Games festival will be a “boost” for Leamington

Three generations of the same family try out a VR headet which will be featured at the Interactive Futures event in Leamington.
Three generations of the same family try out a VR headet which will be featured at the Interactive Futures event in Leamington.

Leading lights of the UK gaming industry will come together at a major event in Leamington from the end of next week.

The Interactive Futures games festival will take place at the Spa Centre from Thursday (January 31) to next Saturday (February 2) and will be a first for the town which is home to the ‘Silicon Spa’ games development cluster.

Cllr Andrew Mobbs, the leader of Warwick District Council, said: “I’m extremely proud that we have brought this completely unique event to Leamington.

“Interactive Futures not only supports the current generation of talent in our district but also offers unrivalled access to the best in the business for a whole new generation, who with the right skills could become the future industry leaders in our growing Silicon Spa.”

The main conference on Thursday and Friday will provide a platform for the creative communities to showcase the latest developments and opportunities in this fast growing sector.

An important element of Interactive Futures is the opportunities for independent studios and students to get their games or animations in front of the audience of professionals attending the festival, through competitions, or by submitting their portfolio for review by an industry expert.

The Saturday is tailored for aspiring games creators, enthusiasts, students and families with sessions including Let’s Make where those attending can explore virtual reality and create their own animation, a Raspberry Pi Minecraft workshop or the chance design their own video game character for a Pixelheads Dash.

For those interested in starting a career, there are talks from leading games professionals including Ubisoft, Playground Games, Codemasters and Darbotron on the job roles available in the industry, or how to get your foot in the door at a AAA studio.

BAFTA will also be holding workshops for parents, teachers and young game designers at Leamington Town Hall - which are completely free to attend but need to be booked in advance.

Stacy O’Connor, digital skills lead for the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “This event is the perfect opportunity to showcase the innovative and growing gaming companies which are based in Leamington. It will showcase the varied career opportunities available to young people across the region and will provide an economic boost to the area.”

A pass for the Saturday costs £5.

Visit interactive-futures.com for tickets, session bookings and further information.