Australia is Back at Gamescom 2024!

16
May

Gamescom is the world’s largest and most important business event for video games, and this is the perfect opportunity to show the world what Australia has to offer and importantly connect you to global business partners! IGEA will again be organising an Australian pavilion at the event which allows participants to showcase products or host meetings, and we are looking for expressions of interest from you! 

If you are interested in participating on the Australian stand, please register your interest here: 

Expressions of Interest for Aussie Stand at Gamescom 2024 

Please familiarise yourself with the Q&A section below as it includes important information regarding the stand, the services on offer, tickets, and everything in between. 

For further information, please contact Jens via jens@igea.net or join the Aussies at Gamescom Discord server. 

Australian Stand FAQs 

When and Where Will Gamescom Take Place? 

Gamescom is hosted at the Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany. The business halls, complete with the Australian stand, will be open from Wednesday 21 August to Friday 23 August. 

Tell Me About the Australian Stand 

The Australian stand will be in the business area of Gamescom, in the exact same location as the last two years, right at the entrance of hall 03.2. 

 This is a great location, as the stand is right at the hall’s entry and will see a lot of foot traffic! 

 Depending on interest, the stand will have a footprint of up to 225m2. In 2022 and 2023, the stand helped generate close to AU$10m worth of deals! 

IGEA will take care of all the stand building. 

What Packages Are on Offer? 

This year, the Australian stand will offer three options: 

Option 1:

Demo station: The opportunity to demo your game with access to a shared meeting room (with a monitor). You will also get access to shared meeting tables. 

Option 2:

You can have your own meeting bar table in a (shared) VIP meeting area (an option you should consider if you want to use the stand but don’t want to demo anything). 

Option 3:

You will have access to your own private meeting room, which will also come with a monitor to demonstrate your products. 

You can book your own meeting rooms with up to two other studios (i.e., three overall). It’s then up to you how to split up access. 

Please note: 

  • The above is subject to demand and the stand’s limitations. For example, if there is not enough demand for exclusive meeting rooms, we will reduce their number and increase the number of demo stations—and the other way around. However, due to space limitations, some of these options are limited as they take up a lot of room. 
  • We endeavour to accommodate as many businesses as possible; however, should your preferred option not be available due to high demand, we will liaise with you regarding the next steps. These could either be going with a different option or, in the case of an overbooked stand, engaging in a selection process (see below) 

 Other services include: 

    •  Two meeting planning tools (MeetToMatch and Gamescom’s own tool) 
    • Stand internet 
    • Pre-conference training 
    • Drinks for guests 
    • A reception at the stand to attract international guests 

 

Moreover, each studio will be issued three exhibitor tickets (see below for more info on tickets). 

Pre-Conference Training

 We are planning the following activities to make sure you can take proper advantage of Gamescom: 

  • Destination information: Hotels, access to the venue, what to know about Cologne, but also how to use MeetToMatch
  • Business training: Depending on the maturity of the participating studios, we will organise business-related training; this could include how to prepare best your presence or how to negotiate with publishers. 



Prior to attending Gamescom, we will also encourage the various states to run ‘live’ get-togethers so delegates can meet in person and get to know each other. 

In addition, we will make available on the stand a printed brochure that will feature updated information on the Australian game development ecosystem as well as government funding and support mechanisms available to grow the industry and attract investment  We will offer the opportunity for studios to participating on the Australian stand to showcase your business, including photos and contact details within the brochure, however, you can opt out of this

Most importantly, IGEA does all the heavy lifting and stand build, so you don’t have to. All you need to do is turn up and start your meetings. 

What Is This Going to Cost? 

For an overview of the fees for the stand packages, please use this spreadsheet: 

Gamescom 2024 Fees 

The differences in fees reflect each state’s subsidies towards the stand. If the state your studio is in does not financially support the stand, unfortunately, your fees will be higher. 

Please note: IGEA members are eligible for discounts! If you would like to discuss membership, please reach out to Jens@igea.net 

There will also be the option to pay your fees in instalments. We are happy to discuss payment plans with you and what options work best.  

Lastly, if you are eligible for Austrade’s Export Market Development Grant (EMDG), you may be able to claim 50% of your costs back! This means that you can get access to the stand for as little as AU$2250. 

Extra Services 

If you do need any additional services beyond the standard packages, e.g., a plank to demo your game or additional iPads or consoles, please let us know. We will put you in touch with our trusted stand builder who will be able to assist. 

What are the Selection Criteria? 

We are trying to accommodate as many studios as possible; however, if we receive more applications than the stand can accommodate, we will need to engage in a selection process. 

Applications will be judged by IGEA in collaboration with the states supporting the stand. Given the importance of Gamescom in the annual calendar and the funds contributed by the states, the process will revolve around commercial criteria and/or studios’ track records. In addition, we will consider the number of financial contributions to the stand from each state.  

Deadlines & Fees 

Once we have completed the selection process, we will notify the successful studios. We will regard the confirmation of your attendance and the filling out of a second registration form as a binding contract. 

