How to Thrive in the Strategy, Money & Marketing of Video Games

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DAY 1: EVERYTHING STRATEGY

How to Build a Studio with No Savings and Create Multiple Hits

  • Getting your head around fundamental business concepts like burn rate, profitability, cashflow, longevity, risk….
  • Understanding the source of funds and how different government funds, loans and crowdsourcing campaigns work as a means to raising cash
  • Exploring the key ingredients for creating and executing a successful Kickstarter campaign
Tanya X. Short
Captain of the Ship

KITFOX GAMES

Staying Sane in the Game: The Story of Building an Award-Winning Studio & Hit Games with ADHD & Dyslexia

  • Exploring the amazing success of Monument Valley and the growth story of Ustwo Games as an evolving games business - publisher, investor and digital consultancy
  • Looking at the impact of ADHD and dyslexia on people in a business environment
  • Understanding how to set up your life and business up in a way that supports your emotional, mental and physical wellbeing
Mills
Co-Founder

USTWO (Creator MONUMENT VALLEY)

How JOYMASHER Brazil Has Built Hit Games and Continues to Profit from the Long-Tail of Those Games

  • Understand the games industry in Brazil and how game playing, and development is increasing
  • Finding a niche and building a community from that niche including themes like mental health, retro games, old Nintendo games and more
  • Negotiating win-win publishing partnerships to port your games to new platforms and make the most of your partners’ digital marketing expertise
THAIS WEILLER
Co-Founder
JOYMASHER
& Game Design Teacher PUC BRAZIL

Testing, Funding & Launching Niche – a Genetics Survival Game – a Step-by-Step Plan for Crowdfunding $72,000, Building a Newsletter and Achieving 150k Unit Sales

  • Robustly testing your game concept and understanding your target market
  • Understand how to launch a Kickstarter campaign from pre planning and an email newsletter to the actual campaign
  • Learn how Stray Fawn built an indie studio from scratch from their first game
PHILOMENA SCHWAB
Co-Founder
STRAY FAWN

Creating Unique & Dynamic Games That Stand Out: Making it All Work as a Thriving Solo Indie Dev

  • Deep-diving into the business decision behind creating a unique game engine and what’s that’s done for the process and game quality
  • Wearing multiple hats as a solo dev and how to effectively balance game development, business, self-publishing, marketing and YouTube channels
  • Exploring dev vlogs and how to use YouTube as a channel for community building and awareness
DAVID FRAMPTON
Founder
MAJIC JUNGLE (BLOCKHEADS & SAPIENS)

Prototyping, Funding, Launching & Marketing the Hit Game That Grows Your Studio

  • Developing ways of robustly testing your game concept through competitive analysis, comparisons etc
  • Focus on building a business plan to get your game through to prototype/launch
  • Understand who your community is and build relationships with them now

LINDA ZETTERMAN
Co-Founder
WARPZONE STUDIOS

Critical Lessons in Building a Free-2-Play Game Studio

  • Focusing on creating processes, quality checks and standards for your code so that the game is not dependent on anyone person
  • Understanding the free to play market, how it progressed from Facebook and how to make the most out of machine learning algorithms
  • Analyzing the mobile game market and spreading the right balance between game progression and design and topic

LEONARD LIN
CEO & Game Developer
GAMENAMI

How Amid Evil Prototyped, Self-Funded, Negotiated a Publishing Partnership for Amid Evil as a Brand-New Indie Dev

  • Understand the process of assessing market viability and for developing and funding Amid Evil
  • Determine the benefits and risks of self-publishing, publishing partnerships and or self-funding
  • Explore next steps for Indefatigable Games

LEON ZAWADA
Co-Founder
INDEFATIGABLE GAMES

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DAY 2: EVERYTHING MONEY

 

How to Build a Thriving Franchise Model in a Shrinking PC Casual Games Market

  • Exploring distribution channels, middle men and operating as a solo indie dev 
  • Managing the business of a franchise and building on the long-tail of those games 
  • Lessons learned from many years in the business and how new indies can build a series of games and build a long-tail of revenue

JOE CASSAVAUGH
CEO
PUZZLES BY JOE
"The Clutter Franchise"

Create and Grow a Studio, Raise $500,000 CAD in Capital – Find Out How to Do All of this Working as a Husband & Wife Team

  • Work out your strengths, divide responsibility and create a system for making your relationship work personally and romantically 
  • Understand how to raise money effectively, work with freelancers and get your business operational 
  • Build coping strategies to handle cash-flow crisis, missed milestones, problems with staff and investors and on…

