The Cavechild has been doing an hourly countdown all weekend, waiting somewhat impatiently for the release of Dawn of War II: Retribution  from Relic Entertainment . He pre-0rdered his special copy on Steam the first day they were accepting orders and he participated in the early beta  as well. I will be so happy when Retribution is officially available in just a few more hours, because he is driving me crazy.
Webcast: If you missed the Canada Media Fund  webcast outlining the changes which have been made to funding guidelines, you can view the video  in either French or English online. Note, registration and log-in is required to watch the video. 
Event: The next MoMoVan will be held at the Granville Island Brewing Company on March7th. The topic will be Privacy and Security. Tickets are free for DigiBC members, sponsors, students and partners, $25.00 for non-members. Attendance is limited to 100, so register early .
Competition: Game developers take note, Dream Build Play 2011  is now open for registration. Once registration closes on May 17th, the game submission period will begin. Entrants will have until June 14th to submit their Xbox 360 creations built using XNA Game Studio 4.0 . Winning game developers split $75,000 USD in prizes and get a shot at an Xbox LIVE® Arcade publishing contract, and their games will be featured on Xbox LIVE Marketplace.
Grey Alien Games  has announced its next title. Spring Bonus will be a Spring and Easter-themed match 3 styled game scheduled to launch on April 15th to several platforms including including PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone, XBox Live Indie Games and Windows Phone 7 – possibly for Linux as well. Grey Alien’s founder Jake Birkett has released his first dev diary for the new title, you can read about the lead-up to Spring Bonus’ development on the Grey Alien blog .
Trekking around the halls of GDC with Jake is Brian Provinciano, founder of Vblank Entertainment  and developer of Retro City Rampage . Brian will be participating in a panel discussion titled The Next Steps of Indie: Four Perspectives  during the Indie Games Festival within the GDC umbrella. Attendees to this panel will get an inside look at the road Brian followed as he developed Retro City Rampage, from NES programming in 2002 right up to our current next-gen consoles. Retro City Rampage will be coming to Xbox Live Arcade and Nintendo WiiWare later this year. Retro City Rampage is also a finalist for the Excellence in Audio category at the Indie Games Festival Awards.
Sale: Endloop Systems  has announced that their iPad app iMockups  will be on sale for 30% for the duration of GDC. iMockups for iPad is a mobile wireframing and mockup app for your web, iPhone and iPad projects, combining a beautiful interface with intuitive functionality, taking full advantage of the breakthrough touchscreen device. With a comprehensive and growing list of pre-built dynamic controls (for Web, iPhone and iPad) help turn your ideas into full fledged designs at the office or on the go.
 New Media Manitoba  will be very active at this week’s Game Developers Conference, which is just getting underway in San Francisco. The association is leading a provincial delegation that will showcase the Manitoba digital media industry and offer start-ups and seasoned game companies the opportunity to grow their business. New Media Manitoba will be hosting a networking event  at Thirsty Bear from 4-6pm on March 3rd.
One of the shiny new yet retro members of the Manitoba delegation is the Winnitron itself, making its first appearance at the GDC. The Winnitron  will showcase exclusive Manitoba made games  like Leap4Blue, Trash Pilot, C4ke, Sumo Topplers, and Robots Robots Everywhere, along with other high profile indie titles such as Canabalt 2-Player and Super Crate Box. Fans from all over the indie game circuit are already buzzed about playing classic indie games like Space Sushi, Indie Brawl, and N Arcade on the Winnitron for the first time ever. Winnitron Photo Credit: Chrissy Chubala 
Four companies will be sharing space at our booth on the Expo Floor—Tomkorp Computer Solutions  (creators of Clones ), Cube Force Media  (creators of Aerrevan), Cogmation Robotics  , and Project Whitecard , which is currently leading development on a multiplayer problem-solving game for NASA. 
Representing the Winnitron at the booth will be Bit Collective  (creators of the Winnitron) members Alec Holowka of Infinite Ammo , Tom Rab of Reborn Games , Noel Berry , Marlon Weibe  and New Media Manitoba’s own Kert Gartner . Manitoba game developers Red Reptile Studios  and Complex Games , who recently won a Canada New Media Award for Best Web Game, will be making waves at the conference via some targeted meetings.
If you’ve been following news on Indie Game: The Movie , you’ll know that the Globe and Mail and major industry publications (including this site) have already been celebrating the pre-release footage Blink-Works has posted on their web site. The 2-person team behind the project, Lisanne Pajot and James Swirsky, will be chatting about their film at Manitoba Booth #1137 on Thursday, March 3.
New Media Manitoba would like to gratefully acknowledge the amazing support from Manitoba Trade & Investment, Western Economic Diversification, and Red River College for their contributions toward growing the game companies in Manitoba and this Trade Mission, as well as: Complex Games, Agence nationale et internationale du Manitoba (ANIM), Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada (DFAIT), Industry Canada, Manitoba Innovation, Energy, and Mines (IEM), Economic Development Winnipeg, and Manitoba’s tireless game development community.
Vancouver-based IE Market Research Corporation  has released its 1Q.2011 Global Mobile Entertainment Forecast, 2008 – 2015, which is available now for purchase . IEMR’s forecast provides our quantitative forecasts for Mobile Music, Mobile Gaming, Mobile Personalisation, Mobile TV, and other premium content. It covers 50+ countries and regions, and it is one of the most comprehensive forecasts of its kind in the world.
“We think that the global mobile entertainment market will see significant growth over the next five years. Globally, we are expecting mobile multimedia revenue to rise from $32 billion in 2009 to $52.8 billion in 2015. Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) from 2011 to 2015 will be 9.5%,” said Nizar Assanie, Vice President (Research) at IEMR. “Among different categories of mobile multimedia, we expect that Mobile TV will see the biggest growth in revenues over the next five years. We forecast that global mobile TV revenues (which are broadcast and unicast revenues) will increase from $2.52 billion in 2009 to $6.6 billion in 2015.”
To the comprehensive data set, we are adding a PowerPoint presentation which provides our clients with an overview of key trends in the global mobile entertainment market.
The International Game Developers Association  (IGDA) has secured a new, exclusive membership benefit for members – an airline travel discount. Starting immediately, all IGDA members can get a 5 percent discount on Virgin America flights  booked to attend GDC, E3, IGDA Summit, Casual Connect Seattle, PAX Prime and the IGDA Leadership Forum. Naturally, Virgin America  appears to fly only out of Toronto on our side of the border, but I guess one could drive to Seattle or take the shuttle bus, and then fly down to the California events from there if the overall savings were substantial.
IGDA members in good standing can access the promo codes online . Please note that discounted tickets are limited and members should reserve their flights as early as possible. Remember to add your IGDA special promo code before purchasing your ticket in order to get the discount.
Your travel on Virgin Airlines must fall within these timelines:
GDC 2011: To SFO: 2/24 – 2/28 and From SFO: 3/4 – 3/8
E3: To LAX: 6/4 – 6/8 and From LAX: 6/9 – 6/11
IGDA Summit/Casual Connect Seattle: To SEA: 7/14 – 7/18 and From SEA: 7/20 – 7/24
PAX Prime Seattle: To SEA: 8/29 – 9/1 and From SEA: 9/5 – 9/9
IGDA Leadership Forum: To LAX: 10/22 – 10/26 and From LAX: 10/30 – 11/3