Long-time Wargaming fans know Ola from her many appearances on the WargamingTV channel. As our resident video presenter, Ola always goes where the action is. It’s therefore only natural that she came down to our Wargaming booth at gamescom in Cologne to report live from the scene on all the happenings from the convention. We caught up with her for a private interview to find out what she thinks about the latest developments in the Wargaming universe, and what she plays when she’s not jetting around the world to her next assignment.
Hello Ola. Thank you for finding time for us. First off, can you tell us what your official mission is here at gamescom?
Of course. I’m here first and foremost to be the presenter for a fun video report that will detail all the activity in and around our Wargaming stand and gamescom in general. There are only so many tickets available and naturally not everybody can come. We’re here with our video team to report back for them and give everybody at home an opportunity to experience gamescom through our work. In the end, our report will go out to all the fans all around the world, but it also serves to inform the many colleagues from all other parts of the world who are working in Wargaming offices far away. Since by now, Wargaming has become truly global, we’re also reporting for all our co-workers in St. Petersburg, South Korea, Australia or the United States for example.
|Ola visited gamescom to cover the event for our own WargamingTV channel.|
What do you think about our gamescom booth?
This year our booth features a very interesting visual design. The layout allows for a lot of activity at the same time, which is very much to the liking of the fans. The second level with the platform for eSports is very cool and you have a great view on the crowd below or a different perspective on the stage.
We upgraded our program from last year and brought in some new games as well. The stand for World of Tanks XBOX 360 Edition is a gamescom-first and represents a premiere for players in Europe. In addition to that, it’s always great to see how many people queue up to play the latest versions of World of Tanks or World of Warplanes, which are obviously also featured here.
In terms of entertainment, we scaled up too. The acrobatics show that our dancers put on is stunning. The booth always fills to the rafters as soon as the girls step on stage.
All in all it’s a bigger and better booth in every regard. People should come see it.
You go to a lot of conventions for us. Do you find that gamescom has grown in popularity over the years? How does it compare to other events worldwide?
Yes, I definitely think that gamescom has become more popular. We haven’t seen the official numbers yet, but I’m willing to bet that there will be well over 300,000 people who will have visited gamescom this year by the end of the convention.
The crowds have become bigger and are also more demanding now. The bigger stands now have to cater to a bigger amount of players. There are more stations to play and more side-activities as well. In terms of what’s presented on stage, I think that exhibitors have upped up their program a lot. Visitors get to see real shows now, whether it’s live play, demos, or more elaborate events such as our dance show or a whole concert that Blizzard organised on stage for example.
In comparison to the E3, I think that gamescom has now surpassed it. In Cologne the entire fair ground is bigger, with stands that are more spread out and further apart from each other. Overall I think that gamescom is clearly up and coming.
What is the most memorable thing for you that you have seen at this year’s gamescom?
The stand for Castlevania was crazy! People were lying in sort of tombs with TVs mounted on top of them so that they could play the game in a horizontal position. I thought that was pretty original (and probably very relaxing too after you’ve walked miles through the convention halls before).
As well as that I liked the many cosplay events all around. It’s always fun to see what costumes people come up with and how much time and effort they put into creating these outfits.
What impressed me a lot was also the size of the Blizzard stand and the booth of Electronic Arts. Both seem to be gigantic and take up about half the size of an entire hall.
There are a lot of Wargaming titles that have been announced recently. Which one are you most excited for?
Right now it has to be World of Warplanes. I’m excited to see how it will interact with World of Tanks and how the Unified Premium system will impact things. Personally, so far I’m more of a World of Tanks player, so I’m happy to hear that the development of it continues and that we keep adding new angles to it, like the upgraded Clan Wars. For me it’s a little too time-consuming to get into that, but I’m curious to see how things will turn out once we roll out Clan Wars to World of Warplanes as well.
I also love World of Tanks Generals right now. It’s a great pastime and super fun to play casually at work when I have a spare moment. To me it’s perfect for this purpose because it’s simple, yet interesting and very easy to learn.
When you don’t play Wargaming titles, which games do you enjoy to play?
I play a lot of XCOM, Skyrim and I’m also a huge Need for Speed fan. I’ve played all of the latest installments and get back to it regularly. In terms of MMO’s I recently discovered League of Legends and have started to play it a little. I like the sad look of the Amumu champion. It’s my favourite character. However, I’m not very good at it. Unlike World of Tanks, the game requires a lot of clicking all the time, which just gets exhausting for me after a while. (laughs)
Two new video presenters have joined the international Wargaming family over the last year. How do you feel about the ‘competition’?
(laughs) Well, it’s not exactly competition! We all have different tasks and cater to specific audiences around the globe. Asya is in charge of videos for the Russian World of Tanks community. Pico Mause covers all the news for the US market. I am more responsible for videos about global Wargaming news that highlight the activities of the company and less a particular game. So everyone has their own little niche. We don’t see each other as competitors at all!
Ola, thank you very much for your time.
No problem. It was my pleasure. Poka Poka!