Category: Event

Hand Eye Rocking the Ontario Science Centre this Thursday

July at ScienceRocks!

We’re collaborating with the Ontario Science Centre for their ScienceRocks! Night this month.

ScienceROCKS! transforms the Science Centre into a music playground, where adults 19+ can rock out to live performances, engage in innovative presentations, explore the new exhibition The Science of Rock ‘N’ Roll and enjoy ROLLING STONES AT THE MAX on the IMAX® screen. Each evening event rocks a different theme, and all are accompanied by great food, cocktails and rock-it science! August 21’s theme invites you to Experiment with NEW TECHNOLOGY & MAKING MUSIC.

Here’s some of the things we’re bringing to the night:

  • See a special sneak preview of Pop Sandbox‘s upcoming music-based mobile video game featuring top Canadian indie artists.
  • Learn about Jonathan Guberman‘s research and development process for the Pianocade, a synthesizer inspired by vintage arcade games, and play a few tunes yourself.
  • Get your groove on with booty-shaking tunes from DJ Dualryan, who will be spinning a selection of electronic music ranging from ambient to trance.
  • Play through albums by Beck and deadmau5 or compose your own musical levels in Sound Shapes, an award-winning video game that is part instrument, part gaming experience.

More info and buy $15 tickets here, 19+.

Stage Select Gaming Expo — Let’s Play!

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Christine Kim from Stage Select fills us in on their first-ever gaming expo:

On Saturday June 28th, doors will open at 9AM at the Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre and stay open til 2AM for the first-ever Stage Select Gaming Expo. There are many events happening on this day including panel talks, developer showcases, gaming rooms, live music, marketplace, artists alley and more!

Gamers, developers, educators and enthusiasts of all ages are encouraged to attend this inaugural event. This all-inclusive celebration of play includes video games, table-top games, board games, live-action, cosplaying and, you guessed it, even more…

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The events at Stage Select will begin with a keynote address by Dr. Sara Grimes. Grimes’ speech frames Toronto as a leading community in promoting a more diverse gaming culture. This is due to a number of initiatives that have been started here in Toronto and also through the games that are designed in this city. Her talk will discuss some of the research that has been conducted at Semaphore lab, where she is Associate Director. Learn more about some of the reasons why “inclusive play” is a vital goal that benefits the game community as a whole.

Visit your favourite local studio as they show off their latest releases or yet-to-be released games at our developer showcase tables! Some of the studios you’ll see out are Rocket 5 Studios, creators of Jazz Punk Necrophone Games, Asteroid Base, Drinkbox Studios, Uken Games just to name a few.

Castle Board Games will be serving up sweet treats and fun board games in the Table Top Gaming Room. There is so much to play at this event including: a multiplayer arcade, LARPing, RPGs, and more.

Let’s Play videos are fast-becoming one of the most popular types of videos on YouTube and for the first time in Toronto watch your favourite YouTuber play live! We are featuring the hilarious duo The C_ntrollers and also The Collegiate Alliance who are based in New York. Other live performances will include Improv by the Dandies!

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Start the night off right with performances by The Blast Processors, Epic Game Music and our DJs, Dj Cynex, DJ MartyMcFly, and Used DJ!

Saturday June 28
Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre (9 Garamond Court, Toronto)
9AM – 2AM
Tickets: $25 online $30 cash at the door
Twitter: @StageSelectTO

Starting on June 16th The Edge 102.1 radio will be giving away 20 free tickets. More details to come on the Stage Select website. In case you’re not one of those lucky 20, get your tickets today at!

Stage Select is a volunteer-run organization whose mission is put on the most exciting, inclusive, and innovative events that celebrate everything encompassing play.

