It's that time of the year again. No, I'm not talking about Christmas - that Christian holiday where you find out that you have fifteen new relatives who all want something from you. I'm talking about a much happier, geekier event: the E-Sports and Gaming Summit!

Much less money-consuming and religious than Christmas, ESGS 2016 is set to bring gamers of different genres and platforms together to celebrate in a three-day event this October 28-30, 2016. Located at Function Halls 1-3 in the SMX Convention Center of the SM Mall of Asia, this year's occasion will have a lot in store for gamers both naughty and nice. Try beating that, Santa Claus.

Hosted by Gariath Conepts and presented by PLDT Home Fibr, ESGS will be home to a myriad of developers, publishers, and of course, gamers who haven't showered while waiting in line. Here's a lowdown of the things that will make this event bigger than that one annual holiday which involves a fat man, flying mammals, and a number of innocent trees which were needlessly cut down for our amusement:

The big names in gaming will be there

What's an event without celebrities?

Whereas other industries would have real-life celebrities such as Mike Myers and Ricky Martin, ESGS 2016 is bringing some of gaming's biggest names to show off their products.

Bandai Namco will be hosting a Tekken 7 tournament, the winners of which will qualify for a spot in the King of Iron Fist Tournament 2016. Super Evil Megacorp, a California-based development team with members who worked previously at companies such as Rockstar Games and EA, will also be holding a tournament for their mobile MOBA game Vainglory.

If that wasn't enough, MSI will also be conducting a rig modders competition that lets computer enthusiasts show just how good they are at tearing stuff apart to make things look cooler. Apart from cutthroat competition, publishers such as Capcom, Ubisoft, and Sony will also be there to feature playable demos of their games.

Koji Igarashi will make an appearance

Okay, so maybe there are a couple of real-life celebrities in the gaming community.

Koji Igarashi (also known as IGA) was the assistant director of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night and producer on some of the succeeding titles in the franchise. He won't make an appearance at ESGS 2016 just to look pretty and sign autographs though; he'll be there to show off the results of his new game which was successfully crowdfunded on Kickstarter last year.

Titled Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night, this metroidvania game by Inti Creates seeks to become Castlevania's spiritual successor and tells the story of an orphan girl named Miriam as she tries to find a cure to a curse that is slowly crystalizing her body. The game is set to be released in 2018 so if you want to get a look at it two years before it even goes public, then now's your chance.

There's going to be a Brawl Fest

No, not an actual brawl fest; I highly doubt that security would allow that (or that people who attend ESGS are capable of actual physical violence).   

Instead of taking it outside, some of the country's biggest fighting game communities will be competing in a number of titles that have their characters constantly trying to make the other one uglier by connecting their fists and feet with the other's face.

Teams from Cosmic Gorgons, Imperium, Pinoy PlayStation, and Playbook will be duking it out with their virtual mitts in games of Street Fighter V, Mortal Kombat XL, Super Smash Bros., and a lot of other games that test people's patience, memory, and friendships.

Play dress-up in a cosplay competition

What gaming or anime event would be complete without people dressed in such a way that mothers would tell their children to avert their eyes and complete their education so that they can get a job? None, that's what.

With that in mind, Anime Alliance will be hosting two events: one on Saturday, October 29, which involves a costrip where cosplayers roam around the area getting their pictures taken as they win prizes, and one on Sunday, October 30, where the best cosplayers are showcased and stand a chance of winning cash prizes.

With all that money at stake, dressing up as a sexy male character doesn't seem that bad of an idea. Actually, forget I said that there was a cosplay competition altogether; I'd want to win that money for myself so that I can get that Sailor Moon costume I've always wanted as a kid.

Look to the Indie Arena for independent titles

If you're too hipster for the big names in gaming, then maybe the Indie Arena might tickle your underground music and fedora-wearing tastes.

Featuring a number of the Philippines' best game developers as well as some overseas talents, this area will let you experience games that are both in-development as well as completed. You'll even get the chance to brag to your friends that you played a game before it was released. What could be more hipster than that?

Learn about the gaming industry in the Philippines at Gamefest 2016

Speaking of local indie publishers, ESGS will host a special event that talks about gaming and IT as a business.

Handled by the Game Developers Association of the Philippines (GDAP) and Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), Gamefest 2016 will help aspiring game developers and artists understand the situation of gaming as an industry within the country and guide them on their path to creating more weird games that people are too ashamed to admit that they like.

Those are just a few of the things that will be in store for this gigantic three-day event. With the first day's ticket priced at Php 140 and the succeeding days entrance fee at Php 165 per day, you can purchase your passes to a weekend full of Christmas-defeating video games at any SM Ticket outlet. We'll see you there!

About the author: Carlos Zotomayor

Zoto can see your underpants. Mmm... tasteful.

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