Game Audio Awards 2023

Game Audio Awards 2023

Last Friday, on the 10th of March, Game Audio Awards were held for the first time in a few years. The last time it was organized was in 2020. This caused some electricity in the air, as the event was eagerly anticipated.


The event was held at Hotel Lasaretti in Oulu, Finland. The event is the biggest of its kind in all of Europe.


The evening started with toasts when entering the hall. After taking seats at the preselected tables, the show started. First, they showed a clip of Lukas Stasevskij, who is a part of Game Music Collective, playing a song from the Last of Us with a cello. The video was filmed in war-torn Kyiv in Ukraine. This setup caused massive goosebumps. Lukas has been all over Finnish and international media for the last year for the work he has done for Ukraine.


Next up were speeches from the event’s sponsors: Housemarque and Fingersoft. Especially Ville Rauma’s speech concerning the importance of entertainment in these stressful and difficult times was a good reminder for all of us. That is what the whole event is basically for: to come together in a well-organized event, enjoy great food and drinks, get to know new people, and celebrate last year’s very diverse game music and audio design.

The Jury in 2023 consisted of six highly awarded individuals: Rob Krekel, Panu Riikonen, Ville Sorsa, Panu Aaltio, Kristofer Eng, and Joel Schoch. The jury members have individually participated in the music and audio departments of games/franchises such as The Last of Us, Uncharted, and Control. They also have lots of experience working in the film industry.


The category of best game sound design had ten nominees: Angry Birds Journey, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II (2022), The Callisto Protocol, Dome Keeper, Dying Light 2 Stay Human, The Forest Quartet, MARVEL SNAP, Metal: Hellsinger, Oakenfold and Total War: Warhammer III. 


Eventually, the winner was published and it was: Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II (2022)



Dave Rowe from Infinity Ward
Dave Rowe from Infinity Ward was present remotely and gave a thank-you speech to the audience.

The second category was the best Game music. It also had ten nominees: Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II (2022), Card Shark, Chorus, Dying Light 2 Stay Human, Floodland, Friends & Dragons, Horizon Forbidden West, Metal: Hellsinger, Trek to Yomi and Vampire Survivors.


The winner of this category was: Metal: Hellsinger.

Elvira Björkman receiving the price for best game music 2023.
Elvira Björkman giving a thank-you speech on behalf of Metal: Hellsinger.

The evening had some live music as well. Producer/Oboist Saku Mattila and Guitarist Ossi Maristo from Game Music Collective played some songs for us.


Ossi Maristo and Saku Mattila from Game Music Collective
Ossi Maristo and Saku Mattila from Game Music Collective.

After the official part of the event was over, we got to enjoy some more live music, this time from Lasse Junnila. Also, during the set people were enjoying the music and socializing at the same time. These kinds of events are great for networking.

Jyväskylä Game industry people
People from Jyväskylä's Game industry. From left to right: Tuomas Roininen (Empires Not Vampires Entertainment, Game Business Co-operative Expa), Matti Ollila (Game Business Co-operative Expa), Mika Simula (Fingersoft) and Henri Kähkönen (Microdose).

Game Audio Awards (GAA)

  • An event that focuses on Audio and Music departments of the games
  • Was arranged for the 8th time in 2023
  • Biggest of its’ kind in all of Europe

Learn more about Game Audio Awards



Learn all about Game Business Co-operative Expa:



Making games is all about community

Game Jam participants in Digi & Game Center

Last weekend was something lots of people have been waiting for since last year, Finnish Game Jam 2023. It has played a crucial role in the gaming industry for a long time.


 Global Game Jam is an event where like-minded people gather around at the same place for a limited amount of time. Usually, the Global Game Jam lasts for a whole week, but national chapters can be shorter. The purpose is to create a game (video game, board game, etc.) of which theme is revealed during that period. Annually, Global Game Jam has tens of thousands of participants globally.


 Finnish Game Jam is the Finnish chapter of the Global Game Jam. The event lasted 48 hours. (3.2.2023, 17:00 – 5.2.2023, 17:00). We here at Game Business Co-operative Expa have been organizing Jams in Jyväskylä for a decade. This year’s Jam was the 10th time. It means that we have lots of experience organizing online, offline, and hybrid Jams. This year the Jam was a hybrid model so people could participate online via Discord and offline at the Digi & Game Center.


 The weekend flew by in a heartbeat. This year we had plenty of first-timers participating in the Jam. After discussing with the participants, it became clear why people participate in Jams year and year again. It is all about the community. The Jams are social events. People come with their friends and spend some quality time together. It is also easy to find new friends at these events, as everyone shares mutual interests in creating games. Therefore it is also common to come alone. The organizers always ensure that everyone who wants finds a team to join. It is also possible to create a game alone if it’s what the participant wants.