Artsy Games Incubator at Toronto Animated Arts Festival International

art by Matt Hammill
We are delighted that the participants of our Artsy Games Incubator: Animation Edition will be discussing their brand new games for the first time at TAAFI next week!
The games will also be available to play in the free Maarket during the festival.
June 15, 2014 at 4:30 PM
Six animators, six weeks, six video games! Come see the results of the Hand Eye Society’s ARTSY GAMES INCUBATOR: ANIMATION EDITION, a workshop where animators bring their unique talents and creativity to an interactive medium for the first time. During the six week program participants were given access to game-making tools, guest mentors, and community resources. On this panel, the participants (Paloma Dawkins, Christopher de Castro, Virpi Kettu, Mike McDonnell, & Debbie Yu) will showcase their final projects and talk about the process of game creation, as well as the challenges and rewards of applying an animator’s skill set to a different mode of storytelling. This is the start of several workshops aimed at introducing artists from different backgrounds to the creative possibilities of video games. Moderated by Sagan Yee and Matt Hammill, with the generous support of the Toronto Animated Image Society and the Ontario Arts Council.
Also of interest to game enthusiasts…
June 14, 2014 at 3:00 PM
Former ROCKSTAR GAMES cinematic director/director of production Navid Khonsari who worked on the GRAND THEFT AUTO, franchise games, MAX PAYNE, and The WARRIORS, has now co-founded his own company iNK Stories and is in development of a new game franchise titled 1979 REVOLUTION THE GAME, based on the events surrounding the Iran Revolution. Listen to insights on how he handles creating video games based on real life events and unparalleled impact it can have as a new form of entertainment is not only groundbreaking, but the inevitable next step for our industry.
Check out the rest of the TAAFI talks, screenings and workshops!

Final Comics vs Games 3 Announcement!


Today (Thursday May 8th) is the Comics vs Games 3D + VRcade opening party, Saturday is the main event. SO CLOSE! Close enough that we can finally announce our surprise guest for Comics vs Games Talks.   XKCD‘s Randall Munroe! Here’s the full description:

Comics and Crowds: The Experimental, Massively Multiplayer Comics of XKCD
A Conversation With Randall Munroe

12 pm – 1pm – Saturday May 10th
Bento Miso, #300 – 862 Richmond Street West, Toronto

Randall Munroe with interviewer Miguel Sternberg
Whether it’s a single comic that tells a story over four months or one who’s contents change based on live donations to wikipedia, XKCD has a long history of experimental comics that could only work with a large, highly engaged fanbase. In this conversation with creator Randall Munroe we’ll discuss these unusual comics, their similarity to ARGs and other mass participation games, and the general role of playfulness in his work.

My interview with Randall will be kicking off the talks. Come early as seating is limited and we’re expecting a crowd!


Download the Comics vs Games Talks guide!

You can now download the full schedule of talks in our PDF  Comics vs Games Talks Programing Guide 2014 which is full of information on the entire lineup of speakers as well as their games and comics. It also includes some fetching Interstellar Selfie Station photos!


Comics vs Games Showcase Full Lineup!

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

As we mentioned previously this year we’re bringing back a selection of favourites from the original Comics vs Games. These are the original games created by indie comic artists and game makers specifically for the TIFFnexus Comics vs Games project. Also making their Canadian debut will be several games from ARTXGAME, the Attract Mode project that originally inspired Comics vs Games. It’s a groundbreaking collaboration between Attract Mode and Giant Robot featuring games created by illustrators and game makers.

All the games will be playable at the MeetUp, the island of space age furniture on the second floor of the reference library.

Comics vs Games
Black Church Brigandage - Miguel Sternberg & Andy Belanger
Cumulo Nimblers - John Martz & Farbs
We’re no Angels – Steve Manale & Jamie Fristrom
The Yawhg – Emily Carroll & Damian Sommer

Calvin and Hellen’s Bogus JourneyHellen Jo X Derek Yu
JottobotsJ. Otto Seibold X Kyle Pulver
UntitledDeth P Sun X Cactus
UntitledSouther Salazar X Petri Purho
Return of the Quack – Matt Furie X Chevy Ray Johnston
Catburger – Beau Blyth X Jeni Yang

Special Guest (Sunday only):
Framed – with developer Joshua Boggs from Love Shack Entertainment


Be sure to check out all the Comics vs Games events happening at Bento Miso and the TCAF Library locations. Here’s a handy list of all the events compiled on the TCAF Website:

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.

Full ‘Comics vs Games Talks’ Lineup!

It’s a little over a week till TCAF and all of this year’s Comics vs Games programming!  We can now announce the full line up and schedule for Comics vs Games Talks, this year’s expanded programming bringing together comic and game creators to talk about the two mediums.  It’s all happening at Bento Miso (862 Richmond St W) right above Bit Bazaar, Saturday May 10th.

