The Tokyo Game Show, one of the largest gaming events in the world, has had its general outline for the Spring 2001 show announced today by the Computer Entertainment Software Association (CESA). The show will be held for three days (March 30 to April 1), from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM each day. Before 12:30 PM on March 30, however, the general public will not be allowed to enter the convention hall without a special pass or an involvement in the industry.
This particular Tokyo Game Show is expected to be the biggest yet, featuring a keynote speech from Bill Gates on March 30. The exact details of this speech are currently unknown, but it is probable that he will discuss Microsoft's upcoming gaming system, the Xbox, which is scheduled to release in North America and Japan this fall. As of this writing, forty-five companies have signed up to display their products, including such well-known names as Capcom, Enterbrain, Koei, Konami, Microsoft, Namco, Sony, and Square. Absent from the list are Nintendo, who is still undecided about attending, and Sega and Enix, who have decided to skip the event entirely. This makes the second year in a row Sega has not attended the event.
The theme of the Tokyo Game Show 2001 Spring is "Games Open the Way to the Entertainment of the 21st Century," making a reference to games' recent influence on other entertainment media, such as movies or television. Advance tickets to the show, which will be held at Makuhari Masse in Chiba, will be available starting February 10 for 1000 yen. Tickets may also be purchased at the door for 1200 yen, and Elementary-school aged children and younger will be admitted for free. Stay tuned to RPGamer for more Tokyo Game Show 2001 Spring news as it comes in.