Ontario Dominates GDC 2024 Best In Play

GDC: March 18-22, 2024 - San Francisco, CA. Best In Play: GDC Play 2024

GDC 2024 Best In Play winners have been announced, and an astounding 7 out of 8 studios are from right here in Ontario. These victories highlight our region’s extraordinary output and talent on the world stage. GDC Play is a vibrant interactive platform designed to celebrate the creative vision of indie developers. Many of these projects were made possible with support from Ontario Creates, Canada Media Fund, and other invested shareholders who continue to champion the industry to push the boundaries of interactive entertainment. A heartfelt congratulations to Achimostawinan Games, Games by Stitch, Kitten Cup Studios, Massive Damage, City From Naught, Transitional Forms, and Numizmatic on their wins!

See our highlight video below, and read more about this story on The Lodgge.

Canadian Screen Awards, Seven Out Of Nine IDM Nominees Are From Ontario

Canadian Screen Awards | Prix Écrans Canadiens 2024

Ontario studios have made a significant splash at the Canadian Screen Awards, clinching seven of the nine nominations across the “Best Immersive Experience” and “Best Video Game” categories!

In the “Best Immersive Experience – Fiction” category, titles Broken Spectre by Games by Stitch and Survivorman VR by Cream Productions have earned nominations, while Eternal Spring VR by Lofty Sky Entertainment and In Your Shoes VR by ZeMind Game Studio have been acknowledged in the “Best Immersive Experience – Non-fiction” category. We are also excited to share the clean sweep of Ontario studios in the “Best Video Game” category, featuring Little Learning Machines by Transitional Forms, Return to Grace by Creative Bytes Studios, and Venba by Visai Games.

A big round of applause and the best of luck to all the nominees! Don’t forget to check out The Lodgge’s celebratory short video on YouTube, highlighting the nominees!

Ontario In Full Force at GDC 2024

This year in San Francisco, Ontario will be showing up in droves at all things GDC. With over 40 studios in attendance throughout the conference, we are excited to see such a lively presence this year at the Moscone Center. Featured speakers at this year’s event include Digital Extremes, Sticky Brain Studios, JALI Research, Soft Rains, Transitional Forms, Vivid Foundry, Behaviour Interactive, Studio MDHR, Dames Making Games Toronto, Odyssey Interactive, Visai Games, People Can Fly, Sago Mini, Kitten Cup Studio and more!

The Global Affairs Pitch Competition will also feature a strong showing from Ontario studios, including Computechnosoft, Kitten Cup Studios, Twenty Ninety Creative, Thousand Stars Studio, Get Set Games, Game Pill

As mentioned above, the seven Ontario studios that won GDC’s 2024 Best in Play will feature their titles, alongside dozens of other great Ontario studios. We will also be cheering on Thousand Stars Studio and Massive Damage Games at this year’s GDC 2024 Pitch Competition!

Clarification of Remote Labour Eligibility Within The OIDMTC

Interactive Ontario (IO) extends its sincere appreciation to the Ministry of Tourism, Culture, and Sport (MTCS) for their pivotal role in providing clarity regarding the eligibility of remote labour (including contractors) within the scope of the Ontario Interactive Digital Media Tax Credit (OIDMTC). More info can be found at the IO website below.

We thank Interactive Ontario’s Advocacy Committee and our members for their engagement in modernizing the OIDMTC. We continue to work diligently on the five remaining recommendations (see Part 2 here) and will provide updates as they become available.

Indie Superboost: Game Dev Legal – AI & Beyond

Indie Superboost - Game Dev Legal - AI & Beyond featuring Amar Sidhu - Lawyer & Chief Legal Officer at Amar VR Law. Thursday MArch 28 - 1:00-2:00 PM ET.

For this edition of Indie Superboost (ISB), Amar Sidhu, Lawyer & Chief Legal Officer at Amar-VR Law, partner of Interactive Ontario, will be joining us to discuss the impacts and considerations to account for when using AI to assist with game development.

For game studios navigating the multifaceted legal landscape, Amar Sidhu of Amar-VR Law offers legal advice and services with a focus on the video game industry.

Interactive Ontario Members and IDM producers that are members of the Canadian Interactive Alliance/l’Alliance Interactive Canadienne (CIAIC) receive free admission to all ISB

Thank you to our founding partners Ontario Creates, Canada Media Fund, and Ubisoft Toronto for your continued support of the Indie Superboost series.

Composing For Game Jams Training Event

Composing for Game Jams Training - Music Publishers Canada & Interactive Ontario

Interactive Ontario and Music Publishers Canada are putting on a must-attend workshop for composers and musicians looking to navigate game jams. This informative session will feature insights and training from the staff of the Toronto Game Jam (TOJam), a celebrated, free annual event that brings together game creators for a marathon of game development. Learn everything you need to know to successfully apply, join a team, and make the most of your TOJam experience. Plus, there will be opportunities to network with your fellow game dev professionals.

This session is geared toward NXTGen publishers and your composers/songwriters/musicians as well as young game developers with an interest in working in video games, XR, and interactive media.

– Wed Mar 27 @ 5-7 pm at Kilometer Music Group

Serious Play Returns To Toronto!

Serious Play Conference: Call for Speakers What's your Play? - Open until April 15th

The 2024 Serious Play Conference is back in Toronto! Set to take place at the University of Toronto from August 12-14. Currently, the team at Serious Play is looking for speakers to talk discuss a variety of fields including the power of play, games, and simulations to drive forward learning, training, and knowledge mobilization. This event focuses on a wide range of expertise, but if you are a leader in game development, games for education/edutainment, esports, or XR technologies, or corporate training, they want to hear from you!

The deadline to apply is April 15, 2024.

In addition, early bird registration for attendees is open now! Interactive Ontario members receive 25% off tickets, please visit the IO Members Hub to receive your promotional code

Continue Wants to Help Market Your Game

Continue & Interactive Ontario's: Ask CONTINUE Hours

Starting March 21st, our partners at CONTINUE will begin offering bi-weekly office hours exclusively to Interactive Ontario Members. This open forum will take place on Interactive Ontario’s Discord, which also includes an array of members-only channels regarding funding, events, and other topics.

CONTINUE, a Toronto-based creative marketing agency built for arts and entertainment, boasts a veteran team, a widely varied field of expertise, and a genuine passion for all things video games, XR, and beyond. They have also worked with several Ontario studios to reach their marketing goals.

If you are a member of Interactive Ontario, please bring your video game marketing-related questions to this space beginning next Thursday, March 21st, from 3-4 pm ET, and the Continue team will be happy to help!

Also featured on the IO Discord are bi-weekly office hours with our Funding Expert Chris Fitzgerald, who is available to answer all of your Ontario funding questions.

The Lodgge

To celebrate International Women’s Day, The Lodgge put together a feature article reflecting on some of the remarkable discussions we’ve had with women leaders and innovators in the Ontario video game and XR industry. Please find the full article below.

We have also published our latest episode of The Lodgge Podcast, featuring Snowed In Studios Jean-Sylvain Sormany. Jean and The Lodgge Podcast host Scott Milley talked Snowed In, work culture, Ontario’s video game and XR ecosystem, provincial support, and more!

Become a Member: Learn more about Interactive Ontario Today

Our Mission: To inspire, unite and enable Ontario’s video game and interactive digital media community to achieve long-term growth and prosperity.