Train2Game News Game Dev Heroes award winners

The winners of the inaugural Game Dev Heroes awards have been revealed.

Designed to recognise the talent and hard work of individuals within the game development sector, the Game Dev Heroes are the brainchild of industry veteran Alex Boucher, who also hosted the intimate awards ceremony at Mesmerist, Brighton.

The winners were chosen by a judging panel comprising senior figures from across the industry, namely:

Adam Campbell – Azoomee
Ben Sewell – Launchpad
Caroline Hinds – Creative England
Dana Ramnarine – Rhum
Ed Perkins – Square Enix
Eithne Metcalfe-Bliss – SEGA
Emma Purvey – Outplay
Emma Smith – Creative Assembly
Emma Turner – Outplay Entertainment
Harinder Sangha – SEGA Hardlight
Ian Goodall – Aardvark Swift
Jamie Clarke – Games Jobs Direct
Kish Hirani – Terra Virtual
Lisa Carter – Mimram Media
Marie-Claire Isaaman – Women in Games
Marina Jonsdottir – Wargaming
Nick Dixon – Falmouth Launchpad
Nick Duncombe – Playground Games
Rosemary Buahin – Curve Digital
Simon Iwaniszak – Red Kite Games
Tamsin O’Luanaigh – nDreams
Thad Frogley – Boss Alien
Yvonne Dawes – Frontier Developments

Here we reveal the winners – and some commentary from those who nominated them…

Art & Animation
Anna Hollinrake, Senior Artist, Dream Reality Interactive

“Incredible visual artist and all around good egg. I can’t think of anyone more deserving.”

“Again and again, Anna has pushed the limits of visual story telling for her professional and personal work. Working on projects like Lola and the Giant, Adventure Time: Pirates of the Enchiridion and newly announced Arca’s Path, Anna always adds her own personal flair and unique taste to everything she touches.”

“Anna not only has large strength in her work but she also is a passionate advocate for mental health awareness and creating healthy work spaces in games.”

Design
Meg Jayanth, Freelance Writer & Narrative Designer

“Meg has helped to completely change the way people view narrative design, opening up a whole new understanding of what can be achieved through great writing in games.”

“Meg is the award-winning lead writer for 80 Days, a game with writing so good it made a Telegraph list of best novels. With projects including Sunless Sea and the highly anticipated Sable, Meg is inspiring a whole generation of writers and narrative designers, showing what can be achievable in games.”

“Meg’s work has had a significant impact in writing for games & has been influential in paving the way for a new wave of great narrative-based games.”

QA
Lesleyann White, Quality Analyst & Support, Failbetter Games

“She’s the definition of hero… She deserves all the recognition in the world for doing her job so well you’d think we have no bugs or problems at all! Hero, hero, hero!!”

“As Failbetter’s first dedicated in-house QA person, Lesleyann immediately created a space for herself and her work that brought an amazing level of thoroughness and quality, streamlining the production structure and creating more effective new processes wherever problems are found.

“Described as a fantastic colleague and an incredibly caring and considerate individual, she’s always ready to do the extra bit to make coming to work a complete joy, inspiring colleagues to keep working to make this industry a welcoming place. Lesleyann has even stepped up with her organisational and team building skills, reviving the studio’s game night and becoming famous for her game-themed fruit platter creations!”

Sound
Sam Hughes, Founder The Sound Architect & Intern at Remedy Entertainment

“Sam [and the team] have massively helped to raise the profile and understanding of games audio in recent years. Sam’s a great ambassador and his work is genuinely appreciated.”

“Sam doesn’t need a great deal of introduction to anyone involved in audio, with his work behind The Sound Architect blog and podcast series already being very familiar across the game audio world. He puts a huge amount of time and effort into his work and is always looking to create more inclusive space for people marginalised by the industry.”

“Sam will often attend events and set up interviews on his own time and funding, all while studying for a PhD at York University and now also working as an intern sound designer at Remedy in Finland.”

Production
Jessica Gaskell, Producer, Sumo Digital

“Her professionalism and attitude towards work inspire me to do my best every day and I can honestly say she is the best boss I have ever had.”

“Although Jess isn’t responsible for creating any of the content that goes into the game or the direction, she’s pivotal in ensuring that all the component pieces get done and come together as a whole. She has in-depth knowledge of her projects, all the component parts, the associated roles and how everything interacts.”

