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NEW LEADERSHIP TAKES THE HELM AT IAGR

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The International Association of Gaming Regulators (IAGR) has announced leadership changes following its annual congress in Botswana. With a strong commitment to advancing gaming regulation across the globe, IAGR welcomes the appointment of new President, Ben Haden, taking over from Dr. Jason Lane and Vice President, Caroline Kongwa.

Ben Haden brings a wealth of experience to the role. Ben is currently a Director at the Gambling Commission in the United Kingdom and has served as trustee for IAGR for five years, with the last two being Vice President, delivering two very successful annual conferences.

In tandem with this appointment, Caroline Kongwa assumes the position of Vice President, solidifying her continued commitment to IAGR’s mission. Caroline is the Chief Strategic Adviser of the National Gambling Board in South Africa.

“During my two years of tenure, I’m determined to build on Jason’s great work while President,” says Ben Haden. “It’s a challenging but exciting time to be in gambling regulation. We’ll be looking to encourage greater collaboration and the sharing of best practices across jurisdictions and partners, fostering a stronger sense of our community.

“IAGR would like to extend its sincere thanks to outgoing President Jason Lane for his two years of outstanding leadership. We’re very pleased that Jason will continue to be actively involved in IAGR, serving as an IAGR Board Trustee.”

These announcements were made during the culmination of IAGR’s annual conference held in Gaborone, Botswana, where regulators from around the world came together to discuss key industry issues and best practices.

Looking ahead, IAGR is excited to reveal that its next annual conference will be held in the historic city of Rome, Italy, from 21 to 24 October 2024. This event promises to be a pivotal gathering for industry professionals, providing an invaluable platform for dialogue, collaboration, and innovation. The conference will be a partnership event, co-hosted by IAGR and the International Masters of Gaming Law (IMGL).

“I’m excited about the opportunity to play a part in shaping IAGR’s 2024 conference in Rome and curating a program that matches the outstanding event we experienced here in Botswana,” says Vice President Caroline Kongwa.

Ticket sales for IAGR2024 will open in early 2024.

For further information, please email media@iagr .org or +61 431 659 973.

Gaming

Sortium Revolutionizing Video Game Development with Groundbreaking AI Tools Launch and $4 Million+ Funding Round

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In a significant leap forward for the gaming and entertainment sectors, Sortium, a leader in the wave of generative AI within gaming, has launched innovative AI tools for artists and game developers, marking a new era of creativity and efficiency. These tools, leveraging the Polkadot infrastructure, are set to transform the gaming industry by enhancing the creative process, streamlining production workflows, and producing high-quality user-generated content.

This transformative step is supported by a successful funding round Sortium just closed, surpassing $4 million. The round was led by industry stalwarts such as Signum Growth, with significant contributions from a diverse array of investors, including Cathie Wood’s ARK Investment Management LLC, IDG Blockchain, IVC Fund, Polygon, and 1881 S Group AG. This wide-ranging support underscores the industry’s confidence in Sortium’s potential to revolutionize 3D video game design and entertainment production.

Sortium’s AI tools integrate seamlessly into existing game production ecosystems, automating challenging content creation tasks. This innovation enables studios to significantly speed up production times and reduce costs, allowing them to focus more on innovation and design while empowering users across any system to design their own characters, thereby opening new creative freedoms and revenue streams for developers and individual creators alike. Sortium’s team, with deep expertise in game development, AI, and IP rights management, ensures the smooth adoption of this technology.

According to Angela Dalton, CEO & Founder of Signum Growth, “The Sortium team’s technical capabilities are impressive. Perhaps even more importantly, they possess deep expertise, relationships and understanding across the traditional gaming industry. Generative AI is in its broader market experimentation phase, leading many to ignore IP rights in the spirit of progress and innovation. Sortium’s believes that IP rights will ultimately matter – baking them into the technology at the outset, and respecting artists’ work, are core tenets of the company that we fully support.”

Building on this foundation of technical excellence and ethical commitment, Sortium’s innovations also translate into tangible benefits for the gaming community.

