Interview with Games Gathering organizer10 October 2016
December 2-4, the conference dedicated to videogame development and game content creation – Games Gathering 2016 – will take place. WEGAME media office met with one of event organizers in order to find out their plans and share this information with its readers.
We talked to Alexander Khrutskiy, the major coordinator of Games Gathering conference and cofounder of Games Academy. Previous year, he and his team came up with the idea and organized Games Gathering 2015 conference. He has been working in the gaming industry since 2012, focusing on game design.
WEGAME: As far as we know, you have a significant experience in game design. Tell how it has helped you to organize such a major game conference as Games Gathering?
Alexander Khrutskiy: Naturally, the event could not have happened without this experience. The huge amount of contacts and realizing how the industry operates led me to the idea of Kiev thematic conference organization.
I think you know that previously DevGAMM and Casual Connect were held in Kiev, but all similar large events left us after 2013-2014 occurrences. But the industry has remained and continued to grow. Thus, we thought that Kiev required the conference for developers and organized Games Gathering.
WEGAME: You have a quite interesting offer for indie studios: free stands and prize drawing. What was the reason of implementing such privileges?
Alexander Khrutskiy: It is not our know-how. It is a common practice at conferences: providing indie studios with a space to show their projects. Within the previous year, we have noted a significant growth of the domestic game development industry and decided to support it.
For instance, Unreal Engine 4 by Epic Games simplifies the work of young teams. It helps people with minimal programming skills either to develop their own game or its prototype that can be shown to publishers and investors.
Well, surely, the amount of new teams is growing, and they require some platform to show their games and find potential publishers, investors, as well as to receive feedback from people working in the industry quite long. It is obvious that tips from specialists focusing on game development for 10-15 years will be useful for young teams, help to save lots of efforts and time while producing their first project.
Consequently, we decide to give them such a platform. It is always a pleasure to support any prospective project.
WEGAME: As to young teams: it is often stated that game developers are generally people aged 20-25 years. While the infographics on your website says that the majority part of the previous conference attendees refers to the 26-30 age group. How would you comment it on?
Alexander Khrutskiy: I can’t call the game industry in Kiev and in general very young. It started here in the 90s, and in 1998 and 1999 this country launched game projects. Thus, there are people that have been working in the industry for 20 years.
I can say that one leaves the game industry not very often, because it is quite attractive and interesting. Of course, someone gets tired, emotionally exhausts, but the majority stays. So, I think that the age of 30 or even 40 years is absolutely normal for a person from the home game industry.
But in the context of appearing new teams, it seems to me that this year, attendees of our conference will be younger. There are a lot of young people who have just entered the industry, glow with enthusiasm and develop their projects. I think this time, the average age of Games Gathering 2016 attendees will be 2-3 years lower than the previous one due to newcomers.
WEGAME: How will the second Games Gathering conference differ from the first one?
Alexander Khrutskiy: We will offer a fairly large number of activities. Above-mentioned Indie Blast and three conference days instead of two. On Friday, 2 December, we will hold a business day. This year, there will be more attendees, more lecturers, more contests, activities, communication, and useful information. We are going to grow both in terms of quantity and quality.
WEGAME: There is still no full information about speakers but the amount of lectures has been significantly increased. Could you give more details about lecturers?
Alexander Khrutskiy: Sure, we are often asked why despite open ticket sales, not all of speakers are known. I can tell that it is resulted by a significant amount of people willing to speak at Games Gathering 2016. We choose experts with good reputation and wide experience who could provide the audience with the maximum amount of useful information for a half an hour or an hour.
Besides, a lot of lecturers we negotiate with have a very busy schedule and will be able to confirm their participation only in November. In such cases, we think that it is better to wait and leave a place for a really interesting speaker, rather than arrange with someone else and worry about the absence of a place for Jama Jurabaev or other high level specialist. So, we do not promise to publish a final lectures program very soon but we can guarantee its quality. However, we are going to post an update on the website on a recent day and there will be 70-80% of the program.
It is just a half of information provided by Alexander Khrutskiy for WEGAME media office. Follow posting of new interesting materials about Games Gathering 2016 conference on our website in News section.