Third Kind Games is an independent studio based in Leamington Spa was delighted to support the Interactive Futures event.
With more than 50 active games companies around Leamington, with a further 80 across the West Midlands, being a partner to the event was a great chance to support the future of games development across the Midlands and the UK. The on-line sessions ran from February 17th to February 20th, the event featured a host of online sessions aimed at, not only primary and secondary school children, but also young people, higher education students and parents. The sessions provided practical advice to understand the range of opportunities across the gaming sector and the training and skills needed for the industry.
Interactive Futures is hosted by the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership, Warwickshire County Council and Warwick District Council and “The video game industry is a key component to the successful future of the region and is a sector that the CWLEP is proud to support”.
The event opened with key facts on the gaming industry across the region and the growth of Silicon Spa continuing regardless of recession or Covid, The video games sector anchored in the Leamington Spa region is the second largest in the UK outside of London and Slough & Heathrow. Our rate of company formation in Silicon Spa is also high – 50% of active businesses in the cluster have been established since 2012, and two-thirds since 2010.
The TKG team supported 3 of the panels and also chaired “The range of careers in Games”, “What skills and qualifications do you need for a career in games” and “Are video games a distraction or a vocation”.
In the panels, which are now available online, potential candidates for the gaming industry were given advice on courses and ideas for entry level game design, programming and certain tools to begin their careers, it is clear that gaming is a vocational choice in particular as several panellists began developing their ideas whilst at primary school, or in their teens, so it is important to start early, be collaborative and seek advice and guidance from your peers. TKG also discussed the traditional careers such as HR, Finance, Sales & Marketing which support the day to day success of a gaming business.
We also reminded the audience that it’s important to look to the future as there are a range of new careers on the horizon for the industry with developments in Artificial Intelligence, Virtual and Augmented Reality being utilised to broaden the range of careers available. Some new roles such as Technical Artist and Community Manager are good examples of very recent gaming developments.
TKG also advised on further training and the choice between taking a role in gaming at 18 or going to a university with a gaming degree course, ultimately both paths will work for talented individuals with the passion and persistence for a gaming career. This approach is crucial to increase gender representation in gaming, as almost half of all players are women, but this does not follow through to the employee pool.
Our panel discussed the lack of female, BAME and LGBTQ+ representation, within the industry. There was also a focused discussion on the impact of imposter syndrome or self doubt, which 70% of us can suffer from at some point in our working lives, how we can overcome this and build our confidence for the future.
The Interactive Futures Event shines a light on the Games Industry and reminds us that there are a fantastic range of opportunities across gaming, in design, art, programming and QA, we hope that this event has helped you to discover more about us and the industry as a whole.
We're also delighted to announce that you can now watch all the Interactive Futures 2021 session recordings on demand, either via our web app (Click Here), mobile app (Click Here) or YouTube channel (Click Here).
Simply sign in and navigate through the Agenda tab to watch the videos.