Gala
Into the Galaverse Europe – Malta

Experiential Brand Launch & New Product Announcement

CHALLENGE

“The Galaverse is a new fusion of tech, gaming and creativity, imagined by Gala and brought to life IRL at various exclusive and extravagant events around the globe. “

After the monumental success of GALA’s “Into The Galaverse” launch – Las Vegas in December 2021 –and the GALA MUSIC launch on-site at the Superbowl in February 2022 – GALA tasked VOLO Events Agency with finding a suitable venue in Europe to perform the Galaverse
show. And this time, GALA raised the ante – they wanted to execute an event even more epic than the Las Vegas show. The European performance was to be a celebration of GALA and the official launch of their new business strategy – GALA 2.0!

Gala 2.0 included major announcements and the launch of an entirely new brand – Gala Film.

CHALLENGE – WITH 94 DAYS FROM IDEATION TO EXECUTION:

VENUELocate and secure an appropriate venue in Europe – venue space of approximately 100,000 sq ft – secure hotel accommodations for 1,185 guests, staff, talent and crew for a total of 7,000+ room nights – and design/provide F&B for guests, staff, talent and crew for duration of the event.

  • General Sessions: Design, produce and stage 4 sessions over two days with professional host(s), multiple executive presenters & guests, multiple live performances with original choreography, immersive visual projection with 3D content, custom animations and theatrical special effects
  • Brave New Worlds: Craft eleven (11) distinct theme-park-quality immersive “worlds” each to transform a particular GALA digital game into a live performance with bespoke costuming and punctuated with thousands of artfully edited and custom music tracks – both for the “worlds” and the general sessions
  • Agenda Design, Management & Visualization:Balance multiple layers of simultaneous shows and crews, each with cycling audience segments across the event landscape – each requiring discrete stage direction, next-generation wide screen 4k imagery and a sophisticated overall project management system
  • Webcast: Design and produce a network-quality live-streaming global webcast for day three of the event
  • Produce & Manage: Produce and manage multiple acts for two days and two nights of live concert entertainment; including all backline, lighting, sound and staging
SOLUTION

Strategy

With only 94 days to execute, the VOLO team devised a multi-day gaming extravaganza where participants would become fully immersed in each game through set design, live action, and visual effects. Additionally, the event space would also include “Ask Me Anything” (AMA) spaces and gaming centers where participants could demo the games slated for release and pose questions to game developers. A central performance arena was designed to host 1,200 attendees for the 4 general sessions. And to provide the relevance and authenticity for the launch of GALA Films, VOLO designed and built a classic period-styled movie theater within the exhibition space.

Venue & Location – Fantasy Island!

Location presented a major challenge for the team. Locations and schedules were scouted in England, Italy, Germany, Croatia and Denmark but the island of Malta was selected for its most suitable venue, hotel capacity and a very unique environment.

The space chosen was the Malta Fairs and Convention Center (MFCC) – a nearly 100,000 square foot exhibit space about 30 minutes from the Capital, Valetta. Adjacent to the MFCC was the Malta festival grounds – an ideal location to host the evening concerts planned for days 1 and 2.

VOLO secured nearly all of the available 4 and 5 star hotel rooms on the island for the event and provided shuttle transportation to and from the MFCC .

And while the Malta presented a flair of magical exclusivity and elegance, it also posed unique challenges for staging, equipment and production – 127 trailers of production and staging equipment had to be imported to this tiny Mediterranean island, 50 miles off the southern coast of Sicily!

General Sessions – Anything But “General”

There was nothing “general” about these General Sessions – they were shows unto themselves with live choreographed entertainment, carefully curated music, theatrical special effects and towering wrap- around screens filled with HD video and 3D visual content.

Even more than shows – the General Sessions were announcement platforms for eight new Gala games including Grit, Eternal Paradox and blockbuster releases for The Walking Dead and Battlestar Galactica collections.

And beyond shows and games, one of the sessions featured the stunning meta-release of the debut album for the West Coast supergroup Mt. Westmore via Gala Music – including a video intro from two of the group’s super stars, Snoop Dogg and Ice Cube!

A Truly Epic Production

“The payoff comes when the audience walks through the door and sees something they never expected to see!”

An event of this magnitude needed not just impressive sets, but extraordinary sets. VOLO’s elite team of award-winning set designers and craftsmen developed “worlds” that were so true to life to the games they represented, that even the game designers themselves felt overwhelmed when walking through the real life manifestations of their digital imaginations. Eleven different worlds were designed and built:

