G-Star is back offline. Although it is not the same as before, it was not 100% relaxed and enthusiastic, but I came back to meet gamers.
The meaning of G-Star in Korea is clear. Although there may be differences of opinion on the quality, G-Star is still the largest and most representative game show in Korea. Every year, so many people visit the site that it is difficult to move, and the queues in front of BEXCO have become representative of ‘G-Star’. It was a big event that shook the whole of Busan, and it was a festival of its own.
And at the end of 2019, Corona broke out. In 2020, G-Star gave up offline. No, I had to give up. BEXCO in November, when G-Star left, was really cool. Although it was conducted online, it was not the G-Star we had known for a long time. The appearance of the festival where domestic gamers gathered was nowhere to be seen.
However, this year, G-Star announced that it would be held offline again. And the preparation period filled with many people’s worries, excitement, and expectations has passed. At the G-Star site, where they finally met gamers after Media Day, there was a white check booth to check whether vaccination was given instead of the booth outside BEXCO, which was greeted lavishly every year, and a thermometer along with a fence was installed in the lobby where you could go anywhere. .
And there were no people who jumped in on the opening day on the first day, and there were no event halls that were so crowded that it was right that they were pushed instead of walking. Instead, there were people who entered slowly and orderly with arms raised on bracelets, a waiting space as large as a booth, and a pleasant but awkward event space where you could examine each booth carefully.
The feeling that G-Star gives every year was clear. There are many ‘distances’, whether to see or hear, to do or to live. This was the case when there were many games to be demonstrated, when there were more broadcasting booths than the demonstration podium, when there were large companies with high names, and vice versa. And one more thing, there were so many people that I wondered if I could properly enjoy something in this state.
This year is the opposite. The venue was pleasant as only a certain number of people who made a reservation in advance could enter. It was pleasant enough that I was able to slowly stop the booth that I had only seen with my side eyes while staring at the back of the head of the person in front of me so as not to fall over with frequent steps and carefully examine each one. You can watch other people’s games while passing by, and you can also do a demonstration in a much shorter amount of time, which you would normally have to wait for half a day.
But at the same time, it felt too monotonous. It can be said that the lack of content has become very evident along with the decrease in the number of visitors. As the number of people overflowing enough to feel like fire disappeared, the problem of delays simply due to too many people was solved.
It’s a natural thing. Even if you come early in the morning, if you look around one booth, the number of people this year was so small that the morning hours passed quickly enough to visit all the booths and purchase goods at the same time.
And even though the BIC booth outside the main event hall came in every time, the booth itself was not large enough to be able to pick up and walk around. In particular, due to the special nature of Corona, there was a limit on the number of people entering each booth at the same time, so a large space was needed to wait for the waiting people, and a waiting space was located where there used to be a small booth.
There is one more thing that stood out from this G-Star. The ‘stamp tour’ is not a new recruiting method. As it is the most effective way for visitors to naturally view, experience, and enjoy the entire booth, it has already been seen frequently at G-Star.
But this time, the effect of this stamp tour was much more dramatic. The viewing environment was pleasant, and there was plenty of time left, so most of the visitors were able to actively enjoy the stamp tour. As a result, participation-type booths with stamp tours were popular regardless of small and large booths. There were even more people flocking to the stamp tour booths than the demonstration booths.
In the past, there were a lot of people who went to do something big because they were pressed for time, but this time, there must have been a lot of people who wanted to experience something and get small pleasures from it. However, this may also be due to the fact that the demonstration game itself was small, so on the contrary, there were a lot of people.
G-Star 2021 can be awkward. Especially if you have experienced G-Star before. The awkwardness will creep up from the outside of BEXCO and get bigger as you enter, and it will peak when you look between the spacious booths.
But the awkwardness isn’t as bad as you think. This is because you can experience the fun much more leisurely and look around the event in a much more comfortable way. It’s not a G-Star that gets hit by people and goes crazy, it’s a G-Star that you can look around one by one.
And if you look around a bit more, you can find familiar faces one by one amidst the awkwardness. There are cosplay models guarding the booth, the voices of casters resounding, distinctively decorated booths, and, above all, orderly and quiet game fans who ran for G-Star as before.