The Vortex Video Competition Launches With Stellar Line-Up of Speakers and Judges

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The Vortex Videogame Competition dubbed the "feeder to the Ontario Videogame Industry"; the Vortex Competition has grown each year and attracted the highest caliber of talent in all areas: speakers, judges and competitors.

We are thrilled that as a result of Vortex, our mentoring opportunities, networking and access to publishers, every year winners and other competitors have gone on to launch their games and climb the ladder of success.

The McLuhan Festival of the Future announces today the official launch of The Vortex Competition which will take place on November 4 & 5, 2009. The Vortex Competition, now in its 5th year, is Canada's pre-eminent forum that celebrates, educates, and casts a spotlight on emerging video game entrepreneurs and companies. Within the Vortex Competition, aspiring video game developers obtain the opportunity to hone their business and technical skills through educational sessions, presented by world renowned game industry leaders, in the areas of game design, development, business, finance, and marketing.

Competitors in this year's Vortex Competition are invited to submit concepts or prototypes. All submissions will be reviewed and evaluated by an expert panel and a winner will be selected from each category and announced on November 5, 2009, at the Vortex Competition Awards Gala. The winner will be eligible for cash prizes and the opportunity to have their video game commercialized through a variety of channels.

"The Vortex Videogame Competition was established in 2004 in response to the enormous interest and phenomenal growth of the videogame industry in Canada and abroad. Dubbed the "feeder to the Ontario Videogame Industry", the Vortex Competition has grown each year and attracted the highest caliber of talent in all areas: speakers, judges and competitors." Vortex Managing Director, Sari Ruda points out, "We are thrilled that as a result of Vortex, our mentoring opportunities, networking and access to publishers, every year winners and other competitors have gone on to launch their games and climb the ladder of success."

Vortex 2009 Finals Judges:
o     Blake Lewin - Senior VP, R&D, Turner Broadcasting and Founder of GameTap
o     Kevin O'Leary - Renowned Software Entrepreneur, star of Dragon's Den and Shark Tank
o     Yannis Mallat - President and CEO, Ubisoft Canada
o     Marc Saltzman - Internationally acclaimed Hi-Tech and Game columnist, and TV personality

"It is clear that Vortex's primary mission to support emerging entrepreneurs and companies in the videogame industry will strengthen Toronto's position in the competitive global market," says Rita Davies, Executive Director, Cultural Services, City of Toronto.
An important component of the Vortex Competition is the Vortex Bootcamp, which will be held on October 7 and 8. The Bootcamp features exceptional networking opportunities with the industry's best and sessions include Business 101: IP, Legal, Marketing, Finance; Game Industry Overview: Game Industry Eco System, Big Players, Platforms, Publishers and Distributors; Entrepreneurism and How to Pitch. New for 2009 is a Finance Forum featuring presentations and panels of Venture Capital Professionals, Financiers and Government funding bodies related to the financing of videogame products. Also new are breakout sessions concentrating on a choice of Game Design or Game Production. The Game Design stream includes: High Concept, USP, Platforms, and Software in Design. The Game Production stream offers: Process, Planning, Workflow, and Capacity Requirements for Production. The highlight of this year's Boot Camp Sessions is Key Note speakers, Peter Williams, Chief Strategic Officer of Bamboo Networks, based in New York, Tokyo, China and Thailand and Blake Lewin, Senior VP, R&D, Turner Broadcasting and Founder of GameTap.

To commemorate the City of Toronto's 175th Anniversary, Vortex, in conjunction with our generous sponsor, The City of Toronto, is proud to offer all competitors the opportunity to enter their game in a 175th City of Toronto Birthday Videogame Competition. The winning game will be accessible via the City of Toronto's website which will garner the winner international exposure.

The Vortex 2009 Competition is very excited to announce the involvement of some of the most successful global game publishers, industry leaders, jurists, speakers and mentors who include Ubisoft,Bedlam Games, Transgaming Technologies, Capybara, Telus, Yahoo!, Bell, Cerebral Vortex Games, High Road Communications, Miller Thompson, CMF-Telefilm, Frozen North, RBC, Province of Ontario, City of Toronto, Emerson College, Bamboo Networks Ubisoft, Bedlam Games, Transgaming Technologies, Capybara, Telus,Yahoo!, Bell, Cerebral Vortex Games, High Road communications, Miller Thompson, CMF-Telefilm, Frozen North, RBC, Province of Ontario, City of Toronto, Emerson College, Bamboo Networks] and many more.                    

Important Vortex Dates:

Deadline for Boot Camp: Oct 5, 2009
Boot Camp: Oct 7 - Oct 8, 2009
Deadline for Competition Submissions: Oct 23, 2009
Announcement of Contenders: Oct 29, 2009                    
Vortex Competition: Nov 4 -Nov 5, 2009                                 

Vortex acknowledges the generous support of the following sponsors: Telefilm Canada, Ontario Media Development Corporation, City of Toronto, Canadian Information Processing Society, Bradon Technologies Limited, Digital Sugar, ANM & Associates Ltd., EM & ME Productions, and Parties Without Borders Brandon Technologies Limited, Digital Sugar, ANM & Associates Ltd., EM & ME Productions, Parties Without Borders.

For tickets & registrations, submissions and further information please visit: http://www.vortexcompetition.com

For further information please contact:
Val Dooley, Toots Capital, (416) 488-9649,email: val at tootscapital.com
Follow us on for the latest update http://www.twitter.com/vortexcomp
Join us on Twitter at http://tinyurl.com/vortexcomp or Facebook

http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Vortex-Game-Competition-2009/136266436271

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VALERIE DOOLEY
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