 If you will not be able to travel to Germany after you have confirmed your attendance, the following fees will apply: 

  • Cancellation of attendance up to eight weeks before the event (i.e., 26 June): You will be liable for 30% of the stand fees 
  • Cancellation of attendance up to six weeks before the event (i.e., 10 July): You will be liable for 50% of the stand fees 
  • Cancellation of attendance up to four weeks before the event (i.e., 24 July): You will be liable for 100% of the stand fees 



Code of Conduct 

Please also note that as an official IGEA event, our Gamescom presence is subject to IGEA’s Code of Conduct. As an attendee you – and your staff – will have to explicitly agree to adhere to it. 

What Do I Do if I Need More Than the Three Allocated Tickets? 

This year, Australia is not a country sponsor, so we will not have access to a generous contingent of free exhibitor tickets. However, you can purchase extra tickets via IGEA. Let us know how many you need; they are €60.08 each. 

(Please note: Only Exhibitor tickets will allow you to check out the consumer areas on the weekend. The trade visitor 3-day ticket will not offer this option.) 

 How Do I Access My Tickets Once I Received My Ticket Code/Bought Them? 

  • After we’ve registered you, you will receive an invite and create an account as an exhibitor via the Koelnmesse shop 
  • Inside the Koelnmesse ticket shop you can redeem a voucher code for a ticket (please use a regular browser on a laptop or desktop computer) 
  • You will need to download the Gamescom ticketing app and sign up with your Koelnmesse account (email and password) 
  • Tickets will be downloaded automatically 



If you are having any issues with the process, please reach out to Gamescom directly as it is out of our control. 

Will I have Access to the Gamescom Industry Party? 

Every year, there is an official Gamescom industry-exclusive party at the Rheinterassen, including drinks and food. 

You will need to buy the tickets for this party separately. Please check the Gamescom website for tickets. (At the time of writing they were not yet available. They are likely to be available in July. You will need a customer number to buy these tickets, we will supply this.) 

In 2023, Gamescom party tickets cost €90 (i.e. about AU$146).  

Is this party worth the extra expense? 

In the end, it’s up to you. That said, this party is exclusively for industry members, so it is a great networking opportunity. (We’re speaking from experience!) 

Will There Be Drinks at the Australian Stand?

We will organise a wide variety of drinks, including water, soft drinks, energy drinks, and alcohol. 

Please understand, however, that these are primarily for guests of the stand. So, if – for some mysterious reason – you are feeling a little bit thirsty the day after the official Gamescom party, please make sure you bring along a bottle of water. 

Please also note that as a general rule, alcohol at the stand will only be made available after 5 pm. (Except if a guest asks for it or as part of a reception.) 

Can I Bring My Child Along?

While Gamescom does not ban children from attending the business area, they would like to keep it to 18+. If you need someone to look after your children, Gamescom does offer a dedicated child-minding area. (Also, let’s be honest, it may be a video game event but the business aspect of it is likely to bore any kid to tears…) 

We Are an Aussie Studio but Not Part of the Australian Stand – Can You Store Some Stuff for Us? Can We Use it for Meetings? 

Unfortunately, that is not an option; the stand can only be used by paying studios. These are paying quite a lot of money for the privilege, and it’d be unfair towards them if we let others use the stand for free. (But stop by and say hi!) 

I Would Like to Visit the Stand Before Gamescom Officially Opens – Do I Need a High-Vis Vest? I Also Heard There Was Lunch? 

Nope – if you would like to visit the stand before Gamescom officially kicks off, e.g., to set up, just rock up in your normal clothes. But don’t forget your exhibitor tickets! 

Like the last two years, we will also organise a collective visit to the stand to ensure everything is in order and allow you to set up. For those interested, we will head to lunch at the Italian place around the corner from the venue. And yes, they do have vegetarian/vegan options. 

I’m Getting These Weird Spam Emails About Attendee Lists… 

Sigh… Please ignore them. This is not Gamescom sharing your data with dodgy parties but the latter somehow managing to get a hold of your details – possibly by scraping Gamescom’s website – and now trying to sell them. There’s nothing official about this, and for the love of God, don’t engage with them! 

Timing of Booking 

Please fill out the forms by 31 May! 

Unleash Your Potential as a Game Producer

07
Mar

Back due to popular demand – if you missed out last time, now is the chance to Unleash Your Potential as a Game Producer!

Designed for junior and aspiring video game producers or more experienced producers who want to learn a more modern and adaptive approach, this course is your ticket to growing your leadership and Agile delivery skills in pursuit of sustainably creating games that people love and that meet the goals of the business.

In collaboration with IGEA, the peak industry association for the video games industry in Australia, this comprehensive course, taught over 4 weeks, brings you unparalleled insights and real-world examples from veteran game producers. Developed by Agile and Lean experts who understand the unique challenges of the games development process, this course is your ultimate guide to becoming a competent leader in the industry.

Participants who attended the last course rated it 4.2 out of 5 stars.

This is what a previous attendee had to say:

“Participating in the Agile Producer course was both a confirmation and an expansion of my existing passion for agile methodologies. The course brilliantly illustrated how an agile mindset can revolutionize our work approaches. One of the most enriching aspects was the diversity of attendees; not everyone was a current producer, which brought a variety of perspectives and insights to our discussions.

Engaging with industry leaders who are staunch supporters of this approach was a highlight.
Their expertise wasn’t just inspiring; it was practical and immediately applicable. The course emphasized the importance of human capacity and smooth workflow, vital for fostering teams that are both productive and passionate. This experience reinforced a crucial belief for me: the right mindset is more influential than any specific tool. Whether you’re already passionate about agile methodologies or just starting to explore them, this course is invaluable.”

