This past week, I attend the 2015 LA Games Conference as a volunteer for Digital Media Wire. It took place at the W. Hotel in Hollywood and I was able to listen in on some of the biggest trends affecting the game business today.
Here’s some of the highlights from my three favorite panels that caught my ear.
View from the Top: State of the Game Industry moderated by Eric Goldberg, Managing Director at Crossover Technologies, and this panel had it all.
“Over the long run consoles are going away” says Michael Pachter, one of the most influential analysts following the game biz as Managing Director of Equity Research at Wedbush Securities.
The topics ranged from mobile studios wanting to only focus on “hardcore games” and the importance for brands to have “scale” in order to market themselves well. The popularity of Episodic gaming content was a big focus which made me think of our episodic game in development ‘V.Next.’ Our CEO Paul Furio makes the same point in that “People can become emotionally attached to a great narrative.” – Koh Kim, Business Development at Google Play Games at Google.
Keynote Conversation Ted Schilowitz interviewed by David S. Cohen of Variety
By far the liveliest person I met was ‘Futurist’ Ted Schilowitz, the VR Creator at 20th Century Fox and at the forefront of the digital revolution says “Everything is free is a horrible pipeline.” Ted’s a believer in the power of virtual reality to create new and engaging entertainment experiences and during the discussion he said “We are very close to releasing our first commercial product” he also said “I come from the future” which I later tweeted to Ted that he is in fact my VR spirit animal.
Playing for Real: How eSports is changing the Game the last panel and most fascinating!
eSports which coincidentally, was added to the dictionary last week, http://www.ign.com/articles/2015/05/07/esports-officially-added-to-the-dictionary is the ‘sport’ of competitive Gaming.
“These Kids Have made their names out of their basements” says Jason Xu, CEO, Battlefly, and is adamant that professional gamers are in fact ‘athletes.’
This segment of the gaming community agrees that it’s about the players and the fans building up a community. It’s no wonder that competitive gaming draws over 70 million spectators and presents a unique, new avenue in the entertainment market.
Special thanks to Ned Sherman and everyone at DMW for a truly compelling event.