It's game on at the fourth annual Sacramento Indie Arcade

Image courtesy of Sacramento Indie Arcade

Roll some dice, shoot some aliens or play your best cards at the fourth annual Sacramento Indie Arcade, April 8 at the West Sacramento Community Center.

The gaming convention, hosted in part by the International Game Developers Association (IGDA), invites fans to test out tabletop, card and video games and demos designed by over 30 indie developers from around the region, as well as a selection of classics from Nintendo, Atari and other gaming giants.

“The indie arcade is a collective, cooperative event,” says Gabriel Gutierrez of Rancho Cordova, who serves as the chair for the city’s IGDA chapter and has been organizing the event alongside business partner Briana Aea since 2014. “It’s a celebratory event. Play, learn and inspire; that’s what we try to do.”

This year’s keynote speaker is Michelle Hill of 2K Games—one of the largest video game publishers in the world—who was a 3-D animator for the popular first-person shooter game Borderlands 2 and also worked on NBA 2K17, the latest iteration of the publisher’s critically acclaimed basketball series, which has sold over 7 million copies. Former Xbox software engineer Sela Davis will also share her experience working on virtual reality technology at Seattle-based game company VREAL.

Sacramento-based game developer Just Ice Cold will unveil its game "Meteors Per Second" at this year's Sacramento Indie Arcade. (Photo courtesy of @equalopgamer via Instagram)

And what’s an arcade without the games? You can expect to see plenty of action during Street Fighter and Super Smash Bros. tournaments hosted by Capitol Fight District, Sacramento’s community for competitive gamers. San Francisco independent game development team Rocktastic Games will also be showcasing its raucous, retro-inspired top-down shooter game Rogue Continuum alongside a narrative-driven sci-fi project called STARDROP, created by a developer in Singapore.

Other highlights will include the electronic soundscapes of Bay Area’s Ben Prunty, who is known for his work on the highly praised spaceship simulation Faster Than Light. And after the event, those 18 and older can head to Cafe Colonial in Tahoe Park for an after party with food, drinks, music—and of course more video games.

Gutierrez emphasizes that events like Sacramento Indie Arcade are important for fostering the game development community within Sacramento, which could someday lead to a bustling job market.

“At some point or another, these [developers] are going to need an animator, someone who knows 3-D modeling or someone who can program,” Gutierrez says. “And when they find that person, we’ve done our job.”

Indie Arcade: $10. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. West Sacramento Community Center. 1075 West Capitol Ave. West Sacramento. After party: Free. 8 p.m.-12 a.m. Cafe Colonial. 3520 Stockton Blvd.

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