Australia's Can't-Miss Gaming/Tech Events for 2023-2024
Round up your mates and mark these dates for Australia's gaming and tech events in the next 6 months. With iconic international festivals making their debut to adrenaline-packed esports showdowns, Australia's 2023-2024 tech calendar is bursting at its digital seams. Discover the must-attend events.
1) Melbourne International Games Week (MIGW): Where tech, talent, and tournaments unite
Riding on the heels of its record-setting 2022 edition, Melbourne International Games Week (MIGW) is back and bigger. As Asia Pacific's largest digital games event, over 8 days, MIGW blends gaming, tech, and culture, drawing:
- Game developers
Born in 2015, MIGW has skyrocketed to cement its place on the global digital games calendar. 86,000 attendees attended in 2022, and over a million joined online. Whether you're a seasoned pro or just game-curious, there's something for all.
- High Score (30 September – 1 October): Delve deep into the influence of audio in game design.
- GCAP: Empower (2-4 October): A place for developers to connect and grow globally.
- ACMI's Games for Change (4 October): Be captivated by AR and VR games pushing boundaries.
- Australian Game Developer Awards (4 October): Root for the year's best games.
- Freeplay: Parallels (5 October): A space to discover quirky and innovative indie games.
- ACMI's Cult of the Lamb: Live (6-7 October): An enchanting fusion of gameplay and live orchestral renditions.
- PAX Aus 2023 (6-8 October): The star of the week! Expect panels, demos, and epic tournaments. See further down for more details.
So, gear up, mark your calendars, and join this gaming extravaganza!
- Date: 30 September - 8 October 2023
- Location: Melbourne
- URL: https://gamesweek.melbourne/
2) Games Connect Asia Pacific (GCAP): A power-up for developers
Step into the heart of Australia's gaming innovation: GCAP. In its 18th year, Australia's pinnacle game development event. Seamlessly integrated into the MIGW, it's the hub for budding and experienced developers and gaming industry professionals.
Starting as a mere blip, GCAP has evolved into a must-attend game development world event, amplifying:
- Game developers' skill sets
- Elite gaming industry networking opportunities
- Practical education via immersive workshops, lectures, and exhibitions
With world-class developers and hit titles, gaming opportunities glitter Australia. GCAP 2023's theme? Empower. A rallying call to supercharge every developer's confidence, creativity, and toolkit.
- Deep-dive sessions: Three days of content crafted by veteran game developers. You'll get unique insight from how to lead a games development project to gaining funding. Watch past lectures on YouTube to get insight into the topics.
- Live pitch session: Pitch your game to a panel of international investors and publishers with the GCAP Pitch session.
- Global insights: Tap into the collective wisdom. Glean from international experts and broaden your game development horizon.
- Networking options: Meet industry legends and forge valuable collaborations.
- Exhibition exploration: Get hands-on with the latest development tools and mingle with the local teams crafting tomorrow's gaming sensations.
Don't just witness the future—shape it.
- Date: 2 October – 4 October 2023
- Location: Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre
- URL: https://gcap.com.au/
3) Pax AUS 2023: Melbourne's 72-hour gaming marathon
Every gamer, geek, and developer marks their calendar for PAX Aus. As we hit the 10-year anniversary, relive the classics, experience the breakthroughs, and glimpse the future. No matter your gaming style—PC, console, or analog, there's a quest tailored for you.
For three electrifying days, Melbourne doesn't just host a gaming event; it becomes the gaming universe. With tens of thousands in attendance, it's an unparalleled deep dive into all things gaming:
- Play the latest titles!
- Geek out in panels.
- Lock horns in tournaments.
- Reconnect with gaming buddies.
PAX Aus highlights include:
- Eclectic tournaments: Ready, set, compete! Whether reliving the roaring engines of Ridge Racer, proving your mettle in Street Fighter 6, indulging in Vintage Pinball, or showcasing deft speed running skills, PAX Aus 2023 is the ultimate tournament ground.
- The gaming giants return: With heavyweight nods from Bethesda and Nintendo, you can bet on some show-stopping spectacles. Stay on the lookout for Bethesda's Starfield showcase and get revved up for Nintendo's power-packed Splatoon 3 and Mario Kart 8 Deluxe Australian/New Zealand championships.
- PAX rising stars: Explore the vibrant indie game universe. Meet Devolver Digital, the masterminds behind the acclaimed Cult of the Lamb. Delve into the diverse creations of NetEase Games and other Australian indie prodigies.
- Cosplay Central Crown: Australia's top cosplayers dazzle and showcase their craft to compete at the world championships.
- Tabletop battles: Escape the screens and dive into imaginative board games, intense card duels, and immersive RPG sagas.
Join the legacy. Celebrate a decade of PAX Aus. Dive into gaming's grandest fiesta.
PAX AUS info:
- Date: 6 - 8 October, 2023
- Location: Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre
- URL: https://aus.paxsite.com/
4) SXSW Sydney 2023: An iconic festival's down under debut
Sydney welcomes the famed Austin-based South by Southwest (SXSW) festival for its inaugural Asia-Pacific edition in October 2023. This first-ever departure from Texas marks a historic chapter in the event's 36-year run.
