International Games Week October 29 – November 4

International Games Week

Hi from Nordic Game Day
!

Posted on November 10, 2014

Hi everyone! We just realised that we haven't done our annual blog post swap with Nordic Game Day - so we're going to sneak it in before the big day. Here's NGD co-ordinator Lone Hejlskov Munkeberg with a bit of information about this partner event!

Hi from Nordic Game Day!

Phil from International Games Day has invited me to tell you a bit about how we work.

As we are closing in on the date November 15th, the Nordic libraries are doing the final preparations for the Nordic Game Day and International Games Day.

This year we have representatives from all the Nordic countries, since for the very first time we can welcome four Icelandic libraries to the community. All in all there will be 115 attending libraries in Denmark (30) - including the first attending library from Greenland! - Finland (34), Iceland (4), Norway (35) and Sweden (12). 
In Finland they just can’t get enough - since they are having a game WEEK. Way to go!

The Nordic event is supported by the Nordic Game Institute and the Nordic Council of Ministers. Even though it is supported by them, it is very much a community-driven event. The attending libraries all set up local initiatives and events. More about that later on.

As a coordinator I have different tasks. I make sure that the event has a new poster every year, created by a local graphic Artist (Pernille Sihm). I ensure there is established contact between the developers, publishers, game critics and the libraries. I post news on the blog, Twitter and Facebook etc. This year we have been able to send out free merchandise and boardgames for the libraries. This underlines that both the videogames industry and the boardgame publishers also support the event - they too want games to be as visible and accessible as possible in libraries!

Another coordinating task is the annual browser game tournament. 
And this year we have chosen a semi bald naked guy on a mini bike to run the competition, since we will be competing in the very cool browser game Icycle, by the British indie developer Damp Gnat! At stake are cool prizes like Samsung Galaxy TAB 4 10.1” WIFI and gift certificates to the online service OnePlay - who has a digital library lending service.

Locally all kinds of stuff is going on. 
There are talks from game critics, workshops, cosplay, manga, retrogames, FIFA tournaments, Minecraft LAN, ping pong, chess, card games and much more.

Some of the Nordic libraries are also participating in IGD initiatives, so we are exited that you once again will host great stuff like the Global Gossip Game and the International Minecraft Hunger Games tournament.

We wish you all a very cool Game Day!

Thanks Lone! And I'd just like to point out a mildly awesome fact: that Nordic Game Day is using a British game for their tournament, while IGD is using a Nordic (Swedish, to be precise) game for ours! We're international without even trying 🙂

International Minecraft Hunger Games numbers

Posted on November 8, 2014

Hi everyone! I have some news from the good folks at AADL.

We have at this moment 79 registered "Districts" (i.e. libraries) - 59 in North America, 9 in Europe, and 11 in Australia. Just the USA participation alone is more than twice the number in last year's Super Smash Bros. tournament! Mostly public libraries, and mostly in smaller towns, but a few University libraries.

(I'm also thrilled to see Australia so well represented - per capita, we're doing even better than the USA! Not that it's a contest... but if it were we would totally be winning 😛 And it's great to see so many of the European libraries getting on board as well. I hope you can use this as a springboard to get your local library associations on board too!)

Over the next week, each District will hold whatever qualifying events they choose to select the two players to represent their library, and the 2 selected Tributes from each of these libraries all over the world will be pitted against each other inside Minecraft arenas! Then, the International Minecraft Hunger Games regional semifinals, begin Saturday afternoon, November 15th.

Victors will advance to Regional Finals, and each regional Victor will then face off in an International Final Match!

Just pause for a second and appreciate what an achievement that is for libraries - because of what an opportunity that is for our communities. Most competitive computer gaming on this sort of scale is highly commercialised - and there's nothing inherently wrong with that, but it does heavily limit the opportunities for people to participate.

But here we have an international - no, intercontinental - eSports contest whose only barriers to entry are, just as they are for libraries generally, interest and motivation. AADL deserves a great deal of thanks and credit for making that possible, but the libraries who have taken up the opportunity should pride themselves on doing so.

I look forward to reporting the outcome of this fabulous event!

International Minecraft Hunger Games update – how it will work!

Posted on October 14, 2014

ANN ARBOR DISTRICT LIBRARY PRESENTS:

INTERNATIONAL MINECRAFT HUNGER GAMES

(IMHG)

POWERED BY
GTSYSTEM.ORG

 

WHAT IT IS:

A week-long Minecraft Hunger Games tournament, open to libraries of all types, all over the world! Play optional matches against nearby libraries any time the week of November 10 - 15, then select two tributes to send to the finals for your region on Saturday November 15! Each Library becomes a "District".

 

EACH LIBRARY WILL PROVIDE:

  • A number and specialty for your "District" (i.e. team)
    (These can be whatever you choose. Example: DISTRICT 343 - AADL - Ann Arbor, Michigan - The Used Record Store and Artisanal Corned Beef District)
  • 2 Computers with Minecraft installed and connected to the internet.
  • Use of 2 Minecraft logins (these can be your player's logins, or a shared library login if you've bought a Minecraft license)
  • 1 Computer with internet connection for library staff to monitor and communicate
  • Space to hold a Minecraft event anytime the week of November 10 - 15
  • 2 "Tributes" (i.e. players), 1 boy and 1 girl if at all possible, if you wish to participate in the finals.

 

AADL WILL PROVIDE:

  • GTSYSTEM Tournament Management account for each registered District
  • Dedicated, preconfigured IMHG Server online
  • Scoring Data
  • Matchup Forums
  • Tournament Updates

 

HOW IT WORKS:

Each library will register as a "District" and will receive gtsystem site and moderator accounts. Gtsystem includes the controls to start, stop and monitor your IMHG server. The servers will be available for testing starting November 3, and available for tournament play starting November 10.

