Pocket Gamer Connects Helsinki is gearing up to be our biggest event in the city yet, and we couldn’t be more excited to share with you all that we have in store! It’s going to be a magnificent two day event packed with endless opportunities to learn, scale and most importantly, connect.
If you haven’t heard, we’re bringing back Europe’s favourite games industry conference to the spiritual home of mobile gaming for the first time in two years. On September 27th to 28th, over 1,200 games industry professionals from around the globe will descend upon Helsinki for two days full of networking, matchmaking opportunities and hours of wisdom from over 200 thought leaders from all over the world.
We’re continuing our series spotlighting just some of the amazing speakers that will be gracing the stage at our Helsinki show this September. They have been generous enough to share a few of their insights and expertise with us ahead of time, and you won’t want to miss them!
Today, we’re shining the spotlight on Isaque Sanches, Senior Game Designer at Ubisoft Redlynx. Isaque Sanches is a game developer and interaction artist of Portuguese origin, born in Switzerland, and currently living in Finland. He’s a senior game designer at Ubisoft Redlynx. His career is versatile and somewhat unconventional: as a programmer turned designer, he has worked in a multitude of genres, platforms (PC, console, VR, AR) and audiences (AAA, AA, indie, premium mobile, F2P mobile, etc).
Don’t miss Isaque Sanches at Pocket Gamer Connects Helsinki, where he will be delivering a talk on common reasons why game prototypes are often ill-adjusted and how to avoid those pitfalls.
PocketGamer.biz: What key trend should we be paying attention to in the next 12 months?
Isaque Sanches: Signs of a looming economic recession (worldwide inflation, investments defaulting post-lockdown, energy crisis) and how they will impact the digital industries.
For instance, we're seeing more and more layoffs in major tech companies. There's no reason for it to ‘just be a phase’, all signs suggest that it's only going to get worse: which means that unicorn game companies that have entire portfolios based on ‘buzzword tech’ are going to be the first ones to crash hard.
Is hypercasual gaming here to stay?
Yes. Most of the world population plays on mobile devices. Following Moore's Law, as the cost of mobile devices continues to drop, more and more people outside of first-world countries will gain access to mobile gaming: which means the market and business model of mobile games, which is primarily F2P, will stay dominant. Free, low-commitment, short, ‘snackable’, viscerally rewarding experiences will continue to be the logical evolutionary path for video games.
What is the most overhyped trend from the last 12 months - and why?
Play to earn and non-fungible tokens. The hype is built on the idea of decentralized player ownership of virtual items: this idea is a misunderstanding of the technology fundamentally is and how it works. With NFTs, the registry of ownership of a virtual item is indeed decentralized, but item presence in-game is still ultimately a choice of the game's developer, and therefore actual item ownership is not decentralized: platforms still hold all the power, if not more.
Being ultimately a false promise, this will never engage more than a niche audience segment of crypto-enthusiasts.
What topics do you want to hear more about at industry events?
Failure is much more important, as a learning tool, than success. I'd like to watch more postmortems of disastrous game productions (i.e. toxic environments, mismanagement, etc).
As an industry, we collectively try to avoid talking openly about the negatives.Other than word of mouth and hearsay, the only occasional sources of information are investigative journalism (ex: ‘Blood, Sweat, and Pixels’) and documentaries (ex: ‘Noclip’). This would already be a bad thing in most industries, but it's especially awful in the games industry, which is already very opaque in general, and where sustainable success sometimes feels like a myth.
Can people get in touch with you at the event? What sort of people would you like to connect with?
Yes, absolutely. Whoever you are, feel free to just say "hello" in person or on social media (especially if it's to point out flaws in my talk: I like to iterate those frequently, and real feedback is more welcomed than compliments for the sake of politeness). I’m interested in talking with anyone, regardless of their profession, market, years or experience, etc.
Connect with our stellar speakers
Expand your network with the likes of Isaque Sanches and many, many more brilliant minds at this year’s Pocket Gamer Connects Helsinki conference. There is no better place to connect with the biggest and most inspiring industry players and take your business to the next level. You can still take advantage of our Mid-term offer for a limited time. Head over to our website and buy your ticket today, you can save up to a whopping £150 if you act fast.