JEAN LEGGETT
CEO
ONE MORE STORY GAMES

Strategies for Accelerating a Game Development Industry Locally

  • Determining how to stimulate game development and make available funds, education and support for local game development
  • Understanding the work of the Tunisian Game Development Association and how they have successfully established Tunisia as one of the leading game development countries in the Middle East and North Africa
  • Next steps for stimulating games investment and publishing in Tunisia

ANOIR BENNOIR
General Manager
CREATIVE DIGITAL LAB INCUBATOR

Building a Professional Studio with an Incentivised & Motivated Team Who Care

  • Identifying ways to turn your team into motivated owners of the products and games they work on
  • Identifying the ways to work with publishers and investors that means you get paid what you need - advances and royalties
  • Getting the contracts right and working with lawyers to protect yourself

JOHN HARE
Former Founder
SENSIBLE SOFTWARE

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DAY 3: EVERYTHING MARKETING

Triumph in the Video Games: Let the Magic Happen by Seizing Every Opportunity, Networking & Sharing

  • Taking part, saying yes and getting known within the local game community
  • Determining the steps you can take to get known, be of value and build a meaningful games industry network
  • Exploring IGDA’s role in supporting solo developers and growing studios and how to get involved

RENEE GITTINS
Exec Director
IGDA

Build Your Indie Games Studio with Top Business Development Strategies

  • Understanding your competitor landscape and strengthening your pitch
  • Determining your sales needs, pipeline conversion and how to make sure you’ve got sales leads to keep your cashflow going
  • Systemizing your lead generation and sales pipeline for publishers, partners and work-for-hire clients

ALEX BOUCHER
Biz Dev Expert & Founder
GAME DEV HEROES

Key Steps for Creating an IP from the Very Beginning That Has Tremendous Potential to Become a World Class Video Games Brand

  • Exploring what a world class IP looks like in video games and how it was achieved
  • Understanding how to step out of your video game developer mindset and put yourself in the shoes of your audience
  • Establish how you can turn around or build in a new IP narrative to an existing product

CHRISTIAN FONNESBECH
CEO
LEVERAGE

How to Get a Front Page on Reddit and Why You Want One for Your Indie Games

  • Analyze the ingredients behind successful front-page posts on Reddit 
  • Master techniques for achieving upvotes whilst including calls-to-actions that get results 
  • Understand how to drive upvotes without manipulating – explore the boundaries   

ELYOT GRANT
Founder
LUNARCH STUDIOS
& Co-Creator PRISMATA

Getting Your Game Noticed in a Dramatically Changing PR & Influencer Environment

  • Understanding the dramatic shifts in the games business PR landscape right now and how to get noticed
  • Establishing how to build proper relationships with media and influencers and set up a pre-emptive PR plan to get your game known from the outset
  • Building an analytical and data driven approach to PR and game discovery

MICHAEL BROWN
Director
VICARIOUS PR

The Upper Echelon Games YouTube Story: Maintaining Integrity as a Content Creator

  • Exploring the dark side of video game influencing, YouTube advertising and finding a way to create content and keep your dignity
  • Understanding the impact paid shout outs, game endorsements and paid promotions can have on the quality of your channel
  • Discussing the Indie Spotlight and how to raise awareness of indies getting their games discovered

CHRIS - UE SANCTIONITE
Founder
UPPER ECHELON GAMES

The Power of Community Building & Social Media – From a Master Games Influencer

  • Understand how indies can carve a space out in an extremely competitive market
  • Create quality games that get discovered
  • Strategies for indies to get great quality games discovered
  • Create an inclusive approach to social media and be open and friendly

HEINY REIMES
Influencer

Master Paid Advertising for Indie Games on a Limited Budget

  • Debunk some of the myths about Facebook and other paid advertising channels 
  • Explore the cost per acquisition model versus brand building and awareness 
  • Understand cost effective strategies for getting gamers to buy your game

ANDREW PAPPAS
Founder
RENGEN MARKETING

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DAY 4: EVERYTHING MOBILE GAMES

Forging a Different Path: Building a Premium Mobile Game Business in a Rapidly Changing & Mainly F2P Market

  • Understanding current marketing and game discovery processes for mobile and exploring the potential changes that lie ahead
  • Exploring how premium mobile games enable greater creativity and less dependence on addictive mechanics
  • Determining what mobile first and premium game experiences look like and next steps for Ustwo Games

