Leveling Up at Africa Games Week 2023 – by David Sibato

David-Ambena

Africa Games Week 6th Edition wasn’t just a conference; it was a three-day power-up for my game development journey. Every session, from workshops to Networking, felt like a skill boost, unlocking new levels of ambition and connection.

Day 1: My quest began with “Funding Opportunities for African Game Developers,” navigating funding avenues with industry veteran Jason Della Rocca. It was like cracking open a treasure chest of knowledge, bursting with potential for our continent’s gaming scene. The day ended with a wine-soaked networking odyssey, the perfect blend of business and bonding amidst Cape Town’s charm.

Day 2: “Games for Change Africa” became my battle cry. Joined by renowned speakers and the G4C team, we explored how games can bridge the gap between awareness and action. It was a call to arms, urging us to use our craft to create a positive impact.

Day 3: With the “Xbox Discovery Day,” I delved into the secrets of the ID@Xbox initiative, learning skills to level up my career and glimpse the magical world of game publishing. Supercell’s interactive session on company culture revealed powerful insights, teaching us how to forge the best environment for game development. IFAS’s talk, “How Can the Corporate World & the Creators Support Each Other,” showed us how to build a thriving network for our projects.

Africa Games Week wasn’t just about acquiring knowledge; it was about connection and community. Networking at Groot Constantia, amidst rolling vineyards and global dreamers, reminded me that we’re all part of a vibrant tapestry. Meeting artists from Studio Boland, the ID@Xbox lead, and faces from across the globe cemented that feeling of belonging.

The highlights reel played like a cinematic masterpiece; Epic Games’ growth secrets, game stands showcasing African-born worlds, Unreal Engine’s futuristic tools, and industry leaders charting our electrifying path. The pièce de résistance, The Africa Game Industry Report, delivered by the visionary Hugo Obi, CEO of Maliyo Games. This data-driven document, now freely available at Africagamesreport.com, wasn’t just a report; it was a beacon, illuminating our potential, challenges, and unstoppable ascent. Africa wasn’t just playing the game; we were redefining it.

Africa Games Week was a wake-up call, showing me my strengths in success stories and opportunities for growth. It ignited a fire within me, not just to be a developer, but a leader, a mentor, a champion for African gaming. This wasn’t just a game-changer; it was a revolution in the making.

The knowledge, connections, and inspiration I gained will fuel my journey beyond the conference halls and into the heart of the industry. Now, it’s time to level up, not just my own game, but the game for every aspiring developer on this continent.

Make sure to keep an eye for the next Africa Games Week edition as Cape Town was just the starting point.

David Sibato

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