Course Dates:

Half-day Learning sessions:

  • May 7th
  • May 14th
  • May 21st and
  • May 28th 2024

1:00 pm – 5:00 pm AEST delivered via Zoom

Post-course Knowledge Sharing Workshops:

  • June 14th
  • June 21sst and
  • June 28th

1:30pm – 3.30 pm AEST delivered via Zoom

Cost:

$1760 IGEA members

$2200 Non IGEA members.

Early Bird Bonus – Register by 12 April 2024 and receive 10% off the cost price.

Register here.

Module Supporters who helped make this possible:

Day 1: Foundations of the Role, the Industry
Co-created with Playside Studios

Day 2: Agile & Lean: Adaptive Ways of Working
Co-created with Ally McLean-Hennessy

Day 3: Project Managing & Releasing Games
Co-created with Morgan Jaffit

Day 4: Leading People
Co-created with Loco Games Services

Join us at the Global Play Showcase at GDC 2024 – And Represent Australia

06
Feb

The Global Play Showcase is a reception hosted by 10 video game associations from five continents at the Game Developers Conference (GDC) in San Francisco.

It will take place on 19 March from 6 pm to 9 pm at BuzzWorks. (The same venue as the Australian reception.)

The Global Play Showcase is more than just a reception – it’s a competition. Each country/region will exhibit one unreleased video game that showcases their creativity, innovation, and talent. You will get to play these games, chat with the developers, and vote for your favourite one. The game with the most votes will win the Global Play Showcase Award.

But that’s not all. To finally answer the question of which part of the world has the best treats, you will also get to vote for your favourite snack. Each participant will bring along snacks from their respective regions, so you can enjoy a variety of flavours and textures while you play.

The following associations will be taking part in the Global Play Showcase:

  • IGEA (Australia)
  • Abragames (Brazil)
  • Neogames (Finland)
  • FLEGA (Flanders)
  • WALGA (Wallonia)
  • Lithuanian Game Developers Association
  • Game Developers Association of the Philippines
  • Dataspelsbranschen (Sweden)
  • Pro Helvetia (Switzerland)
  • Gamers Association Ghana



The Global Play Showcase is generously sponsored by:

  • PlaySide Studios, Australia’s largest publicly listed video game developer, and
  • Toast Interactive, makers of VR smash hit Richie’s Plank Experience and upcoming title Max Mustard.



We Need You to Represent Australia!

Australia is already winning hearts at Eurovision and now it’s up to you to do the same!

If you are interested in holding up Australia’s reputation as a place with a passionate and talented local industry, please fill out this form.

(If you have registered for the Australian Reception and want to apply for this, there is the option to just tick a box, so you don’t have to give us the same information twice.)

Besides developers and association members from the other participating countries, all other invited guests are publishers, investors, and first parties.

FAQs

When is the Deadline?
Please fill out the form by 16 February; we aim to arrive at a decision shortly after.

Does my Game Have to Be Unreleased?
Yes, this is to ensure that we’re gaining traction with the target audience. We want to expose them to the hidden gems.

A game available on Steam in pre-release is released if it can be ordered and paid for – even if it is in beta. A game that has already been released in a different format is classified as released.

How Many Games Can Australia Enter?
It’s one game per country. The venue we’re running this at does not offer more monitors, hence why we’re limited.

Can I Come as a Guest?
Sorry, apart from the participating studios and country delegations, this event is only for publishers, investors, press, and other stakeholders. We need to be mindful of the venue’s capacity. We’d love to have you at the Australian reception, though!

IGEA Celebrates at the 2024 Australian GDC Reception

22
Jan

 Join us for networking at BuzzWorks in San Francisco from 6 pm – 9 pm on 18 March and celebrate Australian creativity.  It’s a chance to showcase Australian-made games and teams plus create invaluable networks across publishing, investment, and platforms.

The Australian reception is generously supported by:

  • Screen Queensland
  • Toast Interactive

If you would like to attend the reception, please register via this form by March 4: 

Registration for the 2024 Australian GDC Reception.

We’d also encourage you to join our Australians at GDC Discord server, you can find the link in the registration form.

This reception is open to all Australian game-related businesses. Feel free to bring an industry guest too!

(Please still out the form as space is limited. If there’s space on the night, you’re welcome to come in, see also FAQs below.)

Exhibit Your Game!

In addition, 11 studios will get an opportunity to show their games! We will get access to BuzzWork’s monitors, all you need to do is bring your laptop/console.

We will invite publishers, investors, and first parties and employ a drink token system: Once our guests have played a game, they are awarded a token that entitles them to a free drink. That way we ensure that the focus is not just on sociability but on your games!

If you would like to show your game, please fill out this brief form:

Exhibit Your Game at the 2024 Australian GDC Reception. (Please note that the deadline for submitting an application to show your game has passed, and that we have arrived at a list of finalists.)

Showing your game comes at no extra cost to you thanks to our sponsors.

As an IGEA event, the reception is subject to IGEA’s Code of Conduct.

FAQs

When and Where Is the Reception Taking Place?