“With an unparalleled work ethic and a sense of selflessness, Jess is described as a catalyst for success, a production powerhouse, and long overdue for the recognition she deserves.”

“On top of that she is a key person in fostering the team’s friendly culture, recognising the value of individuals in their skills but also as people, and her respect towards mental health and health related issue are a breath of fresh air.”

Programming
John Campbell, Technical Director, Triangular Pixels

“[John] is incredible… He is by far the best games developer I have ever worked with and I’m so proud of him.”

“John is always busy behind the scenes creating excellent gameplay that whole studios get the credit for, but John just wants to create games people will love and enjoy. He always wants to make everyone else’s lives better by spending that extra effort to not only make players experience better – but also that of his coworkers with the tools and systems he came up with.”

“He is always helping other developers out on online groups, always sharing his knowledge, and isn’t afraid to be technical in his developer talks. He is always researching new methods and techniques which he could adapt to games development, and thinking out of the box to make some really innovative solutions.”

Marketing & Community
Haley Uyrus, Marketing Manager, Failbetter Games

“Haley works non-stop to create amazing marketing campaigns for Failbetter’s games, been part of the 30under30, and is an all round lovely person who makes anyone feel welcome in the industry.

“I saw Haley do a talk about her marketing for Failbetter Games at Develop Conference last year and how she gives all her marketing and community a distinct voice to fit with the world of their games. Seeing this in action through their highly successful Kickstarter [campaign] made me reach out to her and I found her to be very open and helpful, giving me pointers on how to maximise the marketing for my own game on a limited budget. She is exactly the sort of person the games industry should be holding up as an example.”

“Haley was a key figure in designing the Kickstarter for Sunless Skies, a Kickstarter which reached its £100,000 goal in four hours and went on to raise £360,000 in total. She also stepped up to the plate when the company Marketing Director was absent for maternity leave, keeping the community updated regarding the progress of Sunless Skies, as well as the Fallen London reworks that happened during the same time – it was series of major updates and overhauls to the seven year running browser game, and she ensured all updates were well-communicated (and well-hyped!) to the playerbase.”

Management
Thad Frogley, Technical Director, Boss Alien

“Thad’s contribution to the culture of his studio, the industry’s outreach towards young people of all backgrounds, and the careers of all those who’ve had the pleasure of working with him can’t be overstated.”

“Thad’s management style, focused on mentorship and empowerment, gives everyone on his team a fantastic start in the industry.”

“Thad fights hard to ensure talented graduates or interns that may have struggled to find a personality fit at other studios are given a chance to thrive on his team. Colleagues from previous studios across his career now have whole careers of their own founded on Thad’s belief in their potential, going on to become invaluable team members as a result of Thad’s mentorship.”

Unsung Hero
Bill Donegan, Project Manager, SpecialEffect

“[Bill] is a true unsung hero… whose work has transformed the lives of disabled gamers from all over the world through his R&D work at SpecialEffect.”

“Bill’s imagination, creativity and drive have been at the heart of SpecialEffect’s technical achievements ever since the charity began in 2007. As well as playing a crucial role in the team’s success in creating access solutions for hundreds of severely disabled individuals in the U.K., he has also helped create solutions that have had a global impact, too.”

“He was Project Lead in creating SpecialEffect’s open-source ‘EyeMine’ software, a gaze-controlled interface to Minecraft launched earlier this year. Bill also played a key role in the success of recently launched and globally acclaimed XBox Adaptive Controller, co-ordinating SpecialEffect’s contribution, alongside that of other charity partners, to both its design and development.”

Diversity Champion
Helen Andrzejowska, Director, Ocean Spark Studios

“Helen constantly goes above and beyond to inspire and enthuse girls to consider a career in games.”

“Helen founded Ocean Spark Studios with the aim of increasing the amount of women working within the industry, as she truly believes a balanced workforce is a better workforce. Although the studio is only small, she constantly perseveres to try and make a difference with educational & informative visits across schools & colleges.”

“Helen (and co-director Ellie Brown) regularly host workshops to introduce more girls & young people to games as a career, inspiring them to join a creative and wonderful industry, while also advocating the merits of student startup and indie studios.”

