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#CTRLDEV Recap

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This past weekend saw The Game Changers sweep through the city as part of Perth Festival 2014. Thanks to Screen Australia and the Perth International Arts Festival, our distinguished guests were also able to spend some quality time with local developers and their games at the Let’s Make Games #CTRLDEV day.

To start the day off Perth games Freedom Fall, Square Off, Star Hammer 2 and 99 Problems (and blocks are all of them) were put to the test by our international guests, with much fun and constructive criticism to be had. It wasn’t long before another 50 local developers and game aficionados made their way in, eager to try their hand at the homemade titles before sitting down for some serious discussions.

The panels began with Dan Pinchbeck (Dear Esther), Steve Gaynor (Gone Home) and Guy Gadney (The Suspect) looking at the how and why of going Indie, then sharing their tips on successfully surviving as a small team. After a short cupcake break Clint Hocking (Far Cry 2) and Jill Murray (Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation) took to the stage to talk about their experience of entering into the AAA world and working for major studios. It is also worth noting that over the course of the day attendees posed some brilliant questions to the speakers, the answers to which caused both thoughtful nodding and intense note-taking.

You can check out photos from #CTRLDEV below, plus details on how you can provide Let’s Make Games with feedback on the event.

Feedback Survey

If you attended #CTRLDEV, we at LMG would love to hear about your experience of the day. Please check your emails for the Eventbrite feedback survey, and let us know what you liked (or didn’t like). Your feedback is appreciated and will help us organise bigger and better events in the future!

Special thanks goes to the Central Institute of Technology for providing us with the facilities, Justin Halliday from Screen Australia for bringing over his keen knowledge of games funding programs and also Richard Kong for the top quality Photography.

FTI’s new Director of Interactive Programs and all the details on Playup Perth #2

FTI Header

The Film and Television Institute of Western Australia, the organisation behind the WA Screen Awards, have recently appointed Dr. Kate Raynes-Goldie to the role of Director of Interactive Programs. This position is the first of its kind for a non-government, Australian screen resource association, and with Kate at the helm the FTI is reaching out to embrace the local games, interactive and app communities.

kate-raynes-goldieKate brings a wealth of experience to the role, not only as a developer but as a champion for the potential of games and gaming. Kate is the co-founder of Atmosphere Industries, which specializes in experimental and pervasive games, and developed WA’s very first pervasive game, Ghost Town. She is also a Research Associate at Curtin University, and has spoken at a range of international industry and academic conferences, including SXSW Interactive and TEDxPerth.

We would like to congratulate Kate on her appointment to the role, and look forward to even more FTI and game developer interactions in the future!

And while we are on the subject of Atmosphere Industries, the studio is running an event this weekend…

 

Play Up Perth Banner

Playup Perth #2!

What: A playtest experience of Atmosphere Industries’ brand new game
When: 1pm – 3pm, Saturday March 1, 2014
Where: FTI lawn (92 Adelaide Street, Fremantle)
Tickets: Free!

The new top secret Atmosphere Industries game, set to debut at the Fresh Air 2014 festival in Melbourne (March 7-10, 2014). A fun game for players of all skill levels that will involve hilarity and teamwork. Plus, if you loved Star Trek: the Next Generation, you will love this game even more.

(Please bring an internet enabled smart phone, a pair of comfortable shoes and be prepared for some walking around town.)

For more information head on over to the main event page. If you would like to find out more about testing your game at the next Playup Perth, please email kate (at) fti.asn.au or tweet @oceanpark

Reminder: Game Changers and #CTRLDEV on this weekend!

At last the weekend is upon us, where we may fill our days with games and good times. If you have yet to plan your days of rest then fear not, here we have one final reminder of the top notch events on this weekend. There’s still time to grab tickets and so you could be spending your time with a bunch of big-name developers!

