microtalks logo knockout_blackMicrotalks is a speaker symposium produced by IGDA-Austin, meant as a quarterly event.  Each speaker has only 10 minutes to speak with authority on a subject of their choosing, similar to TED Talks or Ignite Talks.  When the final speakers have given their talks, the event opens up as a mixer, becoming a great opportunity for casual networking.


Want to attend?

Check out the News section for the latest information on the next event.  We also post it on Facebook under IGDA-Austin.


Want to speak?

If you are a subject matter expert on a topic and think you can fill 10 minutes then please submit your ideas to: AustinIGDA@gmail.com.  Microtalks has hosted speakers ranging from math metrics in game design, why prototyping should be used, 10 business mistakes, why companies should have a studio game jam to networking tips.  Anything that has to do with the video game industry is welcome, as well as first time speakers.  The rules are: Be an authority, and only 10 minutes. Speakers must be approved by IGDA-Austin officers.


Want to Sponsor?

There are two ways to sponsor a Microtalk.  The first is obvious – we need some funding in order to obtain space, chairs, equipment, etc and make sure the evening is enjoyable for everyone.  The second way to sponsor is provide free space to hold the event.  Currently Microtalks draws a crowd of around 100 people.  We are hoping with continued good talks and better locations the crowd will increase. Send a mail to austinigda@gmail.com.

Past Microtalks shows

Season 2

August 21, 2014

Featured speakers, in order. Links are to slideshow files.

John Henderson, on the chosen theme, “JOY”.

Sara Jensen Schubert, on how to use game design to further joy as a goal

Kyle Drexel, on how user experience research can tell when joy happens

Scott Jennings. on the kind of joy MMO players are looking for, and must let go

Sam Killermann. on why joy in multiplayer games shouldn’t be encumbered

Matt Oztalay. on why joy in the workplace can lead to better games

Rachel Simone Weil. on how to talk about games from a historical perspective

Sheldon J. Pacotti. on how to tie together a game story with player choices

Alexander Brandon. on why it’s a great time to be a game developer

December 13, 2013

Featured speakers, in order. Links are to slideshow files.

John Henderson, on the chosen theme, “Home for the Holidays”.

Gordon Walton, on Austin’s state of being and expecting change

Jennifer Bullard, on why Austin has a lot to appreciate compared to other places

Patrick Curry, with 10 things you need to survive as a games professional

Sheri Graner Ray, with a story about moving to Austin, and why she’s staying

Randy Smith, on how the real world is full of natural inspiration for ideas

Tess Snider, on being a “free range game developer” and what it does and doesn’t mean

Sean Barton, on why interview techniques for programmers are outdated

Adam Creighton, with a rapid-fire run through his career, and why Austin makes sense for him

August 9, 2013

Featured speakers, in order. Links are to slideshow files.

John Henderson, on why personal balance is critical to a professional creator

Lance Myers, on making animated films as a rewarding side job to game art

Jesse Sosa, on planning your art assets as modules for an efficient and flexible pipeline

Alicia Andrew, on why art generalists have been neglected but are badly needed

Chad Mossholder, on being a well-rounded professional audio designer

Chilimbwe Washington, on the trials of being an independent filmmaker

Aaron Standridge, on how to prepare your taxes for fun and profit

Geoff Yetter and Stephanie Whallon, on what the Texas Film Commission can do for game makers.

Season 1

September 7, 2012

Featured speakers, in order. Links are to slideshow files.

Shay Pierce, on how to use Google Docs to do awesome unintended things

Sheri Graner Ray, on why a player’s time is a precious commodity

Jennifer Bullard, on why corporate culture must be carefully defined

Chris Kokkinos, his story of becoming a professional in game audio

Billy Joe Cain, on how crunch is a form of trauma

Dan Magaha, on why business improves by “failing greatly”

Larry Kleinkemper, all about AAUGA and laser beams.

May 11, 2012

Featured speakers, in order:

John Henderson,

Sheri Graner Ray,

Alexander Brandon,

Moisés Chiullan,

Jon Jones,

Jorie Stuckwisch

December 16, 2011

Featured speakers, in order:

Jennifer Bullard,

Jon Jones,

April Burba,

Levon Louis,

Gordon Walton


June 24, 2011

Featured speakers, in order:

Jon Jones,

Denis Loubet,

Sara Jensen Schubert,

Fred Schmidt,

Damion Schubert,

Quoc Tran,

Carl Canga


March 25, 2011

First show in current location! Featured speakers, in order:

Zach Vowell,

Ian Bullard,

Tess Snider,

Jason Hughes,

Ed Stark,

Sloan Spaeth

December 2, 2010

Filmed at The Art Department (TAD), downtown Austin. Featured speakers, in order:

Jennifer Bullard,

Norma Jean Crippen,

Shay Pierce,

Jason Manley,

Damion Schubert,

Brian Urbanek,

Ruben Rangel and Conor Brace,

Joshua “ZapWizard” Driggs


September 16, 2010

Filmed at Mister Tramps, North Austin. Featured speakers, in order:

Robin McShaffry,

Scott Jennings,

Amy Goldenburg,

Blake Rebouche,

Dan Teasdale,

Sheri Graner Ray,

Sara Jensen Schubert,

Christian Primozich,

Johnathon Vought,

Wynne McLaughlin