New Zealand is prima facie not the first place one would think of when referring to popular culture. Grand metropolises like London and New York are traditionally the chief focus of such movements. But at the time of changes such as the one we live in, the axis switches its position to include more than just conventional locations.
As an example, mainstream culture icon Harry Potter has as a concept dipped its toe in different waters. From video games to means of transportation, by popular demand his face is now plastered on every corner of the planet. As a consequence, the rising phenomenon can be observed in almost every craft out there, so let the games begin. See what we did here?
Once merely a relaxing hobby, games have become an infallible segment of human lives in the past few years. This kind of entertainment has transformed into a hybrid that engulfs diverse fields of economy and essentially, everyday existence.
Wherever we turn, there is a trace that games have left through interlacing with other industries. Perhaps you have not noticed it, so we are here to open your eyes.
From a Faraway Land…
Going back to the early 2000’s, we saw the Lord of the Rings trilogy filmed in various locations in New Zealand. Soon after, an innovative slot creator launched a land-based casino slot machine inspired by the Middle-Earth legend. This way, we are witnesses to a never-before-seen morphing of two trades. As a result, two fan bases merged into one to, enlarging thus the individual enthusiasts group of each business.
Speaking of fandoms, one has to agree that a great number of LOTR fans tend to be keen on Harry Potter movies.
Henceforth, New Zealanders who happen to be Potterheads were delighted to see HP-themed train excursions gliding through the country. The Wizarding Academy Express, which is what the procession was titled, commenced its journey in Wellington in May this year.
Before long, citizens of Auckland also had the pleasure of hopping onboard what seems like the closest we will get to the Hogwarts Express.
… to a Magical Microcosm
Although the last sequel to the franchise has long seen its last display in the theatres, the Boy Who Lived lives on.
Pokémon GO creators in fact designed an Android and iOS-friendly augmented reality game which was set in motion just a few days ago. Harry Potter: Wizards Unite already has its own Twitter and Instagram accounts, and you can join the community of wizardry anytime. Many celebrities are already on there. The game is expected to connect gamers worldwide in a single universe guided by magic and fantasy. It’s worth noting that New Zealand is one of only four countries in which this brand-new game is available.
However, the games have not remained stuck in the virtual world. Gamers like to socialise in person and an annual gaming convention makes that happen. If you are a gamer yourself, you will have known about the Wellycon.
It is about the largest board game happening in the capital of NZ, and it takes place every June. The outcome of this year’s event (1st – 2nd June 2019) was that “Snakes and Ladders sucks”. All jokes aside, each year the participants vote on the best game of the previous 365 days, and assign the golden raspberry of gaming to the worst-performing releases. Kiwis are knowingly big on board games, and this convention allows for enthusiasts to come together and help the trade evolve and extend its outreach globally.
With all the revolution coming about, we are surprised to see that iGaming has not been affected as much. Sure, offline casinos have welcomed cabinets with gaming content for many a year now. Nevertheless, the virtual cosmos has yet to absorb this influence. The curious among you might have their interest sparked so far, so here’s an extensive list of New Zealand friendly online gaming establishments. We look forward to face-to-face gaming facing the online casino sphere. It’s a real surprise that it has not tapped into it yet!
And seeing that New Zealand – much to all of the doubters’ surprise – is slowly expanding its footprint into the tiniest spores of entertainment and pop culture, we feel pretty confident about our country’s future.
Whether it’s gaming, literary and cinematographic arts, or travelling, our nation is making its stride bravely and courageously.