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WELCOME TO GCAP

Games Connect Asia Pacific (GCAP) is Australia’s premier professional development and networking event for the game development industry, focused on up-skilling and connecting the Australian sector via education, knowledge sharing and the provision of extended personal and business networks. GCAP caters to a range of disciplines and has grown and attracted an engaged audience and esteemed speakers from around the world.

The Focus For GCAP 2022 Is Ambition.

Australian game developers have found their voice in the world and that voice is ambitious. GCAP 2022 will challenge attendees to chase their ambitions and create world class products, experiences, studios, and businesses for an ever-expanding global games audience. GCAP 2022 will provide avenues for personal and professional ambitions to be realised and success to be achieved.

GCAP 2022 will run from Monday the 3rd of October, to Wednesday the 5th of October 2022.

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Monday, October 3
 

9:00am AEDT

Opening Keynote: Lessons in Ambition
Ambition is a complex force that drives us to greatness but can also cause harm. Wren Brier and Tim Dawson share lessons in ambition that they learned throughout their careers, and how those lessons led them to create their award-winning game Unpacking. Follow along on their quest to fulfil their ambitions while trying to not be consumed by them.

Speakers
avatar for Wren Brier

Wren Brier

Witch Beam Games
Wren Brier is the Creative Director of award-winning indie game Unpacking. She's been working in the games industry for 9 years, starting at Halfbrick and later working as a freelance artist before joining Witch Beam Games. In addition to her game development roles, she is on the... Read More →
avatar for Tim Dawson

Tim Dawson

Witch Beam Games
Tim Dawson is Technical Director of award-winning indie game Unpacking. His games career began as an animator at Australian studios including Ratbag, Team Bondi, Pandemic and Sega Studios Australia before co-founding Brisbane indie studio Witch Beam Games. Tim was responsible for... Read More →


Monday October 3, 2022 9:00am - 10:30am AEDT
Plenary 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

10:30am AEDT

Morning Tea
Morning Tea

Monday October 3, 2022 10:30am - 11:00am AEDT
Lobby 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

11:00am AEDT

User and Brand Protection in Developing Gaming Tech Panel
There is no doubt, the gaming sector is evolving at an unprecedented speed! As we hurtle towards the metaverse and web3.0, integrating online safety as part of your culture and brand ethos is critical – this session will highlight the importance of a safety by design approach, to help you to protect users, and in turn your brand reputation.

Drawing on examples and insights from industry giants, such as Twitch, Roblox and others, the session will walk you through ways good product management can help you succeed and how you can work with your audience to create safe and collaborative environments for all.

Speakers
RM

Richard Meech

eSafety Commissioner
Richard Meech is the Financial Entities and Start-ups Engagement Assistant Manager for the eSafety Commissioner. Richard gained an expanse of experience managing stakeholders, risk, compliance, and regulatory contacts in the private sector over an eight-year period, receiving awards... Read More →
KS

Katherine Sessions

eSafety Commissioner
Katherine Sessions leads on eSafety’s world leading Safety by Design initiative, working with industry to ensure users have safer experiences online. In this role, Katherine works at the frontline of emerging tech, ethics, human rights, responsible technology, inclusive and human-centred... Read More →
DC

Daniel Child

eSafety Commissioner
Daniel is eSafety’s Industry Affairs and Engagement Manger, co-ordinating the online safety regulator’s industry stakeholder engagement and strategy, and driving forward its world-leading Safety by Design initiative. With a focus on proactive and systemic change, Daniel’s team... Read More →


Monday October 3, 2022 11:00am - 11:50am AEDT
Room 110 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

11:00am AEDT

Screen Australia: Back in the (funding) Game
2022 marks the return to video game funding for Screen Australia. For the first time since 2014, the national agency is accepting applications for development funding from creators across Australia as part of the Games: Expansion Pack initiative. For those who have access to state-based funding, this represents an exciting, additional opportunity to get a game off the ground. For creators in areas with fewer opportunities, it could be the first time their team has been eligible for government funding. No matter where you’re based, we’re sure you have lots of questions – and that’s exactly what this session is for!
Join Screen Australia’s Head of Online, Lee Naimo, and recently appointed Games Investment Manager, Amelia Laughlan, as they talk through the details of the recently re-opened Games: Expansion Pack fund. They’ll explain:
• What kind of support is available
• Who is eligible for the fund
• What makes an application competitive
There will also be an opportunity to ask questions after the panel.

Speakers
avatar for Amelia Laughlan

Amelia Laughlan

Screen Australia
Amelia is a game producer from Melbourne, Australia. After writing about tabletop games while finishing her Japanese/history degree, Amelia joined the industry in 2017 with Tin Man Games. She spent time at Nintendo Australia as a business development specialist and worked for indie... Read More →
avatar for Lee Naimo

Lee Naimo

Screen Australia
As Screen Australia’s first Head of Online, Lee oversees production funding for emerging Australian scripted and documentary creators working online, supporting projects such as Sarah’s Channel, Content, All My Friends Are Racist, Over and Out, Aunty Donna’s Glennridge Secondary... Read More →


Monday October 3, 2022 11:00am - 11:50am AEDT
Room 109 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

11:00am AEDT

Storytelling Beyond Words
Narrative Design is the art of telling stories using all of the tools available. In this Q&A, we’ll look at some under-utilised aspects of bringing game worlds and characters to life, and discuss how to maintain a coherent creative vision throughout the course of your game from beginning to end.

Speakers
avatar for Leanne Taylor-Giles

Leanne Taylor-Giles

Drop Bear Bytes
Leanne Taylor-Giles has been working in video games and related academic fields since 2006. She has experience on AAA titles, mid-tier games, and established intellectual properties, and has written several academic chapters and a Masters on storytelling systems in games. Her love... Read More →
avatar for Wren Brier

Wren Brier

Witch Beam Games
Wren Brier is the Creative Director of award-winning indie game Unpacking. She's been working in the games industry for 9 years, starting at Halfbrick and later working as a freelance artist before joining Witch Beam Games. In addition to her game development roles, she is on the... Read More →
avatar for Simon Boxer

Simon Boxer

Twice Different
Simon’s a concept artist turned indie developer, and founder of Melbourne studio Twice Different. His most recent release is the genre-blending card crawler, Ring of Pain, which delivers a cryptic narrative through bite-sized poems. Current projects include the comedy adventure... Read More →
avatar for Marigold Bartlett

Marigold Bartlett

Ghost Pattern
Goldie is the art director for local studio ghost pattern, making Wayward Strand - a heartfelt story told in a curious way, set on board a flying hospital airship in 1970's rural Victoria. She also teaches art for videogames at RMIT university, and is the visual art lead for Freeplay... Read More →


Monday October 3, 2022 11:00am - 11:50am AEDT
Room 106 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

11:00am AEDT

TBA
TBA

Monday October 3, 2022 11:00am - 11:50am AEDT
Room 105 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

12:00pm AEDT

Show Don't Tell: The intricacies of metaphors in visual media
We know a picture tells a thousand words, but what goes into those words? From the obvious scrawling’s on walls in horror games to the colour theory of a flower, metaphors and symbolism is often simply referred to as 'visual storytelling'. But metaphors and symbolism have been used in art since the first cave paintings, and are a rich blend of history, current culture and expression. In this panel (names) will examine the metaphors and shorthand they love to use in art, where they came from and how to build a strong, but interpretable world in your games.

Speakers
avatar for Ryan McMahon

Ryan McMahon

PlaySide Studios
Ryan McMahon is Art Director of PlaySide Studios and founder of ArtQuest, a community for local artists. Starting with PlaySide in 2016, Ryan now leads a team of over 60 highly skilled artists and spearheads multiple internal and external art teams in the planning, scaling and execution... Read More →
avatar for Stephanie Everett

Stephanie Everett

League Of Geeks
A 3D Artist with 18 years in the games industry with a lot of mistakes and laughs in the bag over the years. Currently a Senior 3D Environment Artist at League of Geeks.
avatar for Zahraa Al Zubaydi

Zahraa Al Zubaydi

GUCK
Hey I’m Zahraa! I’m a concept artist and an illustrator currently working at a games company and on my own personal creative projects. My artistic interests range from traditional slow oil painting to timely and quick concept development. I always look for new ways to improve... Read More →
HC

Hannah Crosby

Gameloft Brisbane


Monday October 3, 2022 12:00pm - 12:50pm AEDT
Room 109 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

12:00pm AEDT

Tax traps in investment & publishing agreements
With the recent introduction of the DGTO investors are clamoring to funds Australian Dev teams. In this talk we will explore some of the common funding arrangements we have seen and how to address complex tax matters that commonly arise.

Speakers
LH

Luke Henry

LDB Accountants & Advisors
Luke has advised a range of tech and game studios on complex tax and business issues over nearly twenty years.  His team assists over sixty studios of all different sizes from around Australia.  They strive to bridge the gap between tax technical issues, industry language and the... Read More →
AE

Amy Ellis

LDB Accountants & Advisors
Amy has advised a range of tech and game studios on complex tax and business issues over ten years.  She leads a team which assists over sixty studios of all different sizes from around Australia.  They strive to bridge the gap between tax technical issues, industry language and... Read More →

Sponsors

Monday October 3, 2022 12:00pm - 12:50pm AEDT
Room 110 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

12:00pm AEDT

More Than Our Masks: A Fireside Chat Panel
Many of us wear visible signifiers of our identities; we can't hide the culture on our skin, the genders we present, or the queerness of our bodies. As game devs, the unique experiences and perspectives we offer because of this may be specifically sought out to inform a project, help a character feel authentic, or make a world come alive in a wonderful way.

However, we are more than those identifiers, and more than the neat boxes into which we might neatly fit. Our identities and unique experiences are simply one of our arrows, not the whole quiver. There is a lot more to the creativity of game devs, especially those considered "diverse", than those signifiers might indicate.

In this Fireside Chat, three creatives explore their experiences in the game industry - Samra-Jade Sendek (narrative designer and writer; Game of Thrones: Tale of Crows, Lord of the Rings), Meena Shamaly (composer and session musician; Innchanted, Old World), and Starling Tan (composer and session musician; Loch Mess, Sinister Creative). These game devs dive into their complex relationships with who they are, how their identities inform their work, and those surprising things they beyond what you might see.