 

Saturday 22nd February

Perth Festival 2014 Header

This Saturday The Game Changers series will be running as part of the Perth Festival, and will four panels on narrative and storytelling in video games. International guests for this event include Steve Gaynor (Gone HomeBioShock Infinite), Clint Hocking (Splinter Cell, Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory, Far Cry 2), Dan Pinchbeck (Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs and Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture) and Jill Murray (Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation and IV: Black Flag), as well as the excellent Australian guests Guy Gadney (The Suspect), Dan Golding (Game On) and Bajo & Hex from ABC’s Good Game television show.

When:

10.00am–11.00am: The Writer and The Game
11.30am–12.30pm: What the Player Wants
1.00pm–2.00pm: Character and Story
2.30pm–3.30pm: What’s In Store?

Where:

Octagon Theatre, UWA

Tickets: 

(Cost per talk)
General Admission $13.50, Friends $12.50, FT Student (U30) $10.50
To get your tickets head on over to The Game Changers event page.

Sunday 23rd February

CTRLDEV Event Banner

This Sunday we also have #CTRLDEV, an opportunity for Perth developers to get some quality time with our big-name visitors.  Steve Gaynor, Clint Hocking, Dan Pinchbeck, Jill Murray, and Guy Gadney will be hosting two panel discussions that focus on the technical and career aspects of working in the games industry. This event is designed to give you some quality time to talk shop, as well as complement the narrative and storytelling discussions of Saturday’s The Game Changers series. You can also check out the Meet the #CTRLDEV page for all the details on the guest speakers (so you can prep your key game dev questions).

When:

2:30pm – 4:30pm

Where:

Central Institute of Technology (East Perth), 140 Royal St., East Perth

Tickets:

$40/$30 (discount for those attending The Game Changers events).
To get your tickets head on over to Eventbrite page.

Not a bad way to spend the weekend, if we do say so ourselves.
Hope to catch you there!

Meet the #CTRLDEVs

The day of #CTRLDEV draws near, so what better time to take a closer look at the internationally acclaimed developers who will be stopping by. #CTRLDEV will give you the opportunity to meet these fine folk and discuss game design, production and the industry in general. No doubt you will want to chat with them all, but with such a wealth of knowledge available it can’t hurt to assess which of your burning question to ask any given developer.

So on that note, let’s meet the devs…

 

CLINT HOCKING  USA (flag)

Clint Hocking Profile PictureExperience: Creative Director, Scriptwriter, (Senior) Level Designer, Game Designer

Studios: Ubisoft Montreal, Lucas Arts, Valve

Titles: Splinter Cell (Original), Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory, Far Cry 2

Clint started his gaming career with Ubisoft Montreal in 2001 as a level designer for the very first Splinter Cell. Since then he’s worked in a variety of creative positions, including lead roles on Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory and Far Cry 2. Clint was the first-ever recipient of the Game Developer’s Choice Award for Excellence in Scriptwriting.

Outside of game development, Clint is a member of the Advisory Board for the Montreal IGDA Chapter, regularly speaks at the conference around the world (including GDC), and has a monthly column in EDGE Magazine. In his spare time Clint talks about game dev on his blog Click Nothing, and can also be found on twitter as @ClickNothing.

STEVE GAYNOR  USA (flag)

Steve Gaynor Profile PictureExperience: (Senior) Level Designer, Lead Designer, Writer, Tester

Studios: TimeGate Studios, 2K Marin, Irrational Games, The Fullbright Company

Titles: Perseus Mandate, Bioshock 2 inc. Minerva’s Den, Bioshock Infinite, Gone Home

Steve started out as a Temporary Certification Tester who practised make levels with F.E.A.R. editor; before long he had worked his way up to a level designer, working on the F.E.A.R. expansion pack “Perseus Mandate”. Moving on to 2K Marin Steve worked on Bioshock 2‘s “The Adonis Luxury Resort” and “Pauper’s Drop” levels, lead the design of the “Minerva’s Den” expansion, and worked on Bioshock Infinite.

Steve has since gone indie, acting as one of the founding members of The Fullbright Company and a designer/writer on the award-winning Gone Home. When not developing games, Steve talks about them on the Fullbright Design blog, industry publications and in podcasts such as Idle Thumbs. He can also be found on twitter as @GoneHomeGame.

