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Scottish Games Week will take place for the first time from October 24 to October 28 to highlight Scotland’s game industry.

The weeklong Scotland-wide series of events will focus upon video games, with support from the Scottish governments will take place from October 24th-28th 2022.

Created and organized by the Scottish Games Network, with support from the Scottish Government’s Tech Ecosystem Review (STER) fund, Scottish Games Week will position the sector as a key part of Scotland’s digital future.

It seems like it’s about time for this to happen, as Scotland has a thriving games industry and it’s always interesting to highlight local game creators on the world stage. It’s one more example of the worldwide reach of the games economy.

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Focusing on design, development, publishing, education, and the application of games, the event series will showcase Scotland’s pioneering and diverse games ecosystem and act as a catalyst for a more connected and collaborative sector across Scotland, the United Kingdom and internationally.

In 2021 the global games industry was worth a staggering $192.7 billion, according to market researcher Newzoo. It eclipsed many of the other key digital sectors such as cyber, data, AI, fintech and the Internet of Things (IoT).

Scotland has played a pioneering role in the evolution of the games sector since the late 1980s and continues to produce some of the world’s most popular games, including Grand Theft Auto and Minecraft.

The program for Scottish Games Week will take place across the whole of Scotland, with events being planned in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Dundee, as well as the Highlands and Islands and Scottish Borders.

“Scotland is home to an incredible games ecosystem,” said Brian Baglow, director of the Scottish Games Network, in a statement. “We have over 300 developers and creators across the country, from the largest studios, to part-time indie developers. Eleven colleges and seven universities in Scotland are producing graduates with games design, development and production skills.”

Scottish Games Week events

Scottish Games Week is happening in October.

The events will include:

  • More Than Games – An event designed for a non-games audience, to help explain the transformative potential of the tools, technologies and techniques from gaming to other digital tech sectors, the wider creative industries, education, healthcare, the media and beyond.
  • Education Symposium – With eleven colleges and seven universities producing graduates with skills in game design, development and production, Scotland’s talent pipeline is world class. In the first event of its kind, the symposium will bring together educators and stakeholders from across the education and academic landscape.
  • Scottish Games Week Conference – A two-day industry conference in Dundee, the heart of Scotland’s gaming heritage, focusing on the cutting edge of game design, development, publishing, funding, and more.
  • Scottish Games Awards – The first ever Scottish Games Awards will recognise, reward and highlight the incredible creativity, technical expertise, business acumen and pioneering work being carried out across the country’s rapidly evolving games sector.
  • Satellite Events – The programme will also include several events across the whole of Scotland, from the highlands and islands to the borders, focusing on local clusters and topics relevant to each region.

Scottish Games Week will bring together game developers, publishers and educators as well as the broader games tech ecosystem and streamers. All of the events will be hybrid, offering the opportunity to attend in-person, or join an online stream to put games created in Scotland in front of a global audience.

“The games sector proved to be not just resilient to COVID-19, it positively boomed. In 2022 the global games market is projected to exceed $200 billion dollars for the first time,” Baglow said. “Scotland’s games industry is the country’s secret weapon. The games ecosystem is far larger and more complex than anyone gives it credit for, with much to offer the wider creative industries, as well as other areas of the digital technology sector.”

He added, “Scottish Games Week will give this incredible ecosystem a global platform, showcasing, highlighting and supporting the incredible work being produced here in Scotland, as well as exploring all of the ways in which the tools, technologies and techniques from games can be utilised in everything from education, to healthcare and Scotland’s future as a digital society.”

Scotland’s finance and economy secretary Kate Forbes said in a statement: “Scottish Games Week builds on the industry’s reputation thanks to advances made in centers of excellence for the sector like Edinburgh and Dundee. The games industry will play a key part in Scotland’s digital future and in our economy as a whole and is receiving continued Scottish Government support through the Scottish Tech Ecosystem Fund. The Fund is providing support for organizations to deliver meetups and events like Scottish Games Week – which create the best environment for entrepreneurs to succeed.”

The development of Scottish Games Week is supported by an independent steering committee representative of the diverse ecosystem the event aims to serve. Members include: Louise Blain (journalist & DJ), Dr. Amanda Ford (West College Scotland), William Huber (Abertay University), Joanne Lacey (AdInMo), Gary Penn (Denki), Nazan Ünlütürk (Zappaty) and Jim Woods (Sumo Digital).

Louise Blain, journalist and BBC broadcaster, said in a statement: “Games are the most successful entertainment medium in the world but people just don’t know Scotland’s part in that story in 2022. I’m thrilled to be heading up the Scottish Games Awards jury to recognize Scotland’s talent and, importantly, show it off on the world’s stage.”

Anyone interested in being part of the program, attending or sponsoring any of the events should contact the SGW team at: hello@gamesweek.scot

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