BuzzWorks, San Francisco, 18 March, 6 pm – 9 pm. It’s a sports bar that is a 6–7-minute drive away from the Moscone Centre.

Does It Cost Anything to Attend the Reception?

No, this is a free event for all Australian developers and service providers.

Can I Bring Along a Guest?

Yes, you are more than welcome to bring a guest along as long as they work in the games industry.

Please note: We are aiming to strike the right balance between Australian studios and international guests and numbers are limited. If there is space to accommodate you on the night, we’re happy to do so but cannot guarantee access.

What Kind of Monitor Do I Get Access to at the Reception?

All of BuzzWork’s monitors have HDMI and USB ports. All you will need to do is supply your own computer/console.

Please also note that these monitors will not include any branding. Any collateral will need to be supplied by you.

How Many Drink Tokens Will I Get?

We will hand every exhibiting studio US $150 worth of drink tokens. These will buy all the basic drinks. Cheers!

I am Interested in Sponsoring the Event

Please reach out to jens@igea.net

GDC Group Discounts for IGEA Members

08
Jan

Are you planning on attending GDC and would like to save money on tickets?

Bookings for more than 10 people attract a 10% discount on GDC tickets (GDC All Access, Core, and Summits passes). IGEA can buy tickets on behalf of its members and pass on the discount. Tickets covered include GDC All Access, Core, and Summits passes.

If you are interested in taking advantage of this, please fill out this form by 24 January: GDC Group Discounts.

GDC 2024 Scholarship to Assist Marginalised Developers

10
Nov

IGEA, in collaboration with the GDC Scholarship program, is proud to offer a limited number of all-access passes for the Game Developers Conference, March 18 – 22 2024.

The intention of this program is to help assist marginalised developers to attend GDC, recognising the larger career implications of financial hurdles disproportionately affecting marginalised game developers.

This scholarship is open to applicants from marginalised groups including but not limited: to women (Cis and Trans), Queer people, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, gender diverse individuals (transgender, non-binary, intersex), disabled and neurodiverse people, and people of colour.

You must be living in Australia to apply and be over the age of 18.

This scholarship is limited to 10 passes, which covers only the cost of the passes and not the flights or accommodation costs. Please also make sure that you check any visa requirements in due time!

Please apply via this form: https://forms.office.com/r/CpMuuZGZS8

Applications will close on 15 January 2024; applicants will be informed of the results by 20 January.

For any questions, please reach out to the IGEA team at info@igea.net

DGTO Webinar: Check-In

27
Oct

We are checking in on the DGTO with the Office for the Arts! 

The DGTO has been live for a couple of months now. We are checking in with the Office for the Arts in a webinar on the 22nd of November to see how things are going: What are things to avoid? What are some common mistakes they have seen now that the first applications have gone in? 

In addition, you will get another opportunity to ask any DGTO-related questions. 

If you have any in-depth questions, you’d like to ask the team, please enter them here: In-depth questions for DGTO webinar. 

This is for more complex issues the Office may have to research before the webinar. 

Similar to the first webinar in August, you will also get a chance to ask questions live. 

This webinar is aimed at the whole industry, from seasoned veterans to aspirational newcomers. 

 You can register for the webinar here. 

Screen Australia Games Funding Webinar

13
Oct

We join the Screen Australia Games team (Lee, Amelia, and Chad) as they unpack their exciting new funding opportunities aimed at empowering and elevating Australian game makers, and boosting the strength of the local sector through the federal government’s commitment of $ 12 million across the next four years:

Replacing Screen Australia’s Games: Expansion Pack, the new programs include; the Games Production Fund, which will support independent games towards a significant milestone of development such as release or early access; the Emerging Gamemakers Fund for the development of original new projects or prototypes; and the Future Leaders Delegation, which will provide funding and support for up to five individual applicants to travel to San Francisco to attend Game Developers Conference (GDC) 2024.

The grants are designed to support, nurture, and celebrate upcoming Australian independent games and game makers.

Find the recording of the webinar below:

Australian Game Development Industry Survey 22-23

26
Sep

For IGEA to continue to advocate effectively on behalf of the Australian game development industry, we rely on consistent, meaningful and timely data. With new game development funding measures being introduced over the last two years at the Federal and State levels, it is essential that we have accurate industry performance to measure the impact of such funding – and ensure that it is maintained.

It is equally essential that we present the most accurate picture of the local industry as possible to all our stakeholders. To do that, we require broad participation from across the entire industry.

In short, we need you to help us help you!

This will be our 8th independent survey into the game development sector, and we are asking for your support by completing it for the 2022-23 financial year. To complete the survey, you will need to have an ABN (we don’t need to see it) and be directly involved in the development of games, whether developing your own IP, contracting your development services to other parties, or publishing games for other developers.

You will have received an email with an individual survey link for your studio. If you would like to contribute but not have heard from us, please let us know via jens@igea.net

Individual responses to this survey will be strictly confidential and only ever reported in aggregated form. IGEA has engaged Bond University to conduct the survey to ensure your confidentiality. Bond University is the only organisation that will have access to individual responses, which not even IGEA staff members will be able to see.

As per the instructions on the survey, we ask that you enter all financial data in Australian Dollars and provide information for the financial year 2022-23. Ideally, it will help to have your 2022-23 financial reports on hand when completing the survey.