Speakers
avatar for Meena Shamaly

Meena Shamaly

Meena Shamaly, DragonBear Studios, ABC Classic
Meena Shamaly is a composer, session musician, poet, and radio presenter. His work centres around creating music for stories, through the mediums of film, video games, and theatre, with special attention to true cultural engagement.Meena is the composer of Innchanted, developed in... Read More →
avatar for Samara-Jade Sendek

Samara-Jade Sendek

Samara-Jade Sendek
Samara-Jade Sendek is a narrative designer, writer, and QA tech based out of sunny Naarm (or so-called Melbourne). Before transitioning into the deadly sistergirl that the TERFs fear, she was an MMA fighter, before having a heart attack in high school. She survived and now specialises... Read More →
avatar for Starling Tan

Starling Tan

Starling Tan, Sinister Creative
Starling Tan is a composer, arranger, & session musician based in Australia. With a style described as warm, expressive and emotive, she has composed for indie games including Loch Mess and Wrong Number. Her compositional process involves drawing together different threads to tell... Read More →


Monday October 3, 2022 12:00pm - 12:50pm AEDT
Room 105 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

12:00pm AEDT

TBA
TBA

Monday October 3, 2022 12:00pm - 12:50pm AEDT
Room 106 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

1:00pm AEDT

Lunch
Lunch

Monday October 3, 2022 1:00pm - 2:00pm AEDT
Lobby 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

2:00pm AEDT

Lessons from the Trenches: Live Ops Game Data Architecture
There are so many complex challenges in games engineering, this panel brings together an incredible group of games engineers who collectively have decades of experience. Drawing on their experiences in the trenches they will discuss a range of advanced engineering topics like data architecture, live service tools and more.

Speakers
avatar for Josh Caratelli

Josh Caratelli

Josh Caratelli is a Senior Engineer.He grew up in Melbourne's game development industry and alongside excellent co-workers and friends has been fortunate enough to ship ten titles. The first being Rugby League Live 2 (360/PS3) as a teenager on his summer holidays at Big Ant Studios.As... Read More →


Monday October 3, 2022 2:00pm - 2:50pm AEDT
Room 106 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

2:00pm AEDT

Why the Why Matters
Decision making is hard, even though it’s something we experience every day. Often criticised, and rarely understood, a strong idea, when told poorly will struggle to gain traction. This talk dives into building strong justification for your ideas, using data to back up your assumptions, and building an overall narrative around your decisions. Mastering the Why will allow you to build strong visions for your games, and even greater buy in from your teams.

Speakers
avatar for Harry Rex

Harry Rex

Immutable
Harry Rex is a Producer based in Sydney who cut his teeth working on mobile games, now thrust into the world of developing blockchain games, leading the mobile development team on Gods Unchained.
avatar for Chris Clay

Chris Clay

Immutable
I started my career in Technical Art before it was defined as a role where I was on the bleeding edge of using Maya to develop assets for games. I published the first character setup tutorial for Maya on the web way back in 2000. I made the transition to Game Design while working... Read More →
avatar for Justin Hulog

Justin Hulog

Immutable
G. Justin Hulog is the Chief Studio Officer for the Immutable Games Studio - the web3 gaming arm of leading blockchain company, Immutable. Justin oversees the strategic direction of Immutable’s games including Gods Unchained and Guild of Guardians.Prior to Immutable, Justin was... Read More →


Monday October 3, 2022 2:00pm - 2:50pm AEDT
Room 105 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

2:00pm AEDT

From Good to Great: Elevating your Production
We often discuss the basics of production, and how to get yourself a role in the industry. But what do you do once you get there? These producers take you through how they levelled up their skillsets, and the techniques and lessons that helped them grow as both producers and professionals in the industry.

Speakers
avatar for Kelsey Gamble

Kelsey Gamble

Gods Unchained, Immutable
Kelsey is a community management veteran of the industry, having spent more than a decade across Asia Pacific working on communities at Bethesda, EB Games, and now as the Head of Community on the game Gods Unchained with Sydney based studio Immutable. She has won numerous awards for... Read More →
avatar for Meredith Hall

Meredith Hall

Summerfall studios
Meredith is a multi-award winning producer, business developer and marketer. Formerly at VicScreen funding local independent developers, she is now the Marketing Director at Summerfall studios. She is also cofounder of Accessibility Unlocked, Lead Producer at studios Aconite & Strange... Read More →
avatar for Cass Gray

Cass Gray

PHORIA
Cass Gray is the Digital Producer for Melbourne XR studio PHORIA. Working in the industry for five years Cass has worked as a Producer and Events Manager at studios across Australia and New Zealand, including Weta Workshop, Dinosaur Polo Club and Samurai Punk. In addition to her work... Read More →
avatar for Ashley van Wyngaard

Ashley van Wyngaard

Ubisoft
Ashley van Wyngaard is a Producer at Ubisoft Sydney, working on XDefiant a unrealeased free to play fps game. Ashley is passionate about leading the growth of the team as well as the culture, ensuring a diverse and supported environment for team.
avatar for Elizabeth Blythe

Elizabeth Blythe

Summerfall Studios
With one of the more colourful paths into the videogame industry, Elizabeth is a project delivery master who honed her career at well known companies such as NAB, IBM, and EA. She originally joined Summerfall Studios in 2018 while on sabbatical from a small consulting firm, which... Read More →


Monday October 3, 2022 2:00pm - 2:50pm AEDT
Room 110 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

2:00pm AEDT

TBA
TBA

Monday October 3, 2022 2:00pm - 2:50pm AEDT
Room 109 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

3:00pm AEDT

FMOD to Unity Live: Audio Implementation
We’ll be generating and integrating sounds based on audience requests using FMOD to a Unity project live.
The goal is to cover how to rapidly prototype, integrate and iterate sounds within both FMOD and Unity, as well as demonstrating a workflow for rapid audio generation.

Speakers
avatar for Aaron Edwards

Aaron Edwards

FMOD
Aaron has been working in the International media scene for over 15 years. Starting his career as a composer for film, he quickly expanded into audio for games, television & trailers. Over the years, his skill set increased to include Music Editing & Mixing / Mastering. Aaron has... Read More →


Monday October 3, 2022 3:00pm - 4:30pm AEDT
Room 106 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

3:00pm AEDT

Getting more (that you bargained for)
Pitching for a publishing deal is easy. Getting a great deal, on the other hand, can be tricky. GYLD will take you through the process of negotiating a publishing deal and share how to get more out of a deal.


Monday October 3, 2022 3:00pm - 4:30pm AEDT
Room 105 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

3:00pm AEDT

Queer Games: A hopeful future
A panel of game developers asks ‘how can we play with queer narratives, and can queer narratives influence how we play? How can the games industry explore queer experiences further?’ In this panel, we will discuss topics such as the progress made in recent years, the ways developers can explore queer narratives, themes and mechanics. Significant events that have influenced approaches to queergaming will serve as touchstones for the conversation.

Speakers
avatar for Xavier Ho

Xavier Ho

Monash University
Xavier Ho is an interdisciplinary creative technologist, designer and researcher at Monash University with seven years of industry experience as a visualisation specialist. He is a recipient of the inaugural CSIRO Medal for Diversity and Inclusion for his contributions in raising... Read More →
avatar for Lauren Clinnick

Lauren Clinnick

Lumi Interactive
Lauren is the CEO at Lumi Interactive, a game development studio working on Kinder World. She’s out as a queer game developer, with games that explicitly invite queer players into a moment of respite and connection. Her background is in marketing and PR for a diverse range of game... Read More →
avatar for Jess Zammit

Jess Zammit

Mighty Kingdom
Jess is a writer, freelance journalist, researcher and diversity advocate whose work primarily focuses on promoting inclusion, accessibility and representation in games. She is a director of not-for-profit organisation Represent Me, through which she has collected and presented research... Read More →
avatar for Luke Miller

Luke Miller

Melbourne Queer Games Festival
The Melbourne Queer Games Festival (MQGF) is a lofi event held by a small team of volunteers who love queer games. Its mission is to inform, entertain and challenge LGBTIQ players by reflecting their lives in games.


Monday October 3, 2022 3:00pm - 4:30pm AEDT
Room 110 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

3:00pm AEDT

BeginPlay: The Dos, Don'ts and Key Concepts in Switching to Unreal Engine
Switching engines sounds like a lot. It's a big step, but it's easier than you think! After all, how much of what you know is the tech and how much of it is actually broader Game Dev knowledge that can be reapplied to learn something Unreal? Join Chris Murphy as he steps through the Dos, Don'ts and Key Concepts of switching to Unreal Engine.

Speakers
avatar for Chris Murphy

Chris Murphy

Unreal Engine | Epic Games
Chris Murphy has over 10 years of professional experience with Unreal Engine, a Bachelor of Computer Science and a Bachelor of Multimedia, with game development credits across PC, Vive, PlayStation 4, iOS and Android. Before joining Epic Games as an Evangelist Chris worked as a Technical... Read More →

Sponsors

Monday October 3, 2022 3:00pm - 4:30pm AEDT
Room 109 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006
 
Tuesday, October 4
 

8:30am AEDT

Keynote: Voltrons Will Save Us--Flexible Collaboration Structures in the Information Age
Modern technology provides gaming creators unprecedented means to make games in ways that are better, faster, cheaper, and more sustainable than previously imagined. So, why shouldn't this potential extend to our studio structures, business arrangements, and production strategies? Prolific game developer and Strange Scaffold studio head Xalavier Nelson Jr reveals the details of his studio's "Constellation Model" for the first time, discussing the newfound accessibility and necessity of fluid collaboration structures as late-stage capitalism burns the planet to ashes around us.

Speakers
avatar for Xalavier Nelson Jr.

Xalavier Nelson Jr.

Strange Scaffold
Xalavier Nelson Jr. is a BAFTA-nominated studio head, narrative director, and writer, with dozens of titles under his belt including Reigns: Beyond, Hypnospace Outlaw, An Airport for Aliens Currently Run by Dogs, Space Warlord Organ Trading Simulator, and El Paso, Elsewhere. He also... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 8:30am - 9:40am AEDT
Plenary 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

9:40am AEDT

Morning Tea
Tuesday October 4, 2022 9:40am - 10:00am AEDT
Lobby 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

10:00am AEDT

PROG ROCK ODYSSEY: Designing the Artful Escape
A dive into the origins, art style, development, and artistic vision of the BAFTA award winning title, the Artful Escape, by Creative Director, Johnny Galvatron. Let’s get weird. Let’s pour over some of the influences; music, filmic, and visual that inspired the Artful Escape. Let’s talk about how we developed a visual style that Forbes called the most beautiful indy game of the year. We’re going to go behind the curtain and show you how we created our 2.5d characters and environments, what tricks we used, and pass on insights from the extremely talented team that made it happen.

