Ballarat’s highly successful and nationally regarded workforce development initiative – GIG: Get into Games – is back.
More than 200 students from schools across the Victorian Central Highlands will converge on the Ballarat Mining Exchange today for the 12th GIG: Get into Games event.
Speakers at the event this year include Tony Reed, who heads up the Australia and New Zealand office for Epic Games – the production company behind the popular game, Fortnite.
We also welcome back Anna Brandenberg from EA Games, and Tim Best from Mighty Games. And, for the first, Tess Monash from Harmonix Music Systems will also join us on stage.
Another highlight of this year’s event is the involvement of five local Ballarat gaming studios – Bhad Games, Snake Hill Games, Silent Lighthouse Games, Dark Shadow Studios and Chaos Shard Studios – who will be exhibiting their games for students to play. Some of these game developers themselves went to a GIG event when they were students.
An initiative of the City of Ballarat’s Economic Development department, Get into Games promotes Information Technology (IT) and associated creative industry career paths to both secondary and higher education students by highlighting the opportunities that exist in the gaming industry.
The GIG: Get into Games initiative is designed to attract and retain digital skills and knowledge in the region by promoting gaming and other courses available to students through Federation University; and promote Ballarat as a high-tech and knowledge-based economy interested in attracting games development studios.
With support from Federation University, Highlands LLEN, Game Developers Association of Australia (GDAA), IBM, GUF Games and Telstra, the event helps to encourage a pipeline of IT and creative industry skills that will support the city’s established industry base.
The initiative also supports the City of Ballarat’s Economic Program 2015-2019 which identifies Information, Communication and Telecommunications (ICT) as a key priority sector that will help build an innovative and entrepreneurial culture. The creative industries, of which digital games development is a core component, is also a strategic focus for the City of Ballarat’s Creative City Strategy.
The GIG: Get into Games initiative was a finalist in the 2018 National Economic Development Awards for Excellence, Digital Entrepreneurs category.