XP Game Developer Summit Return in April, Interview With Jason Lepine

The XP Game Developer Summit is returning for its fourth year in Toronto next month. Starting on April 20th, the business conference will host a number of speakers, panels, and masterclasses and invites those in the industry to attend.

XP Game Developer Summit is an annual event dedicated to developers, sponsors, and those within the industry to network and learn from one another. In 2023, the two-day event will be held in Toronto’s Westin Harbour Castle.

Founded by Jason Lepine, XP Game Developer Summit began as the world was first hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. In its first year, the event was created as a free livestreamed event. Throughout the years, XP Game Developer Summit has been able to partner with MeetToMatch to offer remote B2B networking, offer a virtual game showcase and slowly transition into an in-person event with hybrid panels and live aspects in 2022.

We spoke to Lepine to learn more about XP Game Developer Summit means to the Canadian gaming industry and how the event has evolved over time. “This year we’ve added an esports lounge, masterclasses, more talks and panels; and our game showcase has grown to be the largest in Canada,” Lepine tells us. “With 1,000 attendees expected, including more partners and exhibitors than ever, the Summit is quickly evolving to be our biggest show yet!

Toronto and Canada as a whole doesn’t see too many video game-focused events. XP Game Developer Summit offers that chance each year for developers to connect.
“Our priority is to create opportunities for developers, businesses and investors to come together in a space that really highlights the unique aspects of our gaming industry while supporting more business deals and professional development”, says Lepine. This year, the summit sees the likes of Lucie Lalumiere, President of Interactive Ontario as one of the many speakers alongside Samuel Bass of Epic Games, Northern Arena’s Carl-Edwin Michel, and CMO at Women in Game International Kendryx Linscott.

“There’s a buzz of energy this year from global companies excited about connecting with Canadian businesses to North American companies hungry for a world-class event in our own backyard. We’re seeing our partners tapping into the buzz to create their own moments during the week of the XP Game Developer Summit.” 

This year, XP Game Developer Summit is being held during a very busy week for the Canadian gaming industry. Running in conjunction, the Canadian Game Awards is being held each evening on April 20th and 21st. Plus, the Level Up Student Showcase, which focuses on the game design of students, is set for April 19th. “ If you’re part of the gaming industry, there will be a lot to celebrate that week in Toronto,” Lepine says.

On top of networking opportunities and workshops, XP Game Developer Summit has been looking into recruitment and job sourcing assistance. “We saw studios frustrated by their talent shortage and challenged with finding candidates. On the flip side we saw talented developers struggling to find roles. It was a connection issue.” The company then created a job platform dubbed XP Game Jobs. In 2022, the platform peaked at ~10,000 job posts from over 100 Canadian and global studios.

Lepine touched on a few aspects he’s looking forward to from this year’s XP Game Developer Summit while teasing some pretty big things. “I have to say I’m looking forward to our largest Game Showcase ever, which will be an 8,000 sq foot room filled with games. I also can’t wait for our lineup of amazing masterclasses and panels.”

For more information on XP Game Developer Summit and tickets, visit the company’s website.