Salute, of course.
Every year at Salute, people ask why it’s only a one-day show and not the whole weekend. It’s one of those age-old questions that seems to have no answer. This year the mutterings seemed to be particularly strident, and over the last few days I’ve heard this question from many gamers and quite a few traders too. So, I’ve been thinking; would it actually be an improvement, and is it possible anyway?
Firstly, is it possible? Whilst I don’t know the exact sums involved, I do know that it’s not going to be cheap to run the event for another day. However, the traders and customers already manage to cover those costs for one and a half days (including friday set up time), so it doesn’t sound too implausible. In fact, the actual cost is immaterial. What really matters is whether enough gamers would go (back) on the sunday and spend their pennies with the traders to make the traders want to invest their pennies in being there in the first place. I think they would.
The reason why I would be fairly confident is mainly down to the size of the thing, but also to the fact that not everyone can get there on saturday. Being open another day accesses a group of potential gamers who otherwise could not go or think it too far for a one day event. On exactly that theme it might also encourage more continental gamers to make the trip as it would be more of an occasion.
To go back to the size of the event, it is so big that most attendees don’t manage to see everything in one day. People tend to go with some particular companies, games or events in mind and focus on them. I suspect that the smaller and less well known traders in particular suffer for this reason because they are less likely to be something you’re going to see specifically, and more likely to be that hidden gem, suddenly discovered. If the event was open for two days then visitors would be able to see what they came for and still have time explore the rest of the demo games and stands at their leisure. At present, if you take part in a participation game or two you’ll almost certainly not see half the hall.
I’ll be the first to admit that this is conjecture based on scuttlebutt and cogitation rather than hard facts, so if anyone has some actual evidence either way I’d be intrigued to hear it. I’ve spoken to some of you offline on this topic and haven’t wanted to put words into your mouths, but feel free to comment as always.
At the end of the day the Warlords run a great event and it’s down to them to organise it as they see fit. I just think that their very success at this argues for an extra day so that we can appreciate the fruits of all their hard work.