A couple of years back we had Super Bunnyhop over to lend his heavy research and journalistic style to the conference. This year we’re bringing in another department favorite with Chris Franklin of Errant Signal-fame. We’ve been following his channel religiously for ~4 years now, and if you haven’t yet discovered his blend of academic insight and accessible presentation, allow us to introduce you by shining a spotlight on a few of his many insightful video essays!
The Debate That Never Took Place (ludology vs. narrative
Ludography of Blendo Games
Or how about some in-depth game analysis?
If you haven’t added Errant Signal as a regular to your subscriptions, then you’ve missed gems like these! His work is exactly the type of thing we aim at with these conferences: taking something of great interest/importance and deep diving – feet first! His ease of style belies his academic rigor and makes his material essential viewing.
But don’t take our word for it, come and see him yourself, on the big stage at Wisby Strand! In Platform Pressures and Perils Chris will lead us through “a meandering chat about how computers shape the games they run”, starting 10:00 on Monday 29/5.
Doris C. Rusch is an assistant professor of game design in the College of Computing and Digital Media’s School of Design where she founded the Play 4 Change lab. Rusch’s work is focused on the theory and practice of creating games that model the “human experience” and focus on mental health issues. Her expertise as a game designer opened her eyes to a new theory, which she discussed in this TED-talk titled, “Why Game Designers are Better Lovers.”
Our students are game designers, but making a game is not enough. You must also be able to show it off, to reach an audience, to pitch it. If a screenshot says a thousand words, and a GIF a million, a video can be an entire Library of Congress! And thus, we force them to create short video trailers for everything they make.
This talk will touch a particularly hot subject: The vulva. And by extension it will let us consider topics like pleasure, shame and embarrassment in gaming.
“you never win ‘over’ the Cunt. You win for it.”
While games fetishise “fun” they still have a problem embracing subjects like intimacy, sex and pleasure as possible variants of it. Using the case of Cunt Touch This, a vulva-based tablet colouring game designed as a tribute to Tee Corinne’s iconic Cunt Coloring Book, Sabine Harrer will introduce the mechanics of the game and explore some of the “cuntroversial” responses it received.
A peek behind the curtains on a Saturday; our 1st year students hard at work building their games for the GGC Show Floor. Only 15 days to go!
It might be weekend-work, but it’s not in vain; there are well over 300 people currently signed up to come and playtest! Make sure you have a ticket too. The Visitors Pass is the cheapest option (pay what you want) and is good for the entire conference – play games, listen to lectures, the award show and the party!
There is still some room in the Game Educators Summit. Are you too pressed for time to attend the full Summit + GGC? We have a suggestion!
Why not attend just the last two days: Tue 30 – Wed 31. That will get you the final day of the GGC show floor, with awards and mingle (= get to know everyone), and the summit working day on 31/5. You can even make the evening flight or ferry back that same day.
So if you are teaching university level game design- och development and haven’t already done so, please:
So Bonnie Ruberg – founder of the Queerness and Games Conference, academic overachieverper-excellence and a well known fan-favorite of ours – is coming to GGC to talk about games that allow players to experience the lives of the marginalized. These games, designed to be immersive, impactful, and socially meaningful, run the risk of being appropriative. As Robert Yang recently put it; “If you walk in someone else’s shoes, then you’ve taken their shoes.” So Bonnie will help us look at the problems with game empathy, and methods of solving these problems.
So let us just gush about Bonnie for a while, because we have been fan-girling overfollowing Bonnie for quite some time! We had her on the island back in 2010 when she ran a full day workshop with our students, about bravely (yet responsibly!) approaching sex and gender representation in their game designs.
The jury represents the most hard-working participants at the Gotland Game Conference (save for our students, naturally). Jurors travel from near and far to listen to our students’ presentations a day before the conference even starts, and to play all of the student productions on the show floor.
Each members brings their own set of experience and expertise, and share that insight directly with the students during the presentations. This is followed by two days of hard labor where each jury member needs to play enough to provide meaningful written feedback (as well as numeric scores) on each game. These scores does not affect student grades, of course, but are an integral part of the GGC Awards and for our students’ learning outcomes!
The jury is absolutely massive, as they need to cover all three years of our education!
Without further ado, here is the complete 2017 Jury!
Anton Albiin, Association of Swedish Game Developers
Bonnie Ruberg, UC Irvine
Chris Franklin, Errant Signal
Doris Rusch, DePaul University
Maria Guadalupe Alvarez, Högskolan i Skövde
Joakim Sjöberg, Odd Raven Studios
Joshua Juvrud, Uppsala University
Martine Pedersen, IndSpark
Mattias “Ditto” Dittrich, Art in Heart
Mike Sellers, Indiana University
Richard Bartle, University of Essex
Sabine Harrer, University of Vienna
Samson Wiklund, Diversi
Patrick Seibert, Founder: indiecouch.org
Travis C. Parrott, Westlaw Legal Solutions
Fred Ström, Pixel Ferrets
Jens Berglind, Might and Delight
Joakim Andreasson, Paradox Development Studio
Jona Marklund, KJ Interactive
Martin Greip, Eat Create Sleep
Max Tiilikainen, iGotcha Studios
Olof Wallentin, Starbreeze Studios
Pernilla Sparrhult, Paradox Development Studio
Peter Stråhle, Might and Delight
Sigrid Svederoth, Cortopia AB
Teddy Sjöström, Pixel Ferrets
Thommy Siverman, Electronic Arts
Tobias Wahlberg, TOB-E GAMES
Vilya Svensson, Pixel Ferrets
Ylva Ljungqvist, Paradox Development Studio
Bold is GAME alumni – welcome back! 🙂
And thanks in advance to all the jurors for taking the time – and putting up the effort – to help improve our students, our education, and our medium!
Oh, and a pro-tip: Visby is fast running out of hotel beds for the conference dates. Please make sure you book your conference pass, and get yourself reservations at the hotels / AirBnB / CouchSurfing if you need a place to stay! This is particularly important for participants of the Educators Summit, since you start a day early and end a day later!
The Swedish Game Awards is the nation’s largest video game development competition, pitting all Swedish game educations against each other. It has been held annually since 2002 and is organized by a student-driven, non-profit association. They just announced that the 2017 finale will be held in Visby – just a few days after the Gotland Game Conference!
Ergo, you might want to adjust your travel schedule to allow for a few more days in this medieval town of ours. 🙂
The Wikipedia page is a good source of information for the SGA, including the competition categories and winners from previous years. We will of course shamelessly point out that our students generally fare very well; last year Gotland took home Best Diversity Effort, Best Execution in Design, Best Technical ExecutionandBest Execution in Narrative. Head on over at our less-official department blog for a full list of all SGA-awards earned by our students.