You can have up to 32 players on your server at once. Each player needs a computer with Minecraft installed, an internet connection, and a valid Minecraft login. These can be the players' own logins, or logins bought by the library. Once you get logged in on one account, you won't need to switch logins between matches.

You can play Hunger Games matches on your server with just players from your library, or you can find matchups against nearby districts through the gtsystem forums. During the week, you can play as many or as few matches against other libraries as you'd like, for your players to get experience, or to choose your eventual tributes, or for grudge matches against rival libraries. These qualifying matches are not required.

 

Then, on Saturday November 15, there will be a staggered series of final matches in different regions based on timezone. This will be finalized when registrations are final in a few weeks. Each District can send 2 tributes - 1 boy and 1 girl - to the finals. Participation in the finals is also optional. The finals will narrow down the participating field until only a single player remains.... the winner of the first ever INTERNATIONAL MINECRAFT HUNGER GAMES!

Still have questions? Here's an overview, and our FAQ!

 

WHAT YOU NEED TO DO NOW:

Please fill out this quick form so we have your name, email, library, name, and a few other critical things:

http://goo.gl/AIsGpJ

A member of the AADL Capitol Team will be in touch to confirm your registration and hand you your gtsystem credentials. Stay tuned to this list for updates and details as we draw closer!

 

ANY QUESTIONS?

Contact us anytime at gtsystem@aadl.org for help or with questions!

Thanks for your interest and participation and....

MAY THE ODDS BE BETTER ON YOUR SERVER

IGD Anecdotes: Outside groups

Posted on October 9, 2014

Feeling overwhelmed by all the exciting possibilities for IGD? Fear not! There are many supporters and gamers that are more than excited to see and help you succeed in hosting this event - or simply join in on the day. Whether it's boy or girl scout troops, teens, or other community members, there are many groups out there who may be interested in helping.

The responses on the post-IGD survey last year offer some great examples of groups both outside and inside the library helping to bring IGD together. Here are just a few of the stories of people coming together from public libraries to help make their events successful and amazing.

Stair Public Library, MI:

I did not have a clue how to play Yu-Gi-Oh! even after looking through the instructions, so I was thrilled when I asked my teen helpers from our high school Volunteer Club if any of them knew how to play. One boy, mildly autistic, did and he was wonderful at teaching kids how to play. It was a great opportunity for him to be useful and important, and for kids to learn something from a teen. He was so kind and respectful of the younger kids and began every game with a handshake... and had them do the same.

Pickaway County Public Library, OH:

I invited local Girl Scout troops to assist me with IGD activities as part of their community service commitment. This was a win-win - the girls got service hours & I got help & participants! The Girl Scouts were a great help attracting additional participants (who would want to be the only one playing a game?); they brought their own games & taught others how to play them; they were gaming buddies with younger players helping them follow the rules; they learned how to play new games and shared that info with others; they brought their parents and siblings to participate; they helped clean up; AND they had fun! One Girl Scout's family ended up getting library cards for Mom & all three children. (Dad already had a card.) This is a new community partnership for us & I hope it grows and the girls will participate next year.

Oldham County Public Library, KY:

We had a gaming group from a local university volunteer for the day as their service project. They brought games and spent the event teaching kids and adults how to play new strategy games. It was a great success, and awesome to see people of all ages learning together.

At my library, the part of IGD I am least prepared for is Minecraft. I personally cannot figure it out. I get the concept, but it does not appeal to me one bit. Fortunately, I have some great teens who love the game and who I plan to have organize the Hunger Games Minecraft in my library. I get to have someone enthusiastic about the game take over, explain the rules, take pride in sharing something they love, and acquire community service hours simultaneously. This will also let me spend my time teaching and playing games I love and want to share.

So ask around! If there are gamers in your library, see if they would like to help bring and teach games. They may even be part of a larger gaming group that would be interested in helping - or just swelling your numbers, which not only helps your attendance figures, but means more games are available to be joined in at any one time. Many groups use Facebook to keep track of gaming events in an area. Try searching for gaming groups in your town, county, or region. Meetup has a list of gaming groups, and the nearbygamers website might also be a good place to start. Gamers love what they do and usually are really happy to share their passion with others.

Special Guest Post: Scott Mason, Perton Library, South Staffordshire, UK

Posted on August 18, 2014

Hi folks! Today we're holding off on our monthly Game News post a little. This last weekend was Gen Con, the biggest tabletop gaming convention in the US, so we're aiming to provide some coverage from folks who attended - once they've had a chance to get settled back in! (If you made it, we'd love to throw your perspective into the mix - be in touch!) Meanwhile, here's a guest post from a very energetic young chap from the UK talking about how - in true gamer fashion - he overcame obstacles and solved problems to hold a highly successful International Games Day in the UK before the day even was officially International. Take it away, Scott!

 

My name’s Scott Mason and I’ll be your guest writer today, talking about how I’ve been spending the last few years helping to bring IGD@yl to the UK ^_^. I’m 25, live in South Staffordshire, England and I work for Staffordshire Libraries, currently as the Supervisor for Perton Library (but I’ve been here in one job or another going on 7 years now!).

Gaming has always been a big part of my childhood and something that has grown with me to become a real passion of mine. A lot of people always give me strange looks when I describe ‘games’ that way, but to me, it’s just another medium the same as books, film, music or art and when it’s perfectly acceptable to love each of those as much as people do, I hold no shame in my love for games.

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