Our FGS 2011 Takeaways
All the talks and panels put on my professionals in the web and mobile industry were one thing, but the sheer amount of creative individuals all mingling in one location was another. We all made several acquaintances while at the Flash Gaming Summit, and even a few friends. We ran into some friends from Vancouver as well as some unexpected online friends from the game development community as well! One of the great things about the Flash Gaming Summit is that there isn’t anything quite like it, so when the Summit comes around, the most amazing people, independent and industry alike, are there to talk and share ideas.
Nick: The Flash Gaming Summit was one of the biggest highlights of my entire week-long GDC trip. Being a Flash developer, the one-day event held the most relevance to me, and I made a ton of invaluable contacts within the field. I had a great time, learned a lot, made friends and will definitely be going back next year!
Ola: The FGS kicked some major butt and then some! Near the beginning I remember myself saying, “wow, I suspect this will be the highlight of the week”, and it totally was. Everything was so well organized, and easy to navigate. Also, it made Flash developers feel needed and appreciated. The GDC was cool in its own way, but made you feel like a much smaller fish in an ocean. The concentration of useful contacts as the FGS was ridiculously awesome. Also, having the after-party mixer right in the building was a big plus! Pretty much the only negative was how expensive it was to park my Copper Stallion near the conference.
Chevy: Just seeing all the Mochi crew running around busy, but still excited and happy, was indication enough that the FGS was a success this year. The sold out event was an amazing experience for me not to be replaced. One of the most defining moments for me was when I approached Chris Benjaminsen, founder of Player.IO, an online resource for developing online multiplayer Flash games; I complimented their library and documentation, saying how easy it was for me to pick up Flash networking because of their website. Not moments later one of the developers of PushButton Engine, Ben Garney, popped into the conversation as well (actually I think I interrupted him talking to Chris initially!) Pretty soon I was eating lunch with these two, the developer of AS3IsoLib (for building isometric games) and a bunch of other developers tossing ideas back and forth. So here I am, the developer of FlashPunk, having lunch with the developers of some of the most popular free Flash game engines online, in San Francisco. Not because I’m anybody special, but because everybody is there for the same purpose: to connect to other developers, get feedback on their own projects, and also get inspiration from the community for what they may do next and make some friends.
It’s sad to be back home now, I wish the Summit could happen every month instead of just once a year. Thankfully, I came home with a wad of cool business cards and am promptly getting back in touch with all these folks to keep chatting and see what the future holds for Flash games and tool development. We will all definitely be return attendees for next year’s Flash Gaming Summit, and one or two of us may even have entries in the main game competition- but you can count on us dragging along more people as well for the event, so I hope there is extra seating next year!