IGDA Toronto Presents a Grab-Bag of Developer Chats

IGDA Toronto Presents: Grab-Bag of Developer Chats

Missed any big game conferences lately? This month we’re bringing the conference experience to you, with three different talks by local game developers!

  • Rogue Legacy Design Post Mortem: Budget Development – Teddy Lee, Cellar Door Games
  • What Modern Interior Design Teaches Us About Environment Art – Dan Cox, Ubisoft
  • Super Spy Crash Course: Teaching Players in Splinter Cell Blacklist – Laurent Malville, Ubisoft

We’ll have a social to follow, which may be your last and best shot at getting together with your jam team before we Party Like It’s 19TOJam9!

When: Tuesday April 22nd 7pm
Where: Metro Hall 55 John Street Toronto Room 308

Join the event on Facebook and follow @IGDAToronto on Twitter. All are welcome – an IGDA membership is not required to attend.

Comics vs Games 3!


The Toronto Comic Arts Festival is fast approaching and with it another Comics vs Games! This year’s looks to be the biggest and best celebration of the two media yet!

Bento Miso are sponsoring this year’s events again and bringing back Bit Bazaar, their videogame arts and crafts show. Attract Mode return with a new twist on the gallery show with the Comics vs Games 3D Gallery featuring fully 3D artwork and three virtual reality collaborations between comic and game makers commissioned by Bento Miso playable on Oculus Rifts.

The Hand Eye Society and TCAF will be expanding last year’s single panel to a full day of programming: Comics vs Games Talks, featuring comic and game creators discussing their work and the intersection of the two art forms. It’s a stellar, diverse line up ranging from Faith Erin Hicks talking about creating The Last of Us: American Dreams to a panel discussion on autobiographical comics and games. We’ll be posting a full schedule soon!

All of the above is happening at the Bento Miso space. But we haven’t forgotten the TCAF main location either!

TCAF and Hand Eye will be bringing videogames back to the reference library with the Comics vs Games 3 Showcase featuring highlights from our original Comics vs Games project with TIFF Nexus, which you may remember paired game makers with comic creators to craft original games. In addition we’ll also have a selection of games from ARTXGAME courtesy of Attract Mode!  The first ARTXGAME show was the inspiration for Comics vs Games, and it featured game developers and illustrators creating games together. We’re very happy to be debuting many of these games in Canada for the first time.

More info to come but you can read about the current event line up in more detail on the Comics vs Games page.

Confused about what’s happening where and when? Here’s the breakdown!

At Bento Miso 
#300 – 862 Richmond Street West
Sat, May 10th  - 11:00 am – 8:00 pm

  • Bit Bazaar: Spring Fair 2014 – Presented by Bento Miso
  • The Comics vs Games 3D Gallery – Presented by Attract Mode and Bento Miso
  • Comics vs Games Talks – Presented by The Hand Eye Society and TCAF

Toronto Reference Library, 789 Yonge Street.
Sat May 10th – 9am-5pm
Sun May 11th – 11am-5pm

  • The Comics vs Games 3 Showcase – Presented by The Hand Eye Society and TCAF

All these events are free to the public!

Comics vs Games 3 is a Toronto Comics Arts Festival event sponsored by Bento Miso and co-organized with The Hand Eye Society and Attract Mode.

April 2014 Game Event Roundup


April’s here, and with it comes a lot of exciting video game related news and events. Don’t forget to check out the Toronto Gaming Calendar, which will be updated as more events become announced throughout the month. (Remember, the calendar can also be added to your googlecal.) Note only the events marked with an asterisk are Hand Eye events — for the rest, we’re just signal boosting for this amazing community.


Toronto Video Game Events

* Thursday, April 3 – Thursday, May 8: Artsy Games Incubator: Animation Edition

Friday, April 4: 4th Annual Level Up Student Games Showcase

Saturday, April 12: Retro Runner Launch Party

Saturday, April 12: Social Justice Design Jam #1: Co-Creating Images for the World(s) We Want To Build

Wednesday, April 16: E-Poetry, Performance, Play with a Twine workshop led by DMG Members Kaitlin Tremblay and Kara Stone

Wednesday, April 16: DMG’s Introduction to Game-Making Tools

Wednesday, April 23: DMG April Social

Wednesday, April 30: Torontaru

Wednesday, April 30: Bad Dogs Epic Wednesdays: The Video Game Show

Screen Shot 2014-03-26 at 8.51.53 AM

Local Game Releases

JamminGames released Spirographics on Google Play!

WordPatch was released on the App store.

I Love Donna, a game made from the DMG Game Jam Feb Fatale 2, featuring work from Beth Maher, Kim Koronya, Brittney Oberfield, and Izzie Colpitts-Campbell, was also released.

Bloom Digital Media’s Long Story was released on the iTunes/Andriod app store! (pictured above)

Shu’s Garden was also released on iOS and Andriod!

Cyborg-goddess, a game by Kara Stone and Kayte McKnight, is now available to play.

Alicia Contestabile released the first part of her Twine, Borderlines.


Toronto Folks in the Media

We did a roundup of Toronto representation at March’s Game Developers Conference.

10 Years Ago in the Media: Metanet Software were interviewed for the first time about N, their brand new freeware indie game, for Eye Weekly’s videogame column.

