This year’s Essen SPIEL may have yet to start, but it has already broken some records. It will be the biggest edition of the legendary convention, with the highest exhibitor attendance to date.
While gearing up for the upcoming gaming convention that gathers visitors and publishers from all over the world, organizers of Essen SPIEL revealed plans for the new layout as well as how big the convention will actually be.
SPIEL ‘23 will take up 32,400 square meters (348,750 square feet) across six halls of the Essen Messe. Visitors will be able to explore more than 1,500 new tabletop games from 850 exhibitors. As usual, the publisher booths will be the place to both try and buy those games, alongside older classics that you might’ve missed.
Since the convention is now under different management, the concept will also be changing slightly. Luckily, we got an updated map so you can see where everything will be happening:
This year, each hall will be dedicated to different types of games. In Hall 3, the biggest of them all, you’ll find “expert” games and everything a connoisseur board gamer might expect to find and play. Halls 2, 4, 5, and 6 will be the place for family games and other lighter fare. Those will be the places to be if you’re just beginning with board games and looking for some games with simpler rules.
Lastly, Hall 1 will hold everything else. From RPGs to trading card games, and also wargames like Warhammer 40k, this hall will have every type of hobby game under one roof. Furthermore, artists will have their own space in Hall 5, while in Hall 4 you’ll be able to try prototypes and see upcoming Kickstarter games. To navigate all this, organizers will soon publish a mobile app that will be a perfect companion throughout all four days of SPIEL.
In 2019, Spiel had a record-breaking attendance of 209,000 visitors over four days. Although last year’s edition wasn’t even near that (at 147,000 visitors), chances are Spiel ‘23 might break another record this October. This year’s SPIEL starts on October 5 and runs throughout October 9. Of course, your favorite gaming boars will be there to bring you all the latest news and previews of the hottest board games.