GEC 2016

Games Emerge Conference (GEC), 2016

PGA organized Pakistan’s first Games Emerge Conference (GEC) in December 2016 for the video game developers and creative artists of Pakistan. The event was held in Islamabad from 2nd Dec 2016 to 4th December 2016.

GEC 2016 featured a 2-day game jam (World Wide Impact Jam), which was aimed at bringing together game developers to learn and collaborate. Participants created games on social issues around a central theme. The theme for 2016 was peace and resulted in four prototypes with widely varying game mechanics. These were showcased at the end of the conference. (The games we made)

Along with the game jam, GEC 2016 consisted of technical workshops, panel sessions and talks covering many facets of games and game development. Topics ranged from the potential in games to be agents of positivity, to concept art, collaboration, project management, and winning game design strategies, and many things in between. Several prominent personalities from the local and international video games industry including Brie Code and Rami Ismail were part of the panels or gave talks.

GEC 2016 was the first initiative to bring together the small community of video game developers and students of game development in Pakistan. The event enabled students as well as developers to learn from the experiences and knowledge shared by some of the leading professionals of the industry.

GEC 2016 has laid the foundation for creating a vibrant community of game developers in Pakistan which is still in its infancy. We hope such events will help Pakistan in becoming a significant player in the videogames industry globally.

The event was covered extensively in local and international media. Details of the event are covered in the media releases, referenced in the “Resources” section of this document.

World Wide Impact Jam (WWIJ)

World Wide Impact Jam is a 2-day marathon in which participants around the globe take part in creating games about social issues.

PGA organized the Pakistan chapter of the World-Wide Impact Jam 2016 (WWIJ), an event that was held around the globe. The event aimed to bring together game developers of Pakistan to learn, share, collaborate and create games on social issues being faced in Pakistan, all in just 2 days! Find more details:

The goal of the PGA Game Jam was for the participants to create a game from scratch about a social issue relevant to Pakistan with in a prescribed maximum time of 48 hours. The participants made the games individually or by forming a team of 2 or more participants. The brief time span encouraged creative thinking and innovation as participants rapidly prototyped game designs. Such collaborative experience helped inject new ideas to help grow the game industry while creating awareness about social issues.

The themes selected by PGA for WWIJ (Pakistan Chapter) were “Peace/Education” which are both very important social issues within the context of Pakistan.

WWIJ (Pakistan Chapter) was attended by hundreds of game makers that were actively seeking which software and technologies to use next and what companies support their love of games.


Speakers and Special Guests

Special talks were be provided by Rami Ismail, Brie code and an industry professional from Pakistan. The conference talks covered art, animation, game design, programming, networking, storytelling, production, marketing and more. The sessions were a mix of presentations, panels and hands-on workshops.

Brie Codebriecode-2015november-square_bbhv-640

Lead Programmer at Ubisoft Montreal, who has also worked at Relic Entertainment and Pandemic Studios on the Assassin’s Creed franchise and games like Child of Light, and is helping to launch an exciting diversity initiative at Ubisoft Montreal.

She is currently working on her own startup Tru Luv Media and travelling around the world meeting diverse communities to learn and engage them in creating interesting games. Brie is creating games with the people who don’t like video games.

Rami Ismaelrami-vlambeer-2

Rami Ismail is the Business & Development Guy at Vlambeer, a Dutch independent game studio known best for Nuclear Throne, Ridiculous Fishing, LUFTRAUSERS, Super Crate Box, GUN GODZ, Serious Sam: The Random Encounter & Radical Fishing. Through his work at Vlambeer, Rami has come to realize that the marketing & business facets of many independent game developers could use some help.

Believing sharing knowledge openly is the cornerstone of independent development, Rami has spoken on a variety of subjects at dozens of game events around the world, ranging from the Game Developers Conference to Fantastic Arcade & from University seminars to incubator mentorship. Rami travels around the world trying to find game development communities everywhere, and tries to connect them to help enable anyone around the world to make games.

Shoaib Malikpictureshoaibmalik

Shoaib Malik is currently working as an Associate Director (Games and Mobile Products/Projects) at NorthBay Solutions Pakistan. He has been working in the fields of game development and animation for over 14 years and for the past decade he has been involved in bringing several unique IP game titles to life including Pakistan’s first Multi-player PC game, Cricket Revolution and over a dozen of multi-platform mobile games.
Shoaib is well versed in several disciplines of game development including game design, game production, user acquisition, product development & life-cycle management, art & animation. He is very passionate and enthusiastic about bringing exciting game experiences to life and also sharing his knowledge with others.

Abbas Saleemabbas_pic

As a Transmedia Expert Abbas specializes in Intellectual Property and Product Design. He has produced video games, broadcast animation and toy lines for leading global brands.

IGN Pakistan referred to him as one of the pioneers of video game development in Pakistan and was a key part of the team at Trango Interactive in 2005 that received a Red Herring award. In addition, he was one of the co-creators of Shera Jutt and has created content for the PS2/PS3, Xbox/Xbox 360 platforms, as well as multiple social and mobile games. Recently, he worked on the Peabody Award-winning Burka Avenger where he not only led the production of Season 3 and 4, but also converted it into a Transmedia Product with its own merchandising line.

Currently he is working on creating a Transmedia property that addresses Maternal Healthcare and Reproductive rights in Pakistan and is working with Government bodies to bridge technological gaps within the country’s demographic bulge.

Sadia Bashirsaddi

She is a game artist/designer from Islamabad, Pakistan. She has been working in the game industry for six years now. Sadia has done MS in Computer Science from COMSATS Institute of Information Technology, following her Bachelors in Computer Science from the same institute. She has done research on “Contemporary Practices of Game Development in Industry,” and also extending her research to study traditional and industry-oriented process frameworks suitable for game development. She has been working to provide Game Development learning opportunities and community development across Pakistan by connecting local community with international industry. She has organised multiple game jams, community development events, training courses and workshops. She is extremely passionate about video game development & its education in bringing creativity from the diverse individuals of Pakistan

Waqas Khanimage-3

Waqas is a graduate of GIKI and has over 4 years of entrepreneurial experience. He is currently working as CTO & Cofounder at Spacely Studio
LLC, a US based startup working on an MMO Shooter game, and Cofounder & Instructional Designer at SkillDesk, an edtech startup.
Previously, Waqas founded Half Fried Games and grew it to 1 million downloads. The games he worked on at Half Fried Games were featured multiple times on Google Play and Apple Appstore. Waqas also worked as Game Developer & Cofounder at IQFriends, a brain training startup incubated at Launchub China, Microsoft AppCampus and Startup Brasil. Waqas ranked 4th most outstanding individual in the world at WebSummit, Ireland.

Press Releases

IGN Pakistan
IGN Pakistan: Day One
IGN Pakistan: Day Two
IGN Pakistan: Day Three

About PixelArt Games Academy

PixelArt Games Academy (PGA) is the first and premier institute of Pakistan providing specialized education and training relevant to the video games industry since 2015.

PGA aims to provide a platform to aspiring game developers of Pakistan for the learning and practical application of different components of video games development such as game design, game art, programming, asset modeling and animations.

PGA Game Lab is a space where PGA students from different game development disciplines such as arts, animation and programming come together and collaborate as a team to build their own game under the mentorship of leading industry professionals.

Video games industry in Pakistan is still in its infancy. With PGA, we aim to bridge the gap between the requirements of the video games industry and what is generally taught in universities and colleges of Pakistan.

Our mission is to educate, empower and engage those interested in creating games in Pakistan, by fostering a diverse community of passionate game developers and involving leading industry professionals in the process, not only from within Pakistan but also from around the globe.