Outstanding Contribution
Mike Simpson, Creative Director, Creative Assembly

“For the last 17 years Mike has been the creative force behind Total War, now the most successful PC games franchise of all time, helping to take Creative Assembly from five to 500 employees as it grew from indie developer to publisher-owned super-studio. Mike has a vast knowledge of the industry, which he uses to support BAFTA, sitting on their Committee.”

Alex Boucher, organiser of the Game Dev Heroes awards said: “A huge congratulations to all the winners and, indeed, the finalists. We’re delighted with how the Game Dev Heroes awards have been received and look forward to taking the event forward in 2019 and beyond.

“And, of course, a big thank you to our sponsors Aardvark Swift, Games Jobs Direct, Square Enix, Launchpad, Mimram Media and Analog.”

To find out more about the Game Dev Heroes Awards, contact Alex@GameDevHeroes.co or visit http://www.gamedevheroes.co

Train2Game News Game Dev Heroes Awards

The heroes of the UK’s games development community will be honoured next month during the Develop Brighton conference.

You still have chance to nominate yourself, a colleague or peer for a Game Dev Heroes award – but act swiftly as the nomination period closes today (June 21st).

The Game Dev Heroes Awards [http://www.gamedevheroes.co] will take place on Tuesday July 10th at the Mesmerist [http://www.mesmerist.pub] from 5.30-8pm.

Awards up for grabs include:

• Programming
• Design
• Art
• Animation
• Sound
• Production
• QA
• Marketing & Community
• Diversity Champion
• Unsung Hero

An Outstanding Contribution Award will also be presented on the evening.

To nominate yourself, a member of staff, colleague or peer, visit http://www.gamedevheroes.co/nominations-2018/

The Game Dev Heroes Awards are the brainchild of industry veteran Alex Boucher. Sponsors include Aardvark Swift, Games Jobs Direct, Analog, Launchpad and Mimram Media.

The judging panel comprises leading names in the sector, including:-

Adam Campbell – Azoomee
Ben Sewell – Launchpad
Caroline Hinds – Creative England
Dana Ramnarine – Rhum
Ed Perkins – Square Enix
Eithne Metcalfe-Bliss – SEGA
Emma Purvey – Outplay
Emma Smith – Creative Assembly
Harinder Sangha – SEGA Hardlight
Lisa Carter – Mimram Media
Marie-Claire Isaaman – Women in Games
Marina Jonsdottir – Wargaming
Nick Duncombe – Playground Games
Simon Iwaniszak – Red Kite Games
Tamsin O’Luanaigh – nDreams
Thad – Boss Alien

If you would like to join the judging panel, email info@GameDevHeroes.co

“Game Dev Heroes is a new initiative to recognise and celebrate the work of the people behind the scenes of the games industry,” said Boucher. “Our industry is fantastic at bringing attention and accolades to studios and end products, and we want to extend the benefits to the creators, having their personal contributions celebrated more widely.

“We want these unsung heroes of the games industry, from veteran developers and resourceful support staff, to inspiring management and visionary role models, to be able to have their contributions recognised.”

To find out more, contact Alex@GameDevHeroes.co

Train2Game News Game Dev Heroes

A new search for excellence in the games industry was announced today as the Game Dev Heroes initiative officially launched.

The only national awards ceremony to celebrate game developers for their individual contributions to their studios, teams and projects, the Game Dev Heroes aim to shine the spotlight on the unsung heroes and hidden visionaries behind our favourite titles. Game Dev Heroes are now calling on industry professionals to nominate their studio’s heroes.

Anyone in the studio could be a winner, with categories spanning development, management, marketing and community, the studio ‘Unsung Hero’, and ‘Diversity Champion’. The submission deadline is Tuesday 19th June 2018. An award will also be given to highlight a member of the industry for their Outstanding Contribution, which will be chosen by the judging panel.

The awards are already garnering support with Aardvark Swift, GamesJobsDirect, Analog and Launchpad announced as the first sponsors. The judging panel is set to be announced shortly, composed of industry professionals across HR and senior management, who’ll be able to dig deep into the applications and really comprehend the achievements of those nominated. Simon Hope, Director and Lead Recruiter at headline sponsor Aardvark Swift, said ‘We’re delighted to be part of such a brilliant initiative. Games, projects and studios can only be as strong and successful as their dev team are, and we should recognise and celebrate those who’re making a personal contribution. We speak to so many talented people every single day who’re personally doing phenomenal things – those individuals deserve to be celebrated.’

