GeForce LAN 6, a massive LAN party, was hosted on a US aircraft carrier and sponsored by a number of top PC manufacturers, including Digital Storm
GeForce LAN is a 48-hour LAN party hosted by NVIDIA, and this year it was held on the USS Hornet aircraft carrier in Alameda, California. Digital Storm, a manufacturer of high-end gaming PCs, was one of the sponsors of the event and exhibited many of its latest products.
Over the two-day period, the aircraft carrier hosted a Bring Your Own Computer (BYOC) area, a 64-PC tournament, many exhibits and contests, as well as stage presentations and prize giveaways. This was the 6th annual event, and the first LAN party ever to be held on an aircraft carrier. Exhibits were open most of the day between Friday and Sunday, and tournaments and freeplay games were held at different times throughout the event.
The USS Hornet Museum also made 400 bunks available for liveboards during the event. This gave some participants the chance to experience what it’s like to spend a night in the sailor’s quarters, where things can get a little crowded. It was only available to the participants who purchased a BYOC and BYOC L33T tickets, and there was an added cost of $50.
The event was set up with the LAN on one side of the carrier and most of the exhibitors like Digital Storm Online setting up on the other. Participants had the option to live aboard the Hornet or stay in many of the nearby hotels. For the players who preferred a little more privacy, this was the preferred option. The racks on a ship are packed tightly together, and privacy is at a premium.
There were some definitely logistical challenges to the event, with hundreds of people attempting to load their gaming computers onto an aircraft carrier all at once. Most of the serious gamers at this event tend to forgo the smaller, more portable laptops in favor of the much larger gaming PCs, which provide more power for the money and are much easier to upgrade. They do, however, make it more difficult to load on and off the carrier.
Once they had their computers set up, though, the BYOC section of the LAN party was open continuously, from 3:00 PM on Friday to 3:00 PM on Sunday. This area was the focus of higher security, and equipment could only be brought in or removed at certain times of the day, to help ensure the safety of so much personal property.
The event offered plenty of activities for both casual and competitive PC gamers, and the exhibitors and sponsors that took part had the opportunity to interact with their customers and even tease the release of different products. While it’s unknown if the next event will be held on an aircraft carrier, there will be many future events that bring both gamers and manufacturers together.