Programming Schedule

 

The panels listed below will become available on June 5-6, at the times listed. Just click on the link in the title and enjoy or bookmark them to watch later!


SATURDAY

10:00am Spotlight on Fertessa Allyse • https://youtu.be/wcPTJDs9Tv4

Fertessa Allyse (Game DesignerFunko Games) shares her pitch-ready checklist for designers who are getting ready to pitch their game to publishers.


10:00am Game Design and Worldbuilding • https://youtu.be/XXnToS1YHs4

Designing role-playing games is more than just rolling dice. Building the sandbox for players to enjoy can take many roads. Listen to Spenser Reed (game designer, Alice Is Missing), Banana Chan (game designer, Blood in the Banquet Hall), and Tanya DePass (creative director, Motherlands RPG) discuss how to create engaging and innovative role-playing games in 2021. Moderated by Ivan Van Norman (head of development, Darrington Press).


11:00am–5:00pm Game Pitch Review 

Game pitch review provides attendees with a rare opportunity to present their game concepts, designs, and ideas to a panel of industry experts. The experts will listen to each pitch and provide feedback on the strength and areas of improvement for the game itself as well as the quality of the presentation. Feedback will focus on helping designers develop and better discuss their ideas. Before the event, game designers will submit pitch sheets for review and a larger panel of reviewers will select the best entries for participation in the event, with an emphasis on including as many participants as possible. The game pitch review will run throughout the weekend with portions of the event broadcast live for all attendees to watch and learn from. Tabletop game publishers will be invited to watch all portions of the event to scout new games to bring to market.

Visit our Game Pitch Review page for more information!


11:00am State of the Tabletop Industry • https://youtu.be/nmNdaidiRtg

The Tabletop Industry is growing faster than ever. Games sales are going up, markets are expanding, and the ways people engage with games are changing. Listen to Industry experts Ivan Van Norman (head of development, Darrington Press), Amber Cook (director of marketing, Roll20), B Dave Walters (lead developer, Into The Motherlands RPG), and Mandi Hutchinson (host, The Dice Tower) discuss the current landscape of the games industry and emerging trends for the future. Moderated by Ross Thompson (marketing manager, The Op).


11:00am Designing Puzzles and Escaping the Room • https://youtu.be/iCQNBrBw4wk

From the tabletop to the special events, puzzle-solving is expanding into new spaces. Hear from puzzle experts Mike Selinker (president, Lone Shark Games), Elisa Teague (senior producer, Renegade Games), Juliana Ariel (game designer, Wild Optimists), and Ariel Ruben (game designer, Wild Optimists) as they share how to create puzzle challenges for tabletop games and escape rooms. Moderated by Sen-Foong Lim (game designer, Jiangshi: Blood in the Banquet Hall).


12:00pm Local Game Stores in 2021 • https://youtu.be/P3u3tNneyQA

As the Tabletop industry grows, the retail landscape continues to evolve. Local game store owners Paul Alexander Butler (owner, Games and Stuff), Donna Ricci (owner, Geeky Teas), and Timm Metivier (owner, Meepleville) discuss the current retail landscape and what the future holds. Moderated by Dan “Shoe” Hsu (host, Going Analog).


12:00pm Digital Game Design: On Digital Platforms • https://youtu.be/ex_P66xBBYU

Tabletop games are expanding beyond the physical table. With apps, virtual platforms, and digital games, tabletop games are heading toward a whole new space. Hear from experts on the forefront of digital board games, Geoffrey Zatkin (creative director, Experiment 7), Mark Harris (community manager, Tabletopia), Amber Cook (director of marketing, Roll20), and Fertessa Allyse (game producer, Funko Games) as they talk about how to design digital games and what the future can hold. Moderated by Suzanne Sheldon (Restoration Games).


1:00pm Spotlight on Gabe Hicks • https://youtu.be/7UakacovJy4

In this panel, Gabe Hicks goes into his early experience delving into tabletop design, especially as someone doing all of the networking and contact work remotely. The social side of a community and the necessity to create even when not every project will be perfect. In this panel you'll be reminded that not even success has to have been perfect, you can have success without needing a critical.


1:00pm Storytelling with Tabletop Games • https://youtu.be/zzF4U4I6jYQ

Having an engaging story can be an important part of tabletop games. As much as books and movies, tabletop games are a fantastic medium for storytelling. Listen to expert game designers Amanda Hamon (senior game designer, Wizards of the Coast) and Banana Chan (game designer, Blood in the Banquet Hall) share how to integrate story into the game experience. Moderated by James Hudson (senior director of games, Skybound Entertainment).


