A MAZE is an indie games festival and convention from Germany, and last year’s A MAZE was in South Africa for the first time. It was also around the first time I got into this whole game dev thing. Fast forward to 2013, and A MAZE was back for round two. And now that I’ve been a part of makegamesSA for a year, I could well and truly appreciate the amazingness of A MAZE 2013.
As there was simply too much to ramble endlessly about, and my time is limited due to the urge to make more games, this is gonna have to be a condensed supernova of the awesomeness that was A MAZE 2013.
1. Speakers from all over the globe and of course SA
Guys from Nigeria, France, UK, the States, Poland, etc. I was particularly sad that I couldn’t attend the Friday sessions, what with work and all, but I’m absolutely looking forward to videos of those sessions. The full programme of speakers can be found here.
2. Meeting and hanging out with international greats
In particular, Vlambeer‘s Rami and McPixel‘s Sos was there, and we got to hang out a lot. Besides being really cool guys, they are also really inspirational individuals who’ve achieved tons. Rami’s keynote about how Vlambeer came about and the very existential musings around how we are all inter-connected (it’s like emergent gameplay! ) really made me re-think a lot of my own life. Sos’s energetic attitude to game making (his business card: Mad Scientist of Video Games. His credential? McPixel, Achtung Arcade with 600 games.) was super infectious. The opportunity to pick their brains alone were simply amazing.
3. Pecha Kucha!
At the closing party, we had a Pecha Kucha session. Pecha Kucha is a format of speaking where each speaker has 20 slides with 20 seconds to talk. Thatsitgo! Good thing Thorsten (The handsome fellow who’s the A MAZE event organiser from Germany) convinced me to participate - it was an incredible experience, thinking and putting together the material as well as running through it really leveled myself up. Simon Bachelier from France Vined them all, and of course I await full video releases of them from A MAZE
Seriously, the best thing about A MAZE is the gathering of minds, and the palpable atmosphere of people doing what they love, how they love, and succeeding at it. The sheer force of will is incredible, and makes a great bit rocket behind your back propelling you to do what you should be doing - which should be what you want to be doing. And if that’s making games, then GO DO IT! NOW!
5. OK you can look at some photos first before going to make games
Unfortunately the gallery was obliterated in the Great Blog Crash of 2013. If I have time and energy I’ll resurrect it, but I’m sure you’d rather see new content rather than old stuff :3