Playing Narratives – Belgrade Autumn Bootcamp: Day one

Playing Narratives 22.09.2022.
Time 9 AM - 6 PM
Language English
Location Startit Center / Ubisoft Belgrade
Price Free

Playing Narratives – Belgrade Autumn Bootcamp: Day one

The participants of the "Playing Narratives" program from the entire region are back together again in Serbia, this time in Belgrade, and are preparing for the pitch presentations of the projects they have been working on for the past few months, which will be presented as part of the final event of the first cycle of the Playing Narratives program, scheduled for November 25 in Belgrade as part of the "Digital November" event.

The Playing Narratives program, whose second, regional cycle ends at the end of November, took 30+ participants from Serbia, North Macedonia, Romania and Bosnia and Herzegovina on an eight-month journey through the development of video games, getting to know the industry and leading experts from Serbia, Germany and France.

The whole process of informal and practical education in the field of video games is intended for young creative professionals or students who want to step professionally into the world of game development, gain invaluable experience and new knowledge, and take their first steps in the industry. This year, the work was organized both through online sessions and through two bootcamp programs, while the first one was organized in Novi Sad back in May.

After an intensive program of lectures and workshops, the participants were divided into 8 project teams before the summer (as opposed to 5 in the first cycle), and continued to work as a team on their concepts for different video game projects. This year, the emphasis is on a socially engaged approach, so the expectation is that each of the teams in some way addresses some of the many pressing challenges we are facing as a civilization, under the general thematic framework of Tainted Nowness.

The participants knew from the start that they would have to polish, articulate and present these projects in English before the international jury by the end of autumn. The best project will receive unique opportunities for further development, but most teams will also receive support in various ways to turn their ideas into reality, if they have the motivation to do so.

When it comes to the preparation of the pitch itself, the participants work on the basis of a set structure, while on a couple of occasions they had the opportunity to share their initial presentations with mentors who provided valuable feedback. Their presentations will be limited to six minutes, and in such a short period of time they should convey the basic idea and sensibility of the games they have developed, as well as a series of specific data about the games.

Presentation skills – whether it is an internal presentation at a meeting, speaking in front of hundreds of people at a conference, or speaking to a single but valuable investor – are one of the essential skills that will help any game creator get their game off the ground, and they will be the main topic of the first day of the autumn Playing Narratives bootcamp.

Through a workshop adapted for our program, participants will deal with the content of their presentations, both at the delivery level and at the visual level, but also with the presentation and public speaking skills themselves. In the second part of the workshop, the pitch situation in front of the audience will be simulated, while we will also analyze the recordings of the final preentations from the last year’s cycle. One of our leading trainers for public speaking will help us with that – Relja Dereta!

After the workshop, participants will have the privilege of visiting the Belgrade studio of one of the leaders of the global game development – Ubisoft, and feel the atmosphere of the studio itself, as well as get acquainted with the logic and way of working of one of the largest teams in our ecosystem, and one of the few which works on AAA titles that reach players around the world.

This program is for Playing Narratives participants only, and is not open to the public. Thank you for your understanding.

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Program Playing Narrartives: Ideas to games is supported by the Franco-German Cultural Fund, which was established in 2003 on the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the Elysee Agreement. The general sponsor is Unreal Engine (i.e. companies Epic Games & 3Lateral), while the distinguished sponsor is the French company  Ubisoft Belgrade. This year, the Niš-based Webelinx Games also joined the program as a sponsor, while additional support in the realization will be provided by French and Goethe institutes from the entire region, as well as SGA colleagues from Slovenia GamesMAGDA and RGDA.

Relja Dereta,
Co-founder, Epic Assistants
About the lecturer

Relja Dereta has 15 years of experience in almost daily public performances, from training in various fields to dance performances. He has combined his experience as an Argentine tango instructor, activism trainer and speaker trainer into a unique, comprehensive system of developing communication and public speaking skills: guiding speakers through the entire process, from concept design, to speech structure development to public speaking. it becomes a source of pleasure and inspiration, not stress and discomfort.

Since 2010, he has worked individually with over 400 speakers to prepare their speeches. He advises world experts in formulating their ideas and has collaborated as a trainer and consultant with a number of global and regional companies and institutions (Microsoft, World Bank, Telenor, VIP mobile, Philip Morris International, Comtrade, Nordeus, Direct Media, British Council, Sberbank, Erste Bank, Societe General, Publicis – Saatchi & Saatchi, OSCE…). He is active in the startup community in Belgrade, where he cooperates with relevant institutions and helps entrepreneurs communicate their ideas.

His individual clients come from various fields, from the spheres of natural and social sciences, business, activism, art… Many of them are in the highest managerial positions, and he helps all of them in their common challenge: communicating their rich experience and complex ideas in an effective way. audiences.

Ubisoft Belgrade team,
Ubisoft Belgrade
About the lecturer

On the occasion of the first spring Playing Narratives bootcamp program for participants from the entire region, which was held in May 2022, Ubisoft Belgrade sent a special “delegation” that shared its invaluable experience with future game designers, artists, sound designers and 3d artists from Serbia, North Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Romania.

As part of the program held in Novi Sad, many collegues joined us from Ubisoft’s Belgrade studio: Nikola Stojanović (Lead UI Artist), Diana Koltsova (Junior UI Artist), Ilija Pantelić (Junior UI Artist), Uroš Kurandić (Junior Game Designer), Stefan Lazarević (Junior Game Designer), Mihailo Novaković (Junior Level Designer), Marija Josifović (Level Artist), as well as Milica Todorović (Associate Producer).