The award winners are set to be announced on Tuesday 10th July as part of a Game Dev Heroes networking event, held in Brighton throughout Develop Conference week. The event is free to attend but will be ticketed entry – to be notified when tickets are available head over to http://www.gamedevheroes.co and sign up to the mailing list.

Please direct any queries relating to nominations, judging or sponsorship to
info@gamedevheroes.co and head over to www.gamedevheroes.co to take part.

Train2Game News Develop Brighton

Tandem Events confirmed both PlayStation VR and HTC Hive developers will showcase its headsets at Develop:Brighton this year. The attendance of HTC and Sony add to the strong presence Virtual Reality will have at this year’s conference and expo.
On the expo show floor, a number of VR titles will be on display for attendees to try:

    PlayStation VR Worlds (Sony) – a collection of five different VR experiences that have all been built from the ground up exclusively for the PS VR headset.

    Here They Lie (Sony) – a dark psychological horror experience that transports you to a terrifying, surreal world inhabited by strange and malevolent creatures.

    Sociable Soccer (Tower Studios) – the well-known football title, now brought to virtual reality.

    Radial-G Racing Revolved (Tammekka) – an exciting sci-fi racer using Oculus Rift.

    Battlezone (Rebellion) – designed for the next wave of virtual reality devices, Battlezone gives you unrivalled battlefield awareness, a monumental sense of scale and breathless combat intensity.

    Unseen Diplomacy (Triangular Pixels) – part of the Indie Showcase, Unseen Diplomacy casts you as an elite member of the British Espionage Tactical Initiative, defeating the plans of evil-doers around the world. With a real-life obstacle course created by Vive HTC environment, you will run and roll, sneak and solve your way through volcano lairs and moon bases.

    A Chair in a Room: Greenwater (Wolf & Wood Interactive) – part of the Indie Showcase, explore your surroundings as the protagonist of your own horror story as you immerse yourself in this tense VR thriller set in America’s Deep South.

    Windlands (Psytec Studios) – part of the Indie Showcase, a first person grappling hook exploration game. Soar through the ruins of a fallen world and discover the secrets of the ancients.

During the conference on Tuesday, Oculus’ head of Developer Strategy, Anna Sweet, will deliver the Evolve keynote on how the new medium of VR will help reinvent traditional genres while creating entirely new games and experiences.

Throughout Wednesday and Thursday, Tandem Events has added a brand new dedicated VR track has been added to the conference that will explore every aspect of VR across all disciplines. Sessions will be delivered from the likes of Google, Bossa Studios, nDreams, Hammerhead VR, Valve, Rebellion, Sony Interactive Entertainment and Virtual Reality developer Dave Ranyard.

“We’re very excited to have such a wide range of Virtual Reality games and speakers at this year’s event,” commented Andy Lane, managing director of Tandem Events. “VR is the buzz of 2016 and this year’s conference and expo will showcase some of the very best talent the sector has to offer.”

Develop:Brighton is Europe’s leading game developer conference taking place at the Hilton Brighton Metropole from Tuesday 12 July to Thursday 14 July. Other highlights include talks from industry visionaries Hideo Kojima and Mark Cerny on Wednesday morning and a #askrami session with Rami Ismail of Vlambeer to close the conference.

To view the full conference programme and to find out more details on purchasing passes visit www.developconference.com

Train2game News Second Keynote for Develop Brighton

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Today, Tandem Events, organisers of Develop:Brighton, Europe’s leading game developer conference, announced their latest keynote to be delivered by London based, Bossa Studios.

The announcement comes just one day before the Super Early Bird deadline on Wednesday. 

Entitled ‘Reach for the Sky: Why Disruptive Technology Deserves Disruptive Design’ the talk will take place directly after the opening keynote, delivered by Hideo Kojima and Mark Cerny, on Wednesday 13 July.

CTO Sylvain Cornillon, COO Vince Farquharson and co-founder Imre Jele will take to the stage to discuss how breakthroughs in technology have surprised, inspired, helped and sometimes annoyed Bossa Studios; how modern technologies has given the studio a way to make better games and to make games in a better way.

The biggest portion of the talk will focus on the lessons learnt whilst creating their latest and most ambitious game; Worlds Adrift and will delve deeper into why Bossa Studios is one of the most creative and pioneering UK studios.

