flags at festivals need to be banned.

Ubisoft was there too, with some games or other, inevitably less busy than Guitar Hero. The branded goods continued – oh-so-classy Soulcalibur IV t-shirts in Ubisoft’s case. Were they being worn ironically? At a festival where trilby hats were in abudance, it’s impossible to say.

There was supposed to be an EA stand somewhere too, but I didn’t notice it. Hopefully they paid less for their plot than Ubisoft.

Video games were in evidence on stage too. Most obviously in the form of Hadouken! on the NME Radio 1 Stage, but there were less obvious occurances.

On the Alternative Stage, Chris Hicks and Ross Sutherland performed a piece (poetry, spoken word, rap – call it what you will) about dying in Time Crisis II. In fact, it looks like they have a whole show based around video games.

Finally, there was Bloc Party frontman Kele Okereke’s Bowser t-shirt on the Main Stage. Which I noticed after I’d finished being squashed out of the way to make room for a circle pit. I hate people.

It’s a shame Slipknot had to cancel, otherwise I’m sure they would have used their set as an opportunity to give out Animal Crossing: Wild World friend codes, to encourage some new visitors. It seems like the sort of thing they’d do.