Speakers
avatar for Johnny Galvatron

Johnny Galvatron

Beethoven & Dinosaur
Johnny Galvatron is the Creative Director at Beethoven & Dinosaur, helming the BAFTA award winning rock odyssey, the Artful Escape. Johnny has toured with Def Leppard, shot films clips, written a novel, and generally tries to keep his evil doin' hands from doin' evil. 


Tuesday October 4, 2022 10:00am - 10:50am AEDT
Room 105 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

10:00am AEDT

Unpacking: The Complexities of a Simple Game
Explosions! Subwoofers! and Dolby Atmos!!! These are just some of the things the audio in Unpacking doesn't have, or need for that matter. Does this mean it's audio is just a few click sounds and a bwoop? Nup! This talk will go into the surprisingly complex technical audio implementation using Wwise, in the multi-award winning game Unpacking :)

Speakers
avatar for Jeff van Dyck

Jeff van Dyck

Witch Beam Games
Jeff van Dyck is a three-time BAFTA award winning Composer, Sound Designer and Audio Director, known for his emotive scores and immersive audio design in videogames over the last three decades. Jeff’s early work comprised a string of AAA game franchises including EA’s FIFA, NHL... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 10:00am - 10:50am AEDT
Room 104 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

10:00am AEDT

What can game developers do to help save the planet?
In this session, Dr Benjamin Abraham, author of the first book to examine the games industry's carbon footprint and other sustainability concerns, will outline the challenges facing the industry in getting to net zero. He will outline the current state of the industry, who the major players are and their goals, current best practice around reporting and offsetting, and how individual studios and developers can best align themselves with the climate science.

Speakers
avatar for Ben Abraham

Ben Abraham

Dr Benjamin Abraham has been involved in the digital games industry since founding the games blogosphere aggregator site ‘Critical Distance’ in 2009, and his games writing has been discussed by industry leaders like Clint Hocking, Antony Burch, Manveer Heir, and others. For the... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 10:00am - 10:50am AEDT
Room 103 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

10:00am AEDT

Data Driven Narrative and Narrative Analytics
This talk provides an overview of the analytics we need when measuring story in narrative games. This is the accumulation of what we have learned through trial and error over many years.

As part of this talk we will explain the processes we designed and use to generate data from multiple media platforms. This data is what we use to inform narrative beats and themes, as well as turn the information into usable formats for designers and writers. This talk will include a tutorial on the process of handling the data in excel as well as how to present it in a reader friendly format.

After a brief introduction to the relevance of transmedia in games, we will explain the convergence of narrative structure and beats of existing IP across media to game formats. Expanding on this we will discuss creative solutions in data analysis for optimization, retention and monetization. We will also cover how to derive narrative metrics from existing data in games that don't measure narrative analytics.

Speakers
avatar for Emma Losin

Emma Losin

Mighty Kingdom
Emma is a game designer with product management responsibilities. She holds Bachelors in Psychological Sciences and Game Design as well as qualifications in Interactive Digital Media and Visual Art. Nominated and received a special mention for Ingames 2019, was a Different Games Ambassador... Read More →
avatar for Rebekah Little

Rebekah Little

Mighty Kingdom
Rebekah is a Game Designer at Mighty Kingdom, Australia’s largest game development studio, and a Women in Games Ambassador with a passion for environmental narrative design and serious games. Her qualifications include an Advanced Diploma of Digital Development (Game Design), First... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 10:00am - 10:50am AEDT
Room 106 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

10:00am AEDT

A Personal Philosophy of Excellent Engineering
This talk will expand your conception of engineering from simply “making the computer do a thing” to thinking of yourself as a professional communicator.

One of the challenges for engineers, as they progress towards more senior roles, is making decisions about what to focus on and what to emphasise in their work. We often describe this culinarily as being “seasoned” or having “good taste”. This talk will describe my personal philosophy, with the aim of helping you develop and improve your own personal philosophy.

Speakers
avatar for Andrew Russell

Andrew Russell

Wargaming Sydney
Before joining Wargaming Sydney to develop the netcode for upcoming titles, Andrew Russell worked for a decade as a freelance and indie game developer with a focus on engine programming.


Tuesday October 4, 2022 10:00am - 10:50am AEDT
Room 109 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

10:00am AEDT

Workshop Design and Facilitation for Game Studios
Whether you have a daunting design decision to make, an organisational problem to solve, or your team just isn't singing from the same hymn sheet - finding the right way to have the right conversations with your team can feel overwhelming, and the idea of a "workshop" sounds like time you don't have.

Workshops can be powerful tools for harmonious and effective game development - but they can also be messy, "forced fun" rabbit holes. Getting the intention, design and execution just right is an art.

This talk will draw upon years of experience in creating workshops for development teams, stakeholders and external partners to suggest a system of modules for designing and facilitating the right session for your game team's needs. Covering design principles, tools and technology and facilitation techniques, this talk is all about helping you design the conversations your team needs.

Speakers
avatar for Ally McLean

Ally McLean

Mighty Kingdom
Ally is a game developer specialising in practices that foster healthy, sustainable teams based in Sydney, Australia. Ally is the founder of The Working Lunch, a collection of initiatives to make the games industry a better place to work, and is the Development Manager at Mighty Kingdom.Ally... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 10:00am - 10:50am AEDT
Room 110 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

11:00am AEDT

Style that Sings
“Just do what you do best!!” or “decide immediately out of school or else you’ll tank!!”, you’ve heard all the advice for style development, from naively too idealistic to creating something so dry and ‘marketable’ it makes you cry. Creating a ‘unique’ style in any medium is notoriously fuzzy territory: it requires a mixture of self-awareness, specific vocabulary, and combining things in interesting ways. This talk gives you prompts and tools to tackle the honesty and playfulness of style, whether for personal development or for a client.

Speakers
avatar for Jennifer Reuter

Jennifer Reuter

Jennifer Reuter
Jennifer A. Reuter (or just Jen works too) is your local Melbourne-based strident gremlin, who's jiving through the animation and games scene with 6 years experience as an illustrator, concept and storyboard artist. But telling stories, and drawing them as comics, is where the real... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 11:00am - 11:50am AEDT
Room 105 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

11:00am AEDT

25,000 lines of VO in an Aussie indie game
Wayward Strand has more dialogue than many AAA games. Not only that, it’s fully voiced. So how does an Australian indie team manage to do that? Maize Wallin (Audio Director) and Georgia Symons (Narrative co-director) will talk through how the Ghost Pattern team planned, recorded and implemented one of the most ambitious video game voiceover projects in memory. From casting to actor direction to implementation workflow across Unity, Pro Tools, RX, Wwise (and an inconceivable number of spreadsheets), we’ll share our lessons from developing our own unique process to bring our unique game to life.

Speakers
avatar for Maize Wallin

Maize Wallin

Ghost Pattern
 ​Maize Wallin Victorian College of the Arts (BFA) educated, Melbourne based composer, sound designer, and audio programmer working across indie games and big budget AAA.​Their focus is in 3D spatialised audio, and dynamic music, using cutting edge techniques to create unique... Read More →
avatar for Georgia Symons

Georgia Symons

Ghost Pattern
Georgia Symons is a maker of theatre, games, and interactive experiences. She lives and works on the lands of the Wurundjeri and Bunurong peoples. In all her work, she wants to bring people together to conduct experiments, pranks and spooky rituals. She is a great cyclist, a good... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 11:00am - 11:50am AEDT
Room 104 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

11:00am AEDT

DGTO - application in practice
The Digital Games Tax Offset will be a boon for driving investment in Australian dev teams. We will take a deep dive into the three key areas of the legislation with a focus on how small and medium sized studios can position themselves to best access the offset, manage cashflows and enter a sustainable cycle of development.

Speakers
LH

Luke Henry

LDB Accountants & Advisors
Luke has advised a range of tech and game studios on complex tax and business issues over nearly twenty years.  His team assists over sixty studios of all different sizes from around Australia.  They strive to bridge the gap between tax technical issues, industry language and the... Read More →
AE

Amy Ellis

LDB Accountants & Advisors
Amy has advised a range of tech and game studios on complex tax and business issues over ten years.  She leads a team which assists over sixty studios of all different sizes from around Australia.  They strive to bridge the gap between tax technical issues, industry language and... Read More →

Sponsors

Tuesday October 4, 2022 11:00am - 11:50am AEDT
Room 103 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

11:00am AEDT

We deserve better subtitles!
More than 80% of gamers use subtitles. But how do we make sure subtitles are great?

This session will explore what greats subtitles mean in 2022 and beyond.

From our regular professional use of and research into text-presentation in games, we’ll present how and why people use subtitles when gaming, how developers can improve both the user experience and accessibility of subtitles, and why you should bother.

Specifically, together, we’ll look at:

- what subtitles are, how they work, and how people use them
- how to tune your subtitles for the ways in which people use them
- designing good subtitles, from font, to colour, to contrast
- subtitles for accessibility, and subtitles for preference and convenience
- great subtitles vs. mediocre subtitles (“Control” is the gold standard, but we can do even better)
- subtitles in games vs. subtitles in linear media, what we can learn from other other
- closed captions or subtitles? What’s the difference?
- subtitling sound effects, not just dialogue

By the end of the session, attendees will better understand the world of subtitles, and be equipped with concrete recommendations they can take away to implement in their own games and projects, whether they’re just starting a project, or need to retrofit the subtitles in their existing games.

This session will be more design- and accessibility-focused than technical, but we’ll be discussing some technical possibilities when it comes to developing good subtitles, even though it’s not the focus.