The Yawhg is on Rock Paper Shotgun and on Dorkshelf.

Check out Elizabeth Simins’ comic Bad At Games, featuring Jazzpunk!

David S. Gallant was interviewed on the Financial Post.

Soha El-Sabaawi was interviewed in the Financial Post about her Twine, reProgram. reProgram also was given the Objective Game Review treatment. Oh, and on First Person Scholar, she was interviewed about her first Twine Penalties. Did I also mention she’s profiled on Tech Girls?

Benjamin Rivers’ Alone With You GDC presentation got some good coverage over at Polygon. And it’s also over on the Financial Post.  Listen to Rivers’ GDC talk over at Giant Bomb.

Get Set Game’s Battle Casters was up on the Touch Arcade.

Bento Miso, Rocket 5 Studios, and Asteroid Base were on Inner Space.

Nathan from Capy Games was interviewed on Destructoid about Super Time Force. Super Time Force was also featured over at Dorkshelf!

Sony released the full list of their upcoming 2014 PS4 titles, which includes Drinkbox Studio’s Guacamelee!, Ben Rivers’ Home, and Cellar Door Games’s Rogue Legacy.

Retro Runner: Princess Power, which releases in April, has already started receiving great press, with coverage on the Toronto Indie Hub and Pear Caster.

Rogue Legacy also appeared on Polygon.


Special Announcements and Calls

The Hand Eye Society is hiring a graphic designer for web and print work. Email us with portfolio links.

Ben Rivers released the trailer for his upcoming game, Alone With You.

Will O’Neill’s Actual Sunlight was Greenlit.

Toronto Twiners, want your game covered? Soha El-Sabaawi will be doing a monthly Twine feature at Haywire Magazine, so send your Twines to her!

E-Poetry, Performance, Play is looking for digital poetry for their exhibit celebrating National Poetry Month. If you have a game you think uses digital poetics, contact Lai-Tze Fan. Please submit a brief (no more than 250 words) description of the work(s) and its/their connection to e-poetry. Websites or images describing the work are helpful.

A UWO Professor has been working on an international Developer Satisfaction Survey with the IGDA. If you’re interested, you can fill out the survey here.


Game-making Help Offered/Wanted

Stratum Games is working on Retro Runner: Princess Power right now. RR is an irreverent side-scroller that celebrates the best games of the last 30 years through art, music, and hidden references. We need help to get the game done, though: 1) We need an awesome 2D artist to create some transition slides for our game’s storyline. Please email us at contact@stratumgames.com if you are awesome.
2) We will be including hundreds of video game trivia questions as a sort of “mini game” within our game. We’d like our players to write some of these! Please contribute your questions about your favourite game of yesteryear by emailing us. Check out the site for gameplay footage and info about the project.

I am a creative writer and lawyer looking for an opportunity to tell a story through gameplay. I have numerous short stories as samples of my creative writing style. My experience as a litigation lawyer serves to infuse my story arcs and dialogues with a sense of plausibility and realism. I also have an undergraduate degree in Music Composition and am able to compose music for interactive media. Samples of my composition style are also available on request. I would be pleased to hear from anyone looking to form a partnership to create an adventure-style game with a focus on characters and storytelling. If interested, please contact me.

That’s all for now! If there’s any May events or Toronto video games news, releases, and rad media coverage you want shared, don’t hesitate to pass it along to Kaitlin via email or on Twitter.

Toronto at GDC Roundup


Capybara Games’ Nathan Vella did a great job hosting last night’s IGF Awards, which were sadly lacking in any wins for Toronto nominees Jazzpunk and The Yawhg.

One of the best exhibits at GDC, alt.ctrl features alternative controllers for games and includes Droqen and Patrick Dinnen’s Analog Defender (pictured above) and Droqen’s Bonus Look. Check out Destructoid coverage/photos here.

This headline says it all: “Lovers In A Dangerous Spacetime steals the show at GDC 2014′s Indie Megabooth“.

Zack Kotzer at Now Magazine talks to GDC goers here.

Tomorrow the Curating Video Game Culture: The New Wave of Video Game Events panel is open to anyone with a GDC pass (even an expo). It “brings together talks from five leading organizers of a new wave of cultural video game events, including Babycastles (New York), Punk Arcade (Los Angeles), Hand Eye Society (Toronto), Fantastic Arcade (Austin) and The Wild Rumpus (London) to talk about their experiences in starting and growing cultural video game events, and the unique and diverging motivations that guide their work.” We will be having a picnic in the Yerba Buena park afterwards at 1pm that anyone is welcome to join.

Tonight’s OMDC Ontario Social (co-hosted by the Hand Eye Society) appears to be at capacity, but to those who RSVP’d — see you there!

Games Are Indisputably Art For a Few More Weeks

The Art Gallery of Ontario exhibit featuring the Torontrons has been held over until the 26th — so the people who attend the Meet the Artists Talk featuring Jonathan Mak, Jim Munroe and Mark Connery can still check it out.

For those who missed the first sold out AGO event, the Fancy Videogame Party, they have thoughtfully provided some video documentation.

Sorry if you missed it. We’re not trying to rub it in, honest.

For linkage to the awesome games featured at FVP check out our posts here and here.

Note: In the video “Fun Hops” is attributed to Ryan Henwood, but it was co-written with DualRyan.

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