People gathering in Digi & Game Center

 Many participants enjoy the challenge of coming up with a game in 48 hours. Usually, the game development process takes months or even years. The tight schedule challenges teams and individuals to work more efficiently. 


The participants’ backgrounds vary a lot when it comes to prior experience level. Some have been participating annually since the first local Jam in 2013, while some came for the first time this year. Some participants are working in big local gaming companies. Some are upcoming professionals, students, etc., or working in a different field.


 When people from such various backgrounds come together, it is no surprise that the Jams are also networking events. Many of the more experienced Jammers told that participating in these events has helped them find a job in the field. Employers in the game development field value the Jams significantly.


 The Game Jams also play a crucial role in building the local ecosystem. These events make it possible for like-minded people to connect. It can lead to new companies in the field, which help build the ecosystem and provide tax income for the local municipalities and the country.


 You do not have to be an expert in coding, game design, or any other field to partake in these events. We encourage everyone interested in making games to participate in the Game Jams. Who knows, what kind of possibilities may occur because of it? 


Huge thanks to YAHAHA Studios for partnering up with us for this event.



Global Game Jam (GGJ)

  • An event that focuses on creating original games
  • Has been arranged since 2009
  • Has tens of thousands of participants from all over the world

Finnish Game Jam (FGJ)

  • Part of the Global Game Jam
  • Has been organized since 2010
  • Has local Game Jam hubs in various cities.

Interested in the Game Jams? 


Check out all the games created in Jyväskylä’s  Jam hub this year.


Read here, how your body may react to the fun but demanding 48-hour-long event. 


Learn more about YAHAHA Studios:



Learn all about Game Co-operative Expa:



Brand Marketing Digi & Game Center

Where does the brand start?

Brand development is long-term work and starting is usually the most challenging part of it. It is important to do the groundwork properly. We must first define the goals of what we are going to do, and to whom and why? However, the final image is determined by different stakeholders and target audiences.

From the beginning, representatives of various parties: from the companies, employees, students, and persons responsible for the city of Jyväskylä own development interests have been committed to building the Digi & Game Center brand. This has been a sensible choice because in the end, the brand is built on the images we create together. We started thinking together: How we want to look, and sound like on the outside? What things do we want to represent and what kind of activities do we want to involve?


We organized two workshops and a shared survey for all the representatives of the various parties involved in the Digi & Game Center. They were able to freely participate in the workshops as well as give opinions regarding the brand and communications of the future about Digi & Game Center. From the results of the workshops we could see that people wanted to make the Center warm and receptive to anyone interested in the digital and gaming industry, regardless of age, gender, or background. The Center also wanted to be portrayed as a place where people would first seek help in the digital or gaming industry, whether they were interested in studying those subjects or in the hopes of getting to work in those fields. Information aimed at financiers and potential investors was always also seen as an important part of keeping investor interest as high as possible.

From the very beginning, the value base of the brand building was the emphasis on the community and the appreciation of working together and different ways of cooperation. There is more power in the community than there would be in people individually.

Why we are building the brand?

Underlying the brand building is the goal of increasing sales. In the case of Digi & Game Center this means that the Center’s own offices are would be as full of tenants as possible, there would be a large number of participants in the events, young people are queuing to get in to study and the city of Jyväskylä thinks the Center is a useful community for the development of the city. A strong brand base supports sales and engages customers. There are numerous examples of this from Apple to Merzedes-Benz.

To whom do we want to send a message and what?

The main target groups for brand communications are the gaming industry, the digital industry, educational institutions, investors/financiers/partners, and the potential buyers of inhouse business services. Topics raised in the communication include the Centre’s CO-Working facilities, several events held in different locations inside and outside the Center, the possibility of cooperation networks, start-up services, training opportunities for the industry, industry development in general and of course, the services of the Centre’s own resident companies, as well as investment opportunities in these companies. The City of Jyväskylä’s positive attitude towards new business and the development of the digital and gaming industry as a growing employer of the future has also been emphasized in communications. The main goal of brand communication has been for Digi & Game Center to be the first thing that comes to mind when people think about the digital gaming industry in general and it would be the first place they seek help or information related to these topics.

It would also be important for the brand to be able to stand out from other business communities in Jyväskylä and other Finnish digital and gaming communities. For this reason, the activities have been taken forward together with various stakeholders because in this case, it is the community that creates the foundation for the brand.


