Gaming Program

SXSW Gaming programming provides the unique opportunity for fans and professionals at every level to learn, network, discover, and be inspired by the latest and greatest in gaming.

Brendan 'PLAYERUNKNOWN' Greene, Creative Director of PLAYERUNKNOWN'S BATTLEGROUNDS at SXSW Gaming 2018 - Photo by Cal Holman

Brendan 'PLAYERUNKNOWN' Greene, Creative Director of PLAYERUNKNOWN'S BATTLEGROUNDS at SXSW Gaming 2018 - Photo by Cal Holman

About Gaming Programming


SXSW is well-known for its cutting-edge discussions and insightful programming across all disciplines at its Conference and Festivals. On a trip to SXSW you will hear previously unknown bands, can catch the midnight release of a blockbuster film, and engage with renown technology experts as they discuss their views of the future. This same innovative spirit also dwells within SXSW Gaming and can be seen throughout the thought-provoking conversations found within the festival’s programming lineup, which consists of sessions, panels, meet ups, and mentor sessions that cover every aspect of gaming culture.

And, with dozens of thought-leaders, developers, and personalities from all corners of the gaming industry converging at SXSW Gaming each year, attendees will never have a shortage of things to engage with while participating in the wide variety of programming formats and forward-thinking conversations found at the festival.

How to Submit Your Panel Idea


SXSW PanelPicker

The vast majority of SXSW Gaming sessions are selected through the PanelPicker.

The PanelPicker, a two-step online process that takes place each summer, allows the SXSW community to have a significant voice in the programming that’s found during SXSW Gaming, SXSW, and SXSW EDU. With over 4,000 proposals for SXSW 2019, what will see at next year’s event?

Application Process

During the open application process from Monday, July 1 through July 19, we encourage the community to upload proposals related to the gaming, education, interactive, music, and film industries in a variety of session formats, which included panels, solo presentations, meet ups, mentor positions, and more.

Curious how to still be involved with SXSW Gaming conference programming? Contact the SXSW Gaming team at

Community Voting

All ideas received during the 2019 PanelPicker entry period will be available for the community to vote on from Monday, August 5 – Friday, August 23.

Community votes comprised 30% of the final decision. Additionally, input from the SXSW Staff (30%) and Advisory Board (40%) helped ensure that less well-known voices had as much of a chance of being selected to speak at SXSW as individuals with large online followings. Together these percentages helped determine the final content lineup.

Learn More about PanelPicker

Program Formats


The 2020 SXSW Gaming industry track of programming will consist of three unique formats.

Sessions (Panels, Dual/Interview, Solo Talks)

SXSW Sessions format allows for Panels of up to 3 – 4 panelists, Dual Talks or Interviews, and Solo Talks or presentations for SXSW registrants to enjoy. Topics for SXSW sessions must correlate with one of the 25 SXSW Conference Tracks.

Meet Ups

Meet Ups is the networking format for SXSW Gaming programming. Each Meet Up is focused on a specific industry-related topic that allows for SXSW registrants to connect with fellow professionals and like-minded individuals.

Mentor Sessions

Mentor Sessions allow for industry professionals to offer mentorship and guidance of SXSW registrants who will RSVP in advance for 15-minute 1-on-1 sessions. Questions from mentees will range from feedback about a specific project to getting more in-depth industry insight that pertains to their career trajectory.


Exhibit at SXSW Gaming

Interested in showing off your latest product, project or game in an exciting and energetic atmosphere? With an attendance expanding beyond 55,000, the SXSW Gaming Expo is the perfect place to do so! Learn more about exhibiting at the SXSW Gaming Expo in 2020 today!

Contact Us

Explore Gaming Programming

Engage with hundreds of speakers across dozens of cutting-edge panels and events at SXSW Gaming.


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