Minister for Creative Industries Martin Foley visited Australia’s games development hub ‘The Arcade’ today to announce the program for the first Melbourne International Games Week.
Running from 23 October to 1 November, Melbourne International Games Week 2015 will bring together a host of games and technology events that will strengthen connections within the industry and celebrate Victoria’s leadership in the games sector.
The week will kick off with a 48-hour Microsoft ‘More Personal Computing’ hackathon at Swinburne University, where teams will compete for praise and prizes. Other highlights include:
- The 2015 Unite Australia Conference: a one day game developers’ conference that focuses on emerging games technologies
- The Game Connect Asia Pacific Conference: an event for developers, publishers and investors to discuss changes and innovations in the global video game sector
- An Education in Games Summit: an event for teachers and educators at all levels to explore the role games can play in teaching and learning.
The week will culminate with PAX AUS, a major international games festival – the only PAX event outside the USA – which is expected to attract more than 55,000 games enthusiasts to the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre between 30 October and 1 November.
The Games Week announcement comes just hours after the international launch of PAC-MAN 256, a new mobile PAC-MAN game developed by Victorian games company Hipster Whale in partnership with Bandai Namco, the Japanese games giant and original PAC-MAN creator.
Bandai Namco approached Hipster Whale following the worldwide success of the locally made mobile game Crossy Road, which has been downloaded more than 100 million times since its launch in November 2014.
The new PAC-MAN game is a clever play on a well-known glitch in the original, which would shut the game down once players reached the elusive 256th level. PAC-MAN 256 has been developed to celebrate PAC-MAN’s 35th anniversary. A PAC-MAN character will also be introduced to Crossy Road in a special update.
To see the full Melbourne International Games Week program, or to list a games event on the Games Week website, visit www.gamesweek.melbourne
Quotes attributable to Minister for Creative Industries Martin Foley
“Victoria is home to half of Australia’s digital games industry, with companies ranging from multinationals to boutique developers that, like Hipster Whale with Crossy Road and PAC-MAN, are developing global products.”
“Melbourne International Games Week is a celebration of a strong sector of our creative industries that contributes significantly to the state’s economy.”