Speakers
avatar for Paris Buttfield-Addison

Paris Buttfield-Addison

Secret Lab
Dr Paris Buttfield-Addison is the co-founder of independent game development studio Secret Lab. He serves as producer, and helps to maintain the popular open source interactive dialogue system, Yarn Spinner (https://yarnspinner.dev/). Secret Lab is best known for Night in the Woods... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 11:00am - 11:50am AEDT
Room 106 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

11:00am AEDT

Let's Do Some Crimes. The wonders of abusing C# generics.
To most programmers, generics are used rarely. Most commonly to create singletons or containers. But they can be incredibly powerful and performant tools to solving complex tasks faster, with simpler code or in ways not otherwise possible.

In this talk we will go on a rapid journey from the most basic applications of generics, to how to implement advanced generic functionality all while avoiding the pitfalls many incorrectly assume are part-and-parcel of using generics.

Practical takeaways will be a knowledge of how to build simple to advanced generic code patterns and when they are useful (as well as when they are not). The talk is mostly aimed at intermediate to advanced programmers but not to the exclusion of beginners

Speakers
avatar for Kiera Lord

Kiera Lord

5 Lives Studios
Kiera (aka Cratesmith) is a passionate, old as the hills dev who's been professionally through programming, design and production roles for the better part of 17 years. Trans, queer and about as subtle as a freight train.Her career can be surmised as: Working in the pre-gfc studios... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 11:00am - 11:50am AEDT
Room 109 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

11:00am AEDT

Building and Leading Inclusive Teams in a Hybrid and Evolving World
There is a global battle for the best talent, and an evolution of what it means for people to be the best talent. This session will explore lessons learned in the transition from in office to remote first during Covid, and what it takes to retain global and local talent when there are more options and opportunities available than ever before.
We’ll also dive into the many challenges of leading a team in a Hybrid world where some are in office, some are overseas, and everyone has many calls for their time and attention.

Speakers
avatar for Chris Clay

Chris Clay

Immutable
I started my career in Technical Art before it was defined as a role where I was on the bleeding edge of using Maya to develop assets for games. I published the first character setup tutorial for Maya on the web way back in 2000. I made the transition to Game Design while working... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 11:00am - 11:50am AEDT
Room 110 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

12:00pm AEDT

UI Animation: The Art of making Buttons Move
Attendees will learn the importance of UI motion/animation in games, how it plays an important role in making the whole game immersive and how integral it is in the whole interaction experience of players. Attendes will also learn basics on how to go about making UI animation that is aligned with the game's overall art direction. This talk fits with the track focus for art this year as creative UI in games can certainly be a transmedia medium.

Speakers
avatar for Emmanuel Jr Vasquez

Emmanuel Jr Vasquez

Blizzard Entertainment
My name's Emmanuel Vasquez, Jr and I'm currently working as a Senior UI Artist for Blizzard Entertainment. I have been in the creative industry for over a decade now with most of that time spent in making games. Throughout my game development career I have worked in 5 different countries... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 12:00pm - 12:50pm AEDT
Room 105 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

12:00pm AEDT

Games by Songs
‘Games by Songs’ was a 6 month period of intensive experimentation (supported by Creative Victoria) undertaken by Jake about integrating music with lyrics into video games through collaborative songwriting and game design.

Jake will talk through 3 prototypes and songs he created for it - breaking down his design approach/creative process, successes and challenges, technical implementation (Unity code and FMOD integration), and overall takeaways from the project.

This talk is for designers, audio programmers, and anyone who is interested in innovating in the music games space. The talk will leave you with a place to start with innovating in the games-music space, some tips on integrating music into games, and questioning what a music game can be!

Speakers
avatar for Jake Leaney

Jake Leaney

Things For Humans
Jake Leaney is an indie game developer (Things For Humans) and pop artist/songwriter under the moniker Monster Mansion. He develops games based on the music he writes/releases, most recently the award-winning Halloween rhythm game 'Video World'.In 2021 Jacob received The Creators... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 12:00pm - 12:50pm AEDT
Room 104 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

12:00pm AEDT

How to Raise Investment Funding for Your Games Studio
If you need to raise capital for your games studio, where do you start? Bobby Thandi from XR Games reveals the do's and don'ts of raising investment. Including what you need to get ready before investment, what to expect during the process, red and green flags regarding potential investors, the questions you need VCs to answer, and the questions VCs will be asking you.

XR Games is the studio behind hits such as Zombieland VR and Angry Birds Under Pressure VR

Speakers
avatar for Bobby Thandi

Bobby Thandi

XR Games
'Bobby Thandi is the Founder and CEO of XR Games - an award-winning VR game development studio. Bobby secures contracts from key clients such as Sony Pictures, develops key relationships with global partners such as Meta, Microsoft, Valve, and others.Further, Bobby is responsible... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 12:00pm - 12:50pm AEDT
Room 103 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

12:00pm AEDT

My Experience Of You Is Primarily Authored By Me: Semiotic NPC Design
Spoken by a trained anthropologist who specialises in identity development, My Experience Of You Is Primarily Authored By Me: Semiotic NPC Design outlines how narrative designers and game developers can utilise the linguistic philosophical field of semiotics - that is, how meaning is communicated through symbolism - in order to directly translate how humans perceive others as unique individuals into programmatic representation.

Attendees will learn thought strategies for building NPC design frameworks that spotlight individual complexity and uniqueness, and gives a particular eye to strategies for procedurally generated deep NPC design.

Speakers
avatar for Chantal Ryan

Chantal Ryan

We Have Always Lived In The Forest
Chantal Ryan is founder of the experimental narrative game studio We Have Always Lived In The Forest. She has a passion for making NPCs and worlds feel more interactively human, as well as for developing technologies to make that happen.Chantal is Vera May Swift Scholar and Edward... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 12:00pm - 12:50pm AEDT
Room 106 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

12:00pm AEDT

Optimising your game AFTER it ships
They say that Premature Optimisation is the root of all evil (It's not, but THEY do say it). Delayed optimisation is root of all your players leaving because your game is too slow. This talk will look at how to maintain a released game and ensure that it maintains an appropriate level of performance, that it meets performance objectives that ensure that players aren't inconvenienced, and that when things do slow down, you know when, why and hopefully, how to fix it. This talk will look at performance of servers and clients and how to deal with the ridiculous amounts of data that you can collect to identify the key points you need to address to keep your players happy.

Speakers
avatar for Tony Albrecht

Tony Albrecht

Riot Games
It started over 30 years ago with a C64 BASIC program which bounced a balloon around the screen and the question “How many more balloons can I animate?” That simple question has led to a lifetime of programming, specialising in squeezing as much power out of the hardware as possible.Tony... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 12:00pm - 12:50pm AEDT
Room 109 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

12:00pm AEDT

Building A Better Industry – Australia’s First Union For Game Workers
Game Workers Australia (GWA) is a dedicated group that has been established in Professionals Australia, the union for Australian information technology and software development workers. The establishment of GWA is a vital first step in building a better industry – one which delivers higher wages, better working conditions and greater job security for game workers. In this session, you will hear why workers are organising both here in Australia and internationally, how GWA grew from a volunteer group into a union and how GWA will help to create a stronger, more inclusive and sustainable industry.

Speakers
avatar for Tim Colwill

Tim Colwill

Game Workers Australia
Tim Colwill is a former game developer and game journalist, who now works as an official in Australia’s mighty trade union movement. He is one of the founding members of Game Workers Australia and is currently elected co-convenor of the community.
avatar for Jill McCabe

Jill McCabe

Professionals Australia
Jill McCabe is the CEO of Professionals Australia – a union representing the industrial and professional needs of over 20,000 professional employees across Australia, including game workers. With a background in industrial relations and health and safety, Jill has extensive leadership... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 12:00pm - 12:50pm AEDT
Room 110 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

1:00pm AEDT

Lunch
Tuesday October 4, 2022 1:00pm - 2:00pm AEDT
Lobby 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

2:00pm AEDT

1001 ways to draw an object: An isometric pixel art tutorial
In this session Angus will discuss the technical and artistic challenges he faced when helping to create over 1000 items and 35 environments for Unpacking.

From the ground up, Angus will teach the techniques needed to draw isometric pixel art. The session's emphasis will be on accurate measurement in order to guarantee a consistent 3d illusion within a 2d space. He will also discuss some of the difficulties that arose from the unique requirements of Unpacking, and how they were solved.

Speakers
avatar for Angus Doolan

Angus Doolan

Angus Doolan
Angus is a pixel artist and animator who has been pursuing game development as a hobby for over a decade. He became a freelance pixel artist in 2015 and has since worked on multiple indie game titles, most of which remain in development. He is best known as the primary pixel artist... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 2:00pm - 2:50pm AEDT
Room 105 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

2:00pm AEDT

Days of Future Past: A Journey Through Time to See the Future of Community
When did memes start? What is “brandjacking” and where did it come from? When was it decided that the person handling all online brand communication was for some reason “the intern?” How could knowing this possibly help us navigate the murky future of community management? Kelsey goes full Charles Xavier and tries to tackle the past, the present and the future.... AT THE SAME TIME.

Speakers
avatar for Kelsey Gamble

Kelsey Gamble

Gods Unchained, Immutable
Kelsey is a community management veteran of the industry, having spent more than a decade across Asia Pacific working on communities at Bethesda, EB Games, and now as the Head of Community on the game Gods Unchained with Sydney based studio Immutable. She has won numerous awards for... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 2:00pm - 2:50pm AEDT
Room 103 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

2:00pm AEDT

Algorithms and Emojis: Puzzle Design for Nekograms
This session is a deep dive into how we: designed an intuitive sliding-puzzle game based on nonograms (a popular logic puzzle); generated and curated levels for the game; and created an Endless Mode which creates levels on the fly.

We talk about the difficulties and gotchas of using level generation, and some of the processes we undertook to tests, rate, traige, and curate generated levels. We touch upon some of the features (eg. level sharing) left behind, and conclude with how the puzzle design for our next title has been influenced by what we've learnt.

Speakers
avatar for Nick Lowe

Nick Lowe

Hungry Sky
Nick Lowe is a Founder and Director of Perth-based interactive design studio Hungry Sky, and the Designer and Director of the studio's first self-published game, Nekograms.Nick has worked in interactive media for over 15 years, with clients including: the WA Museum, BitSummit Games... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 2:00pm - 2:50pm AEDT
Room 106 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

2:00pm AEDT

Implementing Team-Based Matchmaking without a Matchmaking Server
Learn how to implement team-based matchmaking for your game, without having to run or pay for a centralised matchmaking server. This talk is a highly technical deep dive into the distributed matchmaking algorithm in our Matchmaking plugin for Unreal Engine, which leverages the free lobby APIs available in EOS and Steam to provide a low cost, scalable matchmaking solution for independent developers.

