February 18th 2015 will mark the first ever Finland Unity User Group gathering, as the group hopes to lower the entrance level for entering the games industry and aims to help everyone in getting the most out of the Unity engine.
The idea behind the gathering is to make the first step into the games industry easier for everyone. By inviting both newcomers and industry professionals to share a day under the same roof, the Unity User Group hopes to initiate interesting discussions and facilitate a high level of knowledge sharing.
“We have professionals from different companies and backgrounds giving speeches of their field and do our best to offer topics suitable for people with varying skill levels”, organizer, programming teacher, and CEO of Taiga Studios, Janne Remes, says to NordicGameBits.
The gathering on the 18th of February will only be the first in a row of gatherings, however, as Janne Remes emphasizes that having a group that can support you in tackling the most common problems will most likely keep people from stopping their game-development career in the very early stages simply because they do not feel like they get the help they need. And that is something the Unity User Group gathering hopes to tackle.
“Sharing knowledge benefits everyone, having a group supporting your learning and tackling common problems hopefully lowers the amount of people who stop trying in the early stage.”
While the Unity engine is very popular among most of the younger mobile focused studios in Finland, Remes mentions that there are still quite a few old studios with homemade engines. And those studios do not have much knowledge about the Unity engine. This is in part because of the funding models in Finland, who have been supporting the games industry mostly in Research and development.
“Ironically our industry’s biggest expenses in starting a company have always been the people and not the tools and equipment we require. I wish to see more funding go towards good games instead of good technology. With Unity’s easy learning curve and support of our group we hope to bring new people to the field.”, Remes explains.
A gathering like the one the Finnish Unity User Group is setting up does not have to require a whole lot of hard work, and Remes advices everyone to organize similar events if you feel like your local area is in need of an increase knowledge sharing.
“Most of our organizers met in Kajaani, Finland. It is a small city in the middle of nowhere with a lot of game development students studying there and making games. Everyone of us is still keeping in touch thanks to social media and internet and because the industry is so small, everyone knows everyone. It’s easy to organize this kind of meetup. So when we saw the need for it, it was time to make it happen. If you feel like you are also in the middle of nowhere, gather same minded people and start something that puts your city on the map.”.
You can read more about the Unity User Group and join the gathering here.