  1. Grit – themed after a Wild West town and named for an upcoming Gala Game release, Grit featured a Saloon, Main Street, Jail and General Store. The Saloon offered an open bar and period appropriate stage shows. Stuntmen added ambiance with a saloon brawl and shootout.
  2. Castle Tower – A fantasy tavern/wizard’s tower-themed space with free-flowing beer, six dining tables – each with a fully equipped Dungeons and Dragons set-up which included professional and costumed Dungeon Masters,. Jesters and Bards to complete the authentic experience
  3. Mirandus Dock– A medieval waterfront dock featuring a full size sailing ship. This “world” was built to match location scenario in GALA’s upcoming fantasy game “Mirandus”. The ship served as the stage from which the costumed game designers could answer questions from an eager audience.
  4. Urban World – A full inner city street scene with digital graffiti walls, a skateboard half pipe with skateboarders and break dance area replete with dancers – all of which added a 1980’s street theme to the event.
  5. 1980’s Arcade – Accessible through the Urban World was a full 1980’s style video arcade with over 50 stand up classic video games – including, Pac man, Centipede, Galaga and many others.
  6. The Walking Dead World – Designed around a scene in Gala’s upcoming game “Walking Dead Empires,” this authentic world from the zombie apocalypse allowed guests to face off in a state- of –the- art laser tag facility while fully immersed in a Walking Dead environment.
  7. E-Gaming Rooms – Two rooms were specially designed and built to house 50 top of the line gaming stations. The main gaming station room was themed as a starship interior
  8. 1930’s Cinema –The perfect setting for an introduction to a new brand – Gala Film. Here the VOLO team designed a 60-eat, 1930’s era cinema complete with a concession stand, space for guest Q&A with the GALA launch team – and, of course, the premier of Gala Film content.
  9. Speakeasy – As one of two dedicated “AMA” (Ask Me Anything) Spaces, this 1920’s speakeasy was accessible through a secret door, Once inside, guests could partake from the open bar while engaging in Q & A with their favorite game designers
  10. AMA Space – In addition to the Speakeasy, a second AMA space with the capacity for 50 guests was built behind the Grit jail.
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Galaverse-europe-malta-marketing- speaker on stage

Visual Design and Artwork

VOLO designed and produced all the supporting visual content for the event – from budget and execution to programmed distribution across all screens in all locations – and including all technology and operations solutions. The 1,200-person capacity general session arena, for example, featured dynamic high-def video content created in Unreal Engine, across the 13 massive LED projection screens .

The VOLO Team also created four distinct UE4 environments for the original general session dance numbers, one of which was inspired by Gala’s Battle Star Galactica game. Unreal Engine 4 also was featured in several of the “world” environments – including an interactive virtual graffiti wall utilizing C++ for the Urban World.

Animation for the Ages

For the launch of Gala Film, VOLO created a feature-quality, three-minute announcement animation . This animation was competed in a record breaking 35 days and involved over 60 animators in 3 countries working around the clock to meet the critical launch deadline. The results speak for themselves.

A Network Quality Broadcast

Day three of the event featured a one-hour long webcast, shot and speed-edited on-site over the events of the preceding two days. Crafted to network standards with cinematic cameras for theatrical effect, the broadcast featured live and prerecorded interviews, Q&A sessions and became the vehicle for the big Gala Film announcement. VOLO crews shot video for the webcast not only in Malta but also in London.

World Class Entertainment

While four all-originally choreographed dance numbers by VOLO’s Fosse and MTV VMA award winning choreography team thrilled guests during the general sessions – entertainment pinnacle spilled across two nights of full set performances from renowned A-List Celebrity music artists

VOLO not only secured the Malta festival grounds concert venue, they also produced and managed all the talent for the show and provided backline, lighting, sound, staging, concert visualization – and an epic fireworks finale!

Talent

  • Noel Gallagher
  • George Ezra
  • Tom Misch
  • Disclosure
  • Phoenix
  • Remi Wolf
  • Editors
  • BT
  • Bassjackers

Relentless Planning and Flawless Execution

With only 94 days to imagine, scale, design, produce, manage, and execute, only VOLO’s relentless planning, attention to detail and “no-nonsense,” flow-through project management process could deliver an event of this magnitude in such a short period of time – flawlessly. VOLO performed on time and on budget every step of the way. Guided by three decades of veteran experience and relationships, VOLO’s team was able to artfully balance media, message, and environment with total project accountability – maintaining the highest levels of excellence.

“VOLO never once said ‘we can’t,’ – they always said ‘how can we?’ They build it from scratch, they designed it and they owned it – and that’s what makes them so professional.”

Sarah Buxton – GALA COO

Galaverse-brand-and-product-launch- blue lights on stage
RESULT

VOLO’s “Into the Galaverse” launch in Las Vegas raised the bar for the events industry.  VOLO’s GALA 2.0 production in Malta redefined the industry’s capability altogether. 

Charles Marto and his VOLO team at crafted a 100,000 square foot, brand specific, theme-park-quality immersive experience with 11 unique world environments, a 1,200-seat arena for 4 general sessions, a network quality one hour webcast, brand-launching animation and produced and managed more A-List musical talent than most music festivals.  

Beyond the (sometimes quite literally) stellar announcements and the ground-breaking partnerships, the Galaverse itself was the experience of a lifetime. Knowing their community well, the conference itself was split into 12 different self-contained “worlds”, introducing visitors to the many universes of the Gala Games ecosystem. 

From an actual (and climbable) pirate ship moored in a fog-filled nightscape to a near-authentic early 1900’s cinema theatre to even the interior of a far-future starship, the Galaverse was a fully immersive masterpiece from start to finish.” 

Having seen the conference first-hand, I can quite proudly say that while Gala really brought their A-Game, the main underlying feeling that carried the event was that of potential. Into the Galaverse didn’t just show us what the brilliant team behind it all had already accomplished, it showed us how bright the future of Web3-based entertainment was. With what we’ve seen in Malta, you may want to be wearing glasses for this!” –  

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