Fringe Theatre 2019

The Fringe theatre heads to EGX Rezzed for the first time after successfully debuting at EGX 2018. The Fringe theatre's schedule consists entirely of panel sessions and live podcast recordings proposed and delivered by the EGX community.

In the Fringe theatre you'll find an incredible range of gaming topics covered. There's plenty to discover, enjoy and debate and we hope you'll take part too.

Thursday 4th April

11am-11.45am: AI and games Artificial intelligence and video games is a big topic these days! While researchers are training AI systems to beat the best humans at StarCraft II and Dota2, the same technologies are used to build everything from Alien: Isolation's xenomorph to the procedurally-generated universe of No Man's Sky and the director of Left 4 Dead. AI is an amazing corner of game development that ranges from cutting-edge science to elaborate smoke'n'mirrors to cover up dumb and silly behaviours. Our panel of game devs, academics and more chat about their favourite AI in games - even when it is rubbish, how AI is helping bring new and exciting games to players and how games even make for better AI too!

12pm-12.45pm: Sword Idol - Not the story of a real game In a parallel dimension a small indie studio created a game, and its name was Sword Idol. Join us; help us explore the design, development, and impact of a seminal game that never was; and watch our panelists scramble to make sense of it all!

1pm-1.45pm: Game development is more than just development What happens when you have absolutely no experience of the games industry and you decide to launch headfirst in building a new studio? In late 2017 Theo Priestley, a known technology industry figure, decided to quit his existing job and launch a new studio. Over the next 18 months with the help of other games industry professionals he successfully built a studio and game concept around an existing IP, but there were a lot of obstacles to overcome and eventually the project stalled. This is that journey which led to eventual failure but one which shed light on many aspects and lessons within the industry from an outsiders point of view; from the initial idea and game design, to negotiating an IP with a known entertainment company, to working with investors and publishers in advance to secure funding, to avoiding the trap of 'work for hire' - the business of games development is not unique but one which eludes many​.

2pm-2.45pm: Girth Loinhammer's Most Exponential Adventure An exponentially branching interactive experience live in the Fringe theatre! Girth Loinhammer has it all: a vast fortress, limitless power, and untold legions of goblin slaves. The one problem? Everybody thinks his evil lair is a sex dungeon. Whether he embarks on an epic quest to change his fortune or just sits at home moping all day, every choice you make will shape the story (and usually for the worse). Features over 500 alternate endings!

3pm-3.45pm: Interactive TV Shows - Transmedia pretensions or the future of entertainment? With Black Mirror's Bandersnatch creating buzz with it's interactive Choose Your Own Adventure story, are we seeing a new future in cross-medium potential where the lines between Interactive and Passive continue to blur? We'll examine previous efforts to merge TV and Games into a Transmedia Frankenstein in an attempt to find a resolution to the seemingly forbidden question: Does the future of entertainment lie in Interactive Media?

4pm-4.45pm: The Games on Film Podcast Join the hosts of the Games on Film podcast in their valiant efforts to celebrate the much-maligned middle ground where the mediums of movies and video games meet. For this panel, they will nominate some video games that would actually make a good movie or TV show, how they would adapt it, what problems that might encounter, and put forward cast and crew they think would be up to the task - as well as inviting suggestions from the audience!

5pm-5.45pm: The NerdOD Podcast The NerdOD boys are back after their EGX live debut with their unique take on the gaming culture, news and features along with the onstage banter and shenanigans, you'd be silly to miss out.

Friday 5th April

11am-11.45am: 30 years of indie The panel will take a breezy look at the past thirty years of indie games as part of Ukie's 30 Years of Play campaign. From indies early days in the 1990s, to tough times in the early-mid 0000s through to the new golden age, we'll take you on a journey through indie development's history and round off by giving you an idea of what the future holds.

12pm-12.45pm: Adventures in interactive streaming – a developer’s tale Join the team from Centrifuge (developers of interactive stream games including Rogue Drones, Zeitgeist and Interference) as they describe how their experience of adding interactive features to their existing games has led to an “interactivity first” game design for their latest title.

1pm-1.45pm: The Sidequest Podcast Info coming soon!

