Pocket Gamer Connects Vancouver Victoria Day deal!

Pocket Gamer Connects, the leading mobile games show in the western world is bringing its unique combination of inspirational speakers, grade A networking, and a vibrant expo to the gorgeous city of Vancouver this summer and we’d love you to join us!

Queen Victoria didn’t do things by halves. And neither do we. So in honour of Victoria Day this coming Monday we’re reducing all of our core tickets to PG Connects Vancouver conference on June 28-29.

Just don’t hang about, because this unique offer is both a time- and allocation-limited affair (come May 29th – or sooner if we run out – and it’s all over).

As with every PG Connects show, Vancouver will unite a cross-section of the entire mobile games ecosystem – from independent developers through media, tool makers, and monetisation experts up to the triple-A publishers and investors. We’ll look to span the globe too, with delegates from Asia, North America, Europe and the hottest emerging markets, as well as from across Canada.

There’ll be seven conference tracks to explore, covering everything from global publishing trends and how indies can survive and thrive to fund raising, monetisation and acquisition techniques, practical development workshops, and future-gazing. We’ll also cover VR extensively and be adding a dedicated ‘Made in Vancouver’ track to celebrate the creativity and talent in the BC area.

Previous shows have featured the biggest names from the leading publishers, including Supercell, King, Disney, Rovio, DeNA, Kabam, Glu, Seriously, Gree, and Square through to indie legends like Mike Bithell, Vlambeer, Fireproof, Ustwo, Etermax and countless others.

Ultimately, of course, the most value is in getting business done and we have multiple ways to facilitate networking including a free meeting tool for planning in advance, three dedicated pitch sessions (20/20 SpeedMatch for developers looking for publishers, Big Indie Pitch for upcoming devs to meet media, plus a dedicated investor event), a lively expo area, plus after-hours networking events including the legendary PG party.

Benefits for students

  • Learn about the business realities of mobile development and how the industry works
  • Pick up practical techniques and strategies for developing mobile games
  • Chance to get close to industry professionals and meet people who could potentially offer jobs/future partnership opportunities
  • Insight into how the industry works through talks and the report that is published with each ticket
  • Meet the media (lots of journalists in attendance + video interviews on site)
  • Opportunity to potential pitch (Very Big Indie Pitch)
  • Entrance to a high-level event with one very low-priced ticket

Those seven tracks in full

  • Indie Futures – A dedicated track for indie developers and how they can survive and thrive in the modern mobile ecosystem.
  • East Meets West: Global Mobile Gaming – Exploring the hottest regions, biggest trends, and best opportunities for mobile game publishers today including a focus on eSports and the latest from Asia.
  • Future Visions: VR & Beyond – A dedicated track looking at VR (not exclusively mobile) and emerging technologies that will affect the industry.
  • Monetise, Retain, Acquire – The latest tips, trends, and techniques in UA and monetisation.
  • Mobile Games University – A dedicated track full of practical tips and workshops on everything from creating great ideas to running liveops.
  • Show Me the Money – Exploring the different sources and approaches of raising funds, from angels and publisher partnerships to government funding and VCs.
  • Made in Vancouver – A dedicated track celebrating the best of Vancouver and British Columbia.

Networking & other key features

  • Pitch & Match – Free business matching meeting system for all attendees.
  • PGC App – Free app to get updates and connect with other delegates on the fly.
  • Big Indie Pitch – Indie developers pitch media and selected experts for prizes and feedback on their upcoming games.
  • 20/20 SpeedMatch – 20 publishers, 20 developers, 2 hours, 1 room. 20 Guaranteed meetings for all selected participants.
  • Expo Area – Discover games, technologies, services and more.
  • I Love Indie Showcase – Up-and-coming indies show off their games in the dedicated expo area.
  • PG Party – Let your hair down, get your dancing shoes on, and your business cards out in our relaxed, always-popular after-hours event.

Initial Speakers include:

  • Ville Heijari – CMO Rovio
  • Phil Hickey – Seriously
  • Chris Akhavan – Glu
  • Peter Qumsieh – Bandai Namco Studios
  • Kent Wakeford – Kabam
  • David Phan – Relic Entertainment / Sega
  • Nicholas Pezarro – Pocket Gems
  • Jikhan Jung – Colopl
  • Chris Petrovic – Kabam
  • Stuart Duncan – IceJam
  • Shum Singh – Agnitio Capital
  • Devin Radford – Fox
  • Macy Mills – CAA / Hitcents

Plus representatives from EA, Hothead Games, Unity, GameSparks, Roadhouse, Magmix, Eastside Games, Iugo and many more!

A Conversation with… Scott Morin

This time A Conversation with… tracked down Scott Morin who is teaching Level Design here at VFS, Scott was from our 9th graduating class.

 

  • Tell me about what you are doing now in the Games Industry

After a few years of jumping studio to studio from the west coast of Canada to the east, I find myself back where it started – at Vancouver Film School. This time around I’m on the other side of the fence, teaching level design. I teach all of the four level design courses here at VFS; theory, practical, application and specialization. I also get to mentor and guide the students along the development of their final projects.

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Epic Tabletop Battles

From the beginning  of  January (Term 2), I have been taking part in the Role Playing Lab at VFS. The RolePlaying Lab consists of weekly sessions in which we meet to play table-top RPGs.

In the case of my group, we are playing a Dungeons & Dragons 3.5 campaign.

