EUROPE – The Minecon 2015 event at Excel London last weekend attracted 10,000 fans of the Minecraft video game.
The convention saw Minecraft’s coding team talk about future features of the game.
The annual convention began in 2010 in Washington and attracted just 50 people.
Game developer and publisher Mojang has since grown the event, from attracting 200 fans in 2011 to Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas and then 4,500 people for Minecon 2012, in Disneyland Park, Paris.
By the time of the 2013 edition in Orlando, Florida, attendance was up to 7,500. There has since been an 18-month hiatus, during which time the game has sold 70m copies and Mojang itself was sold to Microsoft for $2.5bn (£1.6bn).
“It’s impossible for us to have an event big enough that our entire community can attend, but even to have 10,000 people who really care what we’re about, and to meet and talk to them in real life, is really special,” said Vu Bui, Mojang chief operating officer.
The attendance sets a Guinness world record for an event dedicated to one video game.
This year’s Minecon included a ‘speedrun’ competition that will allow players to navigate a Minecraft game map the fastest.
Microsoft also gave out ‘golden tickets’ to a controlled number of fans, allowing them to try the Minecraft version that is being developed for the Hololens augmented reality headset.
The convention drew attendees from more than 73 countries and gaming and event services company Multiplay worked with event company mclcreate to deliver the two-day event.
Online video streaming helped the proceedings reach a further three million viewers worldwide, with viewers tuning in via YouTube, Xbox Live and Twitch.
Tim Spencer, managing director at mclcreate, said: “This was a remarkable event on many levels. The combination of live engagement and online streaming was particularly exciting, and points to the future of events.
“Some of these gamers are only 10 to 16 years old but they demand the spectacular. So we had to push the boat out with really slick technology and production.”
The agency handled lighting the main features in the expo that sprawled over 18 halls and also assembled a 10,000-seater main stage area, two 1,000-seater stages and two 500-seater stages alongside the tournament stage and raised studio.