DAN PINCHBECK  UK (flag)

Dan Pinchbeck Profile Picture

Experience: Studio Head, Creative Director, Researcher, Senior Lecturer

Studio: The Chinese Room

Titles: Dear Esther, Korsakovia, Amnesia – A Machine for Pigs, Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture

Before carving his own niche in the game development field, David’s professional background was one centered on Drama and Digital Arts. Through his experience in using emergent technologies in media and technical arts, David went on to teach Creative Technology at Portsmouth University, as well as research narrative in games. It was from this research that The Chinese Room was born, a project turned award-winning studio.

Starting with Source mods, David and his team created such titles as Dear Esther and Korsakovia. The success of these titles allowed for a standalone of Dear Esther to be developed, and paved the way for future works such as A Machine For Pigs and the upcoming Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture. David can be found manning the @ChineseRoom twitter.

JILL MURRAY  CAN (flag)

Jill Murray Profile Picture

Experience: Narative Director, Script Writer, Author

Studios: Ubisoft Québec, Ubisoft Montreal

Titles: Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag (inc. Freedom Cry DLC), Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation, Your Shape: Fitness Evolved 2012

 Jill started her design career in web development, but found that her true calling was writing. She published two YA novels, Break on Through and Rhythm and Blues, before being brought in as a writer for Assassin’s Creed: Liberation. The game went on to win a Writer’s Guild Awards, while Jill went on to write for Your Shape: Fitness Evolved, Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag and the AC IV “Freedom Cry” DLC.

Jill is currently the Director of Narrative Design at Ubisoft Québec, and presents at such events as Gamercamp and GDC. She can be found providing words of wisdom on twitter as @CodeJill.

GUY GADNEY  AUS (flag)

Guy Gadney Profile PictureExperience: Founder, Digital Executive Producer, Director of Content Production

Studio: The Project Factory

Titles: The Suspect, Who is Tim? (Wie is Tim?), Lost Monsters, Eclipse, Underbelly Skirmish

Guy has been in digital media production for over 20 years, having worked in a production role on mobile, online and game projects for companies across the US, UK and Australia. As a founding member of The Project Factory Guy has had a key role in producing a wide range of projects, including the award winning “Who is Tim?” Dutch transmedia project.

Outside of his production work, Guy served as President of the Board, then Board Director of the AIMIA (Digital Industry Association for Australia). He can also be found speaking at Conferences, Festivals, Award Ceremonies, and of course on twitter as @GGadney.

 


CTRLDEV Event Banner

Don’t forget that Justin Halliday, Screen Australia’s Games Investment Manager, will also be available to chat during #CTRLDEV about the various funding options available for WA game developers.

#CTRLDEV will be your last chance to catch these gaming heavyweights before they fly off into the sunset, so if you have not yet bought your ticket head over to the Eventbrite page. As an added bonus, if you’re heading to a talk for The Game Changer  you can get a discount on your tickets to this event (just bring your PWF ticket stubs or receipts as proof along with your #CTRLDEV ticket).

Hope to see you there!

 

All the details on the Perth International Arts Festival Video Game Events

Perth Festival 2014 Header

Last month we reported that the Perth International Art’s Festival will see game designers and writers from around the world visit our shores for The Game Changers series. Now the full program for the event has been released, detailing the delightful discussions one can expect. Unfortunately it has also been announced that Kevin Shortt (Watch_Dogs) will no longer be attending, but all is not lost! Instead we will be visited by writer, designer and creative director Clint Hocking (FarCry 2 and Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory)!

The Game Changers Program


In addition to delving into games writing, the festival will also be exploring the depths of game music with Between the Desert and the Deep Blue Sea: A Symphony for Perth. The concert will feature the West Australian Symphony Orchestra,  conducted by the outstanding and innovative Carolyn Kuan (USA). The first half of the concert is set to feature the live performance of some epic game soundtracks, while the second half brings us music made with the sounds of Perth - the work of MIT’s Media Lab composer and professor Tod Machover (whose students were behind the creation of Guitar Hero!)

