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Game Design Expo 2011

Rovio and Blizzard to supply speakers for January's event in Vancouver.

For Immediate Release

November 24, 2010

November 24, 2010 – Vancouver, BC – The lineup for Game Design Expo 2011 in Vancouver has been revealed, highlighted by keynotes from Rovio Mobile, the makers of Angry Birds , the all-time bestselling iPhone game , and Blizzard Entertainment, the creators of the world's most popular subscription-based massively multiplayer online role-playing game, World of Warcraft® . The entire day of presentations by the luminaries behind some of the most important games of this year and next constitute the event’s biggest speaker lineup in its five-year history.

The event, slated for January 22-23, 2011, is hosted by the acclaimed one-year Game Design program at Vancouver Film School (VFS), which the Los Angeles Times has called “a top school favoured by game industry recruiters.” Saturday’s Industry Speaker Day at Game Design Expo will feature talks aimed at game industry professionals, students, and anyone interested in games. Tickets for Industry Speaker Day are on sale now and already selling fast.

Rovio Mobile’s Angry Birds, a puzzle game for iPhone, Android, and other mobile devices, has been downloaded over 20 million times. Rovio’s Senior Game Designer and Marketing Manager will kick off Saturday’s schedule by delving into the design and business factors behind its incredible success in a presentation called How to Design a Hit Game for the iPhone.

In addition to crossing the 12 million subscriber mark recently, Blizzard Entertainment's World of Warcraft has racked up numerous achievements. Its first two expansions, The Burning Crusade® and Wrath of the Lich King®, both broke PC-game sales records upon their release, and Blizzard's latest expansion for the game, Cataclysm™, is set to launch on December 7. Blizzard's lead content designer on the game will discuss how the company uses macro design to stay focused on the big picture amid a world of details.

Among the schedule’s many other highlights are talks by leading minds behind Dead Space 2 , Tron: Evolution , True Crime: Hong Kong , and Halo Waypoint , as well as PlayStation Move and Microsoft Kinect. The lineup represents an incredible cross-section of the game industry, from mobile and online games to big-budget AAA titles, from traditional platforms to new motion-based systems.

The event is held in the intimate Vancity Theatre at the Vancouver International Film Centre, and has sold out every year. Anyone hoping to attend is encouraged to buy their tickets now at

“We’re incredibly excited to be welcoming these speakers and companies to Vancouver,” says Dave Warfield, Head of VFS Game Design and the host of Game Design Expo 2011. “Whether you’ve worked in the game industry for years or you’re just starting out, you never stop learning. Games like Angry Birds and World of Warcraft offer countless lessons to us all.”

In conjunction with Game Design Expo 2011, Warfield and VFS Game Design will be hosting a free Open House on Sunday, January 23, where attendees will be able to hear about the program, meet students and faculty, play games, take sample classes, and get details on the full-tuition Women in Games Scholarship. Space is limited, so anyone interested in attending the always-popular Open House is strongly encouraged to register now. Event details and registration are available at

Game Design Industry Speaker Day                  VFS Game Design Open House

Saturday, January 22, 2011, 8am-7pm              Sunday, January 23, 2011, 10:30am-5pm

Vancity Theatre                                                 Vancouver Film School

1181 Seymour St.                                              390 West Hastings St.

Vancouver, BC                                                  Vancouver, BC

VFS is proud to partner with the following event sponsors to realize Game Design Expo 2011: G4, 3vis, Annex Pro, Pixologic, Radical Entertainment, Sumo Lounge, and The Georgia Straight.             

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Game Design Expo Industry Speaker Day – January 22, 2011

Jaakko Iisalo/Matthew Wilson           Senior Game Designer/Marketing Manager, Rovio Mobile ( Angry Birds)

Jeff O'Connell/Mike Skupa                Lead Producer/Lead Designer, United Front Games ( True Crime: Hong Kong)

Anton Mikhailov                                   Software Engineer, Sony Computer Entertainment (PlayStation Move)

Paul Parsons                                        Senior Game Designer, 343 Industries ( Halo Waypoint)

Mitchell Lagran                                    Designer, most recently of Rockstar Games Vancouver ( Max Payne 3)

Alan Shen                                             Senior Design Program Manager, Microsoft (Kinect)

Jonathan Gallina                                 Lead Game Designer, Propaganda Games ( Tron: Evolution)

Seth Marinello                                      Level Designer, Visceral Games ( Dead Space 2)

Cory Stockton                                       Lead Content Designer, Blizzard Entertainment ( World of Warcraft)

About Game Design Expo

Game Design Expo is an annual event for game industry professionals and enthusiasts hosted by Vancouver Film School’s Game Design program. Since the inaugural event in 2007 and continuing through the sold-out 2010 weekend, Game Design Expo has played host to such industry luminaries as Ron Gilbert, Clint Hocking, Don Daglow, Ellen Beeman, and Eric Zimmerman, and creative leaders from companies like Bungie, Activision, EA, BioWare, Obsidian Entertainment, and Ubisoft.

About Blizzard Entertainment, Inc.

Best known for blockbuster hits including World of Warcraft ® and the Warcraft ®, StarCraft ®, and Diablo ® series, Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. (, a division of Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ: ATVI), is a premier developer and publisher of entertainment software renowned for creating some of the industry’s most critically acclaimed games. Blizzard Entertainment’s track record includes twelve #1-selling games and multiple Game of the Year awards. The company’s online-gaming service, ®, is one of the largest in the world, with millions of active players.

About Rovio

Rovio is an award-winning Finnish game developer, and one of the leading independent developers of mobile games worldwide. Previously, Rovio has developed games for some of the biggest names in the mobile space, including Electronic Arts, Nokia, Vivendi, Namco Bandai, and Mr.Goodliving/Real Networks. To visit Rovio, go to

For more information, please contact:

Thuy Khuc, Public Relations Coordinator

Vancouver Film School

+1 604.631.3563 or toll-free in North America 1.800.661.4101 

Contact Person: Thuy Khuc, Public Relations Coordinator

Company Name: Vancouver Film School

Telephone Number: 604.631.3563 or toll-free in North America 1.800.661.4101

Email Address:

Website address:

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