What open-to-public events can you meet game designers at?

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Sideburns7511 101 Jul 24, 2012 at 06:17 networking game-industry peer-to-peer

Hi I’m a Freshman in college and I’ve been reading into how to get through the doors to the game industry and one thing always seems to pop up: It’s all in who you know. So I was wondering.

What are some events that are open to the public that I could meet members of the industry?

I’m very confident in my abilities to be a game designer, it’s more of getting into the spot that worries me. I plan on either doing an internship or QA testing in the next couple of years. I just want to go to some events like PAX, E3 and such. If anyone could leave a list of events and where they are I’d greatly appreciate it, specially in the North East. :) Thanks bros.

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Reedbeta 168 Jul 24, 2012 at 06:48

Find out if you have a local chapter of the IGDA and see if you can drop in on some of their meetups.

As for events, I don’t know that there are too many in the Northeast US. These things are mostly on the West Coast, especially California. There’s PAX East in Boston, of course. However, things like PAX and E3 are not really good places to network with game industry people - they’re are all about marketing games to customers. If you really want to meet game developers you should try going to something like GDC instead. They have reduced prices for students, plus a volunteer program where you work part-time during the conference in exchange for housing assistance and full access to the conference for the time you’re not working. There are also various smaller game design conferences around, but you have to hunt for them.

You should also consider joining Twitter and following some gamedev people there, if you haven’t already. It’s a great way to hear about what’s going on in the industry and get a sense for who the big names are.