Game Republic

Buzzing Event in Manchester

Over 80 game developers from indies to AAA studios joined  a very busy and engaged event ‘New Partners and PR’ at KPMG on Thursday in Manchester. We got some great insights from a stellar line-up of speakers and also welcomed special guests including Sony PlayStation XDEV.  The event formed part of our 2024 event programme that is supported by our Official Partners Red Kite Games, Barclays and Escape Technology. Pictures below article.

Opportunities with ID@Xbox

The presentations kicked off with Ben Robinson from ID@Xbox, who shared info on the innovative Developer Acceleration Programme for developers from underrepresented groups.  For emergent developers, the acceleration programme helps to bring their games to the platform with porting and developers get access to information from Xbox including games lifecycle, marketing tips and more. Finally the programme helps with funding for prototypes that can help developers get their ideas off the ground. Ben also shared info about Xbox Game Pass which has delivered 60 GOTY winners since launch and that engagement goes up by more than 8 times on average when a title enters Game Pass. Ben will be coming to Game Republic GaMaYo on 23rd May and doing a roundtable.

Promoting your games

Charley Grafton Callaghan followed with a talk about PR and how to promote your game, with important advice on starting your campaign early in a game’s development, building a community and working with influencers. Charley emphasised the need for PR because “you are competing for people’s time in a marketplace that is saturated with content that isn’t just games such as TikTok, Netflix, Twitch etc.”. She highlighted the need to be clear about your objectives as “Hope is not a strategy”. She pointed out that there was a lot that game developers could do on their own and provided a useful PR Playbook.

Accessing Talent for Game Development

Charley’s session was appropriately followed by lots of networking before attendees regrouped for a short presentation from Jonathan Lloyd at CG Hero about their platform that provides artists and animators to studios and that ‘accessing talent is easier than acquiring it’.  Jonathan also provided some good reminders to developers to focus on making games for players rather than investors. Jonathan emphasised his mission to provide a collaborative ecosystem for developers to access art and animation talent and highlighted that CG Hero has 6000 individuals across 100 countries including bench talent from 200 studios.

Working with Licensed Content

The final presentation was a talk from Niall Taylor, Scallywag Arcade (part of Draw & Code) about their forthcoming game Taskmaster VR and working with licensed content. Niall provided great tips on this including approaching potential partners, hidden costs, creative control and advantages of working with a well-known brand to give you a head start in your game’s marketing. In his final thoughts he urged attendees to be prepared for rejection because licensors might be keeping an IP dormant on purpose or that the person you are talking to has strong opinions on what is right for the brand. He also advised developers that they should not expect funding to be secured even if you get a license.

Attendees then joined Re:Format at the Bier Keller for some more networking and drinks, as well as popcorn and music provided by DJ Collsie, Paul Colls from Sumo Digital.

Thanks to KPMG for hosting this event and to our friends at Gameopolis for promoting it and helping with the logistics. Thanks also to Format for providing guest tickets for our attendees who enjoyed the mixer event.

If you are feeling sad to have missed this, don’t worry, GaMaYo is next month with over 300 developers set to attend and a VIP networking event beforehand too at the fabulous Tileyard North on 23rd May. There will be 25 new games on show and lots of opportunities to meet developers, publishers, investors, experts and platform holders as well as roundtables on key topics to support your game development. To register you need to be a member of Game Republic or GaMaYo. GaMaYo is a free network for developers in the North and you can join this via the Facebook group or the Great Northern Games Discord. If you would like to join Game Republic to attend events in the future (12 a year), please just click here.


If you like this post, please help us by sharing it!