Some 1,000 visitors exchange ideas and information on the development, marketing and significance of computer games at the industry conference on August 3 and 4 in Cologne
Cologne, 11 August 2015: With its third installment and approximately 1,000 attendees on August 3 and 4, “Respawn – Gathering of Game Developers” has unquestionably established itself as a must-see event for the international game industry in the run-up to the gamescom trade show. In addition to appearances by more than 90 speakers in 70 presentations and panel discussions, 20 up-and-coming developers were given the chance to pitch their game to potential investors at the premiere of the “Respawn Treasure Cave”. Likewise, the “Pitch & Match” business format was the perfect opportunity for conference participants to forge new business relationships and cooperations. The evening events, Games Music Live Jam, Respawn Barbecue, and the party hosted jointly with GDC Europe, topped off the activities with more than 2,500 visitors in total indulging in extensive networking and celebration.
This year’s Respawn program covered a wide spectrum of digital game development and marketing aspects, ranging from coding seminars for programmers to storytelling tips for game developers. Apart from industry newcomers, such iconic figures as adventure legend Charles Cecil (Revolution Software) – whose fame is based on Amiga hits like “Beneath a Steel Sky”, and who has most recently been involved in “Broken Sword 5” – as well as John Hare (Tower Studios), creator of “Cannon Fodder”, “Speedball 2” and “Sensible Soccer”, enthralled attendees with presentations backed by decades of hands-on experience.
Tobias Kopka, Respawn conference and program director, concludes: “Our approach of bringing together the European community of developers and publishers on an equal footing and to support in-depth, content-based exchange within the industry, has worked out perfectly. We are receiving an absolutely overwhelming response and wonderful feedback on the event and the program this year. Respawn has claimed its position as a gamescom week fixture. Personally, I am delighted that so many of the developers whom I had the pleasure of meeting during my travels around the world last year have actually become an integral part of our community and are spreading our message across the globe: ‘Game developers of the world, unite!’”
Among the numerous high-caliber items on the itinerary was Phil Elliot’s (Project Lead at Square Enix) talk, “What We’ve Learned: Square Enix Collective’s Story So Far”, in which he described how Square Enix as an established game publisher helps as-yet unknown indie developers to implement optimal crowdfunding campaigns. According to Elliot, an average of 1,500 supporters are needed to achieve a funding goal of USD 40,000, while the number rises to well over 5,000 for a USD 200,000 target. This topic was also debated in the “Indie Arena Panel: Crowdfunding – Latest Experiences”. Speakers André Bernhardt (Indie Advisor), Marco Rosenberg (KING Art Games), Michael Schade (ROCKFISH Games), Jan Wagner (Cliffhanger Productions) and Phil Elliot shared their observations and experiences of what does and doesn’t work on the biggest existing crowdfunding platform, Kickstarter.com, and why success or failure often depend on how high the funding goal is set.
Other appearances at Respawn 2015 included Linda Breitlauch (Trier University of Applied Sciences), Oscar Clark (Unity Technologies), Jason Della Rocca (Execution Labs), Ellen Lyse Einarsen (Chimera Entertainment), Reynald Francois (Ubisoft Blue Byte), Sabine Hahn (University of Cologne), Hendrik Klindworth (InnoGames), Jiri Kupiainen (Shark Punch), Vlad Micu (Data Realms), Thomas Rawlings (Auroch Digital), Dr. Florian Stadlbauer (Deck 13), Andreas Suika (Daedalic Entertainment Studio West), and Joost van Dongen (Ronimo Games).
This year’s main sponsor was InnoGames. The Hamburg-based game development company with an additional studio in Düsseldorf provided extensive information on career opportunities in the game industry. As part of a cooperation with the concurrent GDC Europe, all Respawn attendees were granted admission to the GDC Europe Expo Floor. Further details are available on www.facebook.com/
About ‘Respawn – Gathering of Game Developers’
Open, uncomplicated, and in step with the leading edge of the games industry. That is what ‘Respawn – Gathering of Game Developers’ is all about. Aruba Events, known for the German Developers Award and the ‘Quo Vadis’ game developers’ conference, has been the organizer of Respawn since 2013. Held in the run-up to the ‘gamescom’ industry expo, the fundamental idea is to provide an informal setting for an exchange between game developers, trade visitors and students. Presentations are not delivered in closed rooms, but held on lecture platforms distributed across the entire venue. This allows Respawn visitors to spontaneously decide which talks and panel discussions they want to attend. They can either go there directly or use the provided wireless headsets to tune in to the audio feed of the presentation they are most interested in at any time. At Respawn, speakers and attendees meet as equals and can enter into a direct dialogue with each other. The topics run the gamut from Game Design & Storytelling, Art Design & Sound, Technology & Engines to Culture & Communications as well as Business & Law. Respawn offers workshops, panel discussions and technology presentations, and provides an ideal networking opportunity right before gamescom opens its doors. Further information is available on www.respawngathering.com.