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East Midlands Chamber News

Video game spectacular GameCity8 needs your space to invade

GameCity, the week-long videogame festival that attracts more than 50,000 visitors to Nottingham City centre, is hoping to recruit even more city centre venues for this year’s annual spectacular.

Powered by Nottingham Trent University, GameCity brings together developers and the public to celebrate videogames, videogame culture and to showcase developments in computer programming.

This year’s festival, GameCity8, will take over much of the Old Market Square in Nottingham from October 19 to October 26 – the school half-term week – with two giant screens forming the heart of the action.

Following a special launch event, organisers have also revealed plans to get shops, bars and other city centre venues to sign up.

“The festival has grown each time bringing in more and more special guests and visitors. Now in its eighth year, we are determined not to get complacent,” said GameCity8 director Iain Simons.

“We are especially concerned with how we can keep things interesting, inclusive and diverse. We want less sameness and more difference.

“The subject matter for video games is limitless and we are looking for ways for developers to reflect that by encouraging them to interact with all parts of the community – young and old, male and female, everyone and anyone!

“That is why we are looking to get as many venues as possible involved. Whether it is a bar, pub, restaurant, hotel or whatever, we’d love to discuss our plans and see what other people can come up with. We want to be surprised! At this stage, no ideas would be off limits.

“We are also looking to get schools involved in the run up to the festival. This is where the concept designers and computer programmers of the future will come from and we are keen to show youngsters, their teachers and their parents what the industry holds for the future,” said Mr Simons.

GameCity has worked alongside some of the most prominent names in gaming, including Nintendo, Microsoft, SCEE, Electronic Arts, Rare, Crytek UK, Harmonix, thatgamecompany and Warner Bros.

Going beyond just playing games, GameCity offers new ways to interact with videogame culture – art exhibitions, director commentaries, playground building, live recreations of videogames, gigs, arcade trails, club nights. Nothing is off limits, according to organisers.

This year’s festival will also include the unveiling of the winners of the Off the Map competition, a collaboration between GameCity, Crytek software and the British Library. Based on drawings and maps of Stonehenge, the Tower of London or the Pyramids, and involving computer programming students from universities including Nottingham Trent, the only brief is a challenge to “surprise and challenge” the judges.

For contact GameCity email if@aeiyognogmct.r, telephone 0115 993 2359 or write to GameCity, Anntenna, 9 Beck Street, Nottingham, NG1 1EQ. To find out more about GameCity visit www.gamecity.org or follow the team on Twitter @gamecity and Facebook (www.facebook.com/gamecity.nottingham).