rAge 2014 NAG LAN early attendees

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

rAge Expo 2014 is almost underway and in case you were debating internally whether you should come or not, perhaps some of these “spy shots” will entice you. While going to get my media pass for the weekend, I decided to snap a few photos of things I saw around the expo while it was being set up. It looks like its going to be an absolute ball!

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Matt found this awesome helmet that looks almost identical to the one The Heavy wears in Team Fortress 2. If you’re stuck for a Cosplay outfit and don’t know what to do, go find this treasure inside the nearby Cash Crusaders.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Williams Hunt Randburg parked some delectable cars outside the main entrance, with the head-turning Camaro Cabriolet certainly making a ton of people jealous.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

The LAN was completely empty and, unusually for this time of day, I didn’t see anyone fussing about with last-minute adjustments and fixes. You’ll notice the giant screen hoisted above the LAN – that will be set to show the current download speed, availabla bandwidth and total data usage of the LAN and the other competitive events going on at the same time on the 2Gb/s Fiber line supplied by Internet Solutions. Last year, the LAN alone managed to consume 24PB of download data and around 4.6PB of uploaded data. Insanity.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

IGN’s booth is underneath the press area and IGN Africa staffers will be chatting to a lot of people here and they will have content streamed live to the internet. Be sure to stop by and say “Hello!” to the IGN Africa team. Maybe give them a hug as well.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Sony on one side, Microsoft on the other. Who will win this weekend’s battle to attract the crowds?

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

The main stage sees the biggest change. The main seating area can accommodate more people and there’s a second stand to the left. All in all, it’s about twice the size it was last year. Expect to see some epic game reveals here and some eye-watering stuff happening on this stage. And don’t miss the Cosplay prizegiving on Sunday afternoon.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

NAG’s merchandise stand is ready for action and looking really good. If you want some swag, pick it up here!

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Yes, you can play Mortal Kombat X this weekend. It will be worth every fatality! Definitely NOT family-friendly viewing.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Megarom’s stand tallies up with our early coverage, but I was surprised to see The Crew being set up with racing wheels. This is something I’m dying to play because I couldn’t get into the beta and I want to see how the game performs before passing final judgment. Also, Far Cry 4!

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Dun dun dun DUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUN! Microsoft’s Xbox One stand was still in pieces when I snapped this, but it looks impressive already. A ton of old and new games will be playable on their stand, including FIFA 15 and Forza Horizon 2.

rAge 2014 Nintendo Wii U Splatoon

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Splatoon was already a bit hit among the vendors and early press while we were there and Nintendo’s stand allows for 4v4 matches. Its difficult to master, but really fun!

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

A sneak peek at the NAG Gaming League DOTA 2 AORUS stand. Man, this is going to be fun to watch. This is the first time that DOTA2 has had a stand dedicated to it.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Ever wanted a poster of yourself in The Evil Within or Pro Evolution Soccer? Make a turn here, the results could be hilarious or impressive.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

If you want to check out Ubisoft’s screenings for The Division and Assassin’s Creed Unity, you’ll need to queue here early. Rule #1: be polite to others in the queue.

rAge 2014 Unplug Yourself stand (1)

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

rAge 2014 Unplug Yourself stand (2)

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

In an entirely unexpected turn of events in 2012, Boardgames.co.za managed to wrap up a large amount of floor space for their board games and got a tremendous amount of interest. This year they’re rolling out the red carpet and a new initiative in conjunction with Skycastle (whose stand and table layouts you see above) and Blowfish Entertainment to, effectively, entice gamers to pull the plugg on their consoles and computers for a bit and enjoy good, old-fashioned board games and collectible card games.

rAge 2014 Telkom Do Gaming teaser (1)

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

rAge 2014 Telkom Do Gaming teaser (2)

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

rAge 2014 Telkom Do Gaming teaser (4)

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

rAge 2014 Telkom Do Gaming teaser (5)

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Telkom this year is not only punting their broadband VDSL and LTE wireless technologies, but they’re also pushing the Do Gaming brand further in conjunction with Alienware and Logitech. There are multiple Alienware X51 computers set up to play League of Legends and they are complimented by a Logitech mouse, keyboard and headset. If you’re interested in Telkom’s gaming and home entertainment offerings as well as super-fast wireless internet, make a turn here this weekend.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Taken with a Nokia Lumia 930 with Windows Phone 8.1 Cyan.

Make sure that you also make a turn by the Marvel figurines stand and admire the amazing level of detail that’s gone into these things. Mind-blowing.

So, now that you’ve seen the sneak peek, will you be at rAge Expo this weekend?

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