The fourth edition of Super! BitCon, billed as Oklahoma’s largest gaming expo, returns April 29-30 to Oklahoma Expo Hall, 3213 Wichita Walk, at State Fair Park. Organizers expect the two-day event to draw 4,000-5,000 gamers of all ages. This year, Super! BitCon features 150 exhibitors, an almost 11 percent increase over last year, said event co-founder B.C. Phillips. Tabletop, card game and video game developers will have a larger presence.
Super! BitCon’s prime draw this year is guest of honor Marc Summers. Convention guests might recognize The Food Network host and producer as host of Nickelodeon’s Double Dare, which premiered on the children’s entertainment network in 1986. He will sign autographs both days and participate in an onstage interview about his career. Prior to the interview, he’s scheduled to make a surprise appearance somewhere at the expo, Phillips said.
There will be two raffles involving Summers — one allows a lucky guest to participate in a Double Dare-inspired challenge with the star, and the second is an opportunity to break free from a mobile escape room with him.
Tickets for both raffles are $5, and proceeds benefit the nonprofit Hotdogs For the Homeless.
Last year’s Super! BitCon guest of honor and producer, writer and host of Nickelodeon’s Nick Arcade Phil Moore will join Summers in the panel discussion.
“So it will be not only about Marc and his experiences, his career, but it will give them an opportunity to shoot the breeze about their Nickelodeon days and what it was like to be there,” Phillips said, “slimings and all that stuff.”
Featured event guests also include Dan and Terry Diebold, the father-and-son owners of the only known working Nintendo PlayStation prototype in the world. A fierce competition and scandal erupted in the mid- and late ’80s when Sony (before the company became a gaming powerhouse) attempted to enter the video console market.
It recruited Nintendo to develop Super NES CD-ROM prototypes that accepted game cartridges and CD-ROMs and included both Sony and Nintendo logos. It also featured a Super Nintendo-esque controller that carried a PlayStation logo.
The partnership didn’t last. Nintendo split and announced a partnership with Sony industry rival Philips.
One prototype found its way into the hands of the Diebolds via auction. They did not know what they owned until several years later, when they learned about it on Reddit.
“Their life has been a whirlwind ever since,” Phillips said. “It’s a piece of history.”
The Diebolds also will participate in a panel discussion about their experiences and boot up the console.
Many traditions, including a charity bazaar, games and giveaways and the popular scavenger hunt, return to Super! BitCon this year.
Phillips credits part of Super! BitCon’s success to fan and vendor feedback. He said he thinks this edition will be the best yet.
“We tried to pare it down to the essentials of what people like to do, and I think we’ve got there this year,” he said.
10 a.m.-6 p.m. April 29 and 11 a.m.-5 p.m. April 30
Oklahoma Expo Hall
State Fair Park 3213 Wichita Walk
Print headline: Super spree, Oklahoma’s largest gaming expo returns to OKC April 29-30.