The survey is shorter than it has been in the past. It should take around 15-20 minutes to complete.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact:

  • Ron Curry (CEO, IGEA) – ron@igea.net
  • Jeffrey Brand (Professor, Bond University) – jbrand@bond.edu.au

Thank you for your contribution and commitment to the ongoing success of the Australian game development industry.

The IGEA Member Mentorship Program Is Back

19
Sep

We are excited to announce that the IGEA Mentoring Program is making a comeback this year.

The program is a collaborative initiative aimed at fostering growth, knowledge-sharing, and professional development within IGEA. It provides an unparalleled chance for members to tap into the vast wealth of experience and expertise present in our network and help mentor the next generation of Australian game professionals. Why Apply to Join the Mentorship Program?

  • Access to Seasoned Mentors: Gain insights from industry veterans who have navigated the very path you aspire to travel. Our mentors bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to guide you towards success.
  • Train the Next Generation: This is an opportunity for you to pass on your knowledge to help grow the next generation of Australian game professionals, be it game developers, marketers, publishers, or any other roles.
  • Tailored Guidance: Each mentoring relationship is personalised to your goals and needs. Whether you’re seeking career advice, industry insights, or specific skills development, our mentors are here to help you achieve your objectives.
  • Expand Your Network: Forge meaningful connections with other members who share your passions and interests. The mentorship program is an excellent opportunity to grow your professional network, opening doors to future collaborations and opportunities.



How to Get Involved

  • Apply: Fill out our mentorship program application form, indicating your goals, preferences, and what you hope to gain from the program.
  • Process: Mentors’ and mentees’ applications will be processed by our Program Manager Lucy, who will also arrange an interview to determine eligibility and matching potential.
  • Match: Lucy  & IGEA will carefully match mentors whose expertise aligns with mentees’ objectives and interests.
  • Connect: Once matched, you’ll kick off your mentorship journey.



Applications to be a Mentor and a Mentee are now open & will close on Monday 16th October.To apply to be a mentor click here: Mentor Application

To apply to be a mentee click here: Mentee Application

Please note: This program is for IGEA members only.

The Details

  • An application does not mean you will be automatically accepted into the program.
  • There will be an interview & matching process following applications to ensure we can create the most successful matches.
  • Previous mentors are encouraged to apply to be mentors again. Unfortunately due to number restrictions, if you have previously been a mentee you will not be eligible to apply to be a mentee again.
  • As a mentor: It is important that you can commit to training & supervision sessions throughout the year (1st training will be scheduled for the first week of November) and be committed to meeting your mentee either fortnightly or monthly for the 12 months commencing after initial training.
  • As a mentee: It is very important that you are committed to being a successful mentee – proactive & available to meet your mentor fortnightly or monthly, and committed to making the most out of the opportunity.
  • Mentors and Mentees will be required to understand and abide by the Mentoring Code Of Conduct.



If you have any questions prior to application please contact the Program Manager, Lucy Megginson, at lucy@mojotalent.com.au

Webinar: Unlocking the Power of the Digital Games Tax Offset

08
Aug

Join us for an Exclusive Webinar: Unlocking the Power of the Digital Games Tax Offset (DGTO)

Do you want to know how to leverage the Digital Games Tax Offset (DGTO) to supercharge your studio’s growth and creativity?

We’re excited to announce a unique opportunity to delve into the world of the DGTO with the Office for the Arts. Join us at 4 pm on August 16 for an insightful webinar that will demystify the DGTO process and offer invaluable guidance on how to prepare for and benefit from this exciting initiative.

📅 Date: August 16
Time: 4 pm
🌐 Registration Link: https://IGEADGTOWebinar.eventbrite.com.au

Key Takeaways:

  • Introducing the DGTO: The fundamentals to successfully lodging your first claim, including the importance of documentation and keeping your accounts in order
  • Interact directly with representatives from the Office for the Arts and meet the people behind this essential initiative, making it easier to connect and collaborate



This webinar promises to be an enriching experience for all game developers, from seasoned veterans to aspiring newcomers. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to get your questions answered and connect with like-minded creators in the industry!

You can watch a recording of the webinar here:

The slides used in the webinar can be accessed here.

IGEA JOINS 25 AUSTRALIAN DEVELOPERS AT GAMESCOM 2023

02
Aug

Say G’Day at Gamescom!

The Interactive Games and Entertainment Association, the premier representative body for the video games industry in Australia, is thrilled to announce Australia’s prominent presence at Gamescom 2023, the world’s largest and most influential video games conference held in Cologne, Germany. 25 talented games studios will be on display as part of the Australian delegation from August 23-25.

Located in the business area, this year’s Australian stand, designed and curated by IGEA, with the generous support of many of Australia’s screen and investment agencies, sets the stage for a showcase of the diverse and innovative products, talent, and creativity that Australia’s video games industry has to offer.

Australia’s video game development landscape is a melting pot of creativity and ingenuity, as evidenced by the impressive line-up of the 25 companies attending Gamescom 2023 (see list below).

