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EPXCON 2015 to feature industry pros from Pixar, LAIKA Entertainment, Young Horses and more


Independent game designer Lisa Brown, who helped in the development Insomniac Games' Sunset Overdrive (pictured) will speak at EPXCON on Sunday, April 26.
Independent game designer Lisa Brown, who helped in the development Insomniac Games’ Sunset Overdrive (pictured) will speak at EPXCON on Sunday, April 26.

EPX Studio has released its lineup for the fourth annual EPXCON 2015, a free animation and video game convention set for April 25-26 at the University of Iowa’s Art Building West.

The student-run organization, which specializes in video game and animation production, announced earlier this month that seven industry professionals (listed below) will each get an hour to discuss their career paths, life in the industry and advice for those interested in similar career paths.

“It’s a big task to put this together,” said Ryan Holtkamp, president of EPX Studio, noting the challenges of a non-profit and student-run organization hosting an event of this scale.

“They’re honored to be invited, and glad to give back by speaking to students who are just starting out in their careers,” Holtkamp said. “It wasn’t long ago that Octodad was just a student project from DePaul University. So this event is really aimed towards inspiring and connecting like-minded people together.”

Saturday speakers

Chris Burrows, technical director at Pixar Animation Studios, whose filmography includes the critically acclaimed The Blue Umbrella, Brave, and WALL-E.

Harrison Pink, game designer for Hangar 13 (formerly of Telltale Games), who has worked on The Walking Dead and Borderlandsgames, both of which have garnered numerous game-of-the-year awards.

Devon Scott-Tunkin, computer game programmer and co-founder of Young Horses, developer of Octodad, which won the Student Showcase Award at the 2011 Independent Games Festival.

Ty Johnson, 3D modeler for LAIKA Entertainment, whose filmography includes the Oscar-nominated films ParaNorman and The Boxtrolls.

Sunday speakers

Greg Wohlwend, independent game developer known for his work on Threes!, which won Best iPhone Game of 2014 and contributed to Wohlwend being listed in Forbes’ “30 Under 30” for video game professionals.

Stephen Jennings, founder and director at Grasshorse Studios, who has worked on the animated shows Powerpuff Girls, Star Wars: Clone Wars, and Johnny Test.

Lisa Brown, independent game designer (formerly of Insomniac Games), who has worked on Sunset Overdrive and Resistance 3.

The event will include an interactive play lounge where independent creators, local companies and organizations will promote their own digital interactive projects. Participating companies include Virtually Competent, ShapeTrix, and Kinto Games.

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