Between the Desert and the Deep Blue Sea Program

  1. Edmonson and Rizzo “Nate’s Theme” (Uncharted 2 & 3)
  2. Edmonson, Ali and Bajakian “Atlantis of the Sands” (Uncharted 3)
  3. McConnell “Grim Fandango : Suite” World Premiere
  4. Schyman “Bioshock 1,2 & Infinite : Suite” World Premiere
  5. Wintory “Woven Variations” (Journey Cello Suite)

The Perth International Art’s Festival will be running 7 February - 1 March. The Game Changers series will be held on Saturday 22nd of February at the UWA Octagon Theatre, with tickets still available through the Perth Festival site. The Between the Desert and the Deep Blue Sea concert will be taking place  March 1st at Perth Concert Hall, with tickets now available through Ticketek.

Reminder: Pop Up Arcade on this Weekend!

FTI Pop Up Arcade Banner

Click to download the full Pop Up Arcade Dino Flyer

For those keen to get their local games fix before the end of the year, here is a last minute reminder that the Film & Television Institute of WA will be hosting a Pop-Up Arcade at the Perth Cultural Centre this weekend. Whether you’re looking to entertain the tykes now that the school holidays have unleashed them, or you just want to try out some fun games on the big screen, the Pop-Up Arcade is surely the place to be.

When: 15th December, 10.30am – 3.30pm
Where: James St Amphitheatre (between PICA and the State Library), Northbridge
Entry: Free!

The official list of Perth games set to be on show has also released, so you can get ready for the gaming goodness of:

For more details check out the official FTI announcement, dino flyer, or head on over to the Facebook event page.

Pop-Up Arcade to bring Perth Games to the Big Screen

James Street Ampitheatre

There’s nothing quite like kicking back and watching something on the big screen, so why not take it one step further with some supersized games?

The Film & Television Institute of WA will be blowing up some homegrown titles for all to see (and play) at their Pop-Up Arcade in the Perth Cultural Centre. In addition to being able to play some free games, there will also be a variety of marquees available to entertain.

When: 15th December, 10.30am – 3.30pm
Where: James St Amphitheatre (between PICA and the State Library), Northbridge
Entry: Free!

For more details head on over to the FTI events page, or contact Michael Ellis via or (08) 9431 6700.

GameCloud presents: GameCity Indie Day!

Game Cloud Event 'Game City' Banner

It’s been a busy year for games in Perth, with many a quality title being released, new studios and partnerships coming about, not to mention a steady stream of awards and nominations arising. In addition to joining us this Sunday for the  Let’s Make Games End of Year Party, why not reflect on the year that was at the all you can eat, drink and play ‘Indie Day’ extravaganza organised by the folks at GameCloud and GameCity.

What: GameCity Indie Day
When: 7th December, 12pm – 6pm
Where: Shop TR2/3, Raine Square Shopping Centre, 300 Murray Street, Perth
Entry: $25
RSVP: Facebook.

As this event is an ode to the Perth gaming industry, there will be a range of games to try your hand at, including some of the latest Perth-made titles. Some local developers already on the gaming guest list are Stirfire Studios, SK Games, Titanium Studios, Gnomic Studios, Black Lab Games and Sky Breaker Games.

For all the latest details on the delicious food and gaming goodness check out the official Facebook event.

Announcing the 2013 WA Games Showcase!

Let’s Make Games is proud to announce the 2013 WA Games Showcase.

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This is our 5th annual showcase of local games and game creators. Each year we see a large increase in awareness of locally made games at our showcase events, and this year should be no exception! We’re returning to the East Perth campus of the Central Institute of Technology, in the spacious downstairs exhibition hall. This year we’ll have exhibitors showing off the best of WA mobile games, PC games, board games, social games, as well as a showcase of the virtual reality games made at the Perth VR Jam.

