On December 10, 2019, Jianguo Ding and Per Backlund left Sweden for a trip to China to meet with several of our Game Hub Scandinavia (GHS) partners in Shanghai and Beijing.
Workshops in 2020
The first workday (December 12) in Shanghai was packed with activities and we visited three partners: Tencent Next, Focus Games and Jiangnan University in Wuxi. At Tencent Next and Focus Games, we discussed the current situation in the Scandinavian and Chinese game markets and exchanged some information and experiences for the future.
Finally, we spent a good deal of time to discuss and prepare the upcoming student visits from the University of Skövde and Dania Games at these two companies. Starting on February 3, eight students (6 at Next and 2 at Focus) will spend 2 months to learn more about China and the Chinese game community.
This will be the 4th year of exchange in this very successful Game Hub Scandinavia initiative.
After the two company visits, we took the train to Wuxi to revisit Jiangnan University where we did the first test of the GHS game design workshop concept in March this year.
The Dean of the School and our previous contact Ruimin Lyu, as well as three other representatives of the school, welcomed us. During the meeting, we discussed the plans for cooperation, including joint workshops, research projects and possibilities for student exchange.
Joint summer course in 2020 coming again
Friday, December 13 was a full day at Shanghai Normal University (SHNU). We started early with a meeting with Dean Zhou, a delegation of teachers and a representative from their international office to discuss our student exchange programs
It was decided that we will repeat the successful joint summer course from 2019 in the summer of 2020. The preliminary dates for the Shanghai part of the course are in June. The Skövde part of the course will be from August 3 – August 14. The weeks in-between will be dedicated to distributed on-line cooperation.
One of the highlights of the day was the signing of the student exchange agreement between SHNU and Skövde. This agreement will give students from the two universities the possibility to spend as much as one semester at the partner university.
We are very happy to offer the unique opportunity for Skövde students to take a specially adapted course package of professional courses in 2D graphics, 3D graphics and animation starting in fall 2020. This is a unique opportunity for game development students in Skövde and most likely one of the first of its kind in Europe.
On Sunday, December 15 we transferred to Beijing with the high-speed train (about 1200 kilometers in an impressive 4.5 hours). After checking in at the hotel we had a meeting booked with Jade Jiang from Nexus. Nexus is a company that organizes different types of indie game community events in China. We discussed the potential cooperation and commercial interests of Nexus and partners in Scandinavia.
Serious games garnering interest in China
Monday and Tuesday (December 16 and 17) were spent at the Cyber Congress 2019, including the 5th China-Europe Game and User Experience Workshop, organized by University of Science and Technology of Beijing (USTB), where Per Backlund also gave a talk on the research program in serious games at University of Skövde.
The continuation of the conference gave several opportunities to interact with research colleagues from China as well as other parts of the world. It is interesting to notice the big interest in games, and in particular serious games, in China which hopefully will generate good opportunities for future cooperation.
On the last day of this visit to China, Wednesday, December 18, we were invited by Dr. Jing Sun to visit Perfect World. This was a very interesting meeting with deep discussions on future cooperation possibilities which could include student exchange as well as commercial possibilities for studios in the GHS community as Perfect World is well-connected and has good knowledge in the Chinese game licensing system.
This is one of the big challenges of the Chines games market, apart from all other challenges of game localization. Hence, a good opportunity for GHS to build capacity in-game localization which will benefit the studios in our community.