More than a thousand games industry professionals from all over the globe are preparing to gather in Kyiv this month. The latest Casual Connect conference (taking place at Parkovy Congress and Exhibition Center, Kyiv, Ukraine) will deliver three days of networking, two official parties, and an expo area and talks from over 80 industry experts.
Launched in 2005, Casual Connect is hosted by Computer Games Association (CGA), and brings together the most talented and knowledgeable experts in the gaming field "to further the industry with the best learning and networking opportunities for gaming professionals." You can see the list of other upcoming events at the official site.
Talks at Kyiv will come from big name companies. You'll see Microsoft, Epic, Nordeus, Gameloft, gumi, Samsung, idreamsky and more, on topics covering industry insights, growth, casino, monetization, design, marketing, business management and the like. Highlights include: Alexis Kennedy of Failbetter Games on "Poetic Design: Marrying Story and System"; Stanislav Costiuc of Ubisoft on "Show, Don't Tell? Play, Don't Show!"; Olga Abashova of G5 Entertainment on "HR Analytics: When Work is a Game and the Employee is a User"; Oksana Afonina of Facebook on "Key Marketing Solutions and Strategies to Grow Your Player Base"; and Oscar Room of Google on "Smarter Growth, Powered by Google's Machine Learning".
An important part of the show will also be the Indie Prize. In Kyiv, 50 finalists from 26 countries will showcase their games during the conference. These finalists were selected by professionals from companies across the games industry. The best and the brightest games will be awarded at the 20th Indie Prize Awards on 26 October. The full list of participants can be found at www.indieprize.org. The Indie Prize is "a scholarship program for up-and-coming indie development teams who show promise as future leaders in the games industry." Additionally, the Premium Developer Showcase is an upgraded option of the Indie Prize for game developers who want to showcase their games in a larger space.
And this month, you'll find the first ever Indie Prize Kids League in association with KID'IT. It will honour the best indie developers from 5-10 years old in Ukraine. KID'IT is the first EdTech platform of offline courses started in Ukraine that focuses on creativity development through technology for children and their parents. The main aim of the project is to shift child usage of technology from passive to active, giving them the understanding of how to create their own stories and games and giving them the feeling of what global citizenship is like.
Kyiv itself is a bustling city full of hidden startup, gaming, and technological talent in its own right. Casual Connect will also shine a light on this with sessions devoted to working with local Ukrainian talent – as well as networking events that showcase the best of what Kyiv has to offer in nightlife, partners, and friends. Participants have options to take a tour of the city and even a day trip to Chernobyl or a Cossack village open-air museum.
Tickets to Casual Connect Kyiv are available now. Developers can ask for a 30 discount off a standard pass on the site. Register ASAP, because prices will go up after 16 October!
Steel Media is a media partner of Casual Connect Kyiv. If you'd like to meet our representatives there, look us up in the Pitch & Match system, which ticket holders get access to.