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Grants will send three Dunedin game devs to San Francisco

(Dunedin, 23 December 2019) The Dunedin-based New Zealand Centre of Digital Excellence (CODE), in partnership with the New Zealand Game Developers Association (NZGDA), has awarded three $5000 travel grants to Dunedin-based game developers to attend the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, California in March 2020.

The CODE grants, included as part of the NZGDA’s annual scholarship programme, were awarded to Seth Corbett-Davies, Aditia Hasib and Georgia Blake.

The Game Developers Conference is the game industry's premier professional event, bringing the game development community together to exchange ideas, solve problems, and shape the future of the industry. With over 25,000 attendees the conference attracts high calibre creatives and investors including programmers, artists, producers, game designers, audio professionals, and business leaders.

CODE Working Group and NZGDA Board member, Tim Ponting, says attending the conference is an exciting opportunity for the three Dunedin-based game developers.

“Seth, Aditia and Georgia will each gain substantial professional development in San Francisco which they can share with the Dunedin game development community on their return. This will not only benefit them directly as developers, it will also benefit the wider Dunedin game development industry and economy. The CODE Working Group is especially pleased to be able to support this so early in CODE’s establishment period.”

Grant recipient, Aditia Hasib, a Community Manager at Dunedin-based game development company Runaway, says she is particularly looking forward to attending talks and panels at the conference relating to community management, marketing, narrative design, and free-to-play mobile games.

“I’m also looking forward to connecting with other community managers to gain insight into the way they approach areas of interest related to community management - for example, how they approach growing a community, dealing with difficult community members or strategies they implement.”

Ms Hasib said attending the conference would provide her with skills directly beneficial to the Dunedin and New Zealand games industry.
“Any skills acquired will be incorporated into my work at Runaway, and these will also be beneficial to the wider community within the Dunedin and New Zealand games industry, as I can share them at game development meetups. I can also help grow the industry by providing talks on the knowledge gained at the conference to students interested in the games industry.”

NZ Game Developers Association Chairperson, Cassandra Gray, says 24 people from Dunedin applied for the CODE grants, which were particularly focused on supporting Dunedin people who are from underrepresented groups in the industry - including Māori, women, youth, and age diverse people.

“We’re really excited for Seth, Aditia and Georgia. The conference is a great event for the industry, and we know from experience that people who attend add real value to the local and national industry when they return.”

For further information on CODE, go to:
https://www.dunedinnz.com/CODE/code-news

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