Category Archives: Edinburgh

Upcoming Meeting: April 2014 – GDC Roundup

Now that everybody has had the chance to recover, it’s time for our 2nd GDC Roundup meeting! Join us in the world’s oldest student union, the Teviot Row House on Wednesday 16th April from 19:30 for an evening of talks, followed by a panel, revolving around all the exciting news from San Francisco’s annual game development extravaganza.

Don’t miss your chance by registering your free ticket on Eventbrite or by using the handy registration box below. Our meetings are open to all, even if you’re not a member of the IGDA. Non-students must be registered ahead of the event in order to be guaranteed entry to the venue.

Following up on last month’s excellent microtalks from the community, we’re on the hunt for speakers interested in sharing some of their experiences from GDC. If you were exhibiting your game, spoke at a session, or even there as an attendee, that means you! We want to hear your thrilling tales, so we urge you to fill out our online form and volunteer to speak.

Edinburgh GameDevSoc

This year’s GDC Roundup is being hosted in association with the University of Edinburgh Game Development Society, who have graciously organised the Teviot Dining Hall in EUSA’s Teviot Row House for us. If you want to stay up to date on their activites, go ahead and check out their website, or contact them at

Eventbrite - April Meeting: GDC Roundup

October 2013 Meeting: Oculus Rift with Brian McDonald in Edinburgh

We’re delighted to be able to bring you a recording of our October meeting, which was held in the Techcube in Edinburgh and was packed to capacity with people wanting to experience the Oculus Rift.

The night was organised by our very own Brian McDonald, and it gave people the opportunity to get hands-on with some of the fantastic games and tech demos that have been created for the Oculus Rift. The night also provided some excellent advice on some of the key aspects that should be kept in mind when developing a project for the Rift.

We had a fantastic turnout for the event, and it was great to see so many people experiencing what the Oculus Rift has to offer.

A huge thank you to Brian for organising the event, and you can check out a video of the event below.

Don’t forget, you can catch up on all our videos by visiting our YouTube channel.

Glasgow Masterclass with Professor Richard Lemarchand: Book Now!

On Tuesday the 2nd of July, Professor Richard Lemarchand will deliver a Masterclass entitled “Life of Play, Life of the Mind: What Game Design Can Teach Us” at Glasgow Caledonian University.

The masterclass will tell the story of Richard’s transition from AAA console game designer to game design Professor, and the challenges he faced in learning how to teach the “dark art” of game design.  Richard will talk about the positive impact that indie games, art games and experimental games can have on the design of blockbuster games like Uncharted, and will describe the incredible opportunities for success he sees for all teachers and researchers who adopt a playful, game designerly attitude in their practice.

A passionate advocate of indie and experimental games, Richard has been involved with the IndieCade International Festival of Independent Games for several years. He organizes the annual GDC Microtalks, a session that celebrates games and play with short talks by diverse speakers, and he is a faculty member of the GDC Experimental Gameplay Sessions.

The masterclass is FREE and takes place from 17:30-20:30. Please note that places are strictly limited! To register please go here.

This means that our original plan for a meetup in Edinburgh will be postponed until later in the month. More details to follow soon!


April Meeting Recap

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 HoJonathan 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!

Bringing San Francisco to Edinburgh

Where – Ryan’s Bar (downstairs area), 2-4 Hope Street, Edinburgh
When – April 11th 7pm

Book your ticket through Eventbrite

A month ago, a number of us stumbled bleary-eyed into airports across the country and one by one, filed over to San Francisco to attend the Game Developers Conference. Many more of us did not.

IGDA Scotland is delighted to announce that we’re bringing a little piece of GDC to our April meeting in Edinburgh, with a range of excellent panelist who are coming along to share their experiences of this year’s GDC, explain why you should do everything in your power to make sure you’re there next year and also give you some ideas how you might be able to make that happen.

As we approach the first birthday of the chapter, Brian McDonald (our chapter leader) will open the meeting with a short presentation on where we have got to, followed by moderating the GDC panel. We’ll also be including lots of time for you to chat to each other, and the panelists, about the things you will hear.

We’re still working to nail down who we’re going to have on the panel, and we’ll announce that in the coming days but for right now, make sure you keep your calendars clear and get your tickets booked. We want to get your questions as part of the panel, so be sure to keep an eye on the Facebook group where we will be asking for these – and don’t worry as there will be opportunity on the night to ask questions too!

Please note that space is limited, so if you are unable to attend, please cancel your ticket so someone else can take your place.

Edinburgh Roundup

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What a week it’s been! IGDA Scotland has rocked Edinburgh for a second time! Thank you to everyone who came along to make an interesting evening of meeting, greeting, discussion and debate. We got a lot of feedback on how the chapter is going and even more ideas for the future, which we hope to be putting in place to make our journeys to the Edinburgh crowd even more special.