Representing diverse backgrounds and experiences, these studios exemplify the breadth of talent thriving within the Australian games industry. Among the contingent are well-established studios such as PlaySide Studios, Hipster Whale, and League of Geeks (the 2020 AGDAs Studio of the Year winner) plus platform developers like Mod.io and indie studios like MAXART, Spitfire Entertainment, and Chaos Theory. All of the Australian companies attending vary in size, ranging from smaller teams to larger operations, with representatives hailing from various corners of the country, including Western Australia, Queensland, South Australia, New South Wales, and Victoria.

Gamescom 2023, will see Australia highlight its commitment to nurturing and supporting the games industry through the Digital Games Tax Offset (DGTO). The DGTO is a globally competitive incentive for games studios to operate in Australia, providing businesses with a 30 per cent refundable tax offset on eligible expenditure. This rebate is designed to attract international investment and bolster the growth of the nation’s games sector.

CEO of IGEA, Ron Curry, says: “The Australian Pavilion at Gamescom 2023 is a testament to the outstanding reputation our game developers have earned. It is an opportunity to showcase the world-class quality and prestige of Australian-created video games and the exceptional people driving our industry’s success.”

“Australia is a burgeoning centre for the global games-development industry. Australian-made games are grabbing international headlines, winning awards, and rocketing to the top of global sales charts with such titles as Unpacking and Cult of the Lamb recently taking the world by storm. The DGTO will further support this momentum.”

– End –

Australian industry partners have supported the opportunity for many developers to join the Australian Pavilion:

  • Screen Australia
  • Trade and Investment Queensland
  • Screen Queensland
  • Screen New South Wales
  • Investment New South Wales
  • Creative Victoria
  • VicScreen
  • South Australian Department of Trade and Investment
  • South Australian Film Corporation



Australian studios attending Gamescom as part of the Australian contingent include:



About IGEA

IGEA (Interactive Games & Entertainment Association) is the peak industry association representing the voice of Australian and New Zealand companies in the computer and video games industry. IGEA supports the games industry’s business and public policy interests through advocacy, research and education programs. For more information, please visit www.igea.net

Media spokespeople available

Ron Curry, CEO, IGEA

Please contact igea@doublejump.com.au to arrange an interview.

Mastering the Global Game: Unlock the Power of Video Game Localisation

08
Jun

Did you know that non-English speaking gamers account for 60% of the world’s total game revenue? Tailoring video games to local regions not only attracts new players but also generates extra revenue that you would otherwise likely forgo.

2M Language Services joined us for a deep dive into video game localisation, revealing foolproof methods for captivating non-English speaking audiences.

Get the full rundown on:

  • Top markets and languages: a snapshot of the profit potential in these trending regions and emerging markets. We also uncover four countries in the APAC region that account for 40% of the world’s total game revenue. Hint: none of the games were sold in English.
  • Developing a video game strategy: a step-by-step breakdown covering all the aspects you need to develop a knockout strategy that creates truly native experiences for international audiences.
  • Case studies: Australian games that went global – how 2M helped two IGEA members get there.
  • AI and GPT-4: how to use technologies to your advantage to speed up turnaround times and keep in sync with game updates. You’ll want to get to grips with this one.



You can access the recording of the webinar here.

Ebury: How to Best Manage Foreign Investment Risk 

11
May

Implementing the Digital Games Tax Offset will bolster Australia’s allure to the digital games industry and position the country as an attractive destination for foreign investment. This will also result in an increase in foreign currency funding, so developers must be prudent when dealing with the FX risk involved.

For example, the AUD/USD exchange rate fluctuated by 15% in 2022, which could mean a probable difference of AUD $150,000 for every AUD $1,000,000 repatriated.

Three key considerations for developers when dealing with FX risk.

1. Understand where your funds are coming from, set a budget rate, and find out how much foreign investment you need

To begin with, it’s essential to determine your budget rate, which is the rate at which you anticipate receiving foreign currency and converting it to Australian Dollars. In setting your budget rate, it’s crucial to take into account the current exchange rate, as well as recent highs and lows. Additionally, you should incorporate a buffer into your budget rate based on these figures. For instance, if the present exchange rate is 0.68, the 3-month high is 0.71, and the 3-month low is 0.66, you could set a budget rate of 0.71, assuming that the developer will close on financing within the next three months.

When determining the amount of foreign investment required, the two most important factors to consider are time and volatility. The length of time until contracting is completed and financing is secured is crucial, as is the potential impact of economic events on the currency market. Significant events like RBA meetings and inflation prints can have a substantial effect on currency market movements. To summarize, the longer the wait until closing, the greater the exposure to volatility, and the larger the buffer required.

2. Partner with a reliable FX partner that can help with your requirements

An FX partner is a financial institution that specializes in foreign exchange transactions and is typically not a bank. Their services usually include helping to structure the payment process, analyzing the appropriate budget rate, and providing advice on upcoming market-sensitive events that may affect the currency.

To manage foreign currency transactions effectively, having a draft finance plan is essential. This plan helps to determine how much AUD a developer requires from the incoming foreign currency, as well as identifying milestones and the duration for which the developer should hedge. Additionally, the draft plan may also provide insight into whether or not a client needs to hedge at all.