“We’re delighted to announce Bossa Studios’ keynote talk at Develop:Brighton,” commented managing director of Tandem Events, Andy Lane. “The programme is shaping up to be one of our strongest to date and with this double keynote special it offers a fantastic opportunity for our delegates to hear from some of the industry’s leading pioneers.”

Develop:Brighton takes place from 12-14 July at the Hilton Brighton Metropole. Highlights from a growing programme include:

Opening Keynote: Legends on the Future:
Hideo Kojima in Conversation with Mark Cerny

Indie Keynote: Funomenal Feel Engineering
Robin Hunicke, Funomena

VR: Don’t Go Alone – Take Me! How to Make a Social VR Experience
Katie Goode and John Campbell, Triangular Pixels

VR: Building Great Games in VR – What We’ve Learnt Through Three Years of VR Development
Simon Harris, Supermassive Games

Marketing: Spending Millions Doesn’t Mean Top Grossing: How Rival Kingdom’s Launch Transformed Our Marketing Approach
Simon Hade, Space Ape Games

Marketing: Find the Right Users, Find Success
Bruce Kerr-Peterson, Google

Funding: Second Generation Crowdfunding: How to Make Crowdfunding & Kickstarter Work for You
Tomas Rawlings, Auroch Digital

Funding: How to Access Video Game Tax Relief
Anna Mansi, BFI

Coding: Research and Development: A Rational Approach
Ray Dey, Sony Computer Entertainment

Business: Merchandising in Games: Effectively Monetising Your Virtual IP as Physical Goods
Joe Stevens, Whispering Gibbon

Design: Let’s Talk Narrative with Rhianna Pratchett
Rhianna Pratchett, Writer

Evolve: Don’t Forget the Eyeballs: Developing Compelling Games for eSports Audiences
Ian Sharpe, Azubu

Tickets are on sale now at www.developconference.com with a super early bird rate running until 23.59 on Wednesday 27 April

Train2game News Develop Brighton Indie Keynote Speakers

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Robin Hunicke, one of the games industry’s most talented developers, has been named as the Indie Keynote Speaker on Thursday 14 July at this year’s Develop:Brighton.

Over a career spanning an impressive 12 years, Hunicke has worked on a number of titles that have shaken the industry, including Journey (9/10 IGN), Boom Blox (9/10 Eurogamer), MySims (8/10 Game Informer) and The Sims 2 (94% IGN). She’s also the co-founder of indie studio Funomena, where she’s currently working on two upcoming titles: Luna and Wattam.

Though her glowing resumé reveals the depth of her knowledge, Hunicke’s candidacy for the Keynote spot is bolstered by an incredible commitment to fairness and diversity of both thought and participation in game design and culture. Recently recognised with an Influential Woman in Games award, Hunicke has also spent several years involved in the organisation of Indiecade while holding the role of Professor of Art, Games & Playable Media at UC Santa Cruz.

She believes game developers can create novel, experimental games by designing for feeling, and her talk will aim to highlight this by focusing on the core artistic and emotional inspirations at the heart of Luna, which focuses on themes of personal transformation. The talk will explain how decisions in art, sound and gameplay design are integrated via “Feel Engineering” to reinforce the games underlying themes and narrative.

“The quality of Robin’s output speaks for itself,” said Andy Lane, Managing Director at Tandem Events. “As someone who’s worked with both big studios and small indies, we know Robin will offer valuable insight and inspiration in her keynote, with her talk kicking off a day of great sessions from a talented cast.”

Other sessions in the Indie Dev Day include:

Pitching is Courtship
Shahid Ahmad, Indie Developer

How does someone in charge of budget for financing video games think? As a developer, how do you give yourself the best possible chance to unlock those funds? In this session, Shahid shares his experiences in commissioning over a hundred games. If you’re a developer and you’re looking for funding for your game, you’ll want to know how to give yourself every chance of success. In “Pitching is Courtship”, Shahid shares some of the things he looked for in a developer and their pitches when he was making funding decisions.

Killing the Indie Crunch Myth: Shipping Games Alive
Simon Roth, Machine Studios

Crunch has become commonplace in AAA and indie development, but it is often misunderstood, misrepresented and, more often than not, outright harmful to a game and the team developing it. This talk will explain the myths surrounding productivity and overtime in the indie games pipeline, illustrate how to avoid the common pitfalls and offer realistic strategies that can be used to keep your team healthy and your milestones on schedule.

