This past July 13th was the first year of the Empire Game Expo in Albany, NY! This con was put on by the same crew behind the Retro Game Con in Syracuse, and they brought the first Video-Game-centric Con to NY’s Capital Region!
I knew that I absolutely had to make an appearance to this event as soon as I had heard about it since while I do enjoy the Comic Cons around the area, this event was focuses specifically on Gaming. I was able to get quick interviews from some great vendors, a few local game devs doing their thing in the Indie Scene, as well as all three of the event’s Special Guests: Rodney Greenblat, Mela Lee, and Cherami Leigh!
The event itself had a TON of stuff to do with gaming stations taking over the majority of the show floor, including demo stations from the Indie Studios. Going further than that, there was also a stage in main hall where we had special entertainment provided, including musical guests Geek Musica and Super Thrash Brothers.
Of course, I was not able to snag audio from everyone that I spoke to, but I was able to snag business cards from them and their contact info is listed below:
Vendors and More!
- The Bard and Baker: https://www.bardandbaker.com/
- Tech Valley Game Space: https://www.techvalleygamespace.com/
- Epic of Dreams: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCxmbrqGt2mI6ajtdYbfBhMA
- Singularity Game Studios: https://www.singularitygamestudios.com
- Clarion Games: https://www.clariongamestudios.com/
- Relic Star Games: https://twitter.com/relicstargames
- Bork Bork Studios: https://twitter.com/borkborkstudios?lang=en
- Luna TK: https://twitter.com/lunat93
- Enigmatic Escapes: http://www.limeshirtstudios.com/
- Nekumore Studios: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC9t3oWxKxHVmReZ4BEwOqHg
- Console Yourself Soap: https://www.etsy.com/shop/ConsoleYourselfSoap
- Queenship Game Studio: https://www.twitter.com/QueenshipGames
- Swiss Army Scorpion: https://www.SwissArmyScorpion.com
- Moth Child Cosplay: https://mothchildcc.wixsite.com/cosplay
- Ye-Old Dicey Goods: https://www.instagram.com/yeolddiceygoods
- Rumblecade Games: http://www.rumblecade.com/
- Super Thrash Brothers: https://www.reverbnation.com/superthrashbros
- Leonard Herman (The Game Scholar): http://www.rolentapress.com/
- Rodney Greenblat
- Mela Lee
- Website: https://www.melalee.com/
- IMDB: https://www.imdb.com/name/nm2323443/
- Cherami Leigh
- Website: https://twitter.com/CheramiLeigh (Well, at least this is what IMDB tells me is her “Official”!)
- IMDB: https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0473873/
Development and Growth
For myself, this was a huge day for me. I am finally getting to the point where I am being recognized at conventions and events by the vendors, artists, and the few game devs that I have had the privilege of meeting. I am still far, oh so far, from being an “influencer” at any measurable level, but I am slowly gaining getting there. While the majority of this work is, of course, for the betterment of the podcast, I also have the additional goal and motive of establishing the podcast as a platform for promoting literacy, STEM, and the Arts within my own local community and beyond. Hopefully I am impressing the right people and will be invited play a more active role in similar events in the area.
Also, this was the first time I was able to speak with multiple Special Guests! It has taken me quite awhile, but I am finally getting more confident in speaking with the celebrity and media guests at events. I am basically an introvert that is forcing himself to be an extrovert, so speaking to people on the fly has been a bit difficult. I will say that this event was easier for me since each of the guests were involved in video games as opposed to strictly acting or comic books. But hey, I will take any advantage I can get! So one more big THANK YOU to Rodney (I plan on visiting your store soon!), Mela (#YouAreAMiracle #BeautifulDisasters), and Cherami (SMASH THE SYSTEM!) for being an absolute delight to talk to!
At this point, one of my goals is to start being on Panels or perhaps becoming a Panel Moderator. Having spent enough time in the soul crushing corporate world, I have a healthy understanding of “Business gotta Business” and I recognize my place as (currently) a non-player in the local community. Still, I feel that I bring a certain amount of professionalism to my conversations and interviews, both in front of and behind the microphone. I feel that my personal style is more formal than the typical “Gamer Bro” but more casual than a typical newscaster. I am not sure if that is a demographic that is in demand, but that’s how I roll! I am still working angles, and perhaps something will snag some traction.
I have also commissioned a YouTube intro to be created, and I would like to start using it to create 5min vids for what I will call, “Gamer U: Making Sure You’re Not a Newb!“. I plan on my initial vids to be basic Destiny Lore (Ahem, Books of Sorrow) and the occasional 5min explanations of Gamer/Geek topics. I already have a full Introduction to RPGs collection planned, but of course my first attempt at it was excessively long. My goal for this would be to introduce some basic concepts for those looking to get into gaming, and then send them off to learn through experience. Don’t worry, dying is part of the game! Potential Tagline: “Sit Down, Shut Up, and you might learn something!”
Growth has been slow, but it is still a positive slope! Unfortunately, presenting a professional appearance is expensive even at the amateur level, such as this website, my PodBean account, and general Content Creator expenses. To help supplement my dayjob income and be able to afford better equipment, I will be starting up a Patreon. I am not sure how many tiers there will be, but right now I am only planning on $1/month as that is about how often I produce an episode. I mean, if you WANT to pledge more, who am I to deny a supporter their desires, amiright?
Until Next Time!
Thanks to all that made time for me to speak with them at the first Empire Game Expo!