Ludus Lekgotla: Parallel Games Talks
In collaboration with Wits Digital Arts, The Ludus Lekgotla Parallel Games Talks will host a wide variety of game developers and talk subjects during the Fak’ugesi Festival in 2019.
From the production stories of games, to Afro-futurism – the Ludus Lekgotla Parallel Games Talks will encompass current topics happening within the game development industry in and around the Global South.
Join us for this super jam packed day full of game development focused talks!
The Ludus Lekgotla Parallel Game Talks day will include the following:
10:00AM – 10:30AM: You, Me, and My OCD: Videogames as a Means of Portraying Mental Illness by Shannon Bennetts
A talk about how burnout and the struggles of university can suck the creativity and vitality out of someone – but turning those stresses into stories that you want to tell in the games you make.
10:35AM – 11:05AM: Make Games and Beat the Odds (For Everyone!) by Estelle Mmathapelo Makhoba
A motivational talk about anyone being able to get started making games, as well as the life struggles that making games can help beat – from depression, losing everything to new and exciting opportunities that come with the job. If you are a professional game developer, or a new-comer to making games, this talk will re-spark your passion for making games!
11:10AM – 11:40AM: Soul Sucking and Telling the Stories You Care About by Noel Fox
A talk that will discuss the use of gaming as an effective means of placing players within the minds of neurodivergent individuals; for the sake of educating players about these conditions, as well as for providing representation for those afflicted with them.
11:45AM – 12:15PM: Be Passionate, but Be Sustainable (You Have to Eat) by Idamiebi Ilamina-Eremie (Remote Talk)
A talk where developers will share opinions and experiences in building culturally relevant, African themed games. We will be exploring if African developers should appeal to a regional or global audience, particularly when thinking about financial sustainability. We will also explore dealing with distractions and project creep.
12:15 – 13:15: LUNCH BREAK
13:15 – 13:45: Using Tech & Gaming to Teach Soccer History to the Next Generation by Mr MediaX
This talk will tell the story of the creation of the Diski Skills Augmented Reality Soccer Game. Diski Skills is a soccer strategy card game that aims to use augmented reality technology to teach soccer history, skills and strategic thinking.
13:50 – 14:20: Reimagine Africa: The Emerging Landscape of African Video Game Development by Eyram Tawia
This talk looks at the growth and creation of video game development throughout Africa – what has changed and what needs to change to sustain a healthy game development industry in Africa.
14:20 – 14:50: We need more Africans in game development NOW by Sithe Ncube
A talk about how there is no better time than now for Africans to become more visibly involved in game development. Sithe will focus on why we need more representation of African characters, stories and creators in the rapidly growing game development industry and why we need to do in right now.
14:55 – 15:25: Afro-Futurism or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Black Panther by Limpho Moeti
This talk investigates how Africa is viewed in pop culture, how it needs to be changed, and where Africa could be in the future.
15:30 – 16:00: Dandara: The Process, Culture and Influences by Lucas Rodrigo Raso Mattos
An overview of the video game Dandara and its development, how it went, what we learned, and how our culture and influences made it into the game and helped us build a more interesting and richer experience.
16:00 – 16:30: Cross Sector Game Jam Winners Announcement
An announcement for the winners of the cross-sector game jam.
Fak’ugesi Arcade is proud to work with the speakers who are participating in the Ludus Lekgotla Parallel Games Talks. View more about our speakers below:
Facilitator & Speaker Bios:
Shannon Bennetts is an artist, animator, and one quarter of Falling Up Studios, a start-up gaming company based in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. She studied at the University of KwaZulu-Natal (Pietermaritzburg Campus), completing her undergrad in Fine Art and Digital Art in 2016, and her post-grad with an Honours degree in Digital Art in 2017 (both with summa cum laude). Throughout her academic career, she has held a fascination with the use of art to place the viewer within her own headspace.
Estelle Mmathapelo Makhoba is an indie game developer and a network engineer who focuses on fusing cutting edge, innovative and experimental game play into their games! Estelle created the video game Khewzi, which you can play in the Arcade Hub during the festival this year.
Noel Fox is a freelance artist based in Joburg under the name OnyxBell! Noel is currently in the second year of studying Game Design. Noel likes to make cute and scary illustrations and comics. Noel also designs clothes and video games!
View more at: http://www.onyxbell.com/
Idamiebi Ilamina-Eremie has over 7 years experience in App and Game Development. He is one of the pioneers of Nigeria, and Africa’s, Game Development movement, having previously founded Sonbim Games. He is a Co-founder and also serves as the Technical Lead at Zenafri, which creates African-themed mobile games and educational apps. He is a graduate of Computer Engineering.
Mr MediaX is a New Media Artist, Content Creator & Podcaster. He lives and connects to the world through exploring interactive art and design in the digital space. His work is heavily inspired by popular culture, neo-dadaism and the media trends that impact the evolution of African life as well as the overall human experience. His work aims to create a narrative that brings the art, online and tech worlds into the same conversation.
Eyram Tawia is CEO and Co-founder of Leti Arts, an interactive digital studio that creates Afrocentric mobile games and comics. He is convinced that Africa will make a salient contribution to the world of game development and believes that this will create new job opportunities that will boost Africa’s GDP. He studied at Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology in Kumasi, Ghana and at the Meltwater Foundation, where he was a Software Teaching Fellow, inspiring others while also working on his own projects. He is also a recent Mandela Washington Fellow, a member of the Harambe Alliance and a World Summit Award Winner.
Sithe Ncube believes that more Africans should have a visible stake in the game development industry and benefit financially, culturally and socially from telling their own stories. Sithe encourages people to make games by facilitating introductory game development & interactive fiction workshops. She hosts a workshop for young women in Lusaka, Zambia called ‘Games Plus Girls’. Sithe promotes the growth of game development by connecting more Africans to the world’s biggest game development event, Global Game Jam, as one of the Sub-Saharan Africa regional organizers for the event. Sithe is studying Computer Science student at Nelson Mandela University and is the founder of Ubongo Game Lab and prosearium.net
Limpho Moeti is the Deputy Festival Director for Playtopia and previously worked for Free Lives (BROFORCE, GORN, GENITAL JOUSTING). She has also spoken at festivals such A MAZE./ Berlin, Nordic Game Jam and the Game Developers of Color. In her spare time she thinks of ways to smash the patriarchy, topple capitalism as well as who was the best Batman. She is also one half of the podcast Bad Form. She is definitely not a robot sent from the future to destroy humanity and is uncertain as to why this rumour won’t die.
Lucas Rodrigo Raso Mattos is a Game Developer and Computer Scientist from Belo Horizonte, Brazil. He is also a co-founder of the Long Hat House – a tiny indie game studio, alongside Joao Brant. He is one of the creators of Dandara (metroidvania, published by Raw Fury in February 2018) and Magenta Arcade (mobile arcade, self-published in 2015). Dandara was praised for it’s representation of Brazilian culture and it’s unique mechanics, receiving multiple nominations and awards, and being selected among Time Magazine’s Top 10 Games of 2018.
Partners & Funders: