EBExpo 2013: The Future of the Australian Gaming Industry
Let's be honest for a second. The Australian gaming industry hasn't been doing well for the past decade. Despite contrary claims that everything was perfectly fine, Australian studios were essentially relegated to nothing more than port jobs or developing existing intellectual properties. Any studio that was developing an original concept was doomed for failure.
With the advent of the then 'next-generation' consoles in the form of the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3, development costs shot through the roof, many studios closed their doors and many people were placed back in the unemployment line. With so many skilled individuals leaving the country in order to find not only work but success, is it any wonder why no one really cared about the industry here?
Over the past few years something exciting has been emerging. Affordable gaming engines in the form of Unity and the prospect of open platforms have invigorated individuals of varying skill sets to band together and form their own small teams. Major educational institutions are taking game development seriously and providing eager students a place to hone their craft. Now more than any other time in Australian history the game development scene is booming at an exponential rate.
At last years' EB Expo the Home Grown Gaming area was pretty unimpressive. A dodgy tent placed far from the main exhibition halls ensured that only those who were interested in the emerging scene would discover the raw skill of up-and-coming developers. Inside, most of the space was dedicated to E-Sport LAN events and Cosplay competitions. Foot-traffic was low and exposure for these individuals was lower.
That all changed this year. The Home Grown Gaming section was placed inside the main halls and was larger than I had ever seen it. Developers of all ages, skills and experience banded together and helped each other out wherever possible. Foot-traffic was at an all time high and the exposure these individuals received was nothing short of inspiring. For the first time in a very long time, I got to watch the future of the Australian gaming industry boom right before my very eyes and I loved every single second of it.
We here at the Mind of Klink are complete amateurs; we slur, we mumble and we clearly aren't made for prime time television. Nevertheless we grabbed our camera, our big-ass bright light and our microphone recorders and began interviewing as many developers as we could find. Even then we still missed a few developers and for that I would like to take this moment to offer my sincerest apologies.
In the twenty six videos below you will see not only some amazing games in the works but get to see the faces and raw skill of the people who will shape the future of this industry. I wish all the developers the best of luck in their efforts and I hope they find success in their games. These are the people who deserve it most.
NOTICE TO FIREFOX USERS: Firefox is having trouble rendering the iFrames for the Youtube videos. Please click here to view the playlist on Youtube.
Super Mega Mega
NOTE: First 10 seconds of the interview and I cocked up the studio name. It's Blunt Instrument, not Blunt Industries. My Apologies.
Blunt Instrument Official Site | Super Mega Mega Dev Blog | Oculus VR Store
Devolution and Jelly
NOTE: We forgot to record footage of Jelly. Oops. :(
Liz Threlfo Official Site | One Game A Month | Game Jolt
NOTE: There are some major audio issues towards the end of the video. We sacrificed audio quality in order to understand what was being said.
Quantum Shade Interactive | Protocol E
SeeThrough Studios Official Site | Particulars (with Demo) | Vote for Particulars on Steam Greenlight!
OTTTD (Over-the-Top Tower Defense)
NOTE: My apologies to Patrick for forgetting his name at the beginning of the video. I'm also sorry for screwing up the acronym.
SMG Studios Official Site | Twitter | Facebook
PixelPickle Official Site
Clicktraption and InconSpyCuous
Cardboard Keep Official Site | Clicktraption on Kongregate | InconSpyCuous Download
Confused Origami Official Site | SkyTank
IntrensiQ Official Site | Glide Site
Beer Mogul Official Site | Formula Legend
NOTE: We forgot to record footage of Tapshot. Have an extended interview instead. :P
Game-Synesthesia Official Site | Game-Synesthesia Facebook
Eternal Pain Official Site | Download Eternal Pain
Unhack and Bermuda
Invert Mouse Official Site | Play Unhack | Vote for Unhack on Steam Greenlight! | Bermuda Official Site
Outpost Software Official Site | Download and Play Outpost
Rumble Academy and Little Wings
NOTE: We forgot to record footage of Little Wings. We got too distracted by Rumble Academy.
Big Paw Games Official Site | Rumble Academy | Little Wings
Wildgrass Games Official Site | Pandamonium Download
Injoy Labs Facebook
Evil Aliens Official Site | Play Orbitor | Vote for Orbitor on Steam Greenlight!
NOTE: There are a few audio issues within the video. My apologies.
Spaceberg Official and Download
Wicked Witch Official Site | Catapult King Official Site
Blast 'em Bunnies and Cubemen 2
NOTE: We forgot to record footage of both Blast 'em Bunnies and Cubemen 2 so we used footage from their respective trailers. My sincerest apologies to both Nic and Seon.
Nnooo Official Site | Blast 'em Bunnies Official | 3 Sprockets Official Site | Cubemen 2 Official
Playground Heroes Official Site | Voxel Nova Official
Natz and Bolts
Natz and Bolts Official Site
Clockwork Interactive Official Site
A New Universe
3Fault Official Site
NOTE: This interview started before we actually recorded. Time was running short so we didn't get to do an introduction.
Oculus Developer Forum
On behalf of everyone here at the Mind of Klink I would like to extend a very special thanks to every developer we met at the EB Expo. Each and every single one of you were very welcoming and made us feel comfortable even with our inexperience.
I would also like to thank the organisers of the EB Expo for providing a place for these developers to show off their works and gain some much needed exposure.
Finally, I would like to thank Double Fine Productions for creating the awesome game Dropchord whose music I unceremoniously used for these videos.
Listen to Dropchord on Youtube | Buy the Soundtrack
See you next year!