Speakers
avatar for June Rhodes

June Rhodes

Redpoint Games
June Rhodes is the owner of Redpoint Games, where she develops multiplayer and online-focused plugins for the Unreal Engine Marketplace. Redpoint Games has released multiple products on the Marketplace, the most well-known being EOS Online Subsystem: an Unreal Engine integration for... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 2:00pm - 2:50pm AEDT
Room 109 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

2:00pm AEDT

It's Not About The Plugins: Building a game career in 2022
There is an irony that building a career in the game industry is much like starting the grand quest storyline of many games. There is often little guidance, the end goal is nebulous and it is hard to tell who might aid and who might prey on you. But like many games, success is often less about the tools you have stuffed in your pack and more about the knowledge and skills to get the best of those tools.

Ambition is a tool, wield it poorly and it is likely to cause more harm than good. There are far more aspects to growing and maintaining a successful career than simply getting a job. Recognizing and optimising potential opportunities is far more valuable to your future than an endless supply of plugins, instruments and toys which can distract us from what we should be focussing on.

This session will explore, explain and encourage attendees to use their ambition to focus their careers on longevity rather than getting lost on the side quests. This session will focus on building a career in game audio, but much of the advice will be applicable across all disciplines.

Speakers
avatar for Stephan Schutze

Stephan Schutze

Sound Librarian
Stephan Schutze has worked in game audio production for over 20 years on nearly every available platform in that period. He wrote the first book on audio production for VR and AR and has presented conference sessions on a broad range of subjects around the world.Stephan has always... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 2:00pm - 2:50pm AEDT
Room 110 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

2:00pm AEDT

Making our Final Stand: A Retro on Age of Darkness
A retro on Age of Darkness from the Playside Studio team. More details coming soon!

Speakers

Tuesday October 4, 2022 2:00pm - 2:50pm AEDT
Room 104 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

3:00pm AEDT

Throwing Shade: How to Yassify Your Game
A dive into Unreal Engine 4's shaders and vfx, how you can wrangle them to work in ways you never expected, and how I used them to create magical comic book effects for Stray Gods: The Roleplaying Musical.

Speakers
TG

Teja Godson

Summerfall Studios
Teja Godson is a self-taught 3D designer, game dev, and tech artist. She's been obsessed with imagining dream worlds since she was a kid, and began bringing them to life in Blender over 8 years ago. Having created environments for award-winning games such as Rumu, Boomerang Fu, she's... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 3:00pm - 3:50pm AEDT
Room 105 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

3:00pm AEDT

Logos for Games
A logo is a beacon for your community, an activator to unlocking funding opportunities, and where customer dedication to your game begins. Discover in this session the power of having a strong logo and how it can help define your game in the market, no matter what stage of development you're at.

Speakers
avatar for Ben Harmon

Ben Harmon

Gravy Stain Pants
Ben Harmon is a freelance graphic designer working alongside the games industry to design iconic logos, powerful brands and marketing content for games. Ben's most recent work includes designing the brand for the Melbourne-based studio Samurai Punk and a logo for their most recent... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 3:00pm - 3:50pm AEDT
Room 103 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

3:00pm AEDT

Using Automated Story Planners for Augmented Narrative
Writers! Has this ever happened to you? *greyscale footage of a writer at their computer being frustrated at having to either plan out hundreds of possible plot threads to get a player-controlled story from one state to another, and then looking to camera with an exaggerated annoyed expression*

Or, players! Has this ever happened to you? *greyscale footage of a player frustrated that their game’s story can’t be very reactive to the actions they take due to the enormous amount of writing that would be needed, and then looking to camera with an exaggerated annoyed expression*

Why not try automated story planning tools, a cool new experimental technique to let computers do some of the work involved in building a story that’s both narratively plausible while also under the control of the narrative designer! *colour footage of players and writers looking happy and giving an exaggerated thumbs-up*

In this talk, we’ll look at automated story planners, which are tools that help writers produce story steps, and can help NPCs take plausible actions to get the story towards a target game state. It won’t write your story for you, but it can help make your story richer!

Speakers
avatar for Jon Manning

Jon Manning

Secret Lab
Jon Manning is the co-founder of Secret Lab, an independent game development studio best known for their work on the BAFTA- and IGF-winning Night in the Woods, and on the hugely popular narrative tool Yarn Spinner. Jon is also the co-author of a number of books on Unity, Swift, and... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 3:00pm - 3:50pm AEDT
Room 106 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

3:00pm AEDT

Expert level debugging
In this talk I'll go through some examples of very hard to debug crashes and problems, including manually unwinding broken callstacks, finding variables when the debugger can't, taking advantage of sanitizers and other advanced tools.

Speakers
avatar for James Mitchell

James Mitchell

Sledgehammer Games
Expert Online Engineer at Sledgehammer Games with over 15 years’ experience using C++. For the last several years, he has been building high performance game server technology.


Tuesday October 4, 2022 3:00pm - 3:50pm AEDT
Room 109 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

3:00pm AEDT

Nurturing neurodiversity: making game dev accessible to everyone
Knowing that there is actually quite a strong probability that someone you work with is neurodivergent, learning about it and how to cultivate a positive workplace environment with neurodiversity in mind can be hugely beneficial, not only for the individual but for the whole team as you nurture a more accessible, diverse, and productive workplace. This talk will focus on sharing the experience of neurodivergent practitioners within the games industry and provide take-away points for building an inclusive and accessible workplace to get the best out of neurodivergent employees and the team overall.

Speakers
avatar for Catherine Booth

Catherine Booth

Gameloft
Catherine Booth is an upcoming Australian game designer with 4 years of experience across marketing and community, QA and design. A passionate storyteller and experience creator, Catherine recently joined the Gameloft Brisbane team after 3 years with Gold Coast virtual reality studio... Read More →
avatar for Bradley Hennessey

Bradley Hennessey

Gameloft
Bradley Hennessey has been a Solo Game Developer for over 8 years, developing numerous titles in that time. As a recent graduate of Game Design at QUT, in 2021 he achieved an internship with Gameloft Brisbane through Screen QLDs Internship program. Now a Junior Designer at the Studio... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 3:00pm - 3:50pm AEDT
Room 110 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

3:00pm AEDT

Designer VS Producer
One in the clouds and one on the ground. Zala (designer) and Calliope (producer) share a light-hearted guide for designers and producers seeking to effectively navigate and communicate their distinctly different perspectives to arrive at their shared goal: a complete, fun, shipped game.

Join us as we talk scope friction, content cuts, purposeful design, player needs, and accessible communication - and provide you with strategies, tools, and processes to strengthen your workplace collaboration.

Speakers
avatar for Zala Habib

Zala Habib

Accessibility Unlocked
Zala is a game designer with a love for bringing design thinking to all fields and disciplines. With 3+ years in the industry she has designed and consulted on games and systems of a wide range of genres and backgrounds. She brings her experience in robotics, theatre, and learning... Read More →
avatar for Calliope Ryder

Calliope Ryder

Wētā Workshop
Calliope is a games producer working at Wētā Workshop on the exciting redacted. Previously a production lead at publishing agency GYLD, and creative producer at local indie Starcolt, Calliope has assisted a wide variety of studios with their production planning, both in-house and... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 3:00pm - 3:50pm AEDT
Room 104 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

4:00pm AEDT

3D to 2D: Moving from One Artistic Style to Another Along the Oregon Trail
How does a studio go from being primarily 3D to creating a 2D pixel art game with over 40 characters? You create a pipeline that utilises the existing skillsets of the animators in order to easily achieve the desired aesthetic result. This however isn’t an entirely easy task to accomplish. This talk will cover the difficulties, teething issues, and ultimate successes that led us to create an award winning game with a unique art and animation style.

Speakers
avatar for John Aitchison

John Aitchison

Gameloft Brisbane
John is a passionate and experienced animator who has been breathing life into gameplay and cinematic characters for over 20 years. With a long career as a digital artist, John has experience working on various large scale projects in numerous studios. John joined Gameloft Brisbane... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 4:00pm - 4:50pm AEDT
Room 105 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

4:00pm AEDT

Braving TikTok: Creating Community & Running Ad
TikTok continues to rise as a key platform that should be part of your marketing strategy. The audience is very online, consuming a lot of content, leaving a lot of comments, and regularly discovering their next highly targeted trend on their For You Page.

Is TikTok worth the effort to figure out? In short, yes. It’s one of the only platforms right now where virality is a possibility. In this talk, I aim to help give you the confidence to start your TikTok account, start putting content out and share how to tackle TikTok advertising.

Speakers
avatar for Victoria Kershaw

Victoria Kershaw

Studio Drydock
Victoria is a passionate marketing and communications nerd living in Melbourne, Australia. She's been working with videogames for 7 years, and is currently the marketing lead at Studio Drydock, working with their cozy story game Wylde Flowers. Previously she has managed communities... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 4:00pm - 4:50pm AEDT
Room 103 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

4:00pm AEDT

ABC Design - Approaching Game Design through Daisy Chains
If you can’t see the whole puzzle, how do you know when a piece is missing? Game Design is often about creating something from nothing and filling a void to solve a problem, but finding the missing piece isn’t always easy. Brainstorming game ideas can feel futile and frustrating, gameplay loops elusive, concepts abandoned half-baked, or something just straight up feels missing. How do we get to the bottom of these problems? How do we figure out what’s missing from a loop? This talk is about using the idea of daisy chains and our ABC’s as a method of approaching, understanding, creating, and troubleshooting game design. This is all in order to reach a practical and actionable outcome, improve design thinking, and making filling in the missing piece of the puzzle as easy as ABC.

