Expo programing and panels will focus on videogames and will also explore the gaming generation's diverse interests, including tabletop RPGs, collectible card games, science fiction and fantasy, television, comics, and novels. Come to hear panelists talk about their current projects and their inside perspective on gamers and gaming as a cultural phenomenon.
Check out our full panel schedule to see your favorite personality or industry guru!
Special Guests & Personalities
An English-born comedy writer currently living in Australia, Yahtzee is best known to The Escapist fans as the voice behind the ruthless weekly videogame review video series, Zero Punctuation. He is also the author of the comedic fantasy novel Mogworld and one of the founders of the combination cocktail bar and gaming lounge, The Mana Bar.
Gavin "Miracle of Sound" Dunne
Hailing from Ireland, Gavin writes, performs and produces songs that celebrate the games we love. His Miracle of Sound music videos, released every other week here at The Escapist, embrace a wide range of musical styles and have earned Gavin an invitation to fly to Germany to perform an original song for BioWare.
Former Epic Games Design Director Cliff Bleszinski, a 21-year veteran of the video game industry, shipped his first commercial title, “Jazz Jackrabbit,” before graduating high school. During his tenure at Epic, Cliff was a key visionary behind the award-winning, multimillion-selling “Unreal” game series and the billion-dollar “Gears of War” franchise, which has eclipsed 19 million copies sold worldwide and crossed over into novels, comics, film, action figures and merchandise. While at Epic Cliff also lent his creative expertise to Epic’s games, such as “Fortnite,” ChAIR Entertainment’s “Infinity Blade” series and multiple unannounced projects, and the scope of his work crossed over into other entertainment sectors as well. Bleszinski is currently on hiatus planning his next personal and professional moves.
S. Gregory Boyd is a partner and the chairman of the Interactive Entertainment Group at Frankfurt Kurnit, where he represents a wide variety of interactive entertainment and new media clients. Mr. Boyd has extensive experience negotiating and drafting game development agreements for consoles, PC’s, mobile games, social games, online games, and MMO's.
Michael's been a game designer, executive producer, head writer, lead programmer, comic author, and studio executive. He's best known for his decade with Epic Games, makers of mega-hits Gears of War and Infinity Blade and the award-winning UnrealEngine.
Bob Chipman has lived and worked in Massachusetts his entire life, and has spent over a decade in the fields of independent film production, film criticism and pop-culture commentary. In addition to producing and performing the webseries Escape To The Movies and The Big Picture for The Escapist, he is the creator of ScrewAttack.com's The Game OverThinker and the political series American Bob. He can also be found blogging at moviebob.blogspot.com.
Born on the East coast and living on the West coast, Dan is the part-time debater and full-time camera-man and editor of No Right Answer every Thursday on The Escapist. His past exploits include a national Emmy for a documentary he directed, as well as winner of the Howitshouldhaveended.com fan submission contest. He hates anime, loves video games, and to his knowledge is the only Escapist contributor to reproduce.
Lisa Foiles is best known as the redhead from Nickelodeon’s award-winning TV series, All That. Other television appearances include Even Stevens, Malcolm in the Middle, and Leverage. A self-proclaimed "gaming enthusiast," Lisa has been a contributor for Kotaku, an on-camera host for The Game Station/Polaris, a judge on IGN’s The Next Game Boss, and the lead voice in Twisted Pixel's Xbox One title, LocoCycle. She currently appears on The Escapist every Tuesday in Top 5 with Lisa Foiles.
Over the past 9 years Steve's career has evolved from QA tester, to writer, to Creative Director. Having a life-long love of the absurd, Steve is thrilled that he has had the opportunity to be lead writer on every Saints Row title and in doing so work with some of the kindest and most talented members of the entertainment industry.
Dr. Mark Kline
Mark Kline is a clinical psychologist and the Associate Director of HRS, where he has served since 1989. He consults to local schools and maintains an active clinical practice, treating children, adolescents, adults, and families. His Dr. Mark column provides helpful advice for readers of The Escapist.
Chris "Prangdog" Pranger is one of three hosts for the popular web series No Right Answer, featured right here on The Escapist. That's right! It's popular now! At night, he plays DJ Hero and thinks up debates that will make people love him for who he is. During the day, he mostly does nothing and works at Nintendo. He'll be your friend! Promise!
Paul is one of the two founding members of LoadingReadyRun, an internet comedy company from Victoria, British Columbia. Paul writes and performs in multiple series for The Escapist, lampooning general geek culture in the sketch comedy series for which the company is named.
The other founder of LoadingReadyRun, Graham also writes, directs and acts in many of the company's videos. Along with Paul, Graham ridicules videogame cutscenes in Unskippable and is the host for LRR's humorous weekly news series, Feed Dump.
Bobby Stein leads a team of narrative designers and writers at ArenaNet, makers of the hit MMORPG Guild Wars 2. Together, he and his team craft Tyria’s Living World narrative with semimonthly new adventures. Coffee helps.
Freelancer for hire and reviews editor for Destructoid, Jim Sterling is The Escapist's sunglass-wearing writer and host of Jimquisition. Each week, Jim takes on the art and business of making games and delivers opinions that are as perceptive as they are controversial.
Random Encounter is a collective of Russian monster hunters posing as a video game rock band. When not slaying hoards of zombies, fiendish vampires, werewolves, or the minions of their nemesis Koschei the Deathless, they spend their time working on progressive rock music. Known for having a fairly diverse sound (they’re regularly described as metal, rock, & folk) they are consistently energetic and as visually entertaining as they are to listen to. Drawing from their love of video games, Random Encounter writes and performs a diverse array of original music with strong tie ins to games like The Legend of Zelda, Demon’s Souls, and Metroid. In addition to video game covers, inspired originals, and originals based on Russian folklore they are known to mash seemingly unlike songs together like the ‘Ballad of the Three Doctors’ (Doctor Who, Back to the future, Jurassic Park), and ‘Purple Angel’ (Purple Haze, One Winged Angel). Random Encounter has been featured on Badassoftheweek.com, performed in practically every major city on the East Coast, led the March of a Thousand Zombies, and fought rival bands with instruments, boxing gloves, holy water, and longsword! For more information and free music check out their website at www.RandomEncounter.com.
The Warp Zone
The five guys that make up The Warp Zone started making videos together in college at Santa Clara University, where they discovered a love of sketch comedy with an on campus club called BroncoTV. The Warp Zone found considerable success with their music videos; their Halo themed parody of The Wanted’s hit, “Glad You Came,” continues to be their most consistently viewed video. The Warp Zone plans to continue on their quest to be the most successful nerd comedy/music video channel on Youtube.