3. Have a hedging strategy in place to mitigate volatility

A developer employs a hedging or currency strategy to handle any foreign exchange risks that may arise. It’s essential for developers to consider how a currency movement against them could impact their project. For instance, if a 10% loss in investment funds occurs due to foreign exchange fluctuations, the developer must determine the implications. Will they need to reduce project costs to make up for the 10% funding gap? Will they be unable to complete the project? These are crucial questions that developers should be asking themselves. Hedging strategies need to be tailored specifically to what the developers’ needs are, which is where an FX partner can help. Ebury can arrange a free FX consultation for IGEA members and develop a strategy to help them mitigate FX risk as much as possible.

In conclusion, the implementation of the Digital Games Tax Offset in Australia presents significant opportunities for the digital games industry and foreign investment. However, developers must be aware of the FX risk involved when dealing with foreign currency funding. To manage this risk effectively, developers should set a budget rate, partner with a reliable FX partner such as Ebury, and have a hedging strategy in place to mitigate volatility. By being proactive and having a comprehensive plan, developers can ensure that they have the necessary funding and resources to complete their projects successfully, even in the face of foreign exchange fluctuations. Overall, careful management of FX risk is critical to the success of digital game developers operating in a global market.

Please get in touch with Patrick Idquival or Annabel Livingston from Ebury (www.ebury.com.au) if you would like to arrange an FX consultation.

 

 

Australian Reception at GDC 2023

19
Jan

IGEA is proud to present the Australian reception at GDC 2023! Join us for networking at the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco from 6 pm – 9 pm on March 20 and celebrate Australian creativity.

This event is aimed at publishers, investors, and platform holders to allow you to immerse yourself in valuable networks and promote Australia as a great destination to make games.

The Australian reception is generously supported by:

  • Screen Queensland
  • Investment New South Wales
  • Creative Victoria
  • VicScreen
  • The South Australian Department of Trade and Investment
  • South Australian Film Corporation
  • Screen Tasmania
  • Screenwest
  • Screen Australia
  • Australia Council For the Arts

 

If you would like to attend the reception, please register via this form by March 6: Registrations for GDC Reception.

We will also add you to our Australians at GDC Discord server.

You will also be able to invite industry guests via the above form (via IGEA). However, please understand that numbers are strictly limited and that we may not be able to accommodate everyone.

As an IGEA event, the reception is subject to IGEA’s code of conduct.

GDC Package

In addition, thanks to the support of Screen Australia, we are proud to offer the “GDC Package” to 20 studios.

The package includes:

  • The ability to demo your game on a supplied monitor at the reception
  • Access to match-making service MeetToMatch (one account per studio)
  • Access to a physical meeting space within 5-minute walking distance of the Moscone Centre
  • Listing your contact details in an updated version of the Level Up! booklet. (Please let us know if you do not want to be included.)

 

If you would like to apply for the GDC Package, please fill out this form by February 5: GDC Package Application Form.

Please note: The GDC Package does not cover travel costs to GDC or tickets to the event. These must be covered by the studio.

Group Discounts

Bookings for more than 10 people attract a 10% discount on GDC tickets (GDC All Access, Core, and Summits passes). IGEA can buy tickets on behalf of the Australian industry and pass on the discount.

If you are interested in taking advantage of this, please fill out this form by the 23rd of January: GDC Group Discounts.

GDC FAQs

When and Where Is the Reception Taking Place?

The Commonwealth Club, San Francisco, 20th of March, 6 pm – 9 pm

Does It Cost Anything to Attend the Reception?

No, this is a free event for Australian developers and service providers.

Can I Bring Along a Guest?

If you would like to bring along a guest that is working in games, please let us know via the registration form. We will invite them on your behalf.

Please note: We are aiming to strike the right balance between Australian studios and international guests and numbers are limited to 200 attendees. This means that we may not be able to accommodate everybody.

It Cannot Attend the Reception Anymore – What Now?

Please let us know as soon as you can so we have an overview of free spots and can them asap.

Does the GDC Package Cost Anything?

Thanks to the generous support of Screen Australia, the package is free. There is, however, a selection process.

Studio selection will be based on the following criteria:

  • the level of creativity and entertainment value of the game
  • the commercial potential of the game and the team’s ability to deliver it
  • the level to which the project and key creatives reflect gender equity and/or the diversity of people and experiences from around Australia

Applications will be judged by Screen Australia in collaboration with the states supporting the reception.

What Kind of Monitor Do I Get Access to at the Reception?

LG 43″ 4K monitors with HDMI connections mounted on a floor stand. You will need to supply your own computer/console.

Please also note that these monitors will not include any branding. Any collateral will need to be supplied by you.

How Many MeetToMatch Accounts Will Recipients of the GDC Package Get Access to?

One account per studio. Additional accounts can be purchased for €89 via info@meettomatch.com

Where Is the Physical Meeting Space Located?

We have booked two private rooms at 649 Mission St, #500 San Francisco, a five-minute walk from the Moscone Centre. One room can accommodate four people, and the other room can accommodate six people.

All room bookings will need to be made via MeetToMatch. (We will liaise with them to make sure it is in their system.)

How Does the Group Discount Work?

If we buy more than 10 tickets as a group, we qualify for a 10% discount. IGEA can buy tickets on behalf of the Australian industry and pass on the discount: You will need to reimburse IGEA but save 10%.

Tickets covered include GDC All Access, Core, and Summits passes.

I am Interested in Sponsoring the Event

Please reach out to Jens (Jens@igea.net) about sponsoring options.

