Excitement is building in A Higher Place for the impending ‘EuroGamer Expo 2011‘ conference in Earl’s Court, London.
September marks an education extravaganza for us as we take to the road for the Scottish Learning Festival (21st and 22nd) and then London for the EuroGamer Expo (23rd)
The EuroGamer Expo is Europe’s equivalent of the massive E3 Games conference in the States (this year was Las Vegas). Game developers and publishers from all over the globe will be attending to showcase the latest in games software and hardware. These include:
UBISoft most recently brought us the brilliant Geography, History and Science rich game From Dust as well as the Assassin’s Creed series, Child of Eden and the upcoming Zoo Resort 3D.
Square Enix produce the amazing Final Fantasy series See this Education Blog Post as well as Kingdom Hearts and the new Deus Ex – Human Evolution.
Sega are noted for their classic Sonic the Hedgehog series and most recently their entry into the sports games market with Virtua Tennis, Football Manager series (highly popular among school pupils of all ages) and Mario and Sonic at the London Olympics 2012.
NCSoft produce massive online gaming experiences for the PC and Mac platforms including City of Heroes.
Warner Bros brought us the dark Batman: Arkham Asylum as well as the much lighter Lego Star Wars, Indiana Jones and Harry Potter series and the classroom favourite Super Scribblenauts.
Other big names include EA Games, Bethseda, THQ and Capcom with many others packing out Earl’s Court with their wares.
Hardware manufacturers will also be present as well as retailers, giving visitors an opportunity to immerse themselves in the entire structure of the gaming world from concept to creation and marketing to multiplayer gaming.
Of course our role (aside from hunting down Arkham City, Battlefield 3 and Hitman: Absolution) will be to determine what is new for education in the vast world of gaming. Just what do these companies do to encourage play as part of learning or learning as a part of play?
With schools using more games based learning technology we will be bringing back the latest news on the future of games in the classroom and asking developers if they will be focussing their attention on this specifically as part of their future growth.
With all games platforms catered for: xBox, Playstation, Nintendo Wii, Nintendo DS, PC, Mac, iPhone/Pad and Android there will be something for everyone. We’ll be looking at how each of these can be used in our classrooms this year.
One of the areas we are most looking forward to exploring is the ‘Indie Games Arcade‘. A showcase of the year’s most innovative and exciting independent titles. The developers in this area don’t have the teams, resources of budgets that the industry giants do but still produce some of the most original games on every platform: Angry Birds, Limbo, Little Big Planet.
We’ll also be catching some of the Developer sessions. A platform for world renowned game developers to present directly to the public about their latest projects.
However, the area we’ll be spending some serious time in is the ‘Careers Fair‘ where companies such as Edinburgh based RockStar North, Media Molecule and Channel 4 will be seeking to recruit. We’ll post here afterwards about some of the types of work there is in the industry with advice on how best to apply.
We’ll be doing our best to gather as much information on games and learning as possible but If you’d like us to find something out in particular or would like information on anything to be showcased at the Expo please drop us a comment and we will try to get you the info you need.
Watch this space for our findings when we return…