Success of Digital Dragons 2016!

Success of Digital Dragons 2016!

The jubilee 5th round of the Digital Dragons attracted over 1300 participants from 30 countries to Kraków. For two days, the capital of Małopolska became the centre of the video games world and the electronic entertainment sector.

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The Digital Dragons Awards were presented for the best games of 2015 during the event, which has earned itself a permanent place in the agendas of leading game developers and producers. For the first time, the main partner of the conference was Małopolska Region.

During two days, Kraków’s Old Tram Depot and the Museum of Municipal Engineering, provided the stage for 71 lectures and presentations by world-class specialists in various fields connected to the production, development, and marketing of videogames. The lectures by the brightest stars of the event – John Romero, Chris Avellone, Feargus Urquhart, and David Brevik – enjoyed great popularity, yet crowds arrived in the lecture halls also during the addresses by Polish developers, which corroborates the power and popularity of Polish games sector growing from year to year. Altogether, in the two days of the Digital Dragons, the participants listened to nearly 3200 minutes of talks and lectures.

A special guest of the Digital Dragons 2016 was Prime Minister Jarosław Gowin. Held during the event was a press conference with participation of Jarosław Gowin, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education and Higher Education. The conference entitled Let’s Play Innovation: Millions for the Support of the Polish Games Sector addressed among others GAMEINN, a sectoral program addressed to the games industry that the National Centre for Research and Development (NCBiR) announced two weeks ago.

For years, the Digital Dragons Awards presentation ceremony has been one of the most important elements of the Kraków event. The awards are presented for the best productions of the previous year. In 2016, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt proved absolutely beyond match, winning four statuettes in Best Polish Game, Best Polish Game Art, Best Polish Game Audio, and Best Polish Game Design categories. The winner in the Best Polish Mobile Game category was This War of Mine produced by 11bit Studios, and the title of the Best Foreign Game was awarded to Life is Strange, a production of Dontnod Entertainment studio. Two special awards were also presented: Małopolska Game Award to Bloober Team for their exceptional contribution to the development of the sector in the region, and Michał Madej from CD Projekt RED was recognised for special contribution to the Polish gamedev. The partner of the gala was G2A.com.

The Digital Dragons was also an opportunity to run another round of the Indie Showcase for independent game developers. This year’s rivalry stood at a very high level, which was jointly emphasised by both conference participants and representatives of the jury evaluating the projects. Among the 60 projects submitted, it was a simulator of the emergency number operator, 911 Operator developed by Jutsu Games, that proved the winner. Besides the statuettes for the best game of the Indie Showcase, the creative artists left Kraków with PLN 10,000 from the Municipality of Kraków in their pocket, and an Oculus Rift from 11bit Studios, sponsor of the Indie Showcase. The runner-up was Crush Your Enemies from Vile Monarch studio, while Book of Demons from Thing Trunk ranked as third. Community Vote Award went into the hands of Space Boat Studios for Out of Reach. It is worth emphasising that nearly 3000 votes were cast in the online plebiscite.

Another great tractor during the Digital Dragons was the tent of Techland, one of the main partners of the event. Set up in the courtyard of the Old Tram Depot, it attracted developers and conference participants, giving them a short break opportunity, and inviting to participate in numerous competitions and meetings with developers working on Dying Light, the latest hit of the Wrocław-based studio. Techland also used the Kraków event for recruitment, actively seeking personnel for the two AAA productions announced in Kraków and developed at the Wrocław HQ of the company, with the total budget of PLN 300 million.

This year again a session of VC Speed Networking was organised during the Digital Dragons. During the short, two-minute presentations, the participants tried to attract the interest of representatives of 10 investment funds with their game-related projects. A regular element of the conference, the networking sessions enjoy an ever greater popularity, as proved, among others, by the growing number of potential investors participating in the event.

The Digital Dragons continues to develop, following the expectations of game developers. The Kraków Technology Park (KTP) persistently supports the development of this innovative sector of Polish economy.

20|05|2016
Source: KPT

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