Residents are the most important resource for the brand and communications

The biggest asset of the brand and communications is its representatives, i.e. the residents of Digi & Game Center. How they talk about daily life in the Digi & Game Center, at events and outside of the house.  As well as, of course, in general of everything they think the Center represents. A relaxed and communal atmosphere combined with professional people that work both for the company they represent and for the common good of entire Digi & Game Center. Now we are striving the companies, employees, and students working in the Digi & Game Center to spread the good news about this wonderful place, which has been created for the need. Marketing tricks will not work unless the community will stand behind the values of the Center. At the same time as the brand is being built, seamless customer experiences are also being built.

Brand creation and the future

The creation of the brand has only just begun, and its first features have only been seen on a smaller scale. Over time we can see how well the initially set goals and the models created are realized and how people themselves internalize the starting points of Digi & Game Center’s brand communication in their daily work and their communication. The goal for the future is for the Center to be known throughout Finland as an active player in the digital and gaming industry within three years. The five-year goal is for the Digi & Game Center to be recognized internationally and for the people to apply for jobs and study abroad.

The work is taken forward together, keeping the focus on the themes defined at the beginning. The groundwork has been done and now the strengthening of the brand image will continue.

Digi & Game Center – Co-Development Ecosystem in the Heart of Finland is OPEN!

The Digi & Game Center brings together companies, students, teachers and researchers in the digital and gaming industry in one place to work and develop products and services. The parties responsible for the centre’s operations include the JAMK University of Applied Sciences, Jyväskylä Game Industry Hub – Peliosuuskunta Expa and Jykia Oy. Expa Game Business Co-operative serves as the operator of Digi & Game Center.


Facilities and working stations are rented for gaming and digitalisation companies. The companies operating in the Digi & Game Center represent industries such as gaming, programming, graphics, animation, 3D and XR/VR/AR production, robotics, ICT, and music and culture production. The high demand for space is an indication of the centre’s necessity and of the fact that the digital and gaming industry in Jyväskylä and Central Finland is active and growth-seeking both in the domestic and international markets. Companies and partners are coming to the centre both from Finland and abroad.

Digi & Game Center has office rooms and hot desk remote co-working stations available for rent. Additionally, the centre has common areas, virtual and augmented reality (XR, VR and AR) facilities and equipment, an audio studio as well as a sauna available.

Are You looking for professionals to Your team?

The center has also sought partners to support the development and operation of the industry in Central Finland. Experts and businesses are developed in the same building, so the community provides opportunities to start new business together or recruit new talents.Through our networks, you can find professionals from the grassroots directly through our a peer-to-peer networks. Midare, a Jyväskylä-based company with a long history in the provision of equipment, operator services and ICT solutions, has already joined the centre.

In addition to business operations, the center will host diverse activities, training and events open to all in the gaming and digital industry as well as JAMK’s Ticorporate Demo & Product Lab and e-sports coaching will also be operating at the center. 

Grand Opening Day 7th Feb 2020 was huge success

Several speeches were kept, coffee and cake were served and over 400 people visited and tested the premises. We got excellent feedback and social media were lively. We are excited what the future holds for use. Join us to make great things together!

Check video from The Grand Opening Day https://youtu.be/OVs0P77B3xM

Check our premises through a virtual tour link to the 3D, 360 camera model, where you can explore all the facilities and the offices of the entrepreneurs: https://my.matterport.com/show/?m=tGEm1yhqJ6t

Welcome to visit Digi & Game Center, Matarankatu 2, 40100 Jyväskylä  Digital or non digital way.

Find us in the Google maps:

IceBreaker – Networking event for teams and startups at Digi & Game Center

What’s your startup about and What kind of co-operation/synergies could we develop in the Digi & Game Center Ecosystem?

About this Event

Greetings, teams and companies in Digi & Game Center!

What’s your startup about and What kind of co-operation/synergies could we develop in the Digi & Game Center Ecosystem?

Expa Game Business Co-operative is organizing a networking event for all teams and startups to break the ice and boost the collaboration possibilities between all teams!

Event: IceBreaker – networking morning for teams and startups in DGC

Date: 10.3.2020

Time: 10:00 – 12:00

Location: Stage area, Digi & Game Center, Matarankatu 2, Jyväskylä

Agenda: How your company can share and benefit from the Digi & Game Center Brand and sustainable game ecosystem?

Sustainable Game Industry Ecosystem project.

Flowhouse presenting -the Digi & Game Center Brandbook.

Participants (thats you!) get to introduce their own startups and services by open chatter and mingle.

Add this to your Google Calendar: http://tinyurl.com/DGC-IceBreaker-1

Welcome to the event!

For any questions, feel free to contact organizer:

email: sasu.louke@expa.fi