Event: 20-22 Jun NYC Games for Change 2011

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ALERT: Prices go up 30% after April 15th.

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The 8th Annual Games for Change Festival

Our preparations for the June 20-22 event are in full swing. This year’s festival will be offering 40+ hours of content over three days as well as social events, massive play sessions, a “Game Arcade” and an Award Ceremony featuring some of the best titles in our genre. Registration is now open so if you want to take advantage of early bird pricing (30% off), visit our pre-Festival page here.

However, the most important part of the Festival is you! We released our call for submissions. If you have a great plan for a presentation or panel, we’re accepting submissions from anyone. We’re also looking for nominations for our 2nd Annual Games for Change Awards where we honor some of the best work in our space. Lastly, the Festival is a great place to network, present your work and get meaningful feedback. So we created a Demo Spotlight category where 5-7 selected projects in production will be presented for comments by a live panel. Each category has its own guidelines – check them out here.

See Also:

The Half The Sky project gains momentum

In our previous newsletter, we mentioned our Executive Producer role in the transmedia project
“Half The Sky”, based on the bestselling book and in collaboration with Nick Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn (link). We recently exhibited the progress on the social networking game done in partnership with Schell Games at the Ford Foundation / ITVS Summit on Women and Girls.

While the Facebook game is created to raise awareness in the West, a large part of this project is aimed directly at impacting those most affected by the issues – in developing countries. Today we can officially announce that the mobile games component of this project has been fully funded by USAID with AED as its implementing partner.

Games for Change will produce four mobile games for JAVA and BREW enabled cell phones to be distributed in India, Kenya and Tanzania. The goal of having the games on these devices is to convey practical information related to health education, economic empowerment and gender-based violence on a mass scale. The developer leading the project is ZMQ, who will be partnering with creative teams in the US and Europe. Former presenters at the 2010 Games for Change Festival, ZMQ has had past successes with mobile games focusing on social issues that have been played on millions of devices in Africa and Asia.

World Bank launches their RFP

Our partners at the World Bank Institute recently launched a Request for Proposal that would be of interest to our community (We first mentioned this project back in November). Through a series of strategy games, WBI plans to further their programmatic goals of being a leader in knowledge-sharing and social change. WBI is now looking for developers to build two games aimed at policy makers in Africa, Asia and Eastern Europe around the topics of Coalition Building and Urban Development. Learn more at the World Bank’s site, here.

New look and site for 2011

In the next weeks and months, Games for Change will be unveiling a new look plus some changes across its digital presence. While the visual updates to our brand are important, we are working to create a new interactive space where visitors can be kept up to date on the latest that is happening in this exciting space, putting the games (current and future) at the center. Stay tuned as we slowly reveal changes and if you have a game to submit or recommend to our revamped “Arcade”, please do so!

Stay connected

To receive current updates and announcements from the Games for Change community, the best options are following us on Twitter or Facebook. If you want to join in on the conversation, our high quality Google Group has over 1,000 members and acts as a great resource for conversation, discovery and answers. You can become a member by following this link.