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  • Arts Community Extremely Concerned By Cuts To The BC Arts Council

14th July 2009

Arts Community Extremely Concerned By Cuts To The BC Arts Council

Alliance For Arts and CultureVancouver via Alliance For Arts – The arts and cultural sector in British Columbia is facing an imminent crisis. The Service Plans for the next two years show a 40% reduction in funding for the BC Arts Council. The BC Arts Council is the largest funding body in the province; last year, more than 224 communities throughout British Columbia depended on it for support.

“The impact to the province will be devastating,” said Amir Ali Alibhai, the Executive Director of the Alliance for Arts & Culture. “The BC Arts Council supports a sector that employs 80,000 people and generates $5.2-billion annually. It is bigger than the forestry and fishing industries combined. At a time when the government is doing everything they can to create and retain jobs, why are they implementing measures that will trigger layoffs and cause organizations to reduce programming?”

According to Ministry’s own research, for every dollar invested in the arts, the province gets back $1.38 in taxes. There are also countless studies that show that arts and culture creates healthy communities, enhances education, and helps to shape our cultural identity.
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14th July 2009

Digital Springboard Mentorship Call For Entries

New Media BCVancouver via NMBC – Emerging Digital Media companies are invited to submit their company profiles and proposals for the DIGITAL SPRINGBOARD, an advisory service and mentorship program being administered by New Media BC and supported by the National Research Council – IRAP.

If you are an emerging Canadian digital media company looking for a mentor to help you navigate a technical or business related challenge, please submit your proposal to Christine Lim-Labossiere, New Media BC’s Manager, Industry Development and International Partnerships by July 28, 2009.

Your proposal should include:

1. Company profile including track record and key staff (maximum 1 page),
2. Company business goals/current Projects in development (maximum 1 page),
3. Specific challenges/difficulties currently faced by company in development process or project that you require Mentorship guidance on. Please specify if it is a technical or business problem and the quantifiable targets and deliverables to be completed within a minimum period of 4 months (maximum 1 page),
4. Show reel or sample of work, if relevant (send to New Media BC, #102-577 Great Northern Way, Vancouver, BC V5T 1E1 Attention: DIGITAL SPRINGBOARD).

The DIGITAL SPRINGBOARD allows at least 6 selected companies to be matched with veteran experts in the digital media industry who will act as Mentors and provide an advisory service to these companies for a minimum period of 4 months and help them achieve their specific business/technical goals.

Eligible companies include those engaged in interactive entertainment (games), interactive design and marketing, digital animation/film and mobile content. Mentors will be identified based on the specific business goals and technical targets and will guide the companies through the challenges they are facing in their early stage of development.

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14th July 2009

Upcoming Events In Vancouver

There are many events coming up in Vancouver which will be beneficial to people in a variety of game development and business roles. Here is a quick run-down – if you have an event coming up which isn’t listed, please let us know. For our national readers, this applies to events happening anywhere in Canada – let us know about it, and we’ll add your industry-related event.

July 23: Social Media Marketing Boot Camp (sold out, see below)

July 23: VANArts Presents a Masterclass with Concept Artist Kevin Chen

July 24-25: Unity 3D Vancouver User’s Group Launch

July 27 – 31: GeoWeb 2009 Conference

August 1: Daisho Digital Art Workshop – Character Concept Art

August 12: Twitter For Business – Getting Results Seminar

August 19: UBC Technology Support Professional Course Info Session

September 3: VANarts Grad Show

September 15 -16: Certified ScrumMaster Training

September 16: Social Media Marketing Boot Camp

September 16 – 18: Internet Marketing Conference 2009

September 16 – 20: Spark Animation Festival

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14th July 2009

Madballs In Babo Invasion Available on XBLA

playbrainsOttawaPlaybrains, an independent game development studio specializing in the digital download arena, are excited to announce that their pride and joy, the love-child of their silicon loins, Madballs in…Babo:Invasion (MiBI) will finally be available for excitable gamers everywhere to purchase and download from Xbox LIVE® Arcade on Wednesday 15th July.

Following highly successful US and UK media press tours, the gaming journalistic community have Madballslavished Madballs in…Babo:Invasion with a rarely seen level of praise for a debut title from a new development studio. Universal in their undiluted acclaim, The Koalition.com had no hesitation in claiming that “…this will be the best arcade game released on Xbox Live this year”, while Team Xbox stated that this was “…one of the most innovative ideas in multiplayer gameplay we’ve seen in a really long time.” Resolution-Magazine simply declared, “Without a shred of doubt, Madballs is the best Xbox LIVE Arcade title that I have ever played.”

