D.I.C.E. Europe will once again include focused roundtable, break-out sessions. Based on the overwhelming success of our roundtable experience at last year’s event, the AIAS will continue this experience once again.
Roundtable break-out sessions are intimate, moderated group discourses where attendees can discuss amongst peers a variety of topics important to the interactive entertainment industry. The roundtables will take place with multiple roundtables in a large room, seating 10 per table including the table leader.
The Academy envisions the table leader briefly introducing the topic. Afterwards, the discussion becomes free form with the leader’s only obligation to serve as a moderator to keep things moving along with a few questions if conversations begin to stall as well as making sure that everyone at the table is getting a fair chance to speak and engage with others. The objective is not to necessarily solve a problem or come to a conclusion – it is to trade ideas/thoughts with other engaged individuals with similar interests and questions.
Roundtable session leaders and topics will be added soon, so please check back for details. If you would like to submit a roundtable topic, please email Debby Chen at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jon Leslie, Principal Agile Coach of Favro
Building Great Teams
There may be no other industry or medium requiring so many different disciplines and specialties to come together to produce something that not only works, but is both immersive and fun. This is true regardless of overall development team size. However, it’s a proven fact that smaller, cross-functional, empowered teams are not only more productive, but also more creative. How should a studio go about building teams that transcend individual disciplines and work together as game developers to make truly new and innovative experiences? What are the attributes that make a great team? And, once that greatness is achieved, how do you scale it across many teams of teams, working on a single title? Let’s discuss the biggest driver of what makes a great game - the team.
Hendrik Lesser, CEO of Remote Control Productions and President of the European Games Developer Federation (EGDF)
Funding, Education, Networking, Creativity
Video games have evolved dramatically over the last decades, and so has their cultural acceptance. Gone are the days when gaming was viewed as a waste of time or even dangerous – today, our industry is widely accepted as a highly popular means of entertainment. This change in perception has led to several European-wide as well as national funding schemes and other initiatives in terms of education and perception which offer lots of opportunities. The discussion will give insight into what these schemes have to offer and how their structural support can enable a broad variety of highly creative projects.
Frank Pearce, Chief Product Officer of Blizzard Entertainment
Planning for Creativity
What processes, tools, structures, and other mechanisms can be used to make sure ideas are surfaced and explored in companies big and small? We’ll discuss how an organization, its leadership, and dedicated teams/individuals can consistently mine for ideas, evaluate their potential, and have the right vehicles in place to help good ideas become great.
Ted Price, President and CEO of Insomniac Games
Bottoms Up Creativity
In the high stakes world of games, fear of failure can often lead to a top-down approach where creative decisions are relegated to a handful of leads. How does one turn things upside down and ensure creativity thrives at all levels of one’s organization? What are the pros and cons of encouraging everyone to jump in? How can growing games companies ensure that all team members feel ownership of the creative process? Does this make your game better? An open discussion will ensue.
Hannes Seifert, Country Manager DACH of Riot Games
Better Together - Games, A Social Medium
We’ve gone from bedrooms to billions, dial up modems to ever present connectivity, and from lonely basement gaming nights to stadiums. This roundtable will discuss how games have evolved into a huge social experience. One that starts at playing with friends, continues with small and big online communities, and ultimately leads to watching huge game events together with thousands of gamers. Social multiplayer games can help us learn important skills such as team play, cooperation, tactics, and strategy - and all that while improving our abilities as digital natives for the societies of the future. Be ready to contribute to a vivid discussion on this, one that’s going to be better together.
Shuhei Yoshida, President of Sony's Worldwide Studios for Sony Interactive Entertainment Inc.
Let's talk about VR (and AR and MR)
2016 was called "Year of VR" and saw the launch of high quality VR systems from Oculus, HTC/VIVE, Sony and Google. Microsoft released developer version of Hololens as well. What will be necessary to popularize this exciting new medium?
The new roundtable format at D.I.C.E is just the best. I loved – and everyone else seems to too – engaging my peers in small and focused, no-nonsense groups, where we could really rip into some of the topics that are critical to our companies as well as our industry.
David Helgason, Founder at Unity Technologies
The D.I.C.E. roundtable format was a very positive change this year. It was great to participate in productive discussions with such an impressive group of people. This truly took industry networking at the conference to a new level.
Mike McDonald, CTO at Wargaming.net
I loved leading the round tables at D.I.C.E. Europe and would love to do it again. I expected to have some engaging discussion with peers but actually ended up not merely stimulated but actually profiting from the experience. I think the format has a LOT of potential for the D.I.C.E. Summit in Vegas and look forward to participating.
Randy Pitchford, President at Gearbox Software
One of my favorite aspects of D.I.C.E. is that everyone brings extensive games industry experience to the conference. And that experience is incredibly varied among attendees. As a result I walked away from my roundtables with a lot of useful advice I would never have found elsewhere.
Ted Price, Founder and CEO at Insomniac Games
The roundtables were great, interesting topics, more importantly learning from a great group of peers sharing their knowledge and opinion.
Alf Tan, Head of Business Development at Amazon Games
The roundtables offered a great opportunity to discover interesting topics through intimate, engaging discussions with colleagues across the video game ecosystem. Our team loved them.
Alyssa Padia Walles, U.S. Managing Director at Hitbox Entertainment
The roundtables at D.I.C.E. Europe were worth the trip alone! How else can you get so up close and personal with so many giants of our industry? I can't wait to see the format take shape at the D.I.C.E. Summit in Las Vegas.
Dave Oshry, CEO at New Blood Interactive
I found the roundtables to be a refreshing format for generating real dialog with my peers about our business. There was a palpable circle of trust at each table that fostered genuine conversation about the challenges we all face.
Lyle Hall, President and CEO at Heavy Iron Studios
The roundtables were a huge source of insight and generated exciting discussions. It was a unique opportunity to explore, frankly and openly, with experts, subjects that are mutually interesting. I was pleasantly surprised by the candid dialogue. Definitely a highlight of the whole program.
Maria Sayans, Chief Customer Officer at CCP Games