Panel: The future of the Australian games industry and its players
On the 30th January 2019, Dr. William Raffe from the UTS Games Studio co-hosted an industry expert panel as part of the Interactive Entertainment (IE) conference, in a partnership with A/Prof Michael Hitchens (Macquarie University) and Dr. Dale Patterson (Griffith University). The panel brought together accomplished professionals from some of the largest games-related companies in Sydney.
This free and publicly open panel, titled "The future of the Australian games industry and its players", aimed at generating discussion around the path that lies ahead for the games industry, what it means to the companies already operating in this industry and their player-base, the role that research and innovation will play in growing the industry, and how the changing local landscape will impact the Australian game designers and developers of the future.
The panellists included:
- Edward Fong - Managing Director (Ubisoft ANZ) / Chairman (Interactive Games & Entertainment Association)
Edward Fong has been a senior player in the Australian entertainment software industry for over 15 years. From Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, GT Interactive Software, Atari / Infogrames to his current role as Managing Director of Ubisoft Australia & New Zealand. Over this time, Edward has been keenly involved in numerous industry initiatives driven by the various industry bodies. Edward is also the Chairman of the Interactive Games & Entertainment Association (iGEA), which, along with Bond University, produces yearly detailed reports of the Australian games industry and its players.
- Daniel Hall - Cluster Category Manager - Gaming (Logitech ANZ)
Daniel Hall is a dynamic, organised, personable professional in marketing and brand management within the retail and commercial channel markets. He has a proven track record of launching key brands and product lines across various technology sectors and has strong skills in project management, digital marketing, packaging, event management and leading cross functional teams. Daniel regularly engages with local media outlets to provide commentary on the Australian games industry and Logitech's role in it, including recently commenting on the launch of Logitech's G560 RGB Speakers, Logitech's wireless charging gaming peripherals, and Logitech's acquisition of Australian esports team Mindfreak.
- Aidan Millott - Product Manager (Wargaming.net)
Aidan Millott is a Product Manager for Wargaming.net. In this capacity, he works with internal stakeholders to improve BigWorld, focusing on the development of game by small teams and works on prototypes. Through this role there is quite a lot of balancing the priorities of several internal stakeholders. Before Wargaming.net, Aidan was an Executive Producer and Studio Manager at Halfbrick Studios. He lead two small teams that developed games for the mobile platform. He was responsible for all stages of the development process and also all recruitment for the studio in Sydney. During his 8 years working at Halfbrick, Aidan released 11 games on several platforms including Nintendo DS, PSP, iOS, Android and Xbox360. Aidan has over 10 years of experience working in the games industry as a engineer and producer.
- Travis Rice - Founder and CCO (LENS Immersive)
Travis Rice has more than twenty years of experience working with artists and future technology in museums, galleries and the hi-tech sector. Growing from his time with international institutions such as Apple, Biennale of Sydney, First Night Austin, and Blizzard Entertainment he has brought this combination of skills to the forefront by founding the LENS Group. As the Chief Content Officer and Director of the LENS Group Travis brings ties to content producers, Directors, artists and technology companies all over the world, in areas such as fine and performing arts, foreign film, main stream media and pop culture. LENS uses A.I. and machine learning to accelerate a next generation custom codec, TORII: built from the ground up for blazing fast and ultra efficient delivery of 4K, VR and AR content. TORII powers the custom VR streaming platform, TYKO which delivers true-meta, VR, AR interactive gaming experiences on all device types.