iFest therefore I am… ahem… sorry.

By @ 07/10/12 in articles

Myself, Rohan and the fearsome duo of Morgan and Damien from Epiphany Games all attended iFest in Sydney this weekend, perusing the multitude of games on show from some of Sydney’s finest, alluding to the game we’ve been working on (while still remaining too shy to announce its name to the world) and just generally enjoying watching the collision (collusion?) of wannabe indie startups and the likes of Trip Hawkins all being able to share the stage.

Talks were primarily aimed at the indies around the place who were looking to turn their hobby / dream / idea into a business. There was talk about publishers, what they can do, when you should approach them and what you should look out for. There were grandiose statements about the future of the business (thanks, Trip!). There was a lovely talk by Paul Stazjer from See Through Studios on self-realisation being a core component (which Rohan referred to as ‘guided meditation with Paul’) immediately prior to a talk cum rant by Martin Slater (ex-2K Australia chap who’s always around the traps in these parts) reducing any and all idealism in the room to mush. As he does.

My own talk was an admittedly rather condescending PR 101 speech in which I catalogue some of the changes I’ve gone through as I’ve moved from Rockstar Games PR to attempting to sound the horn for my own indie game (which I studiously likened to the difference between steering this ship…

…aaaand attempting to get this one to even float…

(Fear not, intrepid readers, this thing WILL be seaworthy!)

There is always much support flying around at indie gatherings of any kind. While some of the events which happen around Sydney and Melbourne are pricing indies out of the market to attend (you know who you are), I figured since I get so much out of attending these things and receiving feedback and criticisms from peers and mentor-types alike, I’d share a brief list of things in the Sydney/Melbourne area which I know about and think are valuable to attend:

  • Freeplay
  • GCAP (Game Connect Asia-Pacific)
  • iFest
  • IGDA Meetups (both cities)
  • Game Masters (or perhaps, since that was a one-off, pretty much anything about games by the Australian Centre for the Moving Image)
  • Game Tech

“It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.”

It’s both. If you’re pretty good at C++, but know someone who can help you out from time to time, the end result to a developer is the same. If you know heaps of people who can help get the word out there about your game, your voice might as well be hundreds of voices.

No one achieves anything entirely on their own. Prodigies who don’t play well with others seldom change the world in the same way merely ‘quite good’ people do when they know how to help steer and entire ship in one direction.

So attend these damn things! There’s heaps of people you can meet who know more than you in some areas and less in others, and the more people show up to these events where indies look to help one another out, the better off we’ll all be.

Dulce et decorum est. Pro patria mori!

Erm… or something like that.


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