After two consecutive years of success, GameOn, the Baltic Region’s biggest gaming culture convention, is preparing to welcome flocks of avid gamers, game developers, journalists and eSports enthusiasts back to Vilnius for their third annual event.
The 2017 edition of GameOn, taking place on 16-17 September, expects to draw over 15,000 visitors, 150 companies and some 100 media outlets. The convention will feature a Tech Expo giving visitors the chance to try the latest games and gadgets, as well as an Indie Village for game developers to meet their fans and promote their work. In addition, guest speakers from companies like Google, NVIDIA, Versus Evil, Housemarque, Wargaming, and others are expected to lead a number of talks and workshops, while several eSports tournaments, cosplay, and musical performances will round out the activities on offer at GameOn 2017.
The increasing interest in a convention like GameOn comes at a time when Vilnius is primed for growth in the Game Development sector. With a rapidly expanding community of local and foreign IT professionals, a business climate that is making it easier for companies to set up shop in Lithuania’s capital, and some of the fastest WiFi in the world, the time to turn ambitious goals into reality is now.
Game Development is nothing new in Vilnius, either. Several local companies have been active in the city for some time, and a handful of foreign companies from around the Baltic Sea Region have established operations in Vilnius. Together with the fact that two local universities already offer dedicated Game Development programmes, alongside several others that have optional Game Development courses, the field is one of particular interest to the local tech economy.
Gamers aren’t the only ones excited for GameOn 2017; Go Vilnius, the city’s official promotion and development agency, sees the value the event brings to the whole city. The agency’s Head of Tourism and Convention Bureau Jolanta Beniuliene says, “Go Vilnius is proud to be supporting GameOn and is making an effort to bring visibility to the event and the entire local game development industry. The growth Vilnius is experiencing in our IT and FinTech sectors is something we hope to duplicate in the area of Game Development, and GameOn can be a major player in making this happen.”
GameOn will be held at the newly renovated Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO on 16-17 September.