(An email will be going out soon to all active customers, but we wanted to let our community know via the forums as well. Please help us spread the word by sharing with people in game, as well, if you know of friends who may be interested in attending.)
A few weeks back we began talking about a gaming event coming in June called the Looking for Group Expo. At that time we were excited about the event because Istaria had been among the games listed as nominees for "Indie Game of the Year", and we asked that you vote for Istaria in that competition. And vote you did! While we won't know the results of the vote until the event itself in June, right now we have some even more exciting news to share with you.
Virtrium team members have been invited to attend the event. In fact, Virtirum's producer and designer, "Velea" , will be among the list of featured speakers at the event! Anyone attending will have a chance to talk with Velea about Istaria, both past present and future, at the 10 am "Developer Session" on Saturday, June 26th. Her talk will focus on how Virtrium has changed the game over the last two years, but an open-ended question session will follow the talk.
And if this weren't enough, we've also been given ten (10) VIP Passes to give to our fans so that they can attend the event free of charge! So starting today, anyone interested in attending the event should submit a ticket to us at Support Website with the subject "Looking for Group Expo Pass", under the category "Looking For Group Expo". Passes will be given out on a "first come, first served" basis to anyone with an active, paid subscription to the game. Only one pass per person will be given out in order to allow as many people as possible to attend the event; multiple subscriptions will not entitle someone to multiple passes. We will notify winners of the passes starting on June 4th. Winners will then have until June 11th to submit confirmation of their travel plans (a copy of an itinerary attached to the support ticket is fine) for us to reserve the pass. Should we not receive such confirmation by June 11th, we'll begin contacting those who submitted the 11th ticket, etc, until all passes are given out.
Registration for the event continues and if you are interested, you can register at http://lfgexpo.com/registration.aspx. Some of the other highlights for the event are a costume contest, a dance contest and an impressionist contest, all to be held at the event. And there are pre-event contests that I just KNOW our community members have the skills to win! Check out all the contests at http://lfgexpo.com/contests.aspx.
We'd also like to hear from you even if you won't be able to attend the event but have questions about Istaria. If there is something you've just been dying to ask about how a game like Istaria is made, this is your chance to "peel back the curtain" and see. While we won't answer any questions in advance of the event, we will do our best to make the planned presentation available sometime after the event, either on our own website or on the lfgexpo.com website. Please note that not all questions will be answered at the event due to limited time. However, if you submit a question to us, we'll do our best to respond. You can submit your questions to us by also going to our support website, and opening a ticket with the subject line "LFG Expo Question". We've created a special category for "Looking For Group Expo" items that you can use as well.
We're looking forward to having a chance to meet and greet Istarians face to face, as well as introduce Istaria to MMO players from across the country, and even around the world!
Hope to see you in June!