April 1st, 2020

Games First Returns!

We’re delighted to announce that for the third year running Games First, one of the game industry’s leading meetups, will be held again in London.


  • Supercell and Space Ape’s yearly gathering of the most innovative,
    experienced and creative minds in games.
  • Top-notch speakers and presentations to inspire.
  • Awesome game demos with projects you’ve never
    seen or heard of before.
  • Your chance to meet with your fellow game devs and chat about
    the very best games on mobile and console.

When & Where

  • Games First is happening on 1st April, 2020.
  • Doors open at 13:00 and talks begin at 13:30.
  • This year, we’ll be at the QEII Centre in the City of Westminster, amongst such iconic landmarks as Westminster Abbey, Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament.

Keynote Speakers

Emily Greer

Founder & CEO of Double Loop Games, and previously the co-founder & CEO of Kongregate.

“Game Genre, Gamer Identity, Gamer Shame”

“Core,” “Casual,” “Mid-Core”: just a few labels shape how developers think about games, and how gamers think about who they are. This talk will look at different ways expectations & identity shape how players interact with games, and what that means for game development.


Ray Mazza 

Senior Creative Director, Gram Games and the creator of Merge Dragons.

“Design Philosophies & Lessons from Developing Merge Dragons”

Merge Dragons! is a top-grossing independent mobile game that mashes merging directly into a puzzly-collection game with cute simulated dragons.

How is such a strange game so successful? This talk takes you on a journey from how this unlikely concept was born, through how the design pillars of discovery, infinite play, and “merge everything” shaped the design into a deeply engaging game. We’ll also look at the game’s approach to monetization and see how slight changes can have monumental impacts.

Ray will share many design insights and even a few fun stories, like how a duck accidentally ended up in a game about dragons (and why that is great).

Eino Joas

Game Lead, Supercell

“Clash of Clans – Bigger, Better, Battle Pass”

Clash of Clans is a hit-game developed by Supercell, released in 2012 and has since launch accrued over 2 billion installs. Last year, the game made headlines for hitting record revenues after over seven years of development. While implementing a Battle Pass into the game was a pivotal milestone, there’s more to the story. This talk focuses on the two-year journey from 2017 to 2019 and sheds light on what changes were introduced into the game, why they were introduced and how they ultimately led to success.

Adele Cutting

Audio Director, Soundcuts

Audio Ninja Skills

Everyone understands what the audio department does…but DO they? Adele’s talk looks at what the audio department actually does and our secret ninja skills that you might not be aware of. How understanding more about the individual disciplines within audio and some of the issues audio teams are challenged with can help you utilise audio in a way that is more than sonic wallpaper..and helps you solve some issues.

Adele is a BAFTA award-winning audio professional with 20+ years experience audio direction and covering all things audio across games, TV, installations, mobile and VR.

Henry LaBounta

Senior Art Director

Learning to See

Designing great art for games is all about clear visual communication. This talk combines the science of seeing and aesthetic principles to shed light on ways to design for both legibility and visual quality. Attendees will gain insight on how to develop and exercise an ability to see with a critical discerning eye.

Henry is a BAFTA award winning Senior Art Director / VFX Supervisor. He has created and directed art for games, VFX, feature animation, TV and consulted on AR/VR development. Most recently he was Studio Art Director on Need for Speed HEAT at EA Ghost games in Guildford UK & Gothenburg Sweden.


13.00 Doors Open
13.30 Opening Words
13.35 Game Genre, Gamer Identity, Gamer Shame – Emily Greer
14.10 ‘Merge Dragons’ Design Philosophies & Lessons – Ray Mazza
15.00 Coffee Break
15.30 Learning to See – Henry LaBounta
16.20 Game Demos
16.40 Coffee Break
17.10 Audio Ninja Skills – Adele Cutting
17.50 ‘Clash of Clans’ Bigger, Better, Battle Pass – Eino Joas
18.35 Game Demos
18.45 Afterparty
22.00 Games First 2020 Ends

Game Demos 

Over the years, we’ve seen loads of developers take the stage for a two minute demo. Ranging from beautifully polished RPGs to wonky shoot-em-ups, there’s always something special to inspire, entertain and make us wonder. If you’d like to showcase your game, please register here.

The Afterparty

At 18:30pm we’re hosting an afterparty with plenty of free food and beverages, this part of the event is the perfect chance to mingle with fellow game makers and meet the keynote speakers. The event concludes at 22:00.

We love hosting this event – it’s our chance to learn and share knowledge with some truly inspirational and talented people, make new friends and, frankly, just have a big, awesome party. 

Registration is Now Open!

To apply for a ticket, click the big purple button below:

Click here!


NB: As always, due to popular demand, we’re limiting Games First specifically to game makers only (no marketing, biz dev, analytics etc).

“Every company forgets, with the best of intentions, that we actually have something to learn from each other, and that we can be reinspired, that we can actually learn from the best if we come together for events like this, where openness is the key and when meeting people only great things happen.” Tristan Clark, Trailmix

“We get to hear what other people have to say about their struggles and daily work lives. So there’s a bunch of talks, and there’s game demos, there’s food and networking and friends.” David Fernandez Huerta, ustwo games

“We wanted to create a place and time for people to share what they’ve learned and also learn from each other.” Ilkka Paananen, Supercell