The third annual Games For Change Latin America Festival will take place at the University of São Paulo, Brazil, from November 28 to December 1. G4C Latin America and City of Knowledge, in alliance with UOL (the largest internet provider in Latin America), will run academic seminars, game design workshops, and playtests of games such as Ludwig, which making its official debut in Portuguese at the Festival.
The Festival will bring together market professionals and researchers of all backgrounds to discuss the impact of video games on society, public health and learning, as well as the relationship between creating and consuming games and the acceleration of technological innovation.
Registration for the Festival is now open. Pick up your pass by November 19 for early-bird savings!
If you have questions about the G4C Latin America Festival, please ask them in the comments or send an email to the organizers.
The program this year integrates reflection and debates with hands-on game design. It also features a three-day game jam at the university’s Sports Center.
“Games are complex objects, interdisciplinary, and transmediatic. Their impact has been increasing, especially in areas considered foreign to entertainment such as education, culture, health, environment, security and defense,” explains Gilson Schwartz, director of Games for Change Latin America and a full professor at the School of Communications and Arts in the University of São Paulo.
A pre-Festival seminar will present a strategic vision of games in the roadmap for the transformation of contemporary global societies, as well as a preview of issues raised by current research on the future of the game industry in Brazil. This session is sponsored by the Brazilian Bank for Social and Economic Development, BNDES, and the university’s Center for Technology Policy and Management.
In addition to the content tracks and game testing sessions, participants will have access to hands-on game creation workshops with Mario Lapin, head of Virgo Games and a pioneering G4C leader in Brazil, and Francisco Tupy, G4C Brazil’s community manager who is responsible for technology and education in the Porto Seguro High School in São Paulo.
The lectures and discussions are organized thematically along three simultaneous tracks: Impact, Learning, and Innovation.
The Impact track discusses the virtues and vices of games, and challenges in areas such as health, political activism, entrepreneurship, and cause marketing. Teachers, researchers, game designers, and activists from Brazil and abroad will participate. Research groups such as Ludens, the Department of History, and the Children and Teenager’s Health Research Center from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFF) will also present.
This track focuses on the use of games in education and how the new “ludic century” can engage and involve students of different ages and educational levels. Participants can explore the relationship between games and learning in various playtest sessions. This year’s highlight is the Austrian game Ludwig and Jörg Hofstätter, CEO of the Austrian studio Ovos.
“The arrival of Ludwig in Brazil is also an opportunity to expand the cooperation between universities and companies of Austria and even the European Union with their Brazilian counterparts. Hopefully, my participation will help to expand the internationalization horizon of the Brazilian games as a two-way flow,” said Hofstätter.
The track will revolve around the relationship between games and paradigm shifts in production and consumption of technology.
“The audiovisual interface will be overtaken by the ‘Internet of Things,’ where playing a digital game will impact the real world, and physical reality will perform as a life-sized playing board affected in real time,” explained José Roberto Amazonas, a professor at the Polytechnic School of the University of São Paulo.
The importance of simulators for innovation in fields such as security, defense, and finance will also be the subject of several lectures and debates. Last, but not least, changes in the field of drama, the emergence of new narrative forms, and the convergence between games and different audiovisual media such as film and television will be discussed on the innovation track.