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EventsGame DesignNews

Indie Prize Asia 2018 Participants from North America, LATAM and Australia

November 12, 2018 — by Catherine Quinton

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Games from around the world will be shown at Indie Prize at Casual Connect Asia 2018. And there is plenty of variety in this group of games from North America, LATAM and Australia. When you play these games you may be the hero your town needs or the hero your kitchen needs. You could visit space as a Martian cockroach or visit distant planets as part of a game of dice. There are intense strategic games and relaxing golf games and even a cooperative battle game.

Game Title: Hamsterdam
Developer: Muse Games
Platform: iOS, Android, Desktop Win, Desktop Mac, Console Nintendo Switch, other consoles
Country: United States

Hamsterdam is an arcade brawler with you, the player, as the Hamster-fu Master trying to save the town. Will you be able to defeat Chinchilla Marlo, the whisker twister in chief? Will you be the hero the town needs?

This game was a finalist at 2017 Big Indie Award and a nominee at 2018 IMGA. In 2017 and 2018 it was a runner up at Big Indie Pitch for E3 and Reversed. In 2018 it was selected for the MIX showcase for E3, EVO and Pax West.

Europe 2018Video Coverage

Brian Schwab: A More Intimate Connection to Technology | Casual Connect Video

October 13, 2018 — by Catherine Quinton

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I try to not only have a good idea, but to fully understand my audience as far as possible. - Brian…Click To Tweet

Mixed reality is the combination of the real world with digital content, allowing developers to bring games and interaction to the real world around you. This relatively new medium presents a number of unique challenges not normally faced by “normal” game AI. Because both the real world and the virtual world need to understand the other, AI and data parsing are huge areas for AI work. In a talk called Bringing Pixels To The World at Casual Connect Europe 2018 in London, Aleissia Laidacker, Interaction Director and Brian Schwab, Director of Interaction Lab at Magic Leap
discussed the ins and outs of mixed reality. This session explained the “what, why, and how” of mixed reality to develop truly immersive experiences. Instead of bringing you into the story [like screen games in MR] the digital objects are in our world, like Roger Rabbit. Tune in to the session below for more insights.

Europe 2018Video Coverage

Bernard Kim: Increasing the Accessibility of Gaming | Casual Connect Video

September 20, 2018 — by Catherine Quinton

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Focus on what players want, but not too much or too excessively. - Bernard KimClick To Tweet

In an engaging Fireside chat at Casual Connect Europe with Steel Media’s Jon Jordan and Zynga President of Publishing Bernard Kim, discussed the growth of Zynga over the last year and what’s next for the company.  In FIRESIDE CHAT: The Evolution of Zynga and What’s Next, Jon and Bernard discussed growth in the increasingly competitive mobile games market and how a focus on live services, genre expansion and player engagement can fuel a company’s growth. “Our focus is always on players experiences and how to make them more engaging and enjoyable within our existing and upcoming games.” He also spoke about the importance of authenticity, especially regarding branded games, and games like CSR that have real cars in them. To hear more great quotes and insights, see the full session below.

Europe 2018Video Coverage

Reko Ukko: Balancing Art and Business in Games | Casual Connect Video

September 18, 2018 — by Catherine Quinton

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As long as there's creativity involved, I'm happy. - Reko UkkoClick To Tweet

In a highly competitive industry, Best Fiends has managed to grow its mobile entertainment franchise into a $100 million brand. In a talk at Casual Connect Europe entitled How to Leverage Game Design to Sustain Brand Awareness, Reko Ukko, VP of Game Design at Seriously, shared his insights on how to successfully grow an audience and increase engagement through storytelling, new feature updates and holiday themed events.

Europe 2018Video Coverage

Launching Video Games in Land Based Casinos with Darion Lowenstein | Casual Connect Video

August 27, 2018 — by Catherine Quinton

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Are you eager to take your video game to the real-money gambling market? What will it take to translate that game into a compelling experience on the casino floor? Darion Lowenstein has the knowledge and experience to answer your questions.

Darion Lowenstein is CMO of Gamblit Gaming, overseeing publishing and marketing for their real-money arcade style games for mobile and for their upcoming hardware launch in casinos. Darion has twenty years of experience producing and directing some of the biggest video games in the industry for companies such as Electronic Arts and Activision.

At Casual Connect Europe, in his session “The Realities of Launching Video Games in Land Based Casinos”, Darion shared his insight into all aspects of bringing video games to the casino floor. These include regulatory hurdles, the size of the market and the lessons learned from creating and introducing original hardware.

Darion insists that there is much more involved than simply taking a video game and putting in the casino. He says, “You really have to make the UI an arcade and casino experience. We take a lot of mobile or known game content and you can’t immediately add gambling and put it on the floor. You’ve got to make it this big, splashy presentation. You’ve got to make it something that really stands out, that competes with a slot machine.

To learn more about how to capitalize on this new revenue stream, be sure to watch the video of Darion’s full session at Casual Connect.