MARIA SAYANS
CEO
USTWO GAMES

Creating a Hit Mobile Game as a New Dev, With No Development Experience, Whilst Working 9-5

  • Understand the process of putting together a game concept, plan and executing it
  • Explore new channels and revenue streams for your game
  • Understand self-publishing and publishing with a publisher and work out how to get the best deal

CLEMENT PEVRIER
CEO
ALMOST GAMES

How HyperBeard Built a Growing Mobile Games Studio Based in Mexico City with Multiple Runaway Hits Aimed at the Casual Gamer Market

  • Explore the strategy behind existing hits and plans to create more 
  • Understand how to get mobile game user experience and marketing to a gold standard level 
  • Master maximum exposure through IOS and Android game stores

ALEX KOZACHENKO
CEO
HYPERBEARD GAMES

Use Innovative Thinking & Processes to Create a Rock-Solid Studio That Creates Successive Hits

  • Design idea testing and game launch processes that create successive hits
  • Create design and production templates that drive quality and efficiency
  • Get strategic about marketing before spending money – pinpoint the platforms and target audiences you want to reach and be creative in reaching them with new messages and approaches

CHRISTIAN HAJA
Biz Dev Manager
sealMOBILEgames

Getting Featured Again and Again on IOS with Zero Marketing Budget

  • Lessons learned from previous game launches in terms of game design and marketing 
  • Develop a disciplined PR campaign with the goal of getting featured 
  • Create marketing and graphics that are simple and compelling

DILMER VALECILLOS
Creator of CUBIQUES, STICKMAN WORLD, FUSEBALLS
DILMER GAMES

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DAY 5: EVERYTHING NEW INDIE DEV

Game Post Mortem:

Breaking Down the Winning Formula: Prototyping, Developing, Marketing of Grizzly Game’s First IP - ISLANDERS

  • Creating a simple and compelling game concept as a first game at game school - minimal viable product
  • Exploring new game creation and YouTube developer vlogs
  • Getting featured on steam and getting the game discovered quickly
  • Discussing next steps for Grizzly Studio

JONAS TYROLLER
YouTuber & Co-Creator Islanders
GRIZZLY GAMES

First Game Business Post-Mortem

Funding, Developing & Negotiating Publishing Deals for a Hit New Game – Win-Win Partnerships

  • Understanding the process of how Rain World was created, funded and published as a commercial game
  • Lessons learned from Kickstarter and then selecting a publisher with the right cultural and commercial qualities
  • Drilling down into the success of Rain World, porting to new consoles and localizing games and next steps for Video Cult Media’s studio

JAMES PRIMATE
Co-Founder & Biz Brain
VIDEO CULT MEDIA (Rain World)

Setting the Stage for a Phenomenal Launch Game as a New Indie Dev - Project: Feline

  • Understanding your niche, market and putting a lot of work into the gameplay before levels, mechanics and bells and whistles
  • The why behind creating quality devlogs and building community and how that good will support you on your journey
  • Working out the next steps post prototype - crowdfunding, microfunds, investors, publishers, grant money…

RAYMOND CRIPPS
YouTuber & Game Dev
PROJECT:FELINE

Carving Your Own Path in Game Development and Making Your Vision Happen

  • A journey of committing to finding ways to thrive in indie game development
  • How to create good will in a community that wants to see you succeed
  • Understand how to manage your time, take care of yourself and work towards your vision, even if it is long-term

PHILLIP WALKER
Game Dev & Retro Games Influencer 
RETRO PHIL

Building Solid Business Development & Networking Skills as a Newbie Indie Dev

  • How to start networking and pitching from ground zero as a new indie when you have no track-record
  • Understand what makes you unique and how to pitch you and your game  
  • How to use free events, meet-ups and your own social media to get yourself known and get the word out about who you are wand what you’re doing

ALEX BOUCHER
Biz Dev Expert & Founder 
@GAME DEV HEROES

Indie Game Development as the Ultimate 21st Century Liberal Art – Building a Life and Career in the Video Game Industry

  • Being a musician versus a rockstar – a real career trajectory for indie game developers 
  • Nestle yourself into a community, be connected and network to establish yourself 
  • Practical ways to fund your first game and get it published with little budget

Lindsay Grace
Knight Chair & Associate Professor 
INTERACTIVE MEDIA & UNIVERSITY OF MIAMI SCHOOL OF COMMUNICATION

MORE SPEAKERS COMING SOON!!

Make the Games You Love and Build a Commercial Business at the Same Time

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The Business of Indie Games Summit

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