We are looking for volunteers to attend games, transport panellists and more. Email Alex for details if you’re available on Saturday. 10 hours of volunteer time in 2014 make you eligible for Hand Eye Society membership in 2015.


Comics vs Games Talks Schedule

12pm-1pm: Surprise Guest (TBA) 
A  conversation on comics and interactivity with a surprise guest.  Sorry folks, we’re keeping this one under-wraps till next week!

1pm – 2pm: The Last of Us – Making American Dreams
Faith Erin Hicks
Ignoring the usual cookie cutter approach to licensed videogame comics the The Last of Us’s creative director Neil Druckman tapped comic creator Faith Erin Hicks to co-create their prequel comic “American Dreams”. The characters and locations from the comic have gone on to influenced both the game and its DLC “Left Behind” in ways both subtle and significant. In this talk Faith Erin Hicks discusses this unique collaboration between an AAA game studio and independent comic creator.

2pm – 3pm: Play my Life – Autobiographical Comics and Games
David S Gallant, merritt kopas, Annie Mok, Kelly Phillips with moderator Soha Kareem
While comics have a long history of autobiographical work, this is an area that game creators have only recently started to explore, creating works ranging from the intensely personal to the intentionally banal. In this panel, creators from both mediums discuss the similarities and differences in how they approach real-life personal themes and narratives in their work.

3pm – 4pm: Putting Pixels on Paper – Game Zine Revolution
Elizabeth Simins, Ashley Davis, Mathew Kumar, Matt Hawkins with moderator Adam Hines
At the same time as traditional game magazines are dying off, the last few years have seen a videogame zine renaissance. Featuring critical and personal writing on games, fan comics and illustrations and taking forms ranging from hand bound silk screen art objects to glossy full colour magazines. Our panel of experts discuss their own zine work, the movement in general and why physical zines are important in a time when publishing online has never been easier.

 4pm-  5pm: Furnishing Gone Home – Creating a House That Tells a Story
Kate Craig
Comic creator and game artist Kate Craig talks through the creation of the mansion in the award-winning story exploration game Gone Home, revealing how she helped tell the game’s central story of love and self discovery visually, through individually crafted environments and found objects.

5pm – 6pm: The Yawhg Post Mortem – Crafting A Multiplayer Choose Your Own Adventure.
Damian Sommer and Emily Carroll
Originally created as a jam game for the first year of Comics vs Games, the Yawhg went on to be developed into a full commercial release nominated for multiple Independent Games Festival awards. Game developer Damian Sommer and comic creator Emily Carroll discuss the creation of their darkly humorous multiplayer narrative game.

6pm-7pm: Out of Order – Playing with Sequential Art in Framed
Joshua Boggs
Will Eisner and Scott McCloud define comics as “Sequential Art”, but what happens when you make a game around re-arranging that sequence? Josh discusses the effects of creating a “comic-book-game” that plays with the order of events, from both a game and narrative design standpoint.


Last Year’s Comics vs Games Panel

For those who missed last year’s Comics vs Games Panel here’s the full video with panellists:
Scott Campbell (Doublefine, The Art of Brutal Legend)
Bryan Lee O’Malley (Scott Pilgrim)
Benjamin Rivers (Snow, Home)
Jim Zub (Skullkickers, Street Fighter HD Remix)
Moderated by Miguel Sternberg (They Bleed Pixels)

Here’s the full video. If you just want to listen here’s an MP3 of the audio.


In other Comics vs Games news…

Joshua Boggs of Love Shack Entertainment will be at the Comics vs Games Showcase (located on the second floor of TCAF) on Sunday!  He’ll be showing off a new version of Framed, which you may remember as one of the interactive comic/game hybrids we featured last year.  He’s visiting all the way from Australia so this is a rare chance to preview Framed and meet one of its creators!

Also a reminder that Thursday May 8th is the Comics vs Games 3D + VRcade Opening Party at Bento Miso!  Your first chance to see the amazing 3D artwork Attract Mode have curated for this year’s gallery show. Plus games, music food and beer! Advance tickets and more info here:

More Comics vs Games news coming next week.  In the meantime you can get info on all the Comics vs Games events on the TCAF website.

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.

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