Host a Play Session at SXSW Gaming

SXSW Gaming Hearthstone Major, SXSW Gaming 2017 - Photo by Jay Willingham

Organized play and competitions will grow larger than ever before at SXSW Gaming (March 15 – 17) in 2018. Next March, you can expect hundreds of new activities for both your favorite classics and the newest releases throughout each of our open play areas.

But, how can you get involved with all these new changes for SXSW Gaming?

Starting this fall, SXSW Gaming is calling on you, our community, to enter creative new ideas for play sessions and activities that will be held at next year’s festival. If you’ve ever wanted to see something take place at a gaming festival that you’ve never seen before, now is your chance to make a huge impact on the events that attendees will see and get to be a part of in 2018!

What is a Play Session?

SXSW Gaming 2018 will allow community members to host four different types of play sessions, which will be listed on the official schedule for attendees to participate in. These play session formats include:

Single-Group Open Play – Bring your group of friends, or meet a new group, by hosting an individual play session in one of the SXSW Gaming open play areas. Focused on one game for a scheduled block of time with a single group of players, these sessions are the simplest and most efficient ways to get involved in SXSW Gaming.

Multi-Group Open Play – Connect with multiple groups of gamers at SXSW Gaming by hosting a multi-group open play session. Instead of just one group of people, host several groups of players for a focused set of play sessions on a game of your choice during a scheduled block of time. This format is meant to be for casual open play and not ran as a tournament.

Open Sign Up Tournament – Host a competition on a game of your choice with an open sign up tournament. These tournaments focus on one game and will require participants to register for the tournament while attending SXSW Gaming. Registration will remain open until all spots have filled or the tournament has begun at its scheduled time. Tournaments are not allowed to have additional prize pools, fees, or other rewards without prior approval from SXSW Gaming.

Pre-Registered Tournament – Host a serious competition on a game of your choice with a pre-registered tournament. These tournaments focus on one game and will require participants to register prior to attending SXSW Gaming for a spot in the tournament. Registration will be open throughout the months leading up to SXSW Gaming, and will close once all spots have filled or the first day of SXSW Gaming has begun. Tournaments are not allowed to have additional prize pools, fees, or other rewards without prior approval from SXSW Gaming.

How to Apply

The SXSW Gaming Organized Play Session form will be open for all entries, free of charge, from Wednesday, September 27 – Friday, December 8. This entry form is a call for all ideas (play sessions, tournaments, and group play) involving games that can exist in the PC Arena, Tabletop Experience, Arcade Bunker, or VR Vault.

Each application requires the following five pieces of information:
1. Who you are
2. Game title and platform
3. Play session format
4. Description of your session
5. Expected time it will take and preferred dates

It’s as simple as that!

Enter a Proposal

What’s Next?

After applying to host an organized play session at SXSW Gaming 2018, please wait for official confirmation from SXSW Gaming on the final status of your proposal. If accepted, organizers will be given a three-day SXSW Gaming wristband to attend the show and run their play session with. All final decisions will be completed during December once the application period has closed.

SXSW Gaming Hearthstone Major, SXSW Gaming 2017 – Photo by Jay Willingham

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Estevan Aviles

Gaming Associate

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