It was a busy year in 2015 and a bit later than we had hoped here is a brief summary of key events and a list of some of the many games released.
There were some key business milestones with Havok purchased by Microsoft in the Autumn, and Brenda and John Romero moving to the West of Ireland to set up a studio.
Here on gamedevelopers.ie we have had a volunteer team busy finalising our content move to wordpress, building up our twitter and facebook accounts and trying to keep up with local developments.
We also became home to the Irish games industry timeline and the Irish game industry map. Both need more community input and we are happy to expand them if you send us some info. Well done Jamie on leading the efforts on those projects.
We have also been cross posting podcasts developed by Geoff Newman from EndLife Studios of interviews with Irish game developers and folks from the local scene.
Below are just some highlights. In addition there are the regular dubLUDO events in Dublin and Gamecrafts everywhere (Dublin, Belfast, London, Paris, Vienna).
If we missed something just get in touch.
Awards and Nominations
Guild of Dungeoneering – Most promising in Development Indie Prize, 2015. Colm Larkin told us “I’m incredibly proud that Guild of Dungeoneering has been selected as a finalist in the Indie Prize. The game has come a long way from its humble beginnings as a gamejam prototype to becoming a top quality indie game. Awards like this one really help show us we are doing something right.”
Hay Ewe by Rocket Rainbow (Galway) nominated for a TIGA Games Industry Award, 2015 and a Casual Connect award Indie Prize nomination, 2015.
Curtain by Llaura McGee – 2015 Best Game Script Award from the Writers Guild of Ireland and Grand Prize for The Most Amazing Game at Amaze, Berlin, 2015. http://dreamfeeel.itch.io/curtain
Deep, Owen Harris and Niki Smit, Finalist, Most Amazing Game Berlin, 2015, http://owenllharris.com/deep/
Some of the brightest minds in the games industry gather each March at the Limerick Institute of Technology (LIT) campus in Thurles to participate in Games Fleadh. The all-island games design and development competition for third-level students was a massive success and garnered plenty of press coverage1234567891011.
Organiser Liam Noonan, lecturer at LIT Thurles put together a fantastic event. There was the annual Robocode competition, which pitted programmers against each other in a tank battle. The theme for the Game Studio competition saw many great takes on the Endless Runner genre. And of course there was glory for those bestowed one of the Game Studio Awards.
Check out their website for information on this year’s event.
State of Play
In May 2015 the by now annual State of Play event took place in the Dublin Institute of Technology, Aungier Street, Dublin. A range of local indies and international speakers took to the stage to offer both inspiration and a dose of reality. Richard Lemarchand keynoted this year.
We wrote a full review which you can read back here.
You can also watch back a video of the key speakers below.
No respectable round-up of 2015 would be worth its salt with out mentioning the impact Imirt has had. Imirt (in case you are comfortably under a rock, thank you very much) represents game developers in Ireland and aims to increase awareness of, promote and grow the industry.
The newly formed association took no time getting active after holding their first public meeting on 30th June. They helped organise Unity’s first visit to Ireland at the end of July and started their monthly webinar ‘Imirt Inspire’ firstly with Dren McDonald, then Chelsea Howe.
In December, Imirt awarded €46,150 in tuition scholarships to 25 of its members in partnership with the Game Developers Conference (GDC) and UBM Tech. The scholarship provides attendees with an all-access pass to GDC, the most important event in game development globally.
The first board was elected in October and consists of some of the biggest names in the Irish scene. Board members are: Chris Gregan; John Halloran; Owen Harris; Stephen Kelly; Colm Larkin; John O’Kane; Brenda Romero. Find out more at http://www.imirt.ie/
In Sept Games Ireland hosted a gathering in the Mansion House on the theme of The Innovation Game. Speakers from Riot, Unity, Groupon, Space Ape Games, En Masse Entertainment, UbiSoft, Amazon, Zalando, Warner Bros and Youtube were joined by a number of game streamers on stage. The event concluded afterwards with food and drink in a bar on Stephen’s Green. See our news post here.
New games launched in 2015
It has been an incredible year for new game launches by full time studios, part time devs and hobbyists. Here are some of the ones we know about and helped to promote. There is even one about water meters! Thanks to everyone who sent us in their info.
- Puppy Cuts – My Dog Grooming Pet Salon (iOS), January – Studio POWWOW and StoryToys Entertainment Limited
- Guild of Dungeoneering (PC), July – Gambrinous, Versus Evil, Dublin
- NinjaGo Endless Runner (iOS), 2015 – 9th Impact, Galway
- Robotory (iOS and Android), 2015 – 9th Impact
- Biker Mice from Mars (iOS and Android), 2015 – 9th Impact
- FranknJohn – Early Access (PC), March – bitSmith Games, Dublin
- Onikira (PC), August – Digital Furnace Games, Dublin
Digital Furnace Games
- Illumina (PC), 2015 – StarCave Entertainment, Galway
- Musclecar Online (PC), February – Psychic Software
- Goblins & Grottos Early Access(PC), December – Psychic Software
Psychic Software, Goblin Portal, Psychic Games Ltd.
- FRZ: Free Racing Zero (iOS and Android), 2015 – SixMinute, Dublin
- Bard to the Future (PC), February – BattleBard Games
- Chameleon Falls – Poke the Bear, Wicklow
- WimblePong Tennis – Gazzapper Games
- Water Meter Dash – Nebula Interactive
- All the Bells and Whistles(PC), December – Gill Games