Commenting on the impending release of Madballs in…Babo:Invasion, President of Playbrains, Scott Simpson said,

“Having spent the past two years of our lives working so hard on MiBI, the entire Playbrains team are so gratified by the response the gaming media have given our game. We always felt that we had a special title on our hands, offering an unprecedented level of gameplay features, options, depth and polish, not yet seen in a digital download title. We are unbelievably proud and excited to finally be able to let players everywhere get their headshot on…”

Madballs in…Babo:Invasion (MiBI), is available to purchase and download for 800 Microsoft poinst from Xbox LIVE® Arcade on Wednesday 15th July.

About Madballs in…Babo:Invasion

A gameplay rich, feature laden “casually hardcore” action shooter, Madballs in…Babo:Invasion (MiBI) is that rarest of gaming commodities: a genuinely unique title. Featuring the recently re-released Madballs™ characters, Oculus Orbus™ and Horn Head™, from the popular 1980’s toys best remembered for their outrageously bad looks and graphically colorful names, MiBI is an arena-based 3D shooter where players are able to design their own combat maps almost instantaneously by placing a combination of map tiles to create a never-before-seen map before gameplay starts. Truly, no two games are ever the same.

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14th July 2009

PROTOTYPE Wins Diamond Award on GameTrailers

We will be posting an in-depth PROTOTYPE review & announcing a contest this week

PROTOTYPEVancouverGameTrailers.com (GT), the premier provider of video for gamers and a division of Viacom Inc.’s  MTV Networks Entertainment Group, announced today that Radical Entertainment’s popular open-world action game, PROTOTYPE™, released by Activision Publishing, Inc., earned the GT Diamond Award for exceeding an astounding ten million video views. In PROTOTYPE players fight as the biologically altered and solitary Alex Mercer cutting down anything in their path, be it military, civilian, or monster to make it through an infected New York City. Additionally, players have the capability to consume and become PROTOTYPEanyone, gaining their appearance, memories and abilities, as they slowly take down key targets throughout the city and unravel the plot behind Alex’s existence.

PROTOTYPE relies heavily on the player’s relationship with its protagonist, Alex Mercer. With an expansive system to upgrade play mechanics throughout the game, players are easily able to find a gameplay style that adapts to their personal preferences. A fully explorable Manhattan gives the game a strong sense of freedom, which was rarely seen in similar open-world games until now with the release of PROTOTYPE.

“Being an open-world game with so much action going on all around you at all times, PROTOTYPE is a game best experienced in motion,” said Kelly Zmak, President, Radical Entertainment. “GameTrailers and their community was a natural fit for showcasing our videos of Alex Mercer using his over-the-top powers, and we’re honored that so many fans continue to closely follow PROTOTYPE. This award really means a lot to the development team here at our studio.”
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14th July 2009

Cerebral Vortex Announces Casual Connect Line Up

Cerebral VortexSt. Catharine’sCerebral Vortex Games Inc., a multi-platform developer of casual games, will be showcasing a diverse line-up of games at Casual Connect Seattle next week. The line-up includes addictive titles for iPhone, PC downloadable and Web.

“Cerebral Vortex Games has a great line-up for fall 2009,” said Keith Makse, President of Cerebral Vortex Games, Inc. “Whether you want to solve crimes, give your brain a workout or battle ghosts, we’ve got you covered. We’re actively seeking partners to Ghost Breakerdistribute our games and we encourage everyone who loves games to drop by booth B10 to see what we’ve got.”

The line-up includes live playable demos of:

Ghost Breaker (iPhone): Battle murderous phantoms using your iPhone camera, powered by a mystical artifact that drains spectres of their essence. The spookiest part is not the ghosts, but the fact that you battle them in your own home, literally!
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14th July 2009

GDC China IGF Officially Announced

Hopefully this is a sign that GDC Canada will also be getting an IGF added to its roster in the future

GDC China San FranciscoThink Services has announced the 1st annual Independent Games Festival China (IGF China), to be held in conjunction with the 2009 Game Developers Conference China. GDC China returns to the Shanghai International Convention Center, October 11-13 of this year.

After 11 years of the main Independent Games Festival competition being held at GDC in San Francisco, the Independent Games Festival will present itself to Shanghai, China for the first time in 2009, in a competition specifically designed to encourage innovation and showcase standout games from smaller companies in the Asia-Pacific region.

The first-ever Independent Games Festival China encompasses three main components. Firstly, an Independent Games Summit event held on the opening day of GDC China will feature multiple sessions with smaller, entrepreneurial Chinese and Asian firms showcasing their work. Secondly, the IGF Pavilion will showcase all finalists’ games on Sunday and Monday (October 11th and 12th) of GDC China, with the Independent Games Festival Awards ceremony being held on
Monday evening.
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