Swedish Trip Recap

I recently returned from my whirlwind tour of Sweden. The main reason for the trip was to speak at the Swedish Game Conference in Skövde. I figured it would also be a great opportunity to stop over to Stockholm and catch up with a bunch of ex-Grin friends, and meet some new people.

Skövde (pronounced Hoo-eh-veh-deh) is located between Gothenberg and Stockholm. It’s the home of Gothia Science Park (not Goth Science Park, which I’m sure is where they cooked up the concept for Twilight) which is a University, science center, and incubation center https://experience.tripster.ru/experience/Zheleznovodsk/sights/. It’s basically a school where students learn about game development, and then can continue their studies and start companies with a great support structure.

The Swedish Game Conference was the first edition of this new get together. It was an opportunity to feature the facilities of the GSP, and gather a bunch of talented speakers and skilled students under once roof.

The speakers were very impressive. The keynote speaker was Stefan Lampinen, a seasoned industry veteran and global market insider when it comes to games. He’s even been hired by ex-MI6 agents, FFS!

I had the pleasure of following his talk, which i will post a blog overviewing my full talk another time. It got some pretty good reactions, but i think that’s only because I had bikini-clad Swedish women in my presentation.

After me, Tabitha Hayes who is in charge of Marketing for the Need for Speed franchise did a great talk about the top ten things to keep in mind when your studio is looking into the Marketing aspect of the project. She was also responsible for developing the marketing strategy for Call of Duty going into Modern Warfare 2, and shared some great war stories about those days in the trenches.

Craig Howe was up next, with a discussion about how to create social media buzz for your game. Craig was previously in marketing at EA, but founded his company RocketXL which is hired by Fortune 500 companies to develop social media strategies for them. He walked the crowd through all kinds of great insights, and featured some great examples of creating buzz (Warioware’s Shake YouTube campaign, the Old Spice campaign) and examples of completely missing the point (Dante’s Inferno deadly sins social buzz campaign).

To wrap up the day, Tom Russo, everyone’s favorite insightful press guy, closed it down. He gave pointers on how to butter up the press, conduct on-camera interviews, and talked about his career highlights and lowlights when it came to the press side of things.

After the show, there was a large dinner hosted by the school for most of the students and speakers. During the day and throughout the dinner, I had a chance to meet with all kinds of students and start up companies. One of the things about my new company Beefy Media at i am so passionate about is providing advice for the smaller companies that don’t know where to start. I met with and discussed strategy with multiple companies, and really enjoyed seeing what they had created and hear about their plans.

Once the conference was wrapped, I headed up to Stockholm to meet up with some friends, colleagues and clients to get down to business.

I’m working with 2 different teams in Stockholm – Might & Delight and Whiteout. Both teams were formed out of the dissolution of Grin, and both teams are working on new IPs trying to get deals with Publishers.

As i mentioned earlier, I’m really passionate about working with developers to help them through the overwhelming process of creating an idea, getting it in front of people, and getting a contract to create that game.

I spent over a day with each team, and we had a fantastic time creating, refining, brainstorming, and planning. I can’t wait to talk more about the projects at both teams are working on, and so far it’s been an absolute blast. I even got a chance to host a live uStream session with the Might & Delight crew, which I want to try to do more of in the future.

There was also a great dinner catching up with my old brothers-in-arms, Bo & Ulf Andersson, the two brother/founders of Grin, and Mikael Nermark from Starbreeze (also worked at Grin). It was really great to meet up with those guys, they are all doing really well on their new ventures, and i can’t wait to hear more about all of ‘em!

Thanks to everyone that was a great host in Sweden, and especially the guys from various sites and Twitter that reached out to say hi! We’re in a new age of digital entertainment and social interaction, and it excites me to experience this and see the evolution of the industry while experiencing it on the front lines.

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About the author

adamboyes - Adam Boyes is a 15 year game industry veteran who has specialized in Production and Business Development. He has held positions such as Executive Producer at Midway and most recently he ran the Product Development group at Capcom US.

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