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First wave of fringe events for London Games Festival announced

All eyes will be on GDC next week but the London Games Festival is beginning to look just as interesting, particularly its fringe calendar.

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London Games Festival

All eyes will be on GDC next week but the London Games Festival is beginning to look just as interesting, particularly its fringe calendar.

The London Games Festival runs from 1-10 April and sees a range of events taking place across the city including EGX Rezzed, the British Academy Games Awards and Now Play This.

The Fringe complements the festival’s official activities and offers a left-field look at video games and games culture. Events revealed so far include a Mario musical and a Sensible Soccer tournament. This is our kind of games festival.

Here is our pick of the events announced so far:

Rumpus: Pick Your Own Misadventure

Islington Metal Works, 1 April – www.rumpusparty.co.uk

Seven rooms quest, missions, live bands, DJs, art and performances.

The Games Europe Plays

The Finnish Institute, 2–10 April –  www.europe.org.uk

An interactive and playful exhibition showcasing the most exciting independent digital games for young people and families.

Radius Nights

Loading Bar, Stratford, 2 April – www.radiusfestival.com

A fun and entertaining live show format that explores ‘everything games’ with a panel of game industry leaders.

Late Shift

BAFTA 195 Piccadilly, 2 April – www.lateshift-movie.com

The UK premiere of the world’s first cinematic interactive movie.

The London Gaming Market

Royal National Hotel, Russell Square, 3 April –  www.londongamingmarket.com

A marketplace focussed on video games, board games and related merchandise, including rare collectibles.

Ukie Student Game Jam

Nationwide, 4–5 April – www.ukie.org.uk

Ukie’s student game jam for Ukie Students.

Sensible Striker Pro

Six Yard Bar, 5 April – Website

Sensible Soccer, Striker and ISS Pro football game tournament.

{code}AOKE

BrewDog, Shoreditch, 5 April – www.codeaoke.com

Developers take to the mic to share ideas, code, or ask for help.

Ukie: IP Landscape Event

Ukie offices, 6 April – www.ukie.org.uk

An event aimed at Ukie members who are affected by IP infringement.

Understanding virtual reality: A Guardian masterclass with Dave Ranyard

Goldsmiths, University of London, 6 April – Website

VR developer Dave Ranyard will discuss the past, present and future of VR.

East v West London Mario Kart Tournament

Unity Creative Agency, Clerkenwell 7 April – www.hellounity.com

An epic East London versus West London knockout Mario Kart 8 tournament.

By The End of Us

Theatre Delicatessan, 8–10 April – www.blockstop.co.uk

Experience a ‘Live Video Game’: a video game performed by actors, live-streamed to theatres in real-time.

Sense of Play

The Royal Institution, 9 April – www.senseofplay.com

A one-day symposium bringing together games designers, artists, cultural commentators, academics, thinkers, players and audiences to look at what’s current, what’s new, and what’s coming next in games.

2D Game Design Workshop

Paddington Arts, 9–10 April – www.thescreencommunity.com

The Screen Community presents a beginners course in 2D Games Design using Gamemaker, where you can learn how to create a game in just two days.

Mario! The Musical

Venue/date TBC
Musical featuring original songs based on classic Nintendo tunes.


The full line-up of confirmed fringe events will be updated at the London Games Festival website.


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Thumbsticks editor and connoisseur of Belgian buns. Currently playing: Paper Mario: The Origami King, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, and Pikmin 3 Deluxe.