2pm-2.45pm: Video Games Journalists vs The Transformers (The Movie) The Transformers: The Movie is a film that's stayed in the hearts of millions since its 1986 release. Inarguably the high point of the franchise's 1980s period, the animated picture saw the likes of Orson Welles, Judd Nelson and Leonard Nimoy lend their voices to warring cartoon robots, all with the objective of SellingToys To Kids. That ever-expanding toy range remains a favourite of adult collectors, some of whom make up the panel for this particular presentation. But we're journalists and critics, too, so it's worth us asking: just why do we love this darn movie? Because... it's not... very good... Or is it? This panel will dig into what makes The Transformers: The Movie either stand up in 2019, or fall apart when under the scrutiny of some of the robots in disguise's biggest fans. There may be tears.

3pm-3.45pm: Eurogamer Podcast live: Ask the review team! Want to know more about how video games are reviewed? Join the Eurogamer review team for a live podcast answering your questions on video game criticism. Whether you've wondered how Eurogamer approaches reviews or want some advice on reviewing games yourself, we'd love to hear from you - send questions to podcast@eurogamer.net ahead of the show, or come along on the day to ask the panel in person.

4pm-5.30pm: Big Red Barrel UK podcast A live recording of our regular BRB UK gaming podcast. Featuring regular hosts Coleman and Tim, as well as irregular hosts, guests and prizes! Including a special return of the Great British Debate, as well as the best discussion of; The Best Games of this Generation. The Best Board Game Videogames, The Best Videogame Board Games and The Best Highlights from Rezzed 2019.

Saturday 6th April

11am-11.45am: Making VR Comfortable: Developers' Perspective Join some of the UK's most accomplished VR developers as they discuss one of the most important factors in Virtual Reality; comfort. For some people, when they think VR, they think motion sickness, this was caused by various uncomfortable hardware and software demos for VR in it's early development stages. Since then, the majority of VR software has come to not only feel very comfortable, but also natural. If you're a young developer interested in dipping their toes in VR or just someone interested in VR as a technology, come by to see how some of Britain's finest VR developers have improved VR for gamers across the globe!

12pm-12.45pm: Video game music & gaming In this session, we look to discuss video game music (VGM), its huge rise in popularity over the years, the adoption of VGM into the "mainstream", the rise of VGM vinyl, music production, common misconceptions about VGM composing, and a Q & A session for the audience. The panel includes award winning composers such as Joris de Man (Horizon Zero Dawn, Killzone 3, Velocity 2X), Richard Jacques (James Bond Blood Stone, LBP2, Mass Effect...), James Hannigan (Dead Space 3, Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3) & David Housden (Thomas Was Alone, Volume, Q.U.B.E 2), and chaired by Noob from DorkTunes, an original podcast which focuses on VGM and composer interviews.

1pm-1.45pm: Disability diversity; how representation goes right and wrong A panel openly discussing how disabilities, learning difficulties and mental health are portrayed in video games. Are there any good disabled characters or stories that players can identify with? Panellists will look at the good and the bad of their gaming experiences.

2pm-2.45pm: Level Design Mysteries: How does level design influence the player experience in games? In this panel we discuss the mastery and mysteries behind the choices level designers make and how those influence the player, how they guide them and in the end, how they improve the overall gameplay. The panel consists Steve Lee (Bioshock Infinite and Dishonored 2), Claire Morley ( Before I Forget) , Rob McLachlan (Silent Hill: Origins, SH: Shattered Memories, Winter Hall and now at The Chinese Room) and Jonathon Wilson (Shu, Augmented Empire, They Suspect Nothing and Dimension Hunter 2) and is moderated by Mark Drew (CMD Studio).

3pm-3.45pm: Melanin Gamers: Inclusion and diversity - the future of gaming A panel will discuss trolls, the challenges surrounding race and racial stereotypes, the issue of representation in the gaming industry. This will also include a live Q&A.

4pm-5.30pm: The Computer Game Show Drama, arguments and wholesome video game chat, it's The Computer Game Show. Watch a special live version of the UK gaming podcast where anything goes, and hear what Sean, David, Mat and James think about the games they've played at Rezzed 2019 and more.

Updated 12th March 2019