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During Day one of Call of Duty XP, in the huge sound stage the crowd boo’d Kanye West’s name. It was reported that 6000 people came to the event and many of them cheered for Dropkick Murphys just a moment earlier. You get the picture of the crowd demographics. People of color were plentiful, although the skin tone median was on the lighter side. Shooting guns military style and hip hop sounds like an incongruent match. The history of cinema repeats in some words or another, “there’s no place in the army for a black man”. Perhaps that changed recently, yet at “XP”, Kanye still had a well packed crowd of the mostly lighter skinned fans and they were into it. Perhaps it was paying the $150 meant stick around and watch one of the most famous musician perform, or maybe it was a way to appease a crowd who paid $150, and wouldn’t be satisfied with Dropkick Murphys. Isn’t that a $15 concert? I’d think to have Kanye and his troupe perform would be a profit breaker. 6000 x $150? = $900k. There’s plenty of merch and expensive Burger Town food.
I’m not making a point that’s good or bad about Kanye West. He’s clearly a star, but it seemed like the wrong call. The folks who were super into it… did they even pay? I doubt it, and there they were at the concert in the front. The right act? A heavy rocking band. Metallica, Linkin Park or Slayer sound about right. It should be an act that military folks and dudes who’d wear an Affliction shirt. A band that’ll appease the fans of a military shooter game of multiple ages. Alas, it was Kanye, a strange choice to end a two day event of paint ball, guns, testosterone, zip lining and Jeeps.
These folks work for the company who’s part of the costume design for the games. They’re not exactly true cosplayers.
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Is this the real dude from the commercials? It looks just like him and he’s not that tall. Burger Town refers to a map in one of the games, and the actual burgers were expensive. $12! There’s a menu photo in the set below! The event began with a traffic jam, it was best to park and walk rather than try to get into the lots. Thousands came out for the opening talk by the Activision president, the Jeep guy and the developers, which explains the future game, Modern Warfare 3. There’s other sites more geared for the details, but the event itself, is huge. It’s spread out, from indoor displays of guns to outdoor zip lines, paint balling, Jeep rides, displays of huge military trucks, food places, a shop, and a journalist hangout which has free food. Yes there’s activities, sumo suits, game tournaments, and more. Really, it’s an event geared for the hardcore dude fan, but at the same time, isn’t quite perfect. I’d add a few more things for the less hardcore. Maybe it needs to intersect more with culture that we all live in, rather than trying to recreate the fantasy world. I’m not quite sure, but perhaps that’s something else to think about. Yes, I’d have liked other things aside just the Modern Warfare games, maybe something that’s not electronic and not paint ball. Yet, it’s still fun and you can get a free Elite package as part of the swag bag. The one bad thing, looooong lines. Can you wait an hour to two or more to zip line? I overhead that was the wait time, and that line wasn’t too long. If you’re there from 10-10, why not, waiting in line is the break time, right? It’s a great event, and if it’s annual, this will be a hit, it can only grow.
This immensely popular game is only going to grow with the next installment. Modern Warfare 3 looks like a blockbuster in the making. The current version, Black Ops is already the most popular game ever in terms of sales, and having an event like this in a sound stage with journalists from all over the world makes sense. Modern Warfare and Call of Duty is huge.