GDC Scholarship to Assist Marginalised Developers

10
Jan

IGEA, in collaboration with the GDC Scholarship program, is proud to offer a limited number of all-access passes for Game Developers Conference, March 20 – 24 2023.

The intention of this program is to help assist marginalised developers to attend GDC, recognising the larger career implication of financial hurdles disproportionately affecting marginalised game developers.

This scholarship is open to applicants from marginalised groups including but not limited: to women (Cis and Trans), Queer people, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, gender diverse individuals (transgender, non-binary, intersex), disabled and neurodiverse people, and people of colour.

You must be living in Australia to apply and be over the age of 18.

This scholarship is limited to 10 passes, which covers only the cost of the passes and not the flights or accommodation costs.

Please apply via this form: https://forms.office.com/r/ee9mMqJvnb

Applications will close on January 22nd, 2023; applicants will be informed of the results by January 26th.

For any questions, please reach out to the IGEA team at info@igea.net

Cloud Webinar with Bespin Global and Google

21
Nov

Many game studios use cloud services for game development and operations. To discover how organisations can improve their service performance and find cost efficiencies, Google Cloud, Bespin Global, and IGEA have partnered to deliver this webinar. In it, you will be introduced to how to best use Google Cloud for game development, launch and service expansion, as well as real-world examples.

You will learn about:

  • Trends in the games industry
  • How to launch a Game with Google Cloud
  • How your business can get the resources they need, when they need to perform, at optimal cost on Google Cloud
  • Best practices and real Google Cloud Platform (GCP) references of how organisations are transforming the way they assure application performance


Join Sameer Pitalwalla, Head of Games at Google Cloud APAC, and Hogan Yu, Google Cloud Technical Consultant at Bespin Global, to hear about how they can assist you from the early development stages to global expansion.

Watch the webinar here:

Guest Post: Why You Can’t Find a Senior…Anyone At All.

17
Nov

IGEA member Kirtsy Parkin runs recruitment agency Supaglu. Kirsty has been sourcing creative talent for businesses across the games, vfx, post-production and advertising industries for over 25 years. She founded, scaled and sold a design-focussed creative recruitment business in the 00’s before moving into development of CG and VFX training, and talent sourcing. She began specialist creative talent sourcing agency Supaglu in 2022 to support the growing games, animation and VFX sector in Australia.

In this piece, she explores the difficulties of finding senior staff and strategies to address it.

 

 

Why you can’t find a Senior…anyone at all.

If you’ve been searching for senior talent in the Australian gamedev industry in 2022, then you’ll probably agree that that market in Australia fits gamesjobsdirect.com’s Isaac Sellar’s description of the European market as “bottom-heavy”.

This might sound like a negative term, but what he means is that all the investment in training and education poured into the games sector over the last decade or so is starting to pay off, and we have a flood of trained graduates and juniors moving into the market.

More international game companies are setting up studios in Australia, attracted by our rebates and our lifestyle. Coupled with the growth of local studios this puts growth projection for the sector at around 30% over the next couple of years – and while that means there is greater opportunity for all those juniors than ever before, it leaves us with a huge problem around mid to senior career hiring, and above into executive level.  This growth pressure is compounded by the fact that across all sectors over COVID, over 600,000 international visa holders in Australia went back to their home countries. Their roles were not supported by Jobkeeper, and border insecurities meant some felt they should return to their families while they could.  Many have not returned.

Businesses from the games sector across the country have reported difficulties in recruiting experienced game engineers/game developers, technical artists, riggers, and animators. There are shortages in high-end generalists, but also anyone with strong experience in a particular niche and of course Leads and Supervisors of all kinds.

Basically, there is a shortage of experience.

So, what can we do?

A good place to look for inspiration is the VFX industry in Australia. Like the games sector, they need their artists located in Oz to access rebates. They’ve also worked on international projects for years now and many companies (not just the big ones) have developed a talent pipeline which has a double-ended focus. They work with universities and training institutions to identify great junior talent, but they’ve also built an international pipeline using project-based business visas (such as the 408) to bring highly experienced artists and devs to Australia. Here are a few suggestions:

  1. Don’t be afraid to consider business migration. It gives you access to great talent across the planet, and most of them want to come to Australia.
  2. Personal job tailoring or “hyper-personalisation” is one of the newest buzz phrases in talent at the moment. Create the boundaries of the role to suit your employee. Flexibility is starting to become a standard expectation, and most candidates will consider work/life balance as well as salary. For some, it’s even more important.
  3. Consider a four-day work week (in Japan, trials of a 4-day work week resulted in a 40% increase in productivity). And yes – it’s four days for a full-time salary.
  4. What does your company stand for as a brand? This one is really important. Mid-career professionals want to work at big international studios because they’re grown up with the games they make. They’re in love with the brand. Smaller companies can create attractive employer brands, too. They just need to be creative about it and invest in marketing.
  5. Offer opportunities for career growth and upskilling within your team. This one’s about retention. If you know one of your key staff members is seeking a leadership role, work out how that can happen without them having to leave you.

 

The talent shortage in Australia is likely to be with us for some time yet – maybe even permanently. Even though we’re training more junior talent, the Australian birth rate is sitting at 1.58 – less than replacement. So, we’re going to need to be creative, embrace change and lift our heads to look beyond our shores if we want to meet the future.

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