by Dries De Roeck on February 22, 2016

The past two days I spent quite some hours at Screenshake, the indie game gathering in Antwerp – organised by The House of Indie. Last year’s Screenshake was good already, but looking back at the 2016 edition – the organisation stepped up their game quite a bit.

Generally speaking, the reason that I like this event is that it is so crossover in every way. Disregarding the content, the indie game community is so very very nice to hang around. No one expects anything, if you want to engage you can – if you don’t no one will question that either. Less façades, more heart.

I very much appreciate diving into a community I have a lot of respect for, that I do not really know in depth, but somehow feel related to. It also feels nice to not meet the same people at screenshake that I already meet at other events. New faces, fresh views.

What I will remember and re-use in my own work

My key insight of Screenshake16 was without any doubt Lana Polansky‘s statement:

This totally resonates with me, and it frames the move away from games of studios like Tale of Tales rather well. The statement goes a lot deeper too, and does not limit itself to games vs. art. I might as well replace this with ‘The scientific research vs. art discussion is a sham’ – which very much relates to my own work. Lana’s talk was packed with references and insights I still need to process, this talk felt like a goldmine of inspiration … I just need to start building my shaft.

Besides Lana’s talk, I got totally inspired by Paolo Pedercini. His deconstruction of SimCity and links made to systems thinking and ‘smart’ cities allowed me to look at my own work from a totally different perspective. I very much liked Paolo’s way of providing answers or strands of thought on how capitalism based algorithms (such as Sim City’s) can be approached in different ways. Game-like experiences as explorations of thought.

The one speaker I was looking forward to since he was announced was Ste Curran. He totally captivated me at Screenshake15, so my expectations where high. Ste brings a talk in an extremely interesting format, being something in between a story, a theater play and a regular talk. This ‘package’ is delivered with such honesty and authenticity that it is plainly beautiful. What stuck with me from Ste’s talk is being more conscious about the relation between the heart and the face, which very much links back to ‘dropping all facades’ I mentioned before.

More highlights & insights

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