Speakers
avatar for Penelope Davison

Penelope Davison

EA Firemonkeys
Penelope is a game designer at EA Firemonkeys, working on the mobile title ‘The Sims Freeplay’. She studied game design at RMIT University before interning with free-roam VR company Zero Latency, briefly working on their first PvP title ’Sol Raiders’. Penelope then graduated... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 4:00pm - 4:50pm AEDT
Room 106 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

4:00pm AEDT

TBA
TBA

Tuesday October 4, 2022 4:00pm - 4:50pm AEDT
Room 109 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

4:00pm AEDT

Don't quit your day job: How to survive making games on the side
Making games is hard. Making a career in games is harder. This talk proposes an alternative approach: not making a career in games at all. If games are art, then it stands to reason that game developers are artists, and most artists support their art through other means. Why do we think games would be any different? Drawing from extensive research with Australian developers, as well as his own experience developing and releasing Brendan Keogh's Putting Challenge, Brendan Keogh argues that rush to turn game development into a day job can sometimes hinder, rather than enhance your ambition. He will outline the arguments for and against keeping game development as your side gig, and outline the benefits and challenges of doing so.

Speakers
avatar for Brendan Keogh

Brendan Keogh

Queensland University of Technology
Brendan Keogh is a part-time game developer and a full-time academic from Brisbane, Australia who has been active in the Australian game development community for over a decade. He is the author of Killing is Harmless: A Critical Reading of Spec-Ops The Line, A Play of Bodies, and... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 4:00pm - 4:50pm AEDT
Room 110 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

4:00pm AEDT

A Bug's Life: QA practices in all stages of a project
Mighty Kingdom prides itself on the adoption of enterprise-grade QA practices, and is excited to share what has been learned with other studios. QA practitioners often cry out for early inclusion in projects, but what does that really mean? This talk will describe how early investment in QA practices and procedures can add demonstrable, practical value to your entire team at all stages of a project, and the costs of leaving it too late.

Speakers
avatar for Jason Imms

Jason Imms

Mighty Kingdom
Jason Imms (he/him) is the Director of Quality Assurance at Mighty Kingdom, Freeplay Festival board member and awards chair. Formerly, Jason was a games and technology journalist for a wide range of Australian and US publications (GameSpot, Giant Bomb, Kill Screen, Hyper Magazine... Read More →


Tuesday October 4, 2022 4:00pm - 4:50pm AEDT
Room 104 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006
 
Wednesday, October 5
 

8:30am AEDT

Opening Keynote: TBA
Wednesday October 5, 2022 8:30am - 9:40am AEDT
Plenary 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

9:40am AEDT

Morning Tea
Wednesday October 5, 2022 9:40am - 10:00am AEDT
Lobby 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

10:00am AEDT

Talk the talk: How to say the right things about your game
One of the best ways to convince people to buy your game is through marketing. But before you start talking about your game, you should first figure out what you should be talking about. Players play games for many reasons. Some play to master them, some play so that they can be someone else, while others might play to release their creative juices. Not all players play for the same reasons and not all gamers have the same motivations to play.

Not only should you create a title that satisfies those reasons and motivations, but you should also be able to communicate your game's virtues too. How do you that? How do you figure out what to say? And how do you apply that in your marketing? Well, that’s what my talk is about. I will share with you one of my favourite exercises to help figure out what you should be saying (finding your Key Pillars) as well as giving you an outline of player motivations and how to use them in your communications.

Speakers
avatar for Michal Napora

Michal Napora

32-33
Michal Napora is a video games marketer and owner of video games marketing agency 32-33. He worked on games ranging from AAA's, all the way to indies. He started his gamedev career with Techland, being the Social Media/Community Manager on Dying Light. After leaving Techland, he started... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 10:00am - 10:50am AEDT
Room 105 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

10:00am AEDT

Getting the most out of your IP - enjoy the full fruits of your labour
You've put in the hard yards and you've got a product you're proud of. You're nervous about putting your baby out into the world - and rightfully so. So much hinges on making this project profitable, so it makes sense to do it right.

The industry talks about game IP all the time but there's barely a clue out there about how to leverage your IP for success.

In this session Briar, Senior Associate at HopgoodGanim Lawyers, will help you quantify your IP, identify the best ways to protect it, and then leverage it in your business.

Speakers
avatar for Briar Francis

Briar Francis

HopgoodGanim Lawyers
Briar is a Senior Associate in HopgoodGanim Lawyers' Intellectual Property and Technology team.Briar has experience in both the intellectual property and information technology fields, advising on a wide range of matters from software and intellectual property contract negotiation... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 10:00am - 10:50am AEDT
Room 103 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

10:00am AEDT

No Hero Is An Island: How Diverse Ensemble Casts Create Living Worlds
Video game stories can suffer when they fall back on stock characters in the service of creating a familiar experience for the player. In this session, I will talk about how the narrative team at Studio Drydock developed an authentic, diverse ensemble cast that powered our witchy farming sim past genre clichés to create a world that feels alive.

Speakers
avatar for Desiree Cifre

Desiree Cifre

Studio Drydock
Desiree Cifre is a writer and narrative designer, most recently on Wylde Flowers, out now on Apple Arcade (Steam and Switch later in 2022).  I am passionate about authentic representation in game stories, and I believe that games can respectfully address serious themes through p... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 10:00am - 10:50am AEDT
Room 106 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

10:00am AEDT

On Demand Texture streaming - How we made all our Cod's fit on one PS4
An overview of Activision’s On Demand Texture streaming technology, its humble beginnings, our hurdles and future plans to help reduce the size of Call of Duty while retaining our high quality Image quality and low latency multiplayer experience. By Chris Fowler – Principal Engineer at Sledgehammer Games. Chris has over 20 years’ experience, working with franchises like Bioshock, Star Wars, Borderlands, Rainbow Six and Call Of Duty.

Speakers
avatar for Chris Fowler

Chris Fowler

Sledgehammer games
Chris, is Platform lead engineer on Call of Duty. With over 20 years experience he has worked on franchises such as Call of Duty, Rainbox Six, Borderlands, Bioshock and Stars Wars.


Wednesday October 5, 2022 10:00am - 10:50am AEDT
Room 109 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

10:00am AEDT

30 is the new 40: Lessons from the 4-day work week
There is a wave of momentum moving through the industry as we reckon with the mistakes of the past and commit to a better, more inclusive future. For many companies, that has meant challenging the very notion of the Monday-to-Friday 40-hour work week.

At Mighty Kingdom we have been at the forefront of progressive workplace policy, most notably our shift to a 4-day work week in 2020. While it certainly grabs a lot of attention, we think of it as part of our total policy package that is designed to attract and retain a more diverse range of talent.

In this talk I will take you behind the headlines and talk about the hard work and tough decisions that must be made to ensure that your policies are actually achieving the outcomes you are looking for, and highlight many of the lessons we have learned along the way.

For those who are considering a change in your career I will discuss some ways of determining whether a companies policies are more than just a bullet point on their job listings.

Speakers
avatar for Philip Mayes

Philip Mayes

Mighty Kingdom
Philip Mayes is the founder and Managing Director of Mighty Kingdom.Philip’s career in games began more than 15 years ago, when he moved to Adelaide Australia from New Zealand to take up a Junior Programmer role at Ratbag Games in 2005. Following the closure of Ratbag later that... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 10:00am - 10:50am AEDT
Room 110 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

10:00am AEDT

So You Think You Can Ship
Creative projects are a beast to finish. Knowing exactly how and when games with novel mechanics, narratives or aesthetics will be ready for release can be a challenge for any team, even those with shipped titles under their belt already.

Cherie “Games Midwife” Davidson will draw from her years of experience supporting creative teams shipping creative projects to share common pitfalls that occur in the last “20%” of development and the warning signs that a project may be headed for a premature release date.

This is a talk for producers, directors and leads working on projects which fall outside of typical genre conventions. It will equip you with the knowledge to identify hidden risks in your timeline and considerations to protect your team so you are enabled to approach the challenge of shipping in a constructive and positive way.

Speakers
avatar for Cherie Davidson

Cherie Davidson

Strange Folk
Cherie “Games Midwife” Davidson is a programmer and producer who has worked on multiple award-winning indie and AAA games (Untitled Goose Game, Paperbark, Necrobarista, Dreams, Tearaway Unfolded). She has been listed in Develop’s 30 Under 30, featured in ACMI's Code Breakers... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 10:00am - 10:50am AEDT
Room 104 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

11:00am AEDT

I Made You Some Content - The Community to Content Pipeline
With social media moving faster than ever, it’s hard to know which pieces of content will stick. Will it be that silly meme you made for fun, or that 30 minute devlog that took ages to edit? Look, it’ll probably be the meme, but that meme can be harnessed to create a powerful and dedicated community who are proud advocates of your game.

This talk will take you through the role of content and how it differs on each social media platform. Every platform will inevitably attract a varied audience, all invested in your game. By translating your game development pillars into digestible marketing pillars, utilising analytics and understanding your audience needs, you will walk away from this talk confident in creating an ongoing content strategy.

Speakers
avatar for Pritika Sachdev

Pritika Sachdev

Quiip
Pritika is a Senior Social Media Professional passionate about connecting and nurturing online communities. With a drive to understand the connection between client and audience, she's constantly looking for new challenges within various ethical industries. She’s currently a Senior... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 11:00am - 11:50am AEDT
Room 105 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

11:00am AEDT

INVESTMENT, MERGERS AND ACQUISITIONS – WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN FOR OUR STUDIO?
This presentation is addressed at those studios looking to take on board investment from third parties or be acquired by third parties. The presentation will be focused on game development companies and the specific hurdles they face in completing a transaction. To do this the presenters will provide an overview of each stage of a ‘typical’ transaction.

Speakers
avatar for Cam Rogers

Cam Rogers

Cam Rogers Legal
Cam is a digital entertainment lawyer with over twelve years’ experience working in video game development and distribution. As a part of his practice Cam acts for game developers, based all over Australia, and has assisted international game publishers such as Epic and Wargaming... Read More →
avatar for Sam Cottell

Sam Cottell

Cottell & Co
Sam is a corporate lawyer with a wide range of expertise, particularly in relation to mergers & acquisitions and investment transactions. He has over 20 years of experience including many recent transactions acting for game developers who are either being bought out or are bringing... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 11:00am - 11:50am AEDT
Room 103 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

11:00am AEDT

Cultivating Playful Culture
In a culture that is driven by efficiency and performance, we often devalue actions and characteristics that contradict those notions. This internalised-culture will often make us feel guilty to linger, self conscious to play or anxious to try new things. It can limit how we engage and narrow our perception.

