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Funomena, Feminist Frequency, Housemarque kick of Ludicious 2019 line-up

Former Naughty Dog lead designer Richard Lemarchand will also speak at the Zurich-based conference

Funomena co-founder Robin Hunicke, Feminist Frequency founder Anita Sarkeesian, and the game designer and academic Richard Lemarchand will headline Ludicious - Zürich Game Festival next year.

Hunicke is the CEO of Funomena, the independent studio behind the IGF-nominated Luna and the upcoming collaboration with Keita Takahashi, Wattam. Sarkeesian is primarily known for her work in criticism through Feminist Frequency, the non-profit organisation for which she is executive director.

Lemarchand is currently an associate professor in the Interactive Media & Games Division at the University of Southern California. Previously, he was joint lead designer on the first three games in Naughty Dog's Uncharted series, and worked on the Gex and Soul Reaver series at Crystal Dynamics.

Other key speakers at Ludicious 2019 are Mikael Haveri, head of self-publishing at Housemarque, ICO Partners founder Thomas Bidaux, Remedy Entertainment's Saku Lehtinen, and the prominent industry advisor and consultant Jason Della Rocca. In total, the event will feature 40 speakers taking part in 60 different presentations.

Ludicious, which takes place in Zurich, Switzerland, will also hand out two awards: the Innovation in Games Award, the nominees for which are chosen from a pool of international game developers, and the Emerging Talent Award, which is drawn from the work of game design students.

In all, more than 200 games from 40 different countries were submitted for the two awards. The winners will be announced at the Ludicious and SGDA (Swiss Game Developers Association) Awards Show.

Here are the nominees for the Innovation in Games Award:

  • 0°N0°W - Colorfiction (USA)
  • Fire Escape - iNK Stories (USA)
  • Frost - kunabi brother (Austria)
  • G30 - Ivan Kovalov (Ukraine)
  • Orphan Age - Black Flag (France)
  • Pikuniku - Sectordub (UK)
  • Semblance - Nyamakop (South Africa)
  • Supertype - Philipp Stollenmayer (Germany)
  • TickTock: A Tale for Two - Other Tales Interactive (Denmark)
  • Unheard - NEXT Studio (China)
  • VR Giants - Wolfgang Tschauko (Austria)

Here are the nominees for the Emerging Talent Award:

  • Anyball - Team Anyball, New York University Game Center (USA)
  • Brownie Cove Express - Sand Gardeners, Plymouth College of Art (UK)
  • Drink Like a Pirate - Daniel Shapley, University of the Arts London (UK)
  • It's Paper Guy - Paper Team, École nationale du jeu et médias interactifs numériques (France)
  • Liff - ISART Digital (France)
  • Light Them All - Corentin Vignet, Ecole Cantonale d'Art de Lausanne (Switzerland)
  • One Hand Clapping - Bad Dream Games, University of Southern California (USA)

Ludicious - Zürich Game Festival takes place from January 31 to February 3, 2019 at the Zeughaushof in Zurich. The current speaker line-up is available on the official website. is a media partner for Ludicious - Zürich Game Festival 2019. We will attend the event with assistance from the organiser.

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Matthew Handrahan


Matthew Handrahan joined GamesIndustry in 2011, bringing long-form feature-writing experience to the team as well as a deep understanding of the video game development business. He previously spent more than five years at award-winning magazine gamesTM.