Speaker line-up Dutch Game Day revealed

Dutch Game Day powered by Control has now published their complete schedule online! The Dutch Game Day powered by Control is a cooperation between Dutch Media Week, the Dutch Games Association and game development magazine Control. The event consists of a two track conference with speakers from The Netherlands and abroad. The event takes place on 6 October 2022, at Beeld & Geluid in Hilversum.

The entire Dutch Game Day speaker line up has been revealed. We have added all the speakers below in this article, but please also make sure to checkout out the conference website for the information on all sessions.

Tickets are still available via our Eventbrite page. Get them now!
(DGA Members get a discount on their Combi-tickets with the Dutch Game Awards, or on Dutch Game Awards tickets. Send an email to get the discount link or check our #dga-members thread in de Dutch Game Industry Slack. Not a member yet? Register here)

Speakers Dutch Game Day

Stefan Ideler is CTO at hosting company i3D.net. In that role, he has worked on scaling countless AAA multiplayer games to millions of players worldwide, including games from the franchises The Division and Rocket League. The right hosting infrastructure is critical to the long-term success of your game. Ideler knows from experience the challenges this presents. Whether it’s protecting against DDoS attacks, preventing cheats, or other issues a developer must consider when developing multiplayer games. In his Dutch Game Day talk, he discusses how to address these challenges.

Elisa Farinetti is co-founder and business developer at Broken Arms Games studio. She is passionate about technology and games, and she is a firm believer in sharing information so that indie developers can benefit from the experiences of other devs. At Dutch Game Day, Farinetti shares the post-release strategy Broken Arms Games had for Hundred Days – Winemaking Simulator. She talks about what they did to get the most out of the game for a year.

Developer Lee Hammoud has over seven years of experience with Unreal Engine, working on several indie games over this span, including his solo project Psychoverse City and VR game Soar. Through his participation in some 20 game jams, Hammoud has learned how to quickly prototype. In his Dutch Game Day talk, he talks about how to speed up prototyping. Hammoud also shows the pitfalls that can cause your rapid prototyping to go wrong. Finally, he talks about how approaching this type of rapid development has affected his ability to finish games.

Solo developer Tomas Sala released his first solo game, The Falconeer, at the end of November. Currently, Sala is working on the second game in The Falconeer world: Bulwark. Almost a decade ago, Sala decided to limit himself by creating only game art without the use of textures. A design process of limitations and restrictions offers technical challenges, but can also be a source of inspiration. In his Dutch Game Day talk, he talks about how creative limitations have become the basis for his design choices.

Tymon Smektala is an active member of the games industry for more than two decades. First in journalism, later in development. After switching careers to game development joined Techland where he took the role of a game designer on Dying Light, followed by assignments as a lead game designer on Dying Light: The Following and Dying Light 2 Stay Human. Creating a sequel to a highly successful game is never easy – especially when the studio’s goal is to do more than just a simple “bigger, better and with more explosions”. The talk will explain some of the decisions the team took while designing Dying Light 2 Stay Human, from the game’s inception, through its development, to some hair-raising moments right before the launch!

Rami Ismail is a Dutch-Egyptian independent games & tool developer with over 20 titles across PC, console, web, and mobile. The co-founder of the influential now-retired indie games studio Vlambeer, Rami worked on award-winning and genre-defining games such as Ridiculous Fishing and Nuclear Throne. Rami will do a talk at the Dutch Game Day powered by Control. That we know for sure. But that’s about all we know. It could be a talk covering business advice or a Super Crate Box classic port mortem. Perhaps it will be a Q&A-session or a fire-side chat. And we would not be surprised if it turns out to be a rant on how we could be better as an industry. But whatever it will be, we are looking forward to it.

Founder and former publisher of Control, Matthijs Dierckx has left journalism behind some time ago. These days, Dierckx is behind a different kind of keyboard as a composer. Among other things, he composed the music for Unexplored 2: The Wayfarer’s Legacy. With that, he won a Dutch Game Award for Best Audio last year. Using the most popular song from Unexplored 2, composer Matthijs Dierckx explains in his Dutch Game Day talk how a composer can make your indie game sound like orchestras and choirs beyond your budget.

Manuel Kerssemakers, co-founder and tech-lead at Abbey Games, will give a unique insight into Abbey’s management game framework during Dutch Game Day. This allows them to work efficiently on complex projects with a small team. Kerssemakers shares the basics of the architecture and workflow Abbey uses to create large management games in Unity and C#. He shows that saving and loading are more than storing data. Think of it as a way to shape your game world.

Willem Hilhorst, Sound & Vision’s game expert, talks about their approach to archiving games in his Dutch Game Day talk. This session is intended to kick off an open conversation with the industry about how Sound & Vision can ensure that old games, and titles yet to come out, are preserved for posterity.

 

Mike Hergaarden has been working on games for 18 years and is running M2H together with brother Matt. He has a passion for multiplayer game development. In his talk Mike shares M2H’s story and lessons learned on their road from indie to AA. Over thirteen years ago M2H’s games reached quite some gamers already. But little did these players know that the online games were running on a PC in the attic of Mike’s parents’ house, standing on toilet rolls. Fast forward to 2022, M2H’s “WW1 Game Series” sold over two million units and was acquired as a “AA FPS series” by Focus Entertainment, one of the bigger game publishers.

Paweł Sasko started working in the gaming industry almost right away after high school and for the past 17 years created multiple games, while for 11 years works in CD Projekt RED. His talk contains the most important and universal Quest Design lessons, based on the 17 years of experience in video game industry of Paweł Sasko, illustrated by the examples from The Witcher 3 and Cyberpunk 2077. The session walks the audience through topics such as engagement with the story, the brevity of the narrative, designing for fun, creating emotional impact, structuring choices and consequences in non-linear stories, tackling and approaching novelty, production effectiveness, and more.

Richard Oud is the Studio Animation Director at Guerrilla, a PlayStation Studio based in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Joining the studio in 2007, his credits include Killzone 2, Killzone 3, Killzone: Shadow Fall as well as critically acclaimed action RPG’s Horizon Zero Dawn and its sequel Horizon Forbidden West. The animation team worked hard to produce new mechanics, features and enemies for Aloy’s new adventure in Horizon Forbidden West. In his talk, Richard will cover an in-depth look at the supporting animations and systems that drive these topics, ranging from player mechanics, human enemies and robotic creatures defining the core gameplay experience of Horizon Forbidden West.

Reza Hooshangi has been making games for more than a decade. He is currently working as creative director and narrative designer on an unannounced project. Before that, he was the technical lead for Children of Morta, the story-driven action RPG that recently sold for the millionth time. During Dutch Game Day, he talks about the challenges of combining procedurally generated content with narrative elements and storytelling. In this session, he talks about some of the systems, design choices and techniques they used to overcome those challenges.

Emrah Kara has been involved in digital distribution for several years. Currently as CEO of Amsterdam-based VaultN. This is a distribution platform for digital assets that allows developers, publishers and sellers to directly track and manage their products in real-time. While the sale of games today is mostly digital, on the back end the industry still operates as if we were selling a physical product, according to Kara. During his talk at Dutch Game Day, he shines his light on the problems developers and publishers are experiencing in digital distribution. Kara talks about his Eureka moment and explains what it will take to fix the market.

Esmeé van’t Hoff is one of the Organizers behind Wholesome Games, while also being a game developer herself; currently working on Tracks of Thought. For the longest time, the most critically acclaimed games have been the ones with the darkest themes and grimmest depictions of life— now there’s room at the table for developers who strive to do the opposite. Wholesome Games is an ever-growing platform focused on elevating these titles. In this talk Esmeé will be lifting the curtain on how Wholesome Games selects titles for its showcases, has grown its vibrant community to over 500k members, and how to connect with a gentle and compassionate audience.

Kela van der Deijl is a game developer and 3D artist, currently working on Mail Time. In her talk Kela will be deconstructing her strategy to developing, pitching and marketing Mail Time as well as how she’s been approaching building a network in the game industry when starting from scratch.

 

In addition, Dutch Game Garden and the Dutch Games Association again present the Games Monitor. Last April, Dutch Game Garden and the Dutch Games Association already presented an interim update of the Games Monitor. This year a full research has been done again on the state of the game industry. The Games Monitor looks at the trends and developments for applied and entertainment games in the Netherlands, such as the number of companies, jobs and game students. The report is presented every three years. During her presentation at the Dutch Game Day powered by Control, Christel van Grinsven, operations manager at Dutch Game Garden, shares the main results of the research conducted earlier this year.

Having joined EA’s XDI team in 2022, Juney Dijkstra was the first to be located in Europe, being based out of The Netherlands & supporting EA teams and partners with a European focus. She was formerly the Legacy Portfolio manager at Paradox Interactive, carrying full responsibility for all games no longer in active development. She started her career as the Lead Producer at Soedesco Publishing where she built the publishing pipeline & team for PC & console and supported the worldwide release of 50+ games digitally & at retail, while at the same time developing & running the in-house porting team. She also runs the Game Production Community Discord, a b2b production / project management / leadership community on a quest to plan better, lead better, and improve team health & happiness, through building a community of knowledge, discourse & support.
At Dutch Game Day Juney will host the Producer Panel: Elevating your team to the next level.

Originally from Canada, Rachel Schachter is a producer at the game development and porting studio Codeglue, in Rotterdam. Her experience includes working with multidisciplinary teams as a producer and project manager in various industries, such as, game development, online commerce, and analytics. Using both Scrum and Agile methods, she has helped teams increase efficiency and anticipate bottle necks in order to keep them productive and on track. Most recently she has worked on bringing the Shadowrun Trilogy to consoles.
At Dutch Game Day Rachel is part of the Producer Panel: Elevating your team to the next level.

Esmeralda Hoffman is a Producer at Silver Rain Games and is currently working on a very exciting unannounced EA Originals title. She has shipped multiple titles across all major platforms in development and publishing environments as a producer and product manager at 2K Games, Soedesco and Guerrilla Games. She has worked on titles such as Horizon Zero Dawn: The Frozen Wilds, Mafia: Definitive Edition, NBA 2K and Borderlands. Outside of her work at SR she focuses on player behavior within game communities and creating safer environments for marginalized folks within the industry. She believes that we can make for a better industry through compassion and radical change.
At Dutch Game Day Esmeralda is part of the Producer Panel: Elevating your team to the next level.

Astrid Huntjens is a Technical Art Producer at Guerrilla. Earlier this year she helped shipping Horizon Forbidden West, supporting the tech teams on the PS4 optimization and pushing the limits of the performance. Before diving into console development, she worked on a variety of content: from curating and publishing web/mobile games, producing VR/AR experiences, to external development. Whenever given the opportunity, she loves supporting initiatives that give a platform to (indie) developers less seen or heard.
At Dutch Game Day Astrid is part of the Producer Panel: Elevating your team to the next level.

 

Find the complete schedule of talks here: http://controlconference.com/sessions-2022/
Find the speakers here: http://controlconference.com/speakers/

Tickets are still available via our Eventbrite page. Get them now!