In this talk Duncan highlights one of these undervalued and under recognised characteristics, playfulness.
He believes playfulness is a powerful concept that promotes creativity, open-mindedness and confidence. He's exploring what it means to be playful, how we inspire playfulness in others and how we can help cultivate a culture that promotes and celebrates playfulness.

Duncan defines playfulness as acting volitionally to make the most of a situation. Doing what you are wanting to do while at the same time pushing the boundaries and exploring new opportunities. With a focus on games, Duncan considers how we might inspire this type of engagement in our players and how that influences how our players engage outside the game too. To engage players in a way that frees them of guilt, fear and anxiety to ultimately cultivate a culture that is less judgemental, less anxious and more autonomous.

Speakers
avatar for Duncan Corrigan

Duncan Corrigan

Duncan Corrigan
Duncan is a game designer with an interest in creating expressive games that inspire playfulness. Frequent games jammer and playful arts festival goer, Duncan spends a lot of his time thinking about how cool games are. He’s currently studying a Masters in Animation, Games and Interactivity... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 11:00am - 11:50am AEDT
Room 106 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

11:00am AEDT

Multiplayer Misadventures - Tales from making our first PvP multiplayer game in Unity
We’ve had one amazing adventure so far and discovered a lot from making our very first PvP multiplayer game.

Gabriella and Will take a deep dive into our cross-platform mobile real-time player vs. player battle game, or CPMRTPVPBG for short.

We want to share our aspirations, the challenges we faced, the technologies we used, and refactors we wish we considered in retrospect. You can learn how our processes and solutions can be applied to your own project and help you better understand what it takes to develop a multiplayer game.

This is for the self-starter experienced in Unity development that’s eager to jump into the realm of making multiplayer games. Our goal is to give you the tips and tools to start your own adventure.

Speakers
avatar for Will Bagley

Will Bagley

Chaos Theory Games
Will is a director and co-founder of Chaos Theory, an independant development studio based in Sydney. As the Technical Director, Will has helped to shape the development practices and standards of the team as they grew from a small 3 person studio up to the current 20+ team.Over the... Read More →
avatar for Gabriella Wilson

Gabriella Wilson

Chaos Theory Games
Gabriella joined Chaos Theory as a Quality Assurance Tester whilst studying at AIT, but quickly transitioned into a Unity Developer, as programming had always been her passion.From programming Battle Toyale, a 20-player digital sideshow game to Bleached Az (AGDA’s Serious Game of... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 11:00am - 11:50am AEDT
Room 109 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

11:00am AEDT

Slacking Off: Running a remote international, asynchronous studio
Studio Drydock is a 3 year old studio that has developed and shipped their first game: Wylde Flowers for Nintendo Switch, Steam and Apple Arcade. The game was developed by a fully remote, international, asynchronous team of 25, including people working from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, USA and Costa Rica.

As the beginning of this work predates the rise of COVID, we needed to develop our own procedures, practices and culture to operate effectively.

This talk will cover some of the advantages and challenges to this structure and outline the solutions that have helped it to be successful.

Speakers
avatar for Amanda Schofield

Amanda Schofield

Studio Drydock
Amanda is the managing director at Studio Drydock and creative director on their recent release Wylde Flowers. Amanda has worked in the games industry as an Engineer, Creative Director, Game GM and Senior Producer for Australian games studios EA Firemonkeys and IronMonkey. Her most... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 11:00am - 11:50am AEDT
Room 110 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

11:00am AEDT

Game Production for Indie Teams
How should you prioritise your tasks/cards? How do you run your team standups productively and effectively? How do you prevent crunch?

These are all questions you’ve likely stumbled on, especially if you’re managing a small team or working solo. Often, indie devs might not have a full time producer to help with managing day-to-day processes, but coordinating the many tasks you have whilst making your game is critical to successfully putting it out into the world. To help you out, we’ve prepared some of our best practices for game production.

Learn about what production is, and hear from Reuben about managing a team and best practices for tracking tasks!

Speakers
avatar for Rueben Moorhouse

Rueben Moorhouse

No Moss Studios / Noble Steed Games
As the founder and director of Noble Steed Games, Reuben has been responsible for leading a range of game development projects for clients to both critical and commercial success. He has been a key member of the local development community, being named in MCV Pacific's "30 Under 30... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 11:00am - 11:50am AEDT
Room 104 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

12:00pm AEDT

Everything is Marketing: Why you're a better marketer than you think.
For decades, marketers have claimed often and loudly that ‘marketing is everything’.
While YouTube pre-rolls, Steam sales, and paid social ads are important for fulfilling your game’s commercial ambitions, the truth is that marketing is a lot broader (and a lot more fun) than one might think.

Marketing may well be everything, but these days it’s important to remember that everything can be marketing. In fact, you’ve likely been marketing this whole time without even realising it!

In this session, Jack Railton-Woodcock (former advertising Creative Director and current Brand Manager of Melbourne game studio Lumi Interactive) will demystify this dark art by busting myths about the marketing world, sharing examples of the good, the bad, and the ugly of advertising, providing a glimpse into the future of marketing, and sharing some creative techniques for developing eye-catching ideas of your own.

Speakers
avatar for Jack Railton-Woodcock

Jack Railton-Woodcock

Lumi Interactive
Jack Railton-Woodcock is the Brand Manager for Lumi Interactive, developers of Kinder World — a restorative game about houseplants, healing, and community care.He comes from almost a decade of experience in the advertising industry, working as an internationally-awarded copywriter... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 12:00pm - 12:50pm AEDT
Room 105 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

12:00pm AEDT

Using storytelling tools for your grant application
In narrative design, we talk a lot about conveying a meaningful story through a gaming experience. However, when you’re applying for a grant, conveying what makes your game’s story and its audience unique is just as important. This talk will explore using storytelling and narrative tools to shape your grant application, how to use these tools to narrow down your game’s core audience, and how to highlight its core selling points in the process.

Speakers
avatar for Lise Leitner

Lise Leitner

VicScreen
Lise is a games creative and writer based in Naarm/Melbourne. They’ve worked in marketing and communications for more than ten years and have worked for cultural institutions and museums in Australia and in their home country of Belgium. As a writer, they’ve contributed to game... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 12:00pm - 12:50pm AEDT
Room 103 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

12:00pm AEDT

Understanding your players better through user research (even on an indie budget)
The success of games depends on their Player Experience and building the best Player Experience relies on understanding your players. Games User Research is integral to understanding players and how to build the best product for them. Research is more than just testing prototypes at the end of the development cycle, it should be embedded throughout the game development cycle.
Come along to learn some tips and tricks on getting started, choosing the right methods and tools for all types of teams.

Speakers
avatar for Megan Pusey

Megan Pusey

Murdoch University
Megan has just finished a PhD in Games User Research. She investigated how puzzle video games can help improve resilience. As a teacher Megan used video games such as Minecraft, Universe Sandbox and Portal 2 to teach science. She enjoys playing video games and cosplays in her spare... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 12:00pm - 12:50pm AEDT
Room 106 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

12:00pm AEDT

Optimising games for a complex world
As our games grow in complexity, and in the number of supported platforms, optimising them to run consistently at their target frame rate has become exponentially more challenging. This work cannot be left to a small group of technical people at the end of production.

In this talk, we will explore project-wide approaches that can be used to engage the team in the optimisation process. From generating and leveraging large volumes of performance data, to techniques that can be applied to scale the game, we will try to offer some practical tips that can make the process easier. To support this, some examples of successes and challenges from recent Ubisoft titles will be provided.

This talk will not focus on bare-to-the-metal coding techniques, and will instead try to present performance optimisation as a holistic approach that should be adopted by the entire production team.

Speakers
avatar for Matt Delbosc

Matt Delbosc

Ubisoft Australia
Matt has been working in the games industry for over 16 years as a Programmer or Programming Lead.  He started his career in Melbourne at Transmission Games and, after spending the last 10 years at Ubisoft Toronto, he is very excited to be back in his home town.He has worked on titles... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 12:00pm - 12:50pm AEDT
Room 109 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

12:00pm AEDT

TBA
TBA

Speakers

Wednesday October 5, 2022 12:00pm - 12:50pm AEDT
Room 110 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

12:00pm AEDT

How Dog Training can make us better Producers
As a Producer by day an Dog Trainer by night, how do the two worlds meet?

Join me on a walk between my two worlds. I'll share tips and dog-tricks, showing different examples for how you can apply dog training theory to help you lead teams, breakdown ambitious goals and deliver great products.

This talk can be useful whether you are leading teams of people, making your first game or just training your dog.

Key Takeaways / Learning Outcomes:
* Reading the room and people
* Identify root causes and/or challenges
* Breaking down strategies, goals and challenges into achievable milestones
* How to implement, test, measure and adapt the plan
* Ability to say you saw that dog at GCAP.

Speakers
avatar for Ali Dale

Ali Dale

EA Firemonkeys
Ali has built and lead high-performing teams as a Producer, Game Designer and Scrum Master. In the last 10 years, she has produced 60+ games, apps and interactive experiences from conception through to delivery; and is currently working in the Racing Division at EA Firemonkeys Studio.Ali... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 12:00pm - 12:50pm AEDT
Room 104 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

1:00pm AEDT

Lunch
Wednesday October 5, 2022 1:00pm - 2:00pm AEDT
Lobby 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

2:00pm AEDT

Data is Art - How to Model for Visual Effects
With node based shader editors and visual effect tools now standard in many large engines, artists have the power to to take a central role in creating dynamic and impressive visuals. This talk is going to look at how images and models can contain more than just colors and shapes. By treating your assets as part of the visual effects process you can help unite your effects with your assets.

Speakers
avatar for Edward Blanch

Edward Blanch

Tin Man Games
Edward Blanch is a game developer formerly from Melbourne now hiding out on a farm in Boweya. He has been working on games for nearly 10 years and the last 6 for Tin Man Games. During that time he has worked on Mobile, Nintendo, Playstation, PC, VR and even BlackBerry games. Starting... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 2:00pm - 2:50pm AEDT
Room 103 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

2:00pm AEDT

Managing Audio Pipelines for Original and Live Service Game Co-Development
This session will discuss the synergies and divergences that exist when managing the audio pipelines for original and live service games being developed simultaneously. Topics will include feature planning, resourcing, risk mitigation and the general path to success when bringing audio to market across titles with varying production cycles.