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For more on Darion’s careeer and other professional views, see this exclusive article which includes his presentation at Casual Connect USA 2018.

Europe 2018Video Coverage

In-App Header Bidding and Why with Natalie Portier | Casual Connect Video

July 10, 2018 — by Catherine Quinton

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What is happening with monetizing today? What do you need to know to successfully monetize into the future? These are questions that are crucial for everyone in the game industry. Natalie Portier offers the information and solutions that can make the difference to your business.

Natalie is the Chief Operating Officer at ad mediation company Appodeal and has been with the company from the beginning. Innovations and quality game development are Natalie’s passions as they implement their ten years of experience in business operations and tech development.

Currently, everyone is interested in in-app header bidding, the next big thing in mobile development. Appodeal is now implementing this solution, providing closer access the actual highest price per impression for publishers and making it available to all Appodeal clients. At the Casual Connect session Mobile Advertising is Evolving: What You Need to Know to Monetize in 2018 and Beyond, Natalie explained more about this technology and why you should care about it, as well as shared the first industry results of in-app header bidding. You can learn more about this trend by watching the video of the full session from Casual Connect Europe 2018.

For more about Natalie and her career, please see this exclusive article.

EventsNews

Announcing the Indie Prize Finalists from South America and North America

May 25, 2018 — by Catherine Quinton

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Casual Connect Europe 2018 Indie Prize Finalists from South America:

Players who enjoy a good fight will appreciate the entries for Indie Prize from South America. All three are based on various kinds of warfare. But each of these three is completely different, taking place in environments that include a world of avatars and minions, the early British time of King Arthur, or present day multi-vehicle war. Each requires strategic thinking and challenging movement and will challenge players’ abilities.

Game Title: Teratopia
Developer: Ravegan
Platform: Console, Desktop Win
Country: Argentina

Teratopia is an action strategy game with the player controlling avatars who spawn different classes of minions. The minions are completely independent; the player can only decide where, when and which one to throw. Players advance through an open-end world as they defeat bosses to unlock new spawning portals. The game has humor, role playing elements and local multiplayer options.

Teratopia is scheduled for release in October 2018 on PC, PS4 and Xbox One.

Kyiv 2017Video Coverage

Dave Rohrl: Making Consistently High Quality Games | Casual Connect Video

May 14, 2018 — by Catherine Quinton

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Life is too short to make bad games! - Dave RohrlClick To Tweet

Panelists Alex Mendelev (Advisor with DoubleJump Games), Dave Rohrl (CEO & Founder of Mobile Game Doctor), Konrad Stanczak (Promotions Specialist at Power Up Game Studio) discussed finding balance between gameplay and monetization at Casual Connect Kyiv 2017. The panel Designing for Revenue – It’s Not All Fun and Games was moderated by Tapdaq’s VP of Business Development Chris Lefebvre. Together, they shared their experience which varied from industry veterans to newly published indies.

ContributionsIndustry

Behind the Title: An Interview with Jessica Tams, Founder and Managing Director of Casual Games Association

April 25, 2018 — by Marina Sapunova

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In this interview, yellowHEAD’s Marina Sapunova speaks with Jessica Tams about her life behind one of the most successful events in the games industry, why she moved to a farm and what she was like in high school.

Marina Sapunova: Hi Jessica! I’m happy to have you with me. I don’t think that you need an introduction for our audience, but it would be great if you could say just a few words about what you do.

Jessica Tams: I’m Jessica Tams – I am the Managing Director of CGA. We have a couple of things that we do: Casual Connect; we also organize Indie Prize, which is the scholarship program for indie developers; and a media outlet – Gamesauce.biz. We’ve been doing this for 13 years. We do 4 shows a year. So that’s what I do.

Marina: Nice! And you are so good at what you do! But let’s talk about Jessica. Who’s Jessica behind her title?

USA 2018Video Coverage

Maximizing Revenue with Mobile Apps | Casual Connect Video

March 27, 2018 — by Catherine Quinton

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Producing the revenue you need for a healthy company is a constant concern is a constant concern for most developers. If maximizing the revenue you can generate from mobile apps is something you want to know more about, the session at Casual Connect USA 2017, The Next Phase of Mobile App Monetization: What Developers Need to Know to Maximize Revenue, offered some important information.

Adam Carey and Boris Logvinskiy

Presenters at the session were Adam Carey and Boris Logvinskiy. Adam Carey, Senior Director of Ad Monetization at Sega Networks, is a specialist on ad operations, ad product, data and marketing with 18 years of experience in digital advertising. You will be especially interested to learn that he is an expert in helping companies adopt and adhere to digital advertising best practices. Boris Gogvinskiy specializes in monetizing mobile apps and heads product management for all MoPub products at Twitter. Previous roles included product management at Demandforce, which was acquired by Intuit in 2011.

New kinds opportunities have been emerging for monetizing mobile apps. Don’t miss learning about them; watch this video of the complete presentation from Casual Connect USA 2017.

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