Console Porting Indie Games with Network Support: Worth it?
James Parker, Ground Shatter

This talk aims to provide an understanding of the additional elements required to port games to console platforms. It’ll go into the knowledge you’ll need when trying to do network play with a micro-team, along with examples of who is currently doing this kind of work and what help is available.

How to Succeed and Where You’ll Fail: Money, Marketing, and Making a Mark
Chair: Joe Brammer, Bulkhead Interactive
Agostino Simonetta, ID@Xbox
Phil Elliott, Square Enix Collective
Gordon Van Dyke, Raw Fury Games
Howard Philpott, Bulkhead Interactive

This 30-minute panel will be discussing multiple avenues to success as an independent developer or studio, focusing on PC & Console. This panel will focus on the often forgotten parts of indie development; how to fund, market, and make a significant splash in the gaming community with your indie title. The speakers are interested in helping developers build sustainable and viable studios, audience members will have multiple opportunities to ask questions to the panel throughout the talk.

Alongside the expo, there are also a number of free-to-attend Indie BootCamp sessions.

Super Early Bird passes are available until 27 April, saving delegates up to 30% on a three day pass. Indie Dev Day passes cost just £90 if booked by this date.

Train2game News Develop Brighton

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Develop:Brighton’s annual search for the next big thing in independent games development is underway as submissions open for its sixth Indie Showcase at www.developconference.com.

The conference’s free-to-enter Indie Showcase celebrates the very best of indie game development with an exhibition featuring the ten best entries as chosen by a panel of experts, chaired by Assyria Games’ Adam Green.

All 10 finalists receive two free Indie Dev Day conference passes, up to five Expo passes, pre-event publicity and a profile on the event website, plus the opportunity to show off their games to around 1,800 developers and publishers at the event.

Over the past five years, more than 500 indie developers have submitted their games to the judging panel. Alumni winners includes the critically acclaimed Gunpoint; That Dragon, Cancer; Darklings which has made it into the top-100 grossing games chart on iOS; and last year’s winner, Hue by Fiddlesticks which scooped both the People’s Choice and Overall Showcase award.

“Each year, the quality of submission to the Develop:Brighton Indie Showcase seems to get higher and higher and it’s fantastic to see our growing list of shortlisted alumni going on to both critical and commercial success,” commented Andy Lane, managing director of conference organisers Tandem Events. 
 
“The showcase is now in its sixth year and continues to be a fantastic opportunity for indie developers to get their games in front of publishers, the gaming press and their fellow peers,” added Adam Green, managing director of Assyria Games and chair of the judging panel.

“The diversity and detail of games submitted to the competition is something to be admired and highlights the good health the UK indie game scene is currently in. I can’t wait to see what this year’s selection has to offer.”

Dan Da Rocha, director of 2015 Overall Indie Showcase winner, Hue, added, “Being involved in Develop:Brighton’s Indie Showcase is great for feedback and exposure for your game. Some of the industry’s top developers and journalists attend the event, so being able to get your game in front of them for free is brilliant. On top of this you can win an award or two, which gives you credibility as a developer and further exposure for your team and game.”

Submissions for the Develop Indie Showcase are now open and it’s completely free to apply. Applicants wishing to enter must comply with the following rules:

– Studios with no more than 15 people
– Studios – and games – that are non-publisher funded
– Games which are not published by a third party at the time of submission
– Games that have a development budget of less than £1million
– Games that are created in the “indie spirit”
– Full information and application forms can be found on the website www.developconference.com

The deadline to enter is 19 May and the overall Indie Showcase and People’s Choice winners will be announced to press and delegates at the Develop:Brighton Conference on Thursday 14 July 2016.

Train2game News Develop Brighton 2016

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Tandem Events, organisers of Europe’s leading game developers conference Develop:Brighton, today announce Hideo Kojima, director of Kojima Productions, as keynote speaker for this year’s conference.
                                                                                               
Hideo Kojima is a world-renowned game creator and auteur known for pushing the boundaries of the video game medium.  Widely considered the father of the stealth genre, he is also credited with innovative story-telling and cinematic presentation in video games at large.

