Over 100,000 people will join the annual celebration of video games and interactive entertainment as London Games Festival announces its dates for 2020: 26 March to 6 April.
97,000+ people attended 40 different events during the 2019 festival. In 2020 professionals and consumers alike have yearly tentpole events like Now Play This and EGX Rezzed to look forward to, plus an expanded Trafalgar Square Games Festival planned across two days and an always-growing B2B strand.
The London Games Festival is increasingly renowned globally for the perception-changing spotlight it puts on interactive entertainment. LGF has more games on show than any other global games event and boasts a more varied programme and diverse audience. This is boosted with events delivered or backed by supporters underpinning the festival such as the British Academy of Film and Television (BAFTA), British Council and Events DC.
It’s also a trusted platform for global business: in 2019 festival events run by LGF organiser Games London genereated business wins of over £25m for participating companies. Next year this will be extended via a number of visiting international delegations from Europe and beyond looking to connect with investors, meet with UK companies or present new games experiences.
Highlights for London Games Festival 2020 include:
- LGF kicks off with EGX Rezzed, one of the biggest PC and indie games shows in the world, running 26 to 28 March at Tobacco Dock
- Ensemble, the festival’s yearly exhibition of BAME talent in games, which will debut at Rezzed before touring other festival events
- The LGF HUB two-day conference and expo on 30 March and 31 March with a focus on the global games industry and key issues around Games Impact, Interactive Narratives and Games Culture
- Games Finance Market, taking place on 1 April and 2 April, which will draw in up to 60 major investors to the UK for pitch meetings with games businesses
- Hollywood XP, a brand new forum of keynotes and panels on 1 April exploring the connections between interactive entertainment and other screen media
- BAFTA Games Awards, the games industry’s most prestigious accolades, awarded on the night of 2 April
- Another collaboration with the Now Play This team to present innovative and inspiring game experiences during London Games Festival
- Plus the return of the Trafalgar Square Games Festival, expanded to a two-day climax for the main festival on 3 April and 4 April and including more free games experiences, cosplay, music and more
London Games Festival is backed by the Mayor of London with funding of £1.2m over three years and seeks to make London the games capital of the world. It is delivered by Games London, an initiative from Film London, the capital’s screen industries agency, and video games trade body Ukie (The Association for UK Interactive Entertainment).
Justine Simons OBE, Deputy Mayor for Culture and Creative Industries, said: “London’s thriving games industry is a real success story, bringing significant investment and jobs to our capital. The London Games Festival is a fantastic showcase for this cutting-edge sector, helping to drive business and share skills. I’m delighted that 2020’s event will be the biggest and best yet.”
Adrian Wootton, CEO of Film London and the British Film Commission, said: “It is fantastic to see the London Games Festival expanding its reach and ambition, building on the success of last year’s festival which created business worth over £25m for participating companies on top of a further £9m generated by the wider Games London programme over the past 12 months. By continuing to connect the best and brightest talent and set to enable major new business opportunities, this year’s festival seeks to cement its central position as the premier showcase for all aspects of games, reflecting the terrific success of the UK industry, which contributes nearly £3bn into the economy. We are thrilled to celebrate this success.”
Dr Jo Twist OBE, CEO of Ukie, said: “The London Games Festival continues to grow and is a fantastic opportunity for all ages to celebrate the creativity and innovation of the games and interactive entertainment industry. London is one of the epicentres of games talent in the UK and continuing to attract international attention to these businesses is key.”
Applications are now open for developers and industry professionals looking to take part in London Games Festival and the wider Games London programme – specifically the Games Finance Market (https://gfm.games.london – deadline 22 January 2020) and the third phase of BAME exhibition Ensemble (www.games.london/ensemble2020 – deadline Friday 6 December 2019). The Games London team is also looking for experts to flesh out an ‘Office Hours’ programme of free advice for games companies run during the festival – email [email protected] to get info. You can discover more about the programme in the coming months via www.games.london and @londongamesfest.