As a rapid response to current world events, with lockdowns and travel restrictions being the new normal, we created a brand-new, online-only conference in our continuing effort to support the games industry. Welcome to the Pocket Gamer Connects Digital series!
The first one in April smashed all expectations with over 1,100 virtual attendees from 60 countries, 160 expert speakers on seven tracks and 2,600 meetings organised across the week. It was our first time hosting an online conference on this scale, and it was a learning experience - the event smashed expectations, but we listened to all the feedback and we’re ready to make the second Digital conference even bigger and better.
We know that the online meeting system, with its Zoom integration, took a particular beating, so we’ve switched providers and can announce today that we’re welcoming attendees to the tried-and-tested Meet To Match platform this time. But that’s just one of the upgrades for the event on 8-12 June. For Pocket Gamer Connects Digital #2, we’re focusing on three main pillars of improvement, plus some bonus features we’re excited to reveal today.
1) Online meeting system
This was the most crucial area of improvement requested for our second digital conference.
We will be adopting the trusted MeetToMatch meeting platform, which you know from other industry events
Our meeting system serves as one of the core functions at any of our events, because it enables games industry professionals to organise meetings, connect and do business with one another. Whilst we had a few hiccups with our meeting system at the first Pocket Gamer Connects Digital, we are committed to bringing you a much-improved system to enable a smoother experience this time.
We will be adopting the MeetToMatch meeting platform, a much trusted networking service you’ll know from other industry events such as devcom, Nordic Game, GIC, Quo Vadis and more. This system promises not only greater functionality, but also more reliability so you can get your meetings organised and conducted with no bumps along the way.
You can specify what video meeting platform you want to use for your meetings. For example Zoom, Skype, Webex, GoTOMeeting, 8x8 or others. It has improved member search tools, including the ability to order attendees by sign-up date.
Additionally, there is a calendar view so you can see at a glance what meetings and sessions are coming up, as well as enabling you to block times when you are not available.
2) Conference theme: The Art of Publishing
Publishing is a core part of the games industry - but it’s not a simple matter.
Barriers for entry have never been lower when it comes to developing and releasing a game, yet competition in the market is fierce, and simply submitting a game to the app store doesn’t guarantee success.
Pocket Gamer Connects Digital will highlight the art of publishing and its importance in the industry
Pocket Gamer Connects Digital #2 will highlight the art of publishing and its importance in the industry, by making extra available content ready for developers to learn from publishers, and for top publishers to share knowhow with each other. Although the event will cover all the great topics you expect, one thread that will draw everything together is the art of publishing. Expect speakers and panelists across all five days to share their expertise on how to work with publishers, what platforms to target, insights on other top games’ stories, how to get your game to market, and the overall world of game creation and game selling.
All this content will be available across all our multitude of tracks, including a bonus round-table session solely focused on publishing, to view live or later on-demand. And to make it easier for you, we will be highlighting certain sessions on our event site and schedule, so you can search for those publishing talks.
3) More content, speakers and topics
Pocket Gamer Connects Digital #1 saw 160 speakers sharing their wonderful insight across seven conference tracks. And for our second edition, we’re bringing you over 220 speakers on 10 conference tracks, running alongside workshops and roundtables. You can expect to see the same kind of content as our first digital event, including talks on monetisation, growth, global trends, live ops, PC and console, game maker insights, and practical tips on development.
We'll also introduce three new dedicated tracks to our Digital line-up:
- Industry Visions & Values
- Incredible Indies
- Esports + Influencers
Joining us for our second conference are some of the finest speakers in the games industry:
- Stuart Dinsey, Curve Digital
- Dhaunae De Vir, Paradox Interactive
- Pierre Vinson, Koch Media / Deep Silver
- Tom Putzki, Wargaming
- Kyu Lee, GAMEVIL COM2US USA
- Petri Hyökyranta, Rovio
- James Yang, Tencent
- Eamonn Vann-Harris, Rebellion
- Kathy Carpenter, The Pokémon Company International
There'll be a Discord, virtual Journalist Bar, revised Publisher SpeedMatch, slicker onboarding and more
If you’re one of the people who filled in our attendee survey or contacted the team directly with ideas: thank you. We’re cramming fresh content into Pocket Gamer Connects Digital #2 daily in response to feedback. For example, we’re opening a Discord server for all our attendees. The channel will be available 24 hours a day throughout the week, and there will be somebody from the Pocket Gamer Connects team present during the times of the show. There will be a dedicated customer support channel where you can ask questions and we will be able to help if you have problems with access to the talks or meeting system. It will also have areas dedicated to each topic of the event - channels organised around the track themes - and a news feed channel bringing in key updates from PocketGamer.biz.
Making its debut in the online realm is a popular feature from our live events - the Journalist Bar. It’s not a literal boozer; think “genius bar” and you get the idea. This will take place on Discord, and it will be a channel where studios can drop in to chat with representatives of our editorial team. There will be editors and journalists in that Journalist Bar channel during a set hour of every day, starting at 12pm (BST). It’s a great place to make contact with the Pocket Gamer and PC Games Insider teams, and maybe arrange a private chat to follow up with a game demonstration if you have something you want to share.
We’ll also be revising the format of our popular fringe event Publisher SpeedMatch. This event pairs publishers and developers in a series of speed-dating type style meetings, however as we’re adapting to our new online environment, now it will be run as timed break-out sessions in Zoom. There will be six rounds an hour, with everybody getting six minutes to meet, curated and overseen by our team.
Finally, there will be slicker onboarding with fewer registration steps. MeetToMatch integrates with Eventbrite, so once you’ve registered for your ticket, you should have speedy access to the meeting system when it’s live (typically this is a week out from the Digital event - don’t panic if you haven’t had access yet). We will be creating FAQs and videos to help with the process.
And perhaps we’ll send fewer emails during the event - what can we say? We love talking to you all!
Pocket Gamer Connects Digital #2 is set up to be bigger and more improved than its debut, why not check what it's all about? Tickets are available with our Mid-Term discount prices, so make sure you book now!