Nov 12

GameCity, GameCityNightsAway, BIG

GameCity festival over, first three dates of GameCityNightsAway delivered and just arrived in Sao Paulo for the BIG festival.

Crazy year, slowly getting written up at CityHall.


Nov 12


After three years of monthly gigs in Nottingham, we’re taking the show on the road. Continue reading →

Apr 12

*that* time again

My working life at is regularly punctuated by 100 minute trips up and down the Midland Mainline service to St Pancras and dashing across London taking meetings about a number of forthcoming projects. There’s a crazy amount of plates spinning at the moment, but the most immediate upcoming event is the launch of this years’ festival event. We’re doing it a little differently this year, both in terms of the launch and the event itself and we’d love it if you can come along to the evening event.

On the evening of May 2nd we’re staging an extra-special GameCityNights gig looking back over the career of Ian Livingstone with the man himself in attendance. I’ve interviewed Ian a number of times over the last few years for a few different projects and he’s always an entertaining, candid interviewee – I think this is going to be a fun and interesting night. Hope you can make it!




Mar 12

Zines & teams

A new post up over at (Game)CityHall, looking back over the process of creating the Zelda Zine @ GameCity 6 – and more specifically some of the process & management that surrounded it.

I’m growing increasingly interested in documenting the ways in which small teams like ours function (and don’t) and in particular how we intersect with corporates in the process.

Mar 12

…are made by people

A lot of this was talked about in the 2010 Vision Statement (that never was…) but not written up, and whilst it’s a little old hat – I wanted to capture some parts of it over at Cityhall. The best part is in the comments where someone I used to read when I was fifteen weighs in. We really should try and get that ZZap! project moving again this year…

Jan 12

GameCityNights : Season 3

Lots happening next week at the Season Three kick-off for GameCityNights. The release goes out in the morning, but I’m sure Chris wouldn’t mind me telling you that there are a lot of new regular features (house-band! Finally!), a brilliant headliner and we’re announcing three new projects that we’ve been working on for a long time…

It’s a little disorientating, but nonetheless exhilarating to be hitting the ground like this so early in the year. If you’re not familiar with what the ‘nights shows are, I’ve just written a small intro up at CityHall.

Hope to see you there…!



Nov 11

Hello (game)CityHall…

We’ve been toying with the idea for a while of creating a process / research blog for the GameCity project for a while now, and finally we’re having a crack at it.

The lovely team at GCHQ are ticking the main sites over very nicely now, so there’s actually very little writing input I have into the day-to-day operation. Honestly, the parts that I’m most interested in increasingly are the festival and activities themselves. In particular, how and why they’re done, how the videogame industry does / doesn’t play well with other parts of culture and public life – some of the internal motivators for the whole project and how it develops. We talk a lot about what we’re doing, and in particular what we’re about to do – but not a lot about the broader context of it.

So, the CityHall blog is an attempt to capture something of the process of developing the GameCity project to allow us to better evaluate it, understand the landscape in which it operates and to help me remember the things that actually happen before they disappear into the haze of approaching middle-age. It’d be really lovely if it also becomes a place for conversation, an extension of the user-group events we used to run, so we can really get to grips with what people might want this thing to become.

Anyway, here it is. Places, software, culture, videogames, culture, ideas, successes, failures and GameCity – all playing out at (Game)CityHall.

Hope you enjoy it.


Nov 11

Things people said about GameCity 6

I always forget to do this and end up with either a clutter of pinboard links, browser bookmarks or a .xls from Chris with *everything* in it…

Mostly this year, people have been amazingly kind and the response to the prize has been nothing short of astonishing. We’re a very lucky festival…



Media Responses:

IGN : Zelda Fanfest

Keza Macdonald with some terrifying footage

GamaSutra : Videogames step deeper into the Cultural Conciousness

“By straddling the blockbuster and indie divide, shifting focus away from mere product onto the process and wider meaning of games, GameCity shines a light on an aspect of video games often missed by so many other specialist game shows. To see the festival act as a catalyst in propelling the gaming medium forward in cultural terms is both fitting and testament to the firm, clear vision of the organizers that has weathered the storm of changing fashions around it.”

Guardian : Six Highlights of GameCity

“Surprising, transfixing, inclusive, joyful… I always run out of superlatives on the subject of GameCity, the Nottingham-based games festival that closed on Saturday.”

Kotaku : Fans build their own Zeldazine

SegaAddicts @ GameCIty 6

“When I arrived in the frankly lovely town of Nottingham, it was hard to get a grip on the festival as a whole. I had looked at the programme list and was honestly shocked by the amount of interesting stuff you could go see for free.”

Made  2 Game : More to GameCity than the GameCity Prize

“If the Prize comes to define GameCity it could lose that identity – and become defined by it, as, say, Sundance has started to be defined by what wins its awards.”

Eurogamer TV : What is GameCity?

Addict of Fiction

“Gamecity has been around for 6 years now, and yet they still seem to miss either accidentally or purposely what the majority of gamers want,”

Nov 11

IGN Podcast from GC6

The first of a torrent of wrap-up posts about the festival, lest I forget everything that happened.

Here’s Jimmy and I on an ‘early’ morning podcast with the brilliant Keza and Stu from IGN.

22:44 minutes of barely keeping it together can be heard here


Sep 11

IGN : Has Gaming lost its Humanity?

That nice bloke Andy Robertson has just published a group interview up on IGN about the absence of humanity in the public face of the games industry – something I’ve been banging on about for a while now. Indeed, if our work at GameCity is about anything, it’s about the fact that games are made by people.

It’s scary being cited alongside luminaries such as Chen, Cuthbert and Braben – although I was really surprised by Jenova’s opening answers.