2:00pm Spotlight on Becca Scott & Paula Deming • https://youtu.be/jf9TGUo0nkI

Becca Scott and Paula Deming talk about streaming and building community in tabletop games.


2:00pm Licensing and Pop Culture • https://youtu.be/yzlIJF5zcJs

Licensed games are more common across the tabletop industry from board games to role-playing games. Companies license intellectual properties and bring those stories to the tabletop. Hear from experts Jonathan Ying (game designer, Star Wars: Imperial Assault), Chris Birch (owner, Modiphius Entertainment), Elisa Teague (senior producer, Renegade Games), and Jayme Boucher (marketplace manager, Roll20) as they share best practices for designing tabletop games with popular intellectual properties. Moderated by Pat Marino (senior game designer, The Op).


3:00pm Working with Artists • https://youtu.be/wQNMJdiqNsM

Graphic design and illustration are important for communicating both game mechanics and themes to players. Learn how to find and work with top artists to bring out the best from your game with Kwanchai Moriya (illustrator/painter), Zoë Robinson (art director, Ghostfire Gaming), Nick Nazzaro (co-owner, Lay Waste Games), and Victoria Ying (cartoonist/author). Moderated by Adam Sblendorio (creative director, The Op).


3:00pm Tabletop Marketing • https://youtu.be/sHfO7_73d8Q

Board games are more popular than ever and there are lots of ways to reach your audience. Building a strong community, working with influencers, having engaging content, and creating a plan ahead of the game's launch are great ways to achieve success. Hear from industry experts, Az Drummond (marketing director, Lucky Duck Games), Danni Loe (marketing manager, Pandasaurus Games), Tracy Dudkiewicz (owner, TAP Marketing), and Darcy Ross (publishing marketing manager, Darrington Press) discuss creative and engaging ways to market board games in 2021. Moderated by Ross Thompson (marketing manager, The Op).


4:00pm Writing the Rulebook and Teaching Games • https://youtu.be/1xOdNlx8X3A

Writing rulebooks and teaching others how to play a game is a critical skillset for game designers. Monique Macaseat (host, Before You Play), Dustin Schwartz (writer/editor, The Rules Forge), Jason Perez (host, Shelf Stories), and T. Caires (games manager, HABA USA) discuss how to communicate gameplay clearly and concisely, in written and verbal formats. Moderated by Becca Scott (host, Good Times Society).


4:00pm Backed on Kickstarter: Crowdfunding Your Tabletop Game • https://youtu.be/sZihg9ragEs

Tabletop games are the most successful category on Kickstarter. Crowdfunding can lead to bringing your game from an idea to the players. Hear from Kickstarter experts, Jon Ritter (tabletop games outreach lead, Kickstarter), Jennifer Graham-Macht (marketing director, Keymaster Games). and Brenna Noonan (president, Quillsilver Studios) for best practices for using crowdfunding to bring your game to life. Moderated by James Hudson (senior director of Games, Skybound Entertainment).


SUNDAY

10:00am You Are Welcome at The Table: Gaming in 2021 • https://youtu.be/GXR0Ukm1c7U

With brand new games coming out all the time, the community is seeing growth on Twitch and more people are discovering tabletop games all the time. Hear from community leaders Ella Ampongan (host, Ella Loves Boardgames), Victoria Caña (co-founder, Cat Quartet Games), and Ruel Gaviola (host, Tabletop Tonight) as they discuss the exciting things happening in the tabletop game industry. Moderated by Suzanne Sheldon (Restoration Games).


10:00am Prototype and Game Pitches: Publishing Your Tabletop Game • https://youtu.be/45_jit2SbKw

Listen to John Zinser (CEO, Alderac Entertainment Group), Eric Slauson (game designer, MonsDRAWsity), Matt Fantastic (game designer, Team3), and Tanya Thompson (director global product acquisitions, Hasbro) discuss the current ways to present your game design to publishers. From setting up meetings, what you need for a prototype, and other industry tips. Moderated by Sen-Foong Lim (game designer, Jiangshi: Blood in the Banquet Hall).


11:00am–5:00pm Game Pitch Review

Game pitch review provides attendees with a rare opportunity to present their game concepts, designs, and ideas to a panel of industry experts. The experts will listen to each pitch and provide feedback on the strength and areas of improvement for the game itself as well as the quality of the presentation. Feedback will focus on helping designers develop and better discuss their ideas. Before the event, game designers will submit pitch sheets for review and a larger panel of reviewers will select the best entries for participation in the event, with an emphasis on including as many participants as possible. The game pitch review will run throughout the weekend with portions of the event broadcast live for all attendees to watch and learn from. Tabletop game publishers will be invited to watch all portions of the event to scout new games to bring to market.

