At the end of February, just between the COVID 19 scare and immediate closure of businesses, Las Vegas managed to squeeze in a gaming convention known as LVL UP EXPO. It took us a bit to work through all the images and experiences we had at this convention but as our thoughts are NOW in order let’s share with you what we LIKED and DISLIKED about this event!
What We LIKED
LVL UP EXPO is held annually at the Las Vegas Convention Center in, you guessed it, Las Vegas, Nevada! This event focuses on gaming of all types (table top, pc, MMORPG, tournament, card, arcade, console, etc.) and anime (there were A LOT of anime themed vendors). In addition to virtual gaming there were also robotic championships (battle droids) AND wrestling (I know…odd, but it was there). Here is what we found to be positive aspects of this convention…
- Transportation on the Monorail – Quick, Cheap, Easy and Accessible.
- Line and Access Control for Badges – While there was a LONG line it only took MINUTES to get through and the staff were VERY helpful.
- Game Variety – There were huge swaths of gaming that could accommodate dozens to hundreds of gamers with ease.
- Programming – Albeit nominal, there were quality panels in the program with wonderful timing.
- Guests – This convention packed a PUNCH with voice actresses/actors and tournament gaming champions!
- Tournaments – There were “Quests” and “Championships” of all varieties from Pokemon Go challenges to LOL and Overwatch team battles!
What We DISLIKED
Every convention has its faults. Some have issues with Line and Access while others are stifled by location drama. LVL UP EXPO had few issues but there were a couple things we think could be improved upon…
- Vendor Layout – There were A LOT of vendors at this event. This is great for variety but the alleys were laid out in an odd fashion. Especially when it came to the ever popular Wild Bill’s Soda booth…there were DOZENS of people in line for that vendor and it clogged up a good 1/3 of the left side of the exhibitor hall.
- Wrestling – While we have nothing against wrestling we do find it troublesome when the ring is IN THE MIDDLE of the exhibitor hall. This position made navigation around that area, like Wild Bill’s, VERY difficult. It was also loud, distracting and a bit dangerous to have in such an open space.
- Cosplay – Now, I LOVE Cosplay but this event had VERY little of it which honestly surprised me. Those cosplayers that we found were far and few between. We think scheduled meetups would solve this problem.
- Hours of Operation – This was the STRANGEST part of this convention. Their hours were VERY limited (like 8 hours tops a day). Most gaming conventions we have attended are open from 10 AM to Midnight so to have 8 hours or less to explore the venue was a bit disheartening.
Complaints aside, we did enjoy ourselves at this event and we HIGHLY recommend you visit at least once. Be sure to check out their plans for 2021 here: https://lvlupexpo.com/
Photos by: https://www.facebook.com/kincartphotography/