Meet Astarion and Lae’zel at the Insomnia Gaming Festival this weekend

The latest iteration of Insomnia71 (or Insomnia the Gaming Festival, for its official title) descends on the NEC Arena in Birmingham 8 September. The three-day event that crams in videogames, esports, indie games, board games, VR games, live-action experiences, all the games you can imagine, has been running since 1999, and in 2023 it’s showing no signs of slowing.

To whet your gaming appetite, here’s what you can look forward to at Insomnia71, along with the opportunity to win a pair of day tickets to the show on Sunday just by filling in this form

Attendees will get to warm up for the latest King of Iron Fist Tournament by going hands-on with TEKKEN 8, the latest iteration of Bandai Namco’s legendary fighting series. For something a little more casual, there’ll be playable sessions for co-op/party games Moving Out 2 and the upcoming Headbangers Rhythm Royale (think Fall Guys meets Rock Band), along with the usual cornucopia of multiplayer-friendly games going back through the generations.

cosplay at the Insomnia Gaming Festival

(Image credit: Insomnia)

As usual, the festival will be glimmering with the god-tier efforts of cosplayers, with competitions each day to pick out the greatest among them. And with the hearty musk of Dungeons & Dragons in the air off the back of Baldur’s Gate 3’s success, Session Zero is hosting an immersive live Dungeons & Dragons experience.

Speaking of Baldur’s Gate 3, you’ll get a chance to meet Neil Newbon and Devora Wilde, the voice talents behind the game’s beloved companions Astarion and Lae’zel (we hear that Neil’s just as charming as his vampiric alter-ego, while Devora is much more chill than her no-nonsense Githyanki warrior). Final Fantasy 16’s Ben Starr, who voiced the game’s hero Clive Rosfield, will be making an appearance too, as well the vocal talents behind two of the most popular heroes from Apex Legends and League of Legends, Elle Newlands (Horizon) and Faya Mata (Lulu).

On the esports front, Nintendo will be hosting the Splatoon 3 European Championship UK & Ireland finals right there on the big Insomnia Stage. There will also be the Valorant iSeries Challenge and Women’s Cup, as well as iSeries Opens for Rocket League, League of Legends, and Team Fortress 2. Finally, Valve’s classic shooter Counter-Strike returns to the show, as domestic teams compete for €15,000 and a precious spot in the National Championships EPL Season 19 EU Pre-Qualifier.

gamers competing at the Insomnia Gaming Festival

(Image credit: Insomnia)

Away from the big stages, you can feast your eyes on the latest gaming tech and PC builds presented by hardware giants Intel, Asus, MSI, Razer, and more, and test your mettle in one of this year’s mini-tournaments, open for all to attend.

There really is too much happening this year to list off, so we’ll stop prattling on. Want to come along? It’s not too late to buy tickets at the official site, and (again) take a minute to fill out this form for your chance to win one of five pairs of day tickets for the Sunday. 

See you on the show floor!

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