Many of us are heading to Brighton next week for this year’s Develop Conference. But two of our number shall be getting the all star treatment.
We’re delighted to report that Aidan Temple, of Glasgow Caledonian University and Paul McGee from University of Abertay Dundee (who you may recall from E3) are two of the five recipients of the first ever set of scholarships to the Develop Conference. They will be receiving all access passes to the conference, and will be introduced to industry experts who will act as their mentor, in order to help them get the most out of their experience. Over the course of the week they’ll be meeting with representatives from Epic, Unity, Microsoft, Ubisoft and Channel 4 among many others.
We hope you’ll join us in saying a huge congratulations to both of the new scholars, we’re sure they’ll have an amazing time in Brighton. Make sure to say hello if you see them there!
But that isn’t all! IGDA Scotland Committee Member Luke Dicken has also received a scholarship, making him the first ever 3 time IGDA scholar. He’ll be jetting off to Seattle for the IGDA Summit towards the end of July, an event where, as we previously reported, he will also be speaking. Again he’ll reap the benefits of an all access pass, and get the opportunity to pick the brains of expert mentors, while receiving the same VIP treatment as the scholars in Brighton. Our congratulations go to Luke as well, for raising the bar for scholars everywhere!
Scottish students have once again excelled this year, now making an appearance at many of the major conferences and expos throughout the world, and highlighting the skills and talents of our students, and letting the international industry get a taste of what’s to come!
In recent months at IGDA Scotland, one of the things we’ve been working on is trying to improve and strengthen our international presence, primarily by building stronger ties with other chapters around the world and learning from their experiences. We had a pretty strong contingent present at GDC in March, and now we’re building upon that success with some more appearances at IGDA events around the world.
Well it seems that all the hard work is paying off. Committee member Luke Dicken will be working with IGDA chapters across the pond as part of his larger lecture tour. Starting in Chile on the 26th June, Luke will be participating in the Video Games Extreme Workshop. It’s a three day event, with an estimated 400 participants. The first day includes panels and seminars from industry experts, that then leads into a two day game jam. During the event Luke will be giving a lecture during the instructional first day, and will be acting as a mentor during the game jam itself.
Moving into July, and closer to home, IGDA Scotland will be well represented at Develop in Brighton, with several of the committee making the journey down. Alongside chapter founder (turned Southern defector) Hazel McKendrick, we are also taking an active role in organising and chaperoning the IGDA Scholarship program in its inaugural year being held both at Develop and within the UK, ensuring that the scholars have an amazing time and meet some of the many industry leaders the UK has to offer!
As soon as Develop wraps up, it’s over to the USA, where, amongst other engagements, Luke will be speaking at Boston’s “Post Mortem” IGDA chapter on the 17th. The Boston area is a hotbed of game development activity, and it’s only fitting that it also home to one of the most active and established chapters, with a monthly “Games and Grog” event.
After Boston, it’s on to Seattle and the IGDA Summit taking place on the 23rd and 24th of July. This is an annual gathering of IGDA members to discuss a range of topics, but focuses on providing “valuable professional development, actionable insight and candid discussion to elevate our craft”. There Luke has been asked to give a session that he’s called “Skynet and You: Game AI for the Uninitiated” as part of a track being presented on the Monday aimed at providing an introduction to some of the more niche areas of the game development process.
It’s all go from here! Keep an eye on the website for news from Luke on his experiences with our IGDA cousins abroad in the weeks after his
In her first post for IGDA Scotland, volunteer Emma Droy summarises our recent meeting in Edinburgh and shares a few of the excellent pictures she took during the event.
Wednesday saw us descending upon Edinburgh for the April meeting of IGDA Scotland. The main topic of discussion was, of course, the Game Developers Conference, which took place in San Francisco last month. We want to say a huge thank you to our panellists, Kate Ho, Jonathan Brodsky and Luke Dicken for taking the time to share their experiences from GDC and have their brains picked by those who weren’t fortunate enough to attend! Also thanks to everyone who was able to come along, it was cosy but we think it was a great success!
The evening kicked off with a short presentation from Brian McDonald, who gave a review of what IGDA is for the new faces in the crowd, and what the Scottish chapter are hoping to do in the future. He touched on the topic of IGDA Scholarships (don’t forget the deadline for applications is April 27th – why not attend our workshop explaining the Scholarships in detail) and gave us a quick introduction to GDC. You can find a video of Brian’s session embedded below.
After a quick break our panellists took to the stage. They each spent some time introducing themselves and explaining to us what they’re doing at the moment, then proceeded to get a grilling on what they got up to at GDC. Kate told us about her time on the Scottish Development International Booth with her company Interface3, giving an entrepreneurial insight to the benefits of attending GDC. Jon from Lucky Frame recounted the gruelling conference experience of an IGF nominated developer, and Luke, who attended GDC through the IGDA Scholarship programme as this year’s Eric Dybsand Memorial AI Scholar gave us all the details on what future IGDA Scholars can expect.
Another break for refreshments was followed with open questions from the audience. The panel (and some audience members) shared tips with the youngsters in the audience, including information on the Conference Associates programmes that allow those interested, particularly students, to get involved at conferences through volunteering.
We’re in the process of editing the video from the panel together now and we will publish it as quickly as possible so that you can see the details of what was said for yourself, so keep an eye out for that!
Thanks again to everyone that came along, we hope you all had a good night!