Gearcraft is back in the UK on a typically soggy, September, Saturday morning but even the British weather can’t dampen on our mood. This time we are about an hour’s drive north of London in Peterborough to visit MineVention UK.
MineVention is a relatively new addition to the Minecraft Convention scene, aimed at the younger gaming audience it is very much youth driven. Originating in Ireland and following successful Conventions and Summer Camps they have decided to bring the MineVention magic over to England. At just £15 for a general admittance ticket it’s also possibly the most reasonable. But the question is was it worth it? OH YES!
This event has a very friendly, intimate feel, almost like meeting up with a group of friends for the day. More than that, it felt like a child’s birthday party, not the dodgy jelly and ice-cream one’s but remember that one friend who’s Mum always managed to throw an awesome party, welcome to MineVention.
The YouTubers embodied this feeling, going above and beyond their already full schedules to meet and make as many people as possible feel special. This is the meet and greet convention, any young gamer’s dream.
Jason Bradbury, host of the Gadget Show, kicked off the event with an enthusiastic bang. There was plenty going on to keep us entertained.
A great selection of YouTubers from Netty, AmyLee and Salems Lady to Tomohawk, AshDubh, Snake Doctor, GizzyGazza and MiniMuka to name but a few were split into four groups, each holding two meet and greet sessions along with a Q&A from a Juliet style balcony. There were Hunger Games(sadly we did not win), a Gaming Bus and a selection of retail stalls. The Jaconi Crafts stall was an interesting twist and something we have never seen before selling handmade Minecraft themed merchandise.
The Amazing Builds of BlockWorksStephen Reid from Immersive Minds gave a truly inspiring talk on the use of gaming and especially Minecraft in Education. He was followed by Wizzard Keen and Dragonz ( fresh from reading their newspapers on the toilet!) who gave a great talk on the development of Wonder Quest. Despite pleas from the audience they gave very little away about season two apart from the fact that they have BlockWorks building the maps, so it goes without saying these will be epic and one to watch out for!
An important aspect of the day was the World Record attempt to have the most ‘Steve’s’ at a convention. Yep that’s right folks Gearcraft has played its part in breaking two world records in the space of a few months !!!
Bearing in mind this is a relatively young convention there were very little downsides to the day. The availability of food was lacking (but this could have been down to the Arena rather than MineVention). The addition of more computers would be a good way forward along with more staged events. We were in the presence of some truly inspiring YouTubers, it would have been great to see them doing what they are best at! Having said this we felt this was a great start for this convention in the UK.
Would we recommend MineVention? YES. The future for this organization is very bright, the heart is in the right place and that’s what counts. This will be a definite on the Gearcraft calendar for next year.