Visit our Game Pitch Review page for more information!


11:00am Spotlight on Tanya DePass & B. Dave Walters • https://youtu.be/K2jlWdTrDyk

Tanya DePass and B. Dave Walters have a conversation about diversity & inclusion in the tabletop roleplaying game community.


11:00am Playtesting: How to Find People and What to Do Once You Have Them • https://youtu.be/-mZVsJfi5ng

Building your playtest community and gathering feedback is an important part of game design. Learn from Nicole Jekich (Funko Games), Julie Ahern (vice president, Greenbrier Games), Jay Cormier (founder, Off the Page Games), and Peter Vaughan (Co-Founder, Cardboard Alchemy) as they discuss how to develop a playtest group and foster useful information for your games. Moderated by Justin Gary (CEO, Stoneblade Entertainment).


12:00pm Elevating the Virtual Tabletop Experience • https://youtu.be/bid6vTDiFAs

The ways people play games are expanding beyond the physical tabletop. With digital platforms bringing people closer together and more cinematic experiences, virtual gaming is a new frontier. Come hear from leaders in the digital tabletop game field, Malika Eubank (CEO, HyperRPG), Spenser Starke (game designer, Alice is Missing), and Adam Bradford (CDO, Demiplane) on how to showcase games and play through digital tools and virtual environments. Moderated by Greg Tito (senior communications manager, Wizards of the Coast).


1:00pm How to Get Started: Designing Your Tabletop Game • https://youtu.be/CRzDpkyQ4-A

How to take an idea and get it on the table. Hear Eric Lang (game designer, Marvel United), Gabe Hicks (game designer, Roll20), Omari Akil (co-founder, BG Brothas), Kathleen Mercury (game designer, Greece Lightning) share about the steps to take your game from idea to design and getting it on the table. Moderated by Jayme Boucher (marketplace manager, Roll20).


1:00pm Designing Games for Mass • https://youtu.be/laOsDjpWbrI

How do you design games for a broader audience and what do larger publishers look for? Tanya Thompson (director, global product acquisitions, Hasbro), Damon Saddler (key lead designer, Mattel), and Eric Slauson (game designer, MonsDRAWsity) discuss game design for the mass market. Moderated by Tony Serebriany (director of new product development, The Op).


2:00pm Manufacturing: Publishing Your Own Tabletop Game • https://youtu.be/1iHu3rQOK-w

Taking a tested game from hand-made prototype to a finished product can be an intimidating process. Publishers John Zinser (CEO, Alderac Entertainment Group), Michael Coe (CEO, Gamelyn Games), Julie Ahern (vice president, Greenbrier Games), and T. Caires (games manager, HABA USA) share insights for producing your game. Moderated by Meredith Placko (co-owner, TurboDork).


2:00pm Starting Your own Publishing Company • https://youtu.be/QMEdeDj9kPs

Thinking about taking the leap and starting your own game company? Hear from Matthew Lillard (co-founder, Beadle and Grimms), Patrick Leder (CEO, Leder Games), Anne-Marie De Witt (co-owner, Fireside Games), and Jenn Ellis (co-owner Twogether Studios) and find out it may not be all fun and games. Moderated by Ruel Gaviola (host, Tabletop Tonight).


3:00pm Tabletop Game Themes for 2021 • https://youtu.be/QUZ0eP0bfpU

Creating games for the future, tabletop games have the ability to tell fantastic stories, create a future of tomorrow, and share a look at history. In 2021, games are reaching a wider audience and setting the stage for the future. Listen to industry experts, Paul Alexander Butler (owner, Games and Stuff), Catherine Stippel (game designer, Nyctophobia!), Kathleen Mercury (game designer, Greece Lightning), and Isaac Vega (co-owner, Rose Gauntlet Entertainment) discuss trends and themes for tabletop games. Moderated by Jackson Wood (marketing coordinator, Japanime Games).


3:00pm Tabletop Media Networks • https://youtu.be/gqvUhDXoX7k

Tabletop communities across the industry are a place for news, sharing about games and awards and more. Listen to Monique Macaseat (host, Before You Play), Lincoln Damerst (host, BoardGameGeek), Mandi Hutchinson (host, The Dice Tower), and Kira Anne Peavley (host, Man Vs Meeple) share how to work with Tabletop media outlets and communities. Moderated by Dan “Shoe” Hsu (host, Going Analog).