The eleventh Clash of Realities has come to a close!

A big thank you goes out to all participants, be it the speakers, the audience or the organizers who were responsible for making this year’s Clash of Realities such a great experience.

This year, the artistic-scientific research conference of the Cologne Game Lab (CGL) of the University of Applied sciences Cologne was organized for the first time in cooperation with the Institute for Media Culture and Theater of the University of Cologne and took place as an online event.

A second part of the conference is planned for June 2021 as a real life event in Cologne.

The digital conference began on November 18 with the Young Academics Workshop. There, young academics presented current projects on Atmosphere in Games: “Atmospheric Propositions: Creating And Thinking the Aesthetics of Playable Atmospheres”. Following the workshop, Dan Pinchbeck held a keynote speech on “Bulding Stories, Telling Worlds”. The founder and creative director of the The Chinese Room presented practical methods for creating compelling, emotional and atmospheric worlds.

International Keynote Speakers

On November 19, the main conference day, the “Summit Morning” was all about the topics Game Entrepreneurship, Media Education, Game Tech, Game Studies and Game Development. Each summit presented its topic in a one-hour session as a panel discussion, virtual exhibition tour, video clip or lecture. Keynote presentations by international top speakers followed in the afternoon:

Joost van Dreunen, Adjunct Assistant Professor at the NYU Stern School of Business in New York, author and consultant, will open the Keynote Afternoon with a presentation on “Princess in Another Castle: Business Model Innovation as a Competitive Advantage in Gaming”.
Julian Togelius, Associate Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at New York University and Research Director at, a start-up for artificial intelligence (AI) in video games.
Janet H. Murray, Dean and Professor of the Digital Media Department at the Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts at the Georgia Institute of Technology and author (“Hamlet on the Holodeck”). Murray will speak on “Gaming the Threshold: Interaction Design between the Material and the Virtual World”.

The Clash of Realities offers internationally renowned experts from science, research and industry a forum for interdisciplinary exchange and dialogue. The research conference will focus on the artistic design, technological development and social perception of digital games and the dissemination of “game literacy”. The program of the conference is being developed in cooperation with the Berlin University of the Arts, the University of Würzburg, the IT University of Copenhagen, the a.r.t.e.s. Graduate School for the Humanities Cologne, the ifs International Film School Cologne, Electronic Arts (EA) as well as the AG Games and the Spielraum project (two associations of researchers in the field of digital games). Project sponsors are the University of Applied Sciences Cologne, the University of Cologne, the Film- und Medienstiftung NRW, Köln Business GmbH and Electronic Arts.

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Here are some more conference impressions: