Game Conferences and Events

There are several events around the world on games. These vary widely in terms of size and focus. Some are more for academics to share their research; others are better suited for educators. Still other conferences are
trade shows where designers and merchants can check out the latest games.

A huge list of game-related events and conferences can be found at GameConfs.com.

Academic

  • DiGRA – DiGRA is the “association for academics and professionals who research digital games and associated phenomena.” Founded in 2003, it is one of the larger game research communities. It features an annual conference where researchers and designers can present their work.
  • Games for Change Festival – Held annually in New York City, Games for Change Festival brings together game developers, businesses, nonprofits and educators. “Discover how digital games and immersive technologies impact education, healthcare, research, civics, and social issues.”
  • Meaningful Play Conference – held at Michigan State, this biannual conference brings together scholars and industry professionals.
  • Serious Play Conference Organized by Clark Aldrich, this conference sponsored by private companies and featuring industry speakers.

Board Game Conventions

Click here for a giant list of board game conventions.

Some of the more popular conventions include the following:

  • UK Games Expo. Birmingham, UK. ~16K attendees.
  • Dice Tower Con. Orlando, FL.
  • Origins Game Fair. Columbus, OH. ~17K attendees.
  • Gen Con. Indianapolis, Indiana. ~60K attendees.
  • Essen Spiel. Essen, Germany. A HUGE convention with about 170K attendees.
  • PAX Unplugged. Philadelphia, PA.

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I teach game design and educational technology courses at Teachers College, Columbia University in New York City. You can reach me at GAMES at tc dot columbia dot edu.