Get practical tips on every aspect of game development at PG Connects London

Essential advice about making games with the Developer Toolkit track next Tuesday, January 23rd

Get practical tips on every aspect of game development at PG Connects London

With the 10th anniversary special edition of Pocket Gamer Connects London next week, we thought it was time to explore the 29-track conference schedule. This January 22nd and 23rd, more than 200 world-class expert speakers will bring you the hottest trends and latest innovations in the global games industry.

You’ll have access to two days of cutting-edge talks, seminars and panel discussions with some of the world's leading authorities covering everything from monetisation and growth strategies, to web3, blockchain and the metaverse.

Don't miss out on this unparalleled opportunity to meet and learn from some of the most exciting companies, brands and individuals in the games industry - tickets are available now.

Between now and when the venue doors open, we’ll share what each track is about, as well as the talented individuals that will lead the sessions.

The Developer Toolkit track

Tuesday January 23rd

Gain valuable expertise from game development professionals as they divulge insights into pivotal tools, software, and methodologies vital for crafting top-tier games. Unlock optimisation techniques, efficient workflows, and adept teamwork advice for ensuring excellence in game creation.

09:10 Game Economies: Everything is Made up & the Points Don't Matter

  • Dave Cross, Game Architect at Crosshatch Games UG

We will walk through the process of creating an economy model from just a core loop diagram.

The main takeaway is that game economies are critical for the success of any free to play title, and that they aren’t mystical creations handed down from the ivory-towers of neckbeards. Anyone can make one, or in the least, be able to determine if the economy designer they hired is a good one. Interspersed are personal stories, tips and tricks, and some spicy takes.

09:30 The Common Struggles of Game Designers & how to Overcome Them

  • Martin Jurasek, UX / Game Design consultant

09:50 Let me Hear you a Story - How to Collaborate With Voice Talents?

  • Maria Borys-Piątkowska, Senior Narrative Designer/Writer at Flying Wild Hog

The process of writing story for a game that is supposed to have voice lines differs much as compared to subtitle-driven scripts. From a writer's perspective, the difference is meaningful both in terms of setting the stage and the sole process of writing.

A line that will be voiced must have a sort of rhythm, it has to be written the way the voice talent could easily pronounce each phrase and not struggle with contextual and spelling challenges. When writing lines, a writer should both think about writing a decent dialogue and bear in mind who's gonna record that very line (the sooner the cast is selected, the better).

A writer's expertise and fully-fledged knowledge of the game script is a crucial feature when it comes to recording sessions with voice talents. Therefore, as a writer, you should learn some in-depth tricks and methods of how to properly collaborate with the voice talents. In my speech, I'd like to share my experience of several years of working with voice acting both as a writer-director and as a voice actor as well.

10:10 How to Unmute: Building Mobile Game Audio From the Ground Up

  • Sam Hughes, Audio Lead at Metacore

Mobile game audio is a whole different beast compared to other devices since a big part of the players choose to play on mute. However, this won’t change unless the game developers give players a reason to turn on the volume, which is why there should be a bigger emphasis on games’ soundtracks. Publishers should always keep in mind that even if only 10% of their players play with the sounds on – depending on the game’s audience – that can easily be over 5M people.

The talk would focus on where to start when planning the audio landscape of your mobile game, how to get feedback from players for it and how to create cohesion between the game sounds and advertisements. The talk is based on my experiences of independently building the audio process of Metacore’s hit game Merge Mansion that has over 50 million downloads globally and was granted the NYX Music Award for the best mobile game music.

10:30 Partners in Play: Building A Winning Co-Development Partnership

  • Jussi Ultima, CEO & Co-Founder at Zaibatsu Interactive
  • Katleen Evers, VP, Publisher & Developer Relations, EMEA at Pingle
  • Stuart Muckley, CEO at Code Wizards
  • Carlos Estigarribia, Head of Business Development at Kokku
  • David Lalonde, Head of Mobile Service Line at Room 8 Group
  • Chantal Zuurmond, Production Director at Lively Studio

After a popular showing in Helsinki, this panel returns for London - it will consider how to make great games with the use of strategic outsourcing, building partnerships between teams to play to the strengths of each.

We dive deep into the realm of collaborative game development, exploring the nuances of co-development, how outsourcing and co-development work, optimising workflows, ensuring quality control, and fostering productive partnerships between studios. Discover how to harness the potential of outsourcing for streamlined development and exceptional game releases.

11:10 Avoiding Common Game Dev Problems

  • Chris Kempt, Consultant at Kempt & Co

Game development is a hugely complex undertaking and one that can be beset by many challenges - by recognising and taking steps to avoid the most common causes of these issues you can vastly increase your chances of a successful outcome.

11:30 Optimise Your Mobile Game With UX Writing

  • Greta Septinia, Senior UX Writer at King

UX writing is a design discipline that focuses on the crafting of clear and actionable microcopy to guide the users throughout the game experience. This session will cover how Candy Crush Saga uses UX Writing to transform narrative direction into actionable microcopy that makes it easy for the users navigate around the game, drives conversion and keeping the experience engaging.

11:50 External Development Trends in 2024

  • Catalin Butnariu, Chief Strategy Officer at Amber
  • Mihai Pohontu, Founder & Executive Chairman at Amber

Join this session for an insightful discussion with Mihai Pohontu about external development and how this sector will fare in 2024, after a challenging year for the games industry in 2023. The fireside chat will cover topics such as the current outlook of external development on mobile and PC/console, the recent industry layoffs, AI in external development, talent marketplaces, and more.

12:10 Goal Driven Development - Eyes on the Price

  • Petter Sydow, Consultant/Independent Developer

Better formulated goals will align your team and development. Indie to triple-A  all have the same challenge; transfer ideas and discussions into fun gameplay. I will show how to better use goals to foster creativity and delivery plus what pitfalls to avoid.

12:30 Buy or DIY: Your Game Development Platform

  • Oscar Clark, CEO at Fundamentally Games
  • Eric Futoran, CEO & Co-Founder at Embrace
  • Chantal Zuurmond, Production Director at Lively Studio
  • Simon Barratt, CEO at Cooperative Innovations
  • Nina Adams, Operations Director at Auroch Digital

In light of the recent uncertainty on game engine and backend server platforms, is it still best to leverage established platforms or build your own? In this panel, we will explore the advantages and compromises of both approaches and how that might affect your game development studio.

Fringe events, parties and networking

As well as two full days of unmissable conference content, whether you're a publisher, developer, investor or indie we've sessions, networking and fringe events designed to give you a conference experience you won't forget. Plus access to our Kick Off and Global Connects parties, where the real networking really happens.

And in addition to all those amazing live opportunities, every one of our 2,500+ attendees gets full access to the event's online meeting scheduler, MeetToMatch. As well as connecting you with decision makers from more than 900 companies, you can organise your appointments at the event itself.

Book your tickets now!

Managing Editor

Steve is an award-winning editor and copywriter with nearly 25 years’ experience specialising in consumer technology and video games. He was part of a BAFTA nominated developer studio. In addition to editing, Steve contributes to,, and, as well as creating marketing content for a range of SMEs and agencies.