“Sortium is leading the frontier of AI in gaming and creative applications. Sortium gives creatives unparalleled freedom in leading gaming environments like Unreal,” said Lex Avellino, Founder & CCO at Passage, one of Sortium’s partners. “The team is breaking technical barriers, and it adds a huge value for our consumer audiences who want to take advantage of the latest virtual tech but need to act with speed and simplicity.”

Sortium is actively forming partnerships with major intellectual properties and leading gaming platforms. A recent major collaboration with Bit Brawl, a game utilizing Sortium technology to deliver live content to over 5,000 users, showcases the versatile application of Sortium’s tools across various gaming environments. Its technology’s wide compatibility with leading development platforms ensures extensive adoption potential and effortless integration into professional industry practices. Sortium’s enterprise solutions, such as the LiveOps API, aim to enhance gaming experiences and enable continuous creativity through endless, tailored content generation.

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Gaming

Phoenix Games Expands Partnership with Warhammer Owner Games Workshop

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Phoenix Games and Games Workshop are continuing their cooperation on Warhammer Combat Cards and expanding their collaboration to work on more of Warhammer’s Universes.

Phoenix Games, a globally operating games company specialised in acquiring and enhancing game studios, is expanding its collaboration with the Warhammer brand. The partnership between both companies is built on the success of the mobile game Warhammer Combat Cards, which was developed by Phoenix Games’ studio Well Played Games for iOS and Android, delighting millions of players worldwide.

Thanks to the partnership, Phoenix Games is expanding its access to the rich universes of Warhammer, including Age of Sigmar, The Horus Heresy and The Old World, providing a foundation for the development of innovative game concepts to include in Warhammer Combat Cards. The objective of the collaboration is to transform the iconic miniatures of characters and factions into unique gaming experiences within Warhammer Combat Cards that will excite not only fans of Warhammer but also new players.

“Continuing and even expanding our partnership with Games Workshop is a logical step, as it unlocks numerous opportunities to create versatile gaming experiences based on globally beloved universes. We are very excited about the opportunity to enhance the Warhammer Combat Cards game with additional IPs and provide fans of the game with new content in the long term,” says Klaas Kersting, CEO of Phoenix Games.

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Gaming

Honor of Kings shares details of groundbreaking new Open Series, registration to begin 15 April

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Today sees a major update for the world’s most played mobile MOBA with new features and content aimed at making Honor of Kings even more enjoyable for both current players and newcomers alike. This is coupled with the announcement of a major esports initiative – The Open Series – aimed specifically at identifying and nurturing the stars of the future.
Level Infinite, publisher of Honor of Kings, has revealed that registration for the new Honor of Kings Open Series Split 1 will begin on April 15, 2024. This groundbreaking series offers amateur players a platform to showcase their skills globally, competing individually and in teams, with the chance to qualify for the prestigious Honor of Kings Invitational Season 2 tournament. With no rank requirements, teams from Türkiye, CIS, MENA, and Wildcard will clash in open qualifiers starting May 1, 2024. The series, featuring two stages, will culminate in the Finals in May, offering special in-game rewards for participants.

James Yang, Senior Director of Level Infinite Global Esports, expressed excitement for the series, emphasizing its role in fostering undiscovered talent and enriching the Honor of Kings esports ecosystem with a path-to-pro opportunity. Interested teams can register from April 15-26, 2024 (UTC+0), and follow official social media channels for updates.

“The Honor of Kings Open Series is an exciting step forward in our mission to grow Honor of Kings esports on the international stage,” said James Yang, Senior Director of Level Infinite Global Esports, Tencent Games. “ Part of Honor of Kings’ commitment in esports is to ensure we provide a path-to-pro for exciting undiscovered talent to put their skill on full display for the world and show fans that anyone is capable of being the best with hard work and dedication. We can’t wait to see what teams emerge from the Open Series to challenge the world’s best at the Honor of Kings Invitational Season 2 tournament.”

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