If you’ve read or heard about Quakecon in years past, you’ve probably heard about NVIDIA’s annual Quakecon launch event. Two years ago, with host Julie Stoffer from the Real World and G4 fame, NVIDIA had a Fear Factor inspired launch event that challenged attendees to compete in grueling challenges to win the latest graphics hardware. Two girls even shaved their heads in front of the audience to win a pair of graphics cards, one gamer ate an entire raw onion, and another danced on stage for over an hour. Last year, NVIDIA’s theme was reality shows and gamers competed in reality-show related challenges to win NVIDIA’s latest hardware.
NVIDIA was back with their Kick-Off Event this year and managed to pull off on of the most fun and entertaining events at this year’s Quakecon. Hosted by NVIDIA’s Director of Public Relations, Derek Perez, on the first day of Quakecon, the event put volunteers from the audience in a series of television game show themed challenges. Gamers were tested on their spelling, their dancing skills, and some even competed to win a date with a Quakecon model. Our favorite event was when gamers were chosen from the audience and asked to trade one of their belongings for a chance to win a prize inside one of three boxes held by the Quakecon girls. Attendees gave up their hats, shoes, and one even their underwear for a chance to win a new graphics card and motherboard setup. One person briefly offered his iPhone for a chance to go on a date with a Quakecon model, but after her firm denial, he rushed off stage. Fortunately, most left the contest better off than they started, even though one gamer in particular left the stage with a $100 NVIDIA Gift Certificate, walking off in his socks.