First up, our congratulations to Bioware  and Dragon Age: Origins  for picking up a Swedish Games Industry  award for RPG of the Year and to EA Burnaby  for picking up Sports Game of the Year for FIFA 10 . Also, a reminder that the Early Bird price deadline for GDC Canada  is fast approaching. Take advantage of the ticket discounts and get your passes before March 31 for this May’s great event at the Vancouver Convention Centre.
There’s lots going on over at IUGO Mobile Entertainment  as well. Earlier today the studio announced that several of their game titles  will be released for the iPad. On the list are Cliffed, Zombie Attack Second Wave and Implode, along with their brand new game, Escape: Norm’s World. We also found out today that IUGO’s Director of Business Management, Sarah Thompson, will be one of two featured speakers at the upcoming Appy Hour , which is presented by The Social Agency . Appy Hour will be happening on March 26th at the Revel Room  from 4 – 6pm. Also speaking at Appy Hour will be Jesse MacFayden, a developer over at Nitobi .
The Vancouver Twestival  will be taking place at the CBC Vancouver Audience Lounge this March 25th, and tickets are now on sale. The Twestival is part of a global day of fundraising which will involve thousands of Twitter-users around the world who are gathering together to raise money for Concern Worldwide , an international humanitarian organization dedicated to reducing suffering and ending extreme poverty.
Your $20 Twestival ticket includes:
– Admission (donation to Concern Worldwide)
– 1 Wine ticket (more available for purchase)
– 1 Raffle ticket (more available for purchase)
– Food (sushi & canapes)
– Official souvenir YVRTwestival button
– Entertainment (Rob Cottingham, live DJ, Mojave)
– Socializing with Twitter friends (although that’s priceless!)
Edmonton – Bioware  has announced the release dates for the next round of new DLC  for Mass Effect 2 . The Firewalker pack will be available beginning on March 23, and Kasumi Goto will join the crew of the Normandy on April 6. Kasumi’s DLC expansion will be titled Stolen Memories. Also coming on March 23 are new appearances for crew members Thane, Jack and Garrus. The Alternate Appearance pack will be available for 160 MS Points. The Firewalker DLC pack will include the brand new M-57 Hammerhead Hover Tank as well as five brand-new missions and locations to explore. This expansion will be free to those gamers who have the Cerberus Network  option enabled. The Cerberus Network game add-on code included free to all those gamers who purchased the game new; if you bought a previously-played version, you can add the Cerberus Network option for 1200 MS Points through the XBL Marketplace. In my opinion, the Cerberus Network offers much value in return and is well worth the points if you didn’t purchase the game new.
There are also plenty of new items over in the Bioware store. Today’s new product announcement is the “Morrigan Disapproves ” Dragon Age shirt. If you have a Bioware, Mass Effect or Dragon Age fan in your house, then the Bioware store is a great place to find some cool gift items from shirts and hats to lithographs and music.
The CFTPA  has made the National Digital Strategy Prime Time  panel videos  and several PowerPoint presentations available online. To download the presentations and speeches, scroll down through the schedule list  and click on the links for the presentations you would like. I think that by making these videos and presentations available to those who were unable to make the February conference is a great way to continue a national dialogue for the development of a Canadian digital strategy, and I appreciate the efforts by those at the CFTPA for taking strides to keep those of us in the digital media industry informed and talking.
I’m going to leave you on this Friday afternoon with a music video from the young English rock group Jonny Black . Now, you may ask yourself why a Canadian digital media news site is promoting an English group, and I would answer, “because the young men who make up this group are friends of ours and they deserve some extra promotion. Plus, they’re gamers, too.”
Formerly known as Mendella, Jonny Black’s band members are among those who have a dream and work hard to forge their path in the achievement of that dream. This video in particular is an endeavour by the group to have one of their songs chosen as the UK soccer team’s anthem for the 2010 World Cup. We hope that you enjoy Jonny Black’s music as much as we do, and will help their video go viral (watch it, fave it, share it) thereby playing a part in the achievement of their goals. You can read more about our involvement with Jonny Black and learn more about these young men here , here , and in our gallery, right here .