LEVEL UP KL 2017 2017 returns, opens up opportunity and growth of SEA gaming industry

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Hasnul Hadi Samsudin, Vice President of Creative Content & Technologies at Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) (bottom, 2nd from right) posing with the LEVEL UP KL 2017 speakers at the opening ceremony

Once again, Level UP KL has returned for the third time in three years and it was held over the weekend from 4 November until tomorrow (9 November 2017). As the conference continues to engage with the community exploring cross-border alliances with regional associations, the game industry in Southeast Asia can potentially create new strategic partnerships and drive the region's games development further.

During the 6 days events, it was reported that the event has gathered over 700 participants, speakers and exhibitors from Southeast Asian countries and beyond. For those who are not familiar, the conference's purpose is for the gaming community such as developers, publishers, vendors, technology providers, students and academicians to engage and discuss future partnerships and collaborations. Here are some of the key-line-ups that have happened so far:

  • The Southeast Asia Game Jam (4 and 5 November): A 36-hour game jam, organised by the Malaysian chapter of International Game Developers Association (IGDA Malaysia), showcased promising games developers from the region where they will display their raw skills and creativity in the art of game-making. The goal of this Game Jam is to have participants create games in a collaborative environment under a tight deadline.
  • Workshops and specialised tracks (6 and 9 November): Hands-on workshop with the world’s top games industry experts on various topics, such as games design, concept and environment art, and audio.
  • Business Connection Program (6 November): A business matching and networking platform for delegates to build networks, connect, and explore potential business opportunities with participating companies.
  • LEVEL UP KL Conference (7 and 8 November): The main two-day event, featuring top industry players from around the world on both business and technical facets from various games development platforms, such as mobile, PC, and console. Among the prominent speakers featured this year are Danny Koo from Marvel Entertainment, Brian Recktenwald of Naughty Dog, Appxplore’s Desmond Lee, and Falk Au Yeong who is with SoundtRec Malaysia.
  • Industry showcase and exhibition (7 and 8 November): This showcase will feature the work of the SEA Game Awards finalists alongside other indie games developer studios and an exhibition of product and services from companies operating in the games industry.
  • The Southeast Asia Game Awards (8th November): Organised by MDEC and supported by MYGameOn, the SEA Game Awards is created to recognise outstanding, artistic, and creative efforts for technical and gameplay achievements in the games industry within the region.

According to Hasnul Hadi Samsudin, Vice President of Creative Content & Technologies, Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC), he stated “The Malaysian government recognises the games industry as an important engine of economic growth in the region. The support we receive from LEVEL UP KL year-on-year, along with the solid alliance with prominent players in the games industry, indicates this region has what it takes to drive this robust, dynamic, and multi-national industry. More importantly, this positive development has positioned us as emerging games producing region.”

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Hasnul Hadi Samsudin, Vice President of Creative Content & Technologies at Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) opening the third LEVEL UP KL today in Bangsar South

To date, over 75 game submissions – published and unpublished – from indie game developers, studios, game publishers, and students have been sent in, with 30 games shortlisted as finalists. The awards are divided into 10 categories including Best Visual Art, Best Game Design, Best Rising Star, and Audience Choice Award. The award ceremony will take place on 8th November at the Connexion Conference and Event Centre in Bangsar South where the Conference is currently taking place.

For more information on LEVEL UP KL 2017, please visit levelupkl.com to explore more.