One part of the three events that make up DMW Week NYC - covering games, music and TV - the NY Games Conference 2014 is opening its doors on 8 September.
Highlights include: the morning keynote conversation with Dan Morris (Facebook's Director of North American & Mobile Games Partnership) and Mike Vorhaus (President of Magid Advisors); the fireside chat with Tommy Palm (King's Games Guru) and Arseny Lebedev (Founder of Signus Labs); and a luncheon featuring a discussion on Women in Gaming.
Participating companies include Facebook, King, Electronic Arts, Ubisoft, Google Play, Take-Two Interactive, Twitch, Lionsgate, Conde Nast, Arkadium and more!
Yet New York isn't a location that's often associated with games, so we caught up with event CEO and publisher Ned Sherman to find out more about its content and context.
Pocket Gamer: New York isn't known as a game-centric city so can you give us some background to how the conference started and what sort of people/companies attend?
Ned Sherman: First and foremost, we love NYC! In addition to being the media capital of the world, the people and vibe rock.
So when we thought about where we wanted to have a game conference, it was #1 on our list. To your point though, you definitely get a different mix of people and companies at NYC events then say at our LA Games Conference.
A lot of the game projects are driven by brands, big media and advertising dollars so that dynamic plays out with the kind of attendees we get.
What a lot of people overlook about NYC is the developer scene. There is a talented and close-knit developer community in the City that is both competitive nationwide and makes it all tick.
There are a lot of game conferences at the moment, so where do you think the NY Games Conference sits in terms of the overall hierarchy?
What makes a great conference is the people, the vibe and the attention to detail. We focus on quality over quantity.
In terms of 2014's program, who and what are your key speakers and topics? What new trends do you think are significant?
We're fortunate to once again have a great speaker line-up for the event this year. There are a lot of great ones so it's difficult to call out only a few, but I am particularly looking forward to hearing from Teemu Huuhtanen (ex-Rovio and Sulake exec) who recently raised $6 million to launch Next Games, a Finish studio, that has inked development deals with AMC, Lionsgate and others.
Also, excited to hear from Dan Morris, Director of North American & Mobile Games Partnership, Facebook.
One of the trends that I think will continue to develop in 2014 is the opportunities and expectations to build games and experiences that leverage new technologies related to alternate or virtual reality.
This year, you're running a workshop on Privacy, Safety and Gaming for Young Consumers. Why do you think this is important?
One simple reason: the failure to understand the laws and regulations governing privacy and marketing of digital products and services to young consumers can be and has been a fatal mistake for companies as we have seen by some notable examples in recent years.
Once you run afoul of the rules and regulations, it is extremely hard to dig yourself out of that pit.
The conference is part of a wider week-long conference schedule so what's the interaction between the different events and how do you try to create synergies between the different type of media?
That's right. NY Games Conference is now part of DMW Week NYC, a three day event which brings together over 1,000 execs in games, music, advertising, television, video and movies to network, do deals, party and discuss the future of digital media and entertainment.
We're seeing about 25% of attendees registering to attend all three days and there will be networking parties and dinners throughout lower Manhattan providing venues for people to mix, cross-pollinate ideas and build new relationships.
It's part of our larger mission to help to create a more dynamic and focused digital entertainment ecosystem. And don't forget, we love NYC and love to have fun!
For more information on DMW Games: NY Games Conference, go to www.dmwgames.com.