SXSW Sydney offers a pulsating mix:
- Festivals: Dive into a fusion of music, screen, and games, taking over the city's vibrant venues.
- Expo: Witness disruptive tech, game changers, and tomorrow's innovators.
- Conference: Engage with a stellar lineup of speakers and mentors.
Headliners & Highlights of SXSW Sydney 2023:
- Grammy winner Chance The Rapper: Celebrating 50 years of Hip Hop.
- Tan France of Queer Eye: Bringing style and flair.
- Coachella's Paul Tollett: Music festival magnate.
- 700+ dynamic speakers: Broadcaster Osher Günsberg, world surfing champ Layne Beachley, Reddit CMO Roxy Young, and many more.
- 300+ panel discussions: Topics ranging from the future of love to robot ethics.
- 400+ musical performances: Acts include USA's Flyana Boss, South Korea's Lil Cherry, GOLDBUUDA, and many more.
SXSW Sydney is set to be the annual go-to fest with over 1,000 sessions, performances, and parties. Engage and embrace the future!
SXSW Sydney 2023 info:
- Date: 15 October - 22 October, 2023
- Location: Sydney (Haymarket, Darling Harbour, Ultimo, Chippendale and beyond)
- URL: https://sxswsydney.com/
5) Intel® Extreme Masters (IEM) Sydney 2023: The awaited comeback
After a 4-year hiatus, Intel® Extreme Masters is back in Sydney, solidifying its reign as Australia's pinnacle esports event. The anticipation is evident: tickets are already sold out.
Watch the world's top Counter-Strike teams battle for the grand prize of $250,000. In the past, Sydney has crowned elite squads like SK Gaming, FaZe Clan, and Team Liquid. This year, the competition is fiercer, the stakes higher.
All this action unfolds in the Aware Super Theatre. The ambiance? Nothing short of electric as you watch the world's best CS teams compete live on stage.
With Acer Predator a sponsor, expect a world-class experience. Get ready, Sydney. Esports history is about to be made, and you won't want to miss it.
IEM Sydney 2023 info:
- Date: 20 October - 22 October, 2023
- Location: Aware Super Theatre, ICC Sydney
- URL: https://pro.eslgaming.com/tour/csgo/sydney/
6) DDD Conferences: For developers, by developers!
DDD stands for Developer! Developer! Developer! This non-profit conference series is a beacon of inclusivity in the software community.
Started 2005 in the UK, its mission is to create events open to everyone, especially those missed by typical tech conferences.
What sets DDD apart?
- Inclusivity at its core: Aims to bring together all, especially those overlooked by mainstream tech events.
- Open submissions: Pitch your talk. No exclusions.
- Democratic decisions: Attendees cast their votes, picking the top subjects for discussion.
Always set on a Saturday, DDD is mindful of your schedule and making sure work doesn't stand in the way. Plus, with affordable tickets, everyone's invited!
DDD's ambition extends beyond just talks. Their vision? To reinvent Australia's tech landscape. Pushing for an inclusive digital era where minority voices aren't just heard but are at the forefront.
Upcoming DDD Conferences in Australia:
- DDD PERTH: 7 October 2023
- DDD ADELAIDE: 18 November 2023
- DDD BRISBANE: 2 December 2023
- DDD MELBOURNE: 16 March 2024
So, if you're a developer in Australia, join the DDD conference and influence the future!
7) Programmable: Where Australia's tech pulse beats
Australia's own Programmable is a software engineering conference that covers the whole spectrum of apps and systems. It's where groundbreaking developer content meets human connection, fostering an environment ripe for innovation and camaraderie. The core value? Inclusivity.
While the speaker lineup remains a mystery, here's a sneak peek into the topics:
- Data, intelligence, and the developer: Delve into Data, machine learning, AI, and the enigmatic realm of Generative AI.
- Security central: It's all about monitoring, logging, ethical hacking, and the complete cybersecurity spectrum.
- Languages & tools playground: Whether frontend, backend, mobile, IoT or the buzz around Web3 and NFTs—it's all on the table!
- Digital product chronicles: Tales of architecture, challenges faced, and lessons absorbed.
- Cloud frontiers: Dive into Docker, Kubernetes, Vagrant, and the expansive world of cloud technologies.
Programmable stands as the event where the Australian tech community converges. It's a rendezvous for networking, learning, and growth. Don't miss out!
- Melbourne: 19 March 2024 at the Grand Hyatt Melbourne
- Sydney: 21 March 2024 at the International Convention Centre
- URL: https://www.programmable.tech/
So, there you have it! Australia's gaming and tech scene is alive and pulsating, ready for all. These events are the heartbeat of the Australian gaming world and await your presence. Clear those calendars and prep for a tech-loaded year!
Robert is a Taiwan-based writer and digital marketer at iamrobert design. He has a passion for helping people simplify their lives through tech.