DevGAMM Minsk 2016 Feedback, or Why Renatus Wanted This Gaming Conference to Last Forever


On November 10-11 the capital of Belarus hosted DevGAMM Minsk 2016, the biggest gaming industry event in Eastern Europe which gathered over 1,300 attendees this time. As DevGAMM Managing director Lerika Mallayeva confided in her Facebook post, the number would have been bigger if Minsk Marriott Hotel had room for more people. But quality and participants’ comfort are above all, so the tickets were sold out several days before the event.

Renatus team attended all three conferences in Belarus as Platinum sponsor. This year we set up a really huge corner booth luring the wandering developers with juicy art of our partner Puzzle Dreams studio’s match-3 games and branded sweets.

Every year is unlike the previous one, the only thing that never changes is levelup that DevGAMM team makes every time. Coping with over-the-top attendance is not the biggest challenge these guys had. Maintaining the quality level, adding new useful and fun activities, and bringing trendy speakers to the event turn out to be truly difficult. But they keep doing it!

Minsk event was simply the best in the part of sessions content, it even outdid the previous conference, DevGAMM Moscow 2016. The halls were full during all sessions, of which the top attended ones were presented by Jakub Dvorský (Amanita Design), Chet Faliszek (Valve), Mike Hines (Amazon), Tony Watkins (EA Russia), Marta Dettlaff and Kacper Niepokólczycki (CD Project RED), Piotr Iwanicki (SUPERHOT), Imre Jele (Bossa Studios) and Alex Nichiporchik (tinyBuild).

Special sound, art and animation tracks brought jointly with Archibaldi Studio and OWL Studio got a highly positive feedback. The platform-oriented content, such as Google Apps & Games track and iOS workshop, was of high quality as well. And that’s one of the areas DevGAMM team looks to expand in their next events.

The traditional activities Speed Game Dating, GAMM: Play Showcase, Game Lynch (or perhaps we should say Pokelynch? Watch the video to find out why - coming soon to Youtube) got accompanied by the upside-down version called Antilynch. Members of the collective blog GD Cuffs were the antylinchers who analyzed 3 games for game design and provided expert advice on how to improve them.

One of the novelties that grabbed most attention was DevGAMM Quest. It gathered over 100 attendees who competed for amazing prizes by solving puzzles and completing tasks during both days of the event. Renatus was one of the Quest sponsors, our team asked participants to guess several TOP mobile games by their main characters. Overall, around 50 participants were awarded for taking part in the Quest.

Speaking of the awards. DevGAMM Minsk 2016 featured two award ceremonies: the first one, People of the Year was the celebration of people and companies that contributed into the gaming industry, and the second one, DevGAMM Awards, was meant to name the best games and entertain guests with jokes of two pokemons and Ash… which in fact were the costumed Lerika Mallayeva, Yulia Vakhrusheva and Nikolai Andreev. The first-ever Unity Developer Certification was held in Russian. On passing this 1.5 hour exam including 100 questions on Unity development, the participants received the official Unity Developer Certificate which is valid for 2 years. Who knows, maybe it will be the key that opens door to one’s dream job. Or maybe it will be the knowledge and skills obtained during Speed Interviews by Spice Recruitment. Or the traditional Career Wall organized together with Riot Games, this time it featured a hundred of amazing job openings from top industry companies.

Days gave way to nights, sun replaced snow-heavy clouds, networking was the only constant thing running nonstop! It lasted from Chartboost pre-party up to bye-bye mingle party sponsored by Renatus, including two more parties. The official party on the first day was perfect in terms of organization and had the unforgettable music atmosphere created by Duo Loki and Minskoe More bands. The Unreal Party by Vizor and Epic Games was truly… unreal, and it was definitely the bittersweetest party full of sadness over the conference ending and joy over it being so fantastic.  

Here are some sweet numbers that will save you from falling into sad mood: 22 countries represented. 60 indie projects on GAMM:Play.89 speakers. 105 volunteers.459 registered business meetings.1055 sold tickets.1300+ total participants.1800+! That’s the amount of attendees DevGAMM team is expecting to have on their next Moscow event.

Save the date and place: May 18-19, Moscow city. Be there to become part of the amazing DevGAMM Moscow 2017!
Posted by Renatus on November 24, 2016