Famed for the hit Metal Gear Solid franchise, Kojima will be joined onstage for an hour long fire side chat with industry legend, president of Cerny Games and long-time friend, Mark Cerny. The discussion will focus around Kojima’s inspirations, process and his thoughts on the future of the game.

As well as delivering this year’s keynote, Hideo Kojima will be awarded the 2016 Industry Legend Award at the Develop Industry Excellence Awards on the evening of Wednesday 13 July, the same award fellow keynoter, Mark Cerny received in 2014.

“We’re delighted and honoured to announce Hideo Kojima as our keynote speaker for Develop:Brighton 2016,” commented Andy Lane, managing director of Tandem Events. “Known the world over as someone who’s at the forefront of what’s possible within video games, he continually pushes the boundaries. Alongside his good friend, Mark Cerny, these gaming legends have an amazing history within the games industry and I’m looking forward to hearing more.”

Develop:Brighton takes place at the Hilton Brighton Metropole from Tuesday 12 July to Thursday 14 July. The keynote entitled Industry Legends Discuss the Future: A Conversation with Hideo Kojima, will take place on Wednesday 13 July at 10am.

Other sessions announced for Develop:Brighton 2016:

Don’t Forget the Eyeballs: Developing Compelling Games for eSports Audiences
Ian Sharpe, Azubu

Converting an Established Genre in VR: Pitfalls and Opportunities
Martin de Ronde, Vanguard

What Not to Do as a Startup
Ella Romanos, Strike Gamelabs

Lets Talk Narrative with Rhianna Pratchett
Rhianna Pratchett, Writer

Harnessing the Power of the Crowd to Get Your Game Noticed
Kate Russell, Journalist, Reporter and Author

From 2 to 13: Growing from Nothing and Working with the “Big Boys”
Aj Grand-Scrutton, Dlala Studios

Community-driven Game Development through innovative Marketing Analytics
Ammar Jawad, Radiant Worlds.

Passes are currently available at http://www.developconference.com/

Train2Game News Hi-Rez Studios opens in Brighton

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Hi-Rez Studios today announced that it has opened a new office in Brighton, United Kingdom to expand its reach and better serve its rapidly growing European player base.

Veronique Lallier has been appointed as Vice President of European Publishing to build and lead the Brighton office. Lallier is the former Vice President of Digital Publishing at Warner Bros Interactive Entertainment International and has 15 years of experience in the gaming industry, with particular expertise in the European Online Gaming market.

“Fueled by the continued rapid growth of SMITE, our European community has expanded tremendously over the past year,” said Todd Harris, COO of Hi-Rez Studios. “Hi-Rez prides itself in being a highly community-oriented company, and this move will allow us to much better serve our European players, across SMITE as well as our other games.”

The office will focus primarily on community management, localization and marketing operations for Europe. Core development and operations will still be handled from Hi-Rez’s headquarters in Atlanta.

“I am delighted to join the Hi-Rez team to help support and expand our European player base.” Lallier said, “Hi-Rez has a unique and vibrant community in Europe – as evidenced by the European victory at the 2016 Smite World Championship! I look forward to meeting and working with our passionate fan base here in Europe.”

Hi-Rez is currently hiring for positions in the Brighton office.  For more information about available jobs, visit http://www.hirezstudios.com/ .

Train2Game News Ed Vaizey at Develop Conference

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Tandem Events, organisers of Europe’s leading video games developer conference Develop:Brighton, announced Minster for Culture and the Digital Economy, Ed Vaizey MP, will address attendees on Wednesday 15 July.

Speaking directly after the opening keynote at 10.30am, Vaizey MP will deliver a speech on his department’s outlook for the video games industry in the United Kingdom.

Ed Vaizey MP first attended Develop:Brighton in 2010 and will look back on what has changed in terms of policy over that time period, how tax credits will affect the industry and his ambition for the next five year while in office.

Appointed Minister of State at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, with responsibility for digital industries on 15 July 2014, Ed Vaizey MP was first elected as the MP for Wantage in 2005. He was re-elected in 2010, and May 7 2015.

“We are delighted to welcome back Ed Vaizey MP to Develop:Brighton,” commented Andy Lane, managing director of Tandem Events. “It’s fantastic the Minister continues to champion the video games industry in the UK and that he’s chosen to deliver his address here at Develop:Brighton once again.”

Registration is open at www.developconference.com with passes starting from as little as £125. Entry to the Expo is free.