When GCAP 2018’s theme, The Walls We’ve Built Ourselves, was announced in late June, murmurs began to break out across the industry, spilling through group posts on Facebooks and threads across Twitter. Whilst at the time there was a very evident rejection of this thinking starting to break out, conversation began to shift as we came to terms with discussing this sentiment.
Right from the off in this morning’s opening keynote, we dove deep into the subject that had sent a ripple effect through social media with both GDAA CEO, Tony Reed introducing it, and keynote speaker, Leighton Gray discussing the very notion of walling ourselves off.
Setting the tone, Tony Reed stated what many in the industry are starting to see; there will be a significant change coming in the market place and we, as an industry need to be ready for it. He highlighted that one of the many strengths of our industry is the sense of community and the protections that come with that, but cautioned that we need to ready our selves for this change and tackle it together.
Dream Daddy: A Dad Dating Simulator co-creator, Leighton Gray then continued the dive into this year’s theme, looking at the evolution of games, media and art, and how it has taken on the characteristics of post, post modern art – the thinking that she has coined as ‘metamodernism’. Whilst the wording varied, the crux of her talk echoed Tony’s sentiment, closing with “We might have built these walls with cynicism, but we can tear them down with sincerity.”
Whilst to some this year’s theme may be a little on the nose, to me, these are the sometimes hard, often awkward conversations we need to be having as an industry. As games and the industry alongside it matures, so must the conversations we have. Because, and I paraphrase, if we don’t challenge ourselves, we will never realize what we can become.
GCAP 18 is a part of Melbourne International Games Week 2018. For more information on this event and a full schedule, you can check out the official site.