Before ludum dare 27 started I did my usual thing and looked around for any kind of local meetup in the area. Each time before I had come up short. I really wanted to find some kind of game developer community in the area. The IGDA was around but they didn’t do many events at the time, and most of the members were employed at big studios and didn’t have much with hobbyist and independent developers.
This time however my search found something. The group didn’t have a name at the time, it was really just getting started, but there was a meetup group with an event called “Ludum Dare 27 Kickoff”. They met up in a makerspace about 45 minutes away from my house. I had to go check it out.
It was really awesome. There were a lot of people with all kinds of different backgrounds and interests, that all wanted to make games. Ever since then the group has grown a lot. I have made a lot of awesome friends there and we have accomplished some really cool stuff. The meetups consist of work nights, where we just show and tell about our games and just hang out, and presentation events like postmortems.
Since then we have chosen the name Dallas Society of Play. We have built up a bit of a community in the area where there wasn’t one before. I know we have helped several people get into making games, and we are starting to go out and do some public events. I’ll get to the arcade cabinet in another post.