IGDA-Austin Presents Microtalks: AGENCY


What can be said in 10 minutes? When the subject is making video games, it’s dangerous to go alone. And it’s best to get straight to the point, even when the theme is AGENCY.

AGENCY is the theme for the latest speaker symposium presented by IGDA-Austin, scheduled for the evening of Thursday, May 21. Doors will open at 7 p.m., with opening announcements to begin at 7:30.

The location will be the Green Room of Tech Ranch Austin’s offices in Balcones North. The show is free, but seating is limited, so please sign up only if you’re sure you plan to attend!

The event will be filmed and for the first time, streamed to Twitch! Visit http://twitch.tv/austinigda for details.

Speakers include some of the best Austin has to offer from within and without its video game industry, from technology, design, art, audio, research and the world beyond. And how much can they say about it in 10 minutes?

Speakers to include:

John Henderson

Adam Creighton
co-owner/studio general manager, Panic Button

Beth Beinke-Schwartz
level designer, Certain Affinity

Starr Long
executive producer, Portalarium

Chelsea Hostetter
interaction designer, frog design

Ryan Joy
startup liaison, Microsoft

IGDA Austin Attends the Game Developers Conference

The Game Developers Conference returned to San Francisco in early March and I was there.  As the chair of the Austin chapter, I was pleased to have a chance to represent Austin and our community at the world’s largest annual gathering of video game developers.  IGDA was also out in force, sponsoring numerous panels, social events, student attendees and a booth.   Some of the IGDA events I attended include:

  • Volunteer banquet where more than 100 chapter leaders, dedicated volunteers and student participants were feted for their support of the organization.  
  • IGDA networking event at the San Francisco Children’s Museum.  One of the biggest and eagerly anticipated events of GDC, the IGDA networking event brought together hundreds of attendees in a terrific space adjacent to the Moscone Center for an evening of music, food and great conversation.  We also celebrated Kate Edwards (IGDA’s exec director) 50th birthday!
  • IGDA chapter meetings.  Leaders from around the world met with the executive leadership of the IGDA and discussed how to make the organization better and more responsive/valuable to its membership.  I was stunned by the extraordinary breadth of the IGDA, meeting leaders from Europe and Asia.
  • IGDA board meeting.  The official annual meeting of the IGDA board of directors surfaced some interesting and eye-opening information about the organization.  Slides are here: IGDA Annual Meeting 2015 (PDF).
  • Overall, my first GDC was terrific and I was honored to represent Austin!

You can read more here about IGDA and the GDC:  https://www.igda.org/news

IGDA Austin Joins Tech Executives at the Governors Mansion

On March 14, I joined over 300 tech executives to hear Governor Greg Abbot talk about Texas’ booming technology economy.   The video game industry in Texas (and especially Austin) is a critical piece, and sadly, one that doesn’t get nearly the attention it deserves.   Helping to change that, IGDA Austin joined with the Entertainment Software Association and other tech leaders, investors and entrepreneurs in an event with the new governor of Texas.  While Governor Abbot’s remarks were brief, they were focused on how Texas is out-competing other states for tech talent and investment. 

You can read more here:  http://www.texastribune.org/2015/03/14/capitalizing-sxsw-greg-abbott-touts-texas-economy/

IGDA Austin Meets with Congressman Hakeem Jeffries (NY)

SXSW attracts national leaders to Austin for more than a week of fun. That makes it a great opportunity to meet with visitors from around the country, learning about Austin and Texas. The Entertainment Software Association sponsored a round-table breakfast with Congressman Hakeen Jeffries and local game industry leaders. Joining me, was Adam Creighton from Panic Button. The informal discussion touched on many topics including STEM education, diversity, “women in games,” immigration and the impact of gaming on the national economy.

Job Listings Now Open

Austingamedevs.org, the fine website you’re looking at right now, is now available for job postings! Just click the “Jobs” link above to reach it!

Thanks to Patrick Curry and crew at Unity Austin and ArtCraft Entertainment, who have contacted us about the four positions they have available now, and provided everything necessary for their Companies page!

If any of the above interests you, please send mail to austinigda@gmail.com to let us know your interest!

Other events for April

Assorted events we’re aware of but aren’t running, happening in April:

Our Great March Weekend (SXSW Gaming Expo 2015, Kate Edwards visit, ESA)

Death came to our booth! We gave him a Crowfall button.

Death came to our booth! We gave him a Crowfall button.

We had an exhausting but exhilarating weekend. This one will be a lot more personal, from my own point of view.

IGDA-Austin had table space on the floor of the SXSW Gaming Expo, continuing a presence we’ve had since it was a little bit of hopeful vibes called Screenburn. Thanks to Justin Burnham and Estevan Aviles for all the hard work in securing a space for us.

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