What: WA Games Showcase 2013
When: Saturday 5th October, 1 – 4pm
Where: CIT East Perth campus, 140 Royal Street, East Perth
Cost: Free!
RSVP: On Facebook.
Flyer: Print version here.

Visitors

The WA Games Showcase is your chance to play locally made games and chat with the developers that make them! This year the showcase is being held in the downstairs exhibition area of the East Perth campus at Central Institute of Technology, with greater accessibility, plenty of parking, and more room for more games. The showcase is free to attend, and (weather permitting) we’ll have a sausage sizzle running for your eats and drinks needs.

Exhibitors

WA game developers, we want you at the showcase! If you’re keen to show off your games – any kind of games! – send us an email to and our helpful volunteer team will get in contact with you and register your position at the exhibition.

It is free to exhibit at the WA Games Showcase, and we will have areas prepared for both digital and physical games. We will have tables, power and limited wireless internet available for use; you will need to bring your own hardware, and wireless solutions for any moderate internet usage. If you have any special requirements to showcase your games, just get in contact and we’ll figure something out!

Sponsors

Big thanks to our venue sponsor East Perth Central Institute of Technology for their incredible help with the showcase. Special thanks to Viet Nguyen for his graphic design of the flyer.

If you are interested in sponsorship or promotional opportunities at the WA Games Showcase, please send an email to our events team at

Let’s Make VR Jam!

The Oculus & IndieCade VR Jam starts this Friday 2nd August 2013, and we’re super excited to see what Perth developers create for it. From the official website:

We’re thrilled to announce VR Jam, a long-format, worldwide game jam presented by Oculus and IndieCade. We’re putting up over $50,000 in prizes and a showcase exhibition at IndieCade Festival 2013 for the best VR games and experiences!

Ever since the VR Jam was announced last week, we’ve been working on getting a Perth site up and running. We’ve been blown away by the level of interest and support, and are very happy to announce that we will be serving as a “Playtest Hub” where participants can share and playtest their games on an Oculus Rift VR headset.

Update: Added flyer! Click the image to download a print-ready version. Thanks to Rich for putting this together.

flyer

In additional to the demonstration unit provided by Oculus and IndieCade, we expect to have another 5-7 Oculus Rifts and a whole boatload of other devices including: Microsoft Kinect cameras, Leap Motion sensors, Razer Hydra motion sensing controllers, and possibly even a couple of Cyberbikes hooked up.

Details for the Perth Hub:

  • Dates: 3 August 2013 – 24 August 2013
  • Location: 816 Hay Street, Perth (Upstairs and to the right)
  • Opening Hours: Open to developers every Monday to Friday between 10:00am and 4:00pm. Public demonstrations every Saturday between 1:00pm and 3:00pm.
  • Contact: Via our online form or email to
  • RSVP: Please join us on the VRJam Perth Facebook event page.

Note: We can be open via appointment at other times, so please contact us if you want to organise access outside of these hours.

If you are participating in the VR Jam, be sure to register on the official VRJam webpage, join our VRJam Perth Facebook group, and take note of these Key Rules from the official website:

  • Games must be explicitly designed for virtual reality using the Oculus Rift and SDK.
  • Games must be expressly developed for the competition.
  • All games should be playable using an Oculus Rift with a keyboard/mouse or XInput-compatible gamepad (e.g. Xbox controller).

A huge thanks to our current supporters and sponsors: Oculus and IndieCade for running the global event and supporting us to become a Playtest Hub; Gresley Abas for providing a venue for the entire 3 weeks of the Jam; Savage Cabbage for their help in testing Internet connectivity and networking; and to all the volunteers who have committed their time to help facilitate this event.

That’s it for now. We’ll post a print-ready flyer later today. We’re still looking for a wireless internet sponsor, prize sponsors, and more volunteers to spread the word around so contact us if you can help out. Media inquiries are also very welcome!

Update: A huge thanks to Red Griffin Games who have come on as a prize sponsor. They’re just down the street from the jam site, so be sure to stop by and say “thanks!”.