Games For Change dropped details today about their 2021 Festival, including themes for the event and a call for submissions. The event will take place July 12th-14th, and while not specified in the news, we're guessing this year's event will be held online. As usual, the event will focus on "social justice, ensuring a thriving planet, promoting mental health, and regaining a sense of security." For those who wish to take part in the event, organizers have officially opened portals for both the speakers and awards, which will close on February 12th. More information regarding selection criteria for each can be found on the Games for Change Festival website. Here's more info from the announcement today.
"The issues Games for Change has advocated for years have been accelerated through this time of adversity," said G4C President, Susanna Pollack. "We need to continue that momentum by sharing lessons learned and thinking big about the road ahead. We invite developers, researchers, innovators, and changemakers to create this shared vision for our industry and hope to inspire the next generation of media that tackles our world's most pressing issues."
Through an open call for session submissions, Games for Change is inviting the global gaming community to share the latest thinking around games and immersive media that imagine, inspire, and ignite a future rooted in tangible social impact. Talks, panels, workshops, and demos will be presented across multiple tracks, including but not limited to Civics & Social Issues, Health & Wellness, Games for Learning, and the return of the XR for Change Summit. Given the increased interest from international communities joining the Festival virtually in 2020, Games for Change will feature more sessions and speakers whose work is making an impact outside of the United States. In addition, Games for Change reinforces that the Festival is a platform for all voices and backgrounds, providing the community an opportunity to celebrate and reinforce core values: cross-sector collaboration, innovative and progressive thinking, and diverse perspectives.
Nominations have also opened for the 2021 Games for Change Awards, which recognizes and celebrates games in various categories. Games and XR experiences released between January 1, 2020 and March 31, 2021 are eligible to apply for one or more of the six award categories, such as Most Innovative, Best Gameplay, and Best Learning Game. Through a rigorous evaluation process by industry professionals, four finalists will be chosen in each category.