At our sixth annual GamesBeat 2014 this year, we are trying an experiment called GamesBeat University (GBU). It’s like a conference within a conference taking place at the same time as GamesBeat 2014 on Monday Sept. 15 and Tuesday Sept. 16 at the Parc 55 Wyndham hotel in San Francisco. The speakers in this side convention will offer tips, tricks, and practical advice for game makers and others in the industry.

Jeff Green of Hit Detection

Above: Jeff Green of Hit Detection.

Image Credit: Jeff Green

While the main stage features well-known executives talking about their high-level vision, the GBU talks are about helping you run a game business. The sessions are consistent with our theme of “Total World Domination” — or global gaming. Consultant Michael Ehrenberg will host a must-attend lecture on how to pitch your project to Apple and get a feature in the App Store, which can make or break a title. In another talk, Matt Higby of Sony Online Entertainment will discuss his own experience as a creative director. He’ll offer practical advice on how to deal with online harassment — an increasingly volatile and, unfortunately, common problem in gaming.

You can check out the full GamesBeat University 2014 agenda here. It’s packed with 20 solo talks from experts on a variety of topics. Our emcees include Jeff Green, consultant for Hit Detection; Margaret Wallace, CEO of Playmatics; and Joseph Olin, CEO of It’s a Secret. Developers are our target, but anyone attending the conference can go.

GBU will run from 11 a.m. until 5:10 p.m. on Monday, at the same time as the main-stage talks. It will pick up again at 10 a.m. Tuesday and run through 2:50 p.m. GamesBeat attendees will have a choice about which sessions to attend.


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GamesBeat University

Above: Be sure to check out GamesBeat University.

Image Credit: VentureBeat

Here’s the rundown of the talks:

Monday, Sept. 15

Emcee: Jeff Green

11:00 a.m. — Cass Phillips, game designer at Pocket Gems, on turning a community into creators.

11:20 a.m. — Michael Ehrenberg, consultant and former App Store marketing manager, on pitching your game to Apple

11:40 a.m. — Jim Ying, head of publishing at Tango, on getting noticed by a $25 million global games fund

12:00 p.m. — Jesse Pujji, CEO of Ampush, on getting the best lifetime value return out of your best customers

1:30 p.m. — Oliver Miao, CEO of Pixelberry Studios, and Janis Zech, co-founder of Fyber, on monetization and doing good

1:50 p.m. — Terry Angelos, chief product officer at TrialPay, on cross-platform development in a mobile world

2:10 p.m. — Alina Soltys, senior analyst at The Corum Group, on gaming M&A hitting high scores

Emcee: Margaret Wallace

2:40 p.m. to 3:40 p.m. — Jay Eum moderates a breakout panel on partnering with Asian giants: How to ride on their shoulders without getting trampled.

4:10 p.m. — Beth Kindig, senior manager of developer relations at Vserv.Mobi, on game markets beyond China and the U.S.

4:30 p.m. — Gil Shoham, CEO of Supersonic, on his love/hate relationship with advertising

4:50 p.m. — Shai Magzimof, CEO of Nextpeer, on adding a social layer to games

Tuesday, Sept. 16

Emcee: Joseph Olin

Joseph Olin

Above: Joseph Olin, CEO of It’s a Secret.

10:00 a.m. — Tushar Makhija, head of business development at Helpshift, on mobile-game customer relationship management

10:20 a.m. — “Cymatic” Bruce Wooden, developer and community relations head at AltspaceVR, on how virtual reality will change multiplayer gaming

11:10 a.m. — Mark Robinson, CEO of DeltaDNA, on Analytics 3.0, or maximizing real insight and action from your player data

11:30 a.m. — Rick Sanchez, vice president of product and marketing at OnLive, on the myths and facts of cloud gaming

1:30 p.m. — Paul Thind, head of business development for gaming at InMobi, on maximizing monetization without going too far

1:50 p.m. — Henry Lowelfels, head of developer relations at Scopely, on how to decide if you need a game publisher

2:10 p.m. — Matt Higby, creative director for PlanetSide 2 at Sony Online Entertainment, on tips for handling online harassment

2:30 p.m. — Roger Roman, chief operating officer at Visionary Works, on how to engage millennials, the largest consumer generation ever

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We expect to have more than 100 speakers at the event.

margaret wallace

Above: Margaret Wallace, CEO of Playmatics.

Image Credit: Dean Takahashi

Each year, GamesBeat follows a big trend. In 2009, we focused on how “All the World’s a Game” with gaming’s explosion on the global stage. In 2010, GamesBeat@GDC focused on “Disruption 2.0.” In 2011, our theme was “Mobile Games Level Up,” focusing on the busy intersection of games and mobile technology. In 2012, we explored the “Crossover Era,” covering the time when so many big game companies and start-ups were transforming themselves by expanding from one market to the next. Last year, we talked about the “Battle Royal,” as barriers between the different industry segments came down. Now, in the bid for “Total World Domination,” the competition to become the biggest global gaming company is wide open.

As companies adapt, we’re witnessing disruption, change, consolidation, innovation, and the arrival of big money. Billions of dollars are at stake. Last year, more than 550 notables from throughout the industry — social, mobile, online, PC, and console — attended the event. Please join us.

This year, we’ll see the return of our contest for the best gaming start-up. The attention that these companies get for speaking onstage and winning the event is invaluable. An all-star panel of judges will pick the most promising entry based on freshness, innovation, and potential for business success. The top nominees will appear onstage, and the judges will pick the winner at the event.

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Here’s what a couple of game industry leaders said about last year’s event:

“Thanks for the contributions GamesBeat has made for this industry.” — Bing Gordon, a partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers.

“It’s really refreshing listening to the cutting-edge innovation that is happening in the industry. I’m learning so much by being here.” –– Mike Gallagher, the president of the Entertainment Software Association.

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Thanks to the following industry leaders for supporting GamesBeat 2014: NativeX as Corporate Partner; Tapjoy, Criteo, and SupersonicAds as Gold Partners; TrialPay, InMobi, deltaDNA, and TapSense as Silver Partners; Fyber, LifeStreet Media, SGN, Funplus, AppLift, Upsight, HelpshiftPersonagraph, OnLive, Ampush, and Trumaker as Event Partners; PwnitNudge, and VisiSonics as Nest Partners.


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