Although I have heard a lot about them, I had never got the chance to play a table RPG before. In some way I am glad because now I learned how to do it with an amazing Dungeon Master! Funny enough, our Dungeon Master is a VFS Graduate himself. Diego R. Pons graduated way back in 2006, in the 4th Game Design Class ( we are in the 40th class), and currently works at Next Level Games. Our DM plays all characters incredibly well, and is able to provide us with a deeply immersive experience both with his performance and the soundtrack and images he prepares.

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One does not simply choose the VFS life

I don’t really understand how I survived my first term in VFS, but I did it, and I’m alive – YAY!

…Well, I suppose I should introduce myself first.

My name is Andreia, 22 and I came from Portugal aaaaall the way to this side of Canada to study Programming for Games Web and Mobile at Vancouver Film School. While finishing my bachelor’s in Graphic Design I got really frustrated by not being able to actually make stuff happen and thus decided to learn Sorcery (aka Coding).

It has been a great adventure up until now, super far away from home, but it’s been worth it.

I’ve been around since October but haven’t really got the time to write something. So here it goes my review of the first term.

 

When I look back at the last 2 months this is how I would describe it:

(Programming students – and everyone around hearing them crying and eat ice cream – will get this)

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2014 brings a new addition to the VFS family

In case you haven’t heard, we are excited to add a brand-new, innovative program to the award-winning educational roster at VFS.

Programming for Games, Web & Mobile is the first of its kind in the industry: a comprehensive one-year program that provides grads with the technical, creative, and industry knowledge to work in an almost unprecedented number of fields. An incredible array of skills are learned and an incredible range of industry doors are opened.

The course was designed by Dave Warfield, Head of Game Design; Peter Walsh, Game Design Senior Instructor; and Miles Nurse, Head of Digital Design. Many months of research and planning went into the program, along with students, alumni, recruiter, and industry consultations.

The entertainment arts industry relies on skilled programmers, who are the technical lynchpins to digital media projects, from Interactive Designers and Front-End Developers, to VFX Programmers and Technical Architects. Programming for Games, Web & Mobile is all about becoming a better, smarter, more versatile and hireable developer.

If you would like to learn more about Programming for Games, Web & Mobile, or know someone who would be interested, please visit the program page or speak to an advisor.

We are extremely proud of all the hard work that has gone into this program and are excited to see it start in March and grow the world-class educational experience that is Vancouver Film School.

GD Alumni at the VFS Class Representative Dinner

Once every term, all of the class representatives from the various departments of the Vancouver Film School meet at the VFS Café to listen to a keynote speaker and to meet other fellow class reps.  For November’s VFS Class Representative Dinner, the featured speakers were Andy Fedorchuk (GD 30) – Associate Designer at Relic Entertainment, and James Daniell (GD 25) – Game Designer at IUGO, who spoke on their experiences about finding jobs after school and networking.

Both James and Andy had previous work experience before attending the VFS Game Design program. James had previous game making experience with friends in college, while Andy held several random careers. One common thing was that they both loved playing games, and they wanted to pursue careers that would allow them to makes games for real.

Needless to say, their aspirations have become a reality. As a Brian Wood Memorial Scholarship Recipient, Andy is an Associate Designer at Relic Entertainment. He admits that if it hadn’t been for the internship, he knows he would probably still be looking for a job. James was able to relate since he was selective with the jobs to which he applied, and did not want to get just ‘any job’. When he interviewed with IUGO, he was genuinely enthused about working there as a Game Designer.

While the VFS Game Design program gave Andy and James the tools that they needed to get the jobs that they both wanted, they still needed to get their dream jobs for themselves – through networking!

For our busy readers, here are  three important tips on networking our Alumni shared:

  1. Talk to your Idols: Being a student has its perks! Approach an industry professional, inform them that you’re a student and then ask them if they have any advice for aspiring game designers!
  2.  Be Proactive: Ask for help when you need it – send emails or go to Meetups!
  3. Be Casual: Don’t be blunt by asking a professional to give you a job. Networking doesn’t have to be stressful! Be casual and friendly, and soon enough, your downtime can turn into your networking time!

After the presentation, all of the class representatives were able to socialize and relax. While many of us returned back to our respective campuses after the dinner, it was a great opportunity to learn from the successful alumni of the VFS Game Design campus!


Maria Lee and Melissa Borda are VFS Game Design Students

 

Game Review: Disney Infinity

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Disney Infinity

Release Date: August 18, 2013
Developer: Avalanche Software
Publisher: Disney Interactive
Genre:
Adventure / Sandbox
Plataform: PS3 / 360 / Wii U / Wii / 3DS / Mobile / PC

Lets face it: everyone is a Disney fan! I honestly won’t believe you if you say that at one point of your life you weren’t touched by Disney’s unique way of telling stories. Whether by their characters, art, animations, parks, shows, songs or even by Mickey himself. I bet you have experienced that “magic” and, if you are a human full of emotions, you probably fell in love too.

And finally the big day arrives for all of those Disney lovers: the big release of Disney Infinity, a game that – as Disney – is everywhere. Or at least in almost all platforms. The player can find it on PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Nintendo WiiU – as the main console version – or even on Nintendo 3DS, following more as a “Mario Party” gameplay style. Nintendo Wii also received the game for its platform, though with fewer features, such as the absence of a co-op experience in the Play Set part of the game. And if it wasn’t enough, players can also experience Disney Infinity on PC and iOS devices, offering the options to build, edit and share all of your toy box experiments at any time.

For the ones who still don’t know, the game allows players to share their creations on ANY PLATFORM. It doesn’t matter if you are a Nintendo player, you can easily share your Toy Box with an user that plays on PlayStation 3, for example.

WHERE DREAMS COME TRUE

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