I’d like to say a big thanks to Chris Wright, from local firm <a title=”We Games Analytics, who gave a stellar talk on how to get Games Analytics “Wright” (ouch…)

Pics or it Didn't Happen!

Our camera buggered up on the night, the technician told us it’s awesomeness-ity reciprocator hadn’t been designed with an IGDA Chapter meeting in mind. Chris has however, given us his slides which will be able to give you all the juicy load out on using analytics, and how Chris and his guys can help you get started in a whim!

If you haven’t already, we’d be really interested in hearing your thought’s and opinions on what you’d like to see your IGDA chapter do. So you can spam Kraig, have a flame war on our Facebook Group, or kindly fill out our Survey Monkey Questionnaire. Every-time you do, something bad happens to a bad person! Honest!

IGDA Scotland: Edinburgh Meeting Roundup

It’s difficult to describe the most recent IGDA Scotland meeting in Edinburgh without making it sound like some sort of Nordic  house party. There was booze (of course there was booze…)  There were Vikings searching for Peanut Butter (who would have thought) as well as some guy bawling “WHO THE F*** ARE YOU???!!” at everyone in the room…

Needless to say this was one of the best IGDA Scotland meetings so far.

It was also quite a momentous occasion, as this completes our first lap of Scotland’s key gaming cities, and we’re not showing any signs of stopping, responding to feedback and ideas from everyone as the chapter evolves and grows. The sheer amount of community spirit around the chapter is beautiful. At one point it occurred that the venues’ projector had broken down with only a few hours before the meeting, yet within a couple of Twitter and Facebook conversations, the problem had been remedied with people coming along with their own AV gear.

We kicked off the speakers with Phil Harris from SquareGo!, talking about the elements of a good story in games, and where things have gone a bit wrong in some of today’s big money franchises. To top off the talk was a round of creating 5 noun game games, that have spawned the next generation of Triple-A Viking and Pizza Ninja based genres with a little dash of good improv.

We also had a speaker who nearly didn’t make it, thanks to our reliable public rail network that we all treasure so dearly. Luke Dicken took to the floor after he bought a train ticket to get a replacement bus service to Edinburgh after a derailment. It was dubbed “The Talk That Not Even Scotrail Couldn’t Hold Off” and I think it’s another fine testament to the dedicated community we have developing around our meetings. Luke is an AI Researcher with the Strathclyde AI & Games Group at the University of Strathclyde, and like another person I know, went to E3 as an IGDA student scholar. I don’t know what your E3 activities were this year. Mine involved hooking the laptop up to the TV and watching the press conferences in full screen, if a little blurry at times, streaming video. Well, I was doing that, as well as drooling over a certain competitive word-based  puzzle game that’s been long overdue, and had questions as to whether getting to go to E3 in person was actually anything better than watching it online.

Queue jumping, schmoozing with some of the industry’s brightest, as well as front row seats to everywhere that’s worth going; when the IGDA give you a free ticket, it’s not just a free ticket: it’s a banner of awesome, with those flaming roman candle things that never go out no matter how hard you try.

Almost as awesome as watching an member of Rockstar North eat an entire double kangaroo burger from the Walkabout in the space of 3 minutes. It Happened!

Lastly to conclude the night of talks was the one and only Colin Riley from Codeplay. Now I’ll admit, when you think of the idea of having a technical talk about programming to top of a night heavily subdued in summer heat and alcohol, it doesn’t sound like the most interesting thing to be listening to. However, I think everyone was pleasantly surprised about the elegance and entertainment value found in learning about something better than Object Oriented Programming. Plus he did some awesome diagrams.

In between all of the talks there was time for much banter and conversation between everyone. The chapter is rapidly accomplishing one of it’s main goals to give Scotland’s Game’s sector a place mix with one another. In a time where there has been much doom and gloom surrounding the UK’s game sector, it’s great to see people in the industry themselves getting together and having a good time if anything else.

Before we close things off here we’ like to give a big shout out to a worthy cause. Sick Kids Save Point is a videogames marathon organised on behalf of the Sick Kids Friends Foundation in Edinburgh.Looking at their Twitter it seems they’re already making waves, raising money for the Royal Hospital for Sick Children in Edinburgh with intake of over 100,000 injured and sick children each year. The funds raised by the charity help to pay for a variety items including high tech surgical equipment that saves lives. We here at the IGDA would love to see them raise as much cash as possible, so if you have some disposable income you’d like to put to work, or fancy holding your own 24 hour charity game marathon, make sure to check them out.

We’ll be back on the wire letting you know about future events soon. Didn’t make it to the event? Don’t worry! Our speakers have been kind enough to share their power-points with you, and we’re working on posting video recordings of the talks up very soon. Until next time, why not get in touch with us via Twitter, Facebook or our Google mailing list group and let us know what you think we should be doing.

Phil Harris

Luke Dicken
Colin Riley