Speakers
avatar for Barry Dowsett

Barry Dowsett

EA Firemonkeys
Barry Dowsett is an audio director, composer and 25 year veteran of the video game and interactive media industry. He currently works in mobile gaming, overseeing titles in development and live service.


Wednesday October 5, 2022 2:00pm - 2:50pm AEDT
Room 104 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

2:00pm AEDT

When Keeping It Real Goes Right: A Guide To Genuine Engagement
Community Management is hard work, especially for small teams where the CM wears multiple hats. Remaining authentic while building and maintaining a thriving, healthy community can be especially challenging.

In this session we will discuss how to find your audience, define your voice, and stick to marketing pillars without losing your personality - or your mind.

Speakers
avatar for Aaron Haukedal

Aaron Haukedal

mod.io
Social & Content Strategist at mod.io; previously Community Manager at New World Interactive. A lover of games, dogs, and building communities through genuine engagement.


Wednesday October 5, 2022 2:00pm - 2:50pm AEDT
Room 105 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

2:00pm AEDT

The other writing for games: 6 writing principles towards better technical support docs
Game companies need solid technical writing, just like any other software and customer-oriented business. It's crucial for the team and for the players.
We helped a large mobile game company with millions of players to apply a standardised technical writing method to their knowledge articles. The results? Higher player retention with clear in-play community content, accurate FAQ's and fast technical solutions. They have an efficient and scalable team support solution with well-structured, plain language content that allows them to find answers fast.

Speakers
avatar for Miranda Verswijvelen

Miranda Verswijvelen

Learningworld design
Digital learning experience designer and technical writer with a passion for gamelike design for elearning and plain language in documentation. Over 15 years of incredibly diverse projects in the digital learning space, both corporate and academic. Currently combining freelance work... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 2:00pm - 2:50pm AEDT
Room 106 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

2:00pm AEDT

Let's talk about LiveOps
It’s time to think about making games differently. Games are shifting from one-off experiences to services that evolve. Developers of successful live games focus on understanding their players, meeting their individual needs,
and cultivating long-term relationships. This is what we call LiveOps. LiveOps is about bringing people together and giving them reasons to stay together by offering satisfying experiences. LiveOps help games build healthy communities that last for years - let us show you how

Speakers
avatar for Michelle Sandford

Michelle Sandford

Microsoft
Tedx Speaker, Developer engagement lead at Microsoft for emerging communities, She Codes Mentor, Data Science advocate and lover of the indie games community.
avatar for George Coldman

George Coldman

Microsoft
George has been gaming since his first Atari 2600. Loving the social aspect of gaming he naturally fell into online gaming and communities dealing with bad ping, spiky packet streams and toxic trolls in equal measure. A Customer Engineer for Microsoft by day, he still spends large... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 2:00pm - 2:50pm AEDT
Room 109 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

2:00pm AEDT

Diversity Isn’t Enough: Crafting a Psychologically Safe Environment
There are many reasons having a diverse staff can help your studio to be more effective in making great games, but merely bringing a mix of people to the table won't guarantee you'll reap the benefits. If someone isn't comfortable sharing their criticisms, concerns and mistakes, they'll disengage and hold back, you won't get their best, and you run the risk of groupthink.

This talk will introduce the concept of psychological safety as one of the key things that can make the difference between polite conflict-avoidance and an engaging, inclusive, rich environment bursting with passionate creativity. A large body of research tells us how we might create an environment where people are able to take their mask off and bring their whole selves to work, including their experience, ideas and creativity. This talk will teach you how to cultivate this environment for your own studio.

Speakers
avatar for Dominic Gurto

Dominic Gurto

Wargaming Sydney
Dominic has been working professionally in the games industry for over a decade, most of which has been spent leading teams. He is currently the Development Manager and Director of Engineering of Wargaming Sydney's Games Unit, where he leads a large co-development effort on a new... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 2:00pm - 2:50pm AEDT
Room 110 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

3:00pm AEDT

Strapped for Cash, Not Style - Building a Strong Art Direction with a Tiny Team
While working on the comedic killer-robot-vacuum-cleaner title Justice Sucks, we had big ambitions to create a fresh, unique art style that would make for an eye-catching experience. With only two-full time artists.

This talk will focus on the lessons learnt along the way, more specifically what strategies were deployed to maximise a two-man team's output, both from a production and a technical standpoint. Our approach resulted in a roster of 50+ characters, hundreds of unique assets and one hell of a 90s inspired ride.

Speakers
avatar for Cyrian Guillaume

Cyrian Guillaume

Samurai Punk
After starting his career as a 3D generalist for an architecture firm, Cyrian Guillaume worked his way to become the art director for Samurai Punk and has so far released 5 titles across multiple platforms, including: The American Dream, Feather, Screencheat: Unplugged and the upcoming... Read More →
avatar for Callum Williams

Callum Williams

Samurai Punk
Callum is the Character Artist at Samurai Punk. He's worked on several projects for the studio, with experience ranging from the visual remastering of ScreenCheat: Unplugged, to creating the large variety of stylized characters and environment art in Justice Sucks. Callum is an artist... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 3:00pm - 3:50pm AEDT
Room 103 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

3:00pm AEDT

I'm a game developer, I don’t need to know about music licensing....or do I?
“I know I need music for my game, but I know nothing about music licensing. I just want music in my game that I can use without any issues.”

I get it, you’re a game developer, not a music licensing expert. However, if you are developing a game and thinking about hiring a composer to create custom music you do need to be aware of a few basic music licensing options that need to be discussed when on boarding a music composer. If not, you could find yourself with a lot of problems later down the line when there is confusion over who owns what, who gets what, and who can do what with the music.

This talk is an introduction to music licensing from the perspective of a game developer and will cover basic music licensing options, typical composer rates, factors a composer considers when determining the cost of music, points of negotiation (especially if you are budget restricted indie studio), and a few other important questions that you need to considered that will help you feel more comfortable and confident when talking with music composers.

Speakers
avatar for Belinda Coomes

Belinda Coomes

Belinda Coomes
Belinda is a music composer who specialises in composing for games.  Her game credits include 'Ring of Pain', ‘Command & Conquer: Tiberian Sun Rising', and additional tracks for ‘Game for Peace (PUBG Mobile)’ major update.  Her experience also spans multiple industries including... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 3:00pm - 3:50pm AEDT
Room 104 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

3:00pm AEDT

TBA
TBA

Speakers

Wednesday October 5, 2022 3:00pm - 3:50pm AEDT
Room 105 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

3:00pm AEDT

Accessibility As A First Principle
We all might disagree on how much challenge is the perfect amount, but even fans of masochistically difficult games will agree: losing because you made the wrong decision has the potential to be fun, but losing because you could not win a tactile struggle with the controller is the stuff of rage quitting. Players with impaired vision, limited motor control, dyslexia, or any number of other challenges might find simple parts of your game to be frustratingly complex. The odds of such players enjoying your game are vanishingly small… unless you develop your game around their needs in the first place!

Thinking about players with hands, eyes, minds, schedules, and distractions different than your own is neither free, nor easy, but it can open up your games to a wider audience of potential enthusiasts.

This talk will cover ideas on how to use accessibility as a baseline of success and chief design constraint, as well as best practices for making sure usability is an ongoing component of development and not a last-minute addition. We’ll look at some games that stand out as being playable by a wide range of players due to ease-of-use, inclusive controls, or other nods to accessibility, as well as lessons and reflections on the speaker’s efforts to create a game with accessibility as a core goal.

Speakers
avatar for Matt MacLean

Matt MacLean

Generic Lake Monster
Matt MacLean is a game designer with eighteen years of professional experience and is currently a designer, programmer, and CEO of Generic Lake Monster, a studio aiming to launch their first game in late 2022.Before founding Generic Lake Monster, MacLean spent over twelve years at... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 3:00pm - 3:50pm AEDT
Room 106 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

3:00pm AEDT

Mouse-like Precision Without Aim Assist: Making Good Gyro Controls
Despite being strongly associated with unreliable gimmicks, the motion sensors found in modern controllers offer mouse-like precision when used correctly. There are many gotchas and bad habits that we've picked up from implementing stick aiming over the last two decades, but a good gyro aiming implementation makes your game more approachable to new players, more accessible to those with some kinds of disabilities, and raises the skill ceiling for competitive players. Done right, good gyro controls drastically reduce the gap between keyboard & mouse players and controller players, and even remove the need for aim assist except as an accessibility option.

Let's talk about how to do them right.

Speakers
avatar for Jibb Smart

Jibb Smart

Jibb Smart
Contract Input Specialist in AAA games. Best known for Fortnite's industry-leading gyro and flick stick controls, Jibb is also the creator of the flick stick control scheme, gyro control best practices, GyroWiki, JoyShockMapper, and GamepadMotionHelpers.


Wednesday October 5, 2022 3:00pm - 3:50pm AEDT
Room 109 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

3:00pm AEDT

The Meta-Game of Leadership
A lot of valuable leadership advice exists. Like power-ups, these tools help as soon as we use them, but they have the biggest strategic impact if we understand the leadership meta-game.
When we boil it down, our ability to lead hinges on our credibility in the eye of the team. Do they trust that we are the right person to chart the course towards our ambitious goals?
In this talk, we dive into a framework to understand and analyse our credibility, find areas where we can improve, and make the best use of our management tools and tactics.

Speakers
avatar for Emilie Poissenot

Emilie Poissenot

Mighty Kingdom
Emilie is a Senior Product Manager at Mighty Kingdom, recently joining the team to contribute to all their amazing projects. Her career spans 14+ years, 3 continents, a few shades of blue and a wide variety of games. Before Mighty Kingdom, she led the design team at League of Geeks... Read More →


Wednesday October 5, 2022 3:00pm - 3:50pm AEDT
Room 110 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

4:00pm AEDT

Closing Keynote: TBA
Wednesday October 5, 2022 4:00pm - 5:00pm AEDT
Plenary 1 Convention Centre Place South Wharf, Victoria 3006

6:30pm AEDT

Australian Game Developer Awards
Wednesday October 5, 2022 6:30pm - 11:00pm AEDT
The Forum 154 Flinders St, Melbourne VIC 3000, Australia

9:30pm AEDT

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Wednesday October 5, 2022 9:30pm - 9:45pm AEDT
 
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