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On Saturday and Sunday, the Midwest Gaming Classic hosts industry panels that are open to all attendees! Topics cover all aspects of gaming.

Friday, April 12th, 2019

Special Presentation

Special Presentation
7:00pm until 12:00am @ The Garcade Presentation Hall (4)


We don’t usually run our presentation halls during Preview Night, but we’re making an exception this year for something special… and while the presentation isn’t taking five hours, the room will stay open after that. If you’ve got your ticket for Friday Preview Night or VIG, stop by and see… something!


Saturday, April 13th, 2019


Stern Pinball: The Black Knight Returns!

Stern Pinball: The Black Knight Returns!
11:30am until 12:15pm @ The Garcade Presentation Hall (4)


Stern Pinball seminar with Steve Ritchie and Tim Sexton on Stern’s newest game, Black Knight Sword of Rage!


Ernie Hudson: These Games Are REAL

Ernie Hudson: These Games Are REAL
12:30pm until 1:15pm @ The Garcade Presentation Hall (4)


When Ernie Hudson was filming the original Ghostbusters in 1984, did he have any hint it would be an enduring movie? What’s it like re-visiting the character of Zeddemore in both the 2009 video game and the 2016 pinball machine? What does the future hold? We’re going to ask Ernie all these questions and more in this fun Q&A session!


Arcade SuperGun Demonstration

Arcade SuperGun Demonstration
1:00pm until 1:30pm @ "A Winner Is You" Stage (22)


PEW! PEW!
Chris Dammacco of Windy Gaming explains the use of arcade superguns, their compatibility with arcade boards, and how to use them on your own TV.


VGBS: Collecting Carts Again with the Switch

VGBS: Collecting Carts Again with the Switch
1:00pm until 1:45pm @ G2B Presentation Hall (6)


AAuthor Jeffrey Wittenhagen and cohost Kyle Gilbert from the VGBS Gaming Podcast are joined by the talented D.J. Medina aka Sarumaru (Creator of FX Unit Yuki for the TurboGrafx CD) and Jonathan Polan (from JP’S SWITCHMANIA) for a conversation about collecting physical cartridges on the Nintendo Switch! From revived franchises to expansive collector’s editions to new games tapping into that “Retro Nostalgia”, they will compare an old school collector’s mindset to a new school gamer. Jeffrey will also unveil his newest book project involving Nintendo Switch collecting!


Jeremy Parish: 40 Years of the Most Important Game Ever

Jeremy Parish: 40 Years of the Most Important Game Ever
1:30pm until 2:00pm @ "A Winner Is You" Stage (22)


Jeremy Parish, retro game writer extraordinaire, thinks this is the most important game ever, and it’s 40 YEARS OLD! Whatever could it be? Stop by on Saturday and find out. Here’s a hint: We don’t have a clue! It’s certainly not DuckTales… or is it?


Harold Johnson: History of Gaming and GenCon

Harold Johnson: History of Gaming and GenCon
1:30pm until 2:15pm @ The Garcade Presentation Hall (4)


It’s hard to encapsulate what Harold Johnson has done for tabletop games in a paragraph! He copyedited the original Dungeon Master’s Guide, developed multiple D&D tournament modules, was the Director of Games Research & Development at TSR, worked on the design team for DragonLance, Forgotten Realms, Spelljammer, and Ravenloft… and continues to this day with Return to Tamoanchan! He was also influential in GenCon’s move to Milwaukee. Learn about all this and SO MUCH MORE!


David Thiel: What's That Sound?

David Thiel: What's That Sound?
2:00pm until 2:45pm @ G2B Presentation Hall (6)


David Thiel has been producing sound for video games and pinball machines since 1980, from the coin-op version of Q*Bert to the C4 version of Winter Games, and recent games like Jersey Jack Pinball’s Pirates of the Caribbean! In this presentation, David will teach you how to discover more about the sounds that your games make, and the stories they tell!



Ben Heck Surface Mount Soldering Tutorial

Ben Heck Surface Mount Soldering Tutorial
2:00pm until 3:00pm @ The BitBuilt Experience (2)


Ben Heck, the master of modification mayhem, returns. This time he’s showing you how to solder stuff to other stuff! This is an invaluable skill if ever you’re building circuitry and eclectic electronic do-dads and whatchamajiggers.


Frank Cifaldi & Howard Phillips: Saving Nintendo's History

Frank Cifaldi & Howard Phillips: Saving Nintendo's History
2:30pm until 3:15pm @ The Garcade Presentation Hall (4)


Nintendo is the Disney of video games. Its characters and games have captured imaginations more than those of any other game company, and its game designs practically set the template for other companies to follow. So why do we know so little about its inner workings? Join former Nintendo Fun Club President Howard Phillips and Video Game History Foundation director Frank Cifaldi as we discuss Nintendo’s early days, the birth of Nintendo Power, and how we can work together to ensure that the company’s legacy is preserved.



Tim Lapetino & Greg Freres: The Visual Evolution of Pac-Man

Tim Lapetino & Greg Freres: The Visual Evolution of Pac-Man
3:00pm until 3:45pm @ G2B Presentation Hall (6)


Pac-Man was created nearly 40 years ago, and despite appearing in 50+ games over a dozen platforms, the little yellow dot muncher is alive and well. Author and designer Tim Lapetino will explore what makes the character so iconic and still recognizable despite technology changes and visual evolution. He will be joined by Bally/Midway alum Greg Freres, to discuss Ms. Pac-Man, the extended family, and what the design of the character and his marketing representations mean to popular culture.


Eugene Jarvis: Raw Thrills

Eugene Jarvis: Raw Thrills
3:30pm until 4:15pm @ The Garcade Presentation Hall (4)


One of the most prolific arcade hit designers of every era, Eugene Jarvis currently leads top arcade manufacturer Raw Thrills. Hear him give an update on what Raw Thrills is up to, and learn more about what goes into the creation of today’s arcade hits!


American Pinball: Oktoberfest in April

American Pinball: Oktoberfest in April
4:00pm until 4:45pm @ G2B Presentation Hall (6)


Last year, American Pinball had just debuted their brand new Houdini Pinball! This year, American is shipping their second game, Oktoberfest! Come learn about it and what the year has been like with the American Pinball Team!


Retronauts: 30 Years of Game Boy

Retronauts: 30 Years of Game Boy
4:30pm until 5:15pm @ The Garcade Presentation Hall (4)


Thirty years ago, the Game Boy released to a massive reception, eventually going on to sell over 118 million consoles during its lifespan. Bob Mackey and Jeremy Parish of Retronauts break down the life of this incredible handheld!


Scott Danesi: Pinball Homebrew

Scott Danesi: Pinball Homebrew
5:00pm until 5:45pm @ G2B Presentation Hall (6)


When Scott Danesi started designing Total Nuclear Annihilation pinball, he was doing it just for fun without any industry connections. How did he do it, what did it lead to, and what other fun stuff will he share with us? One thing we know, it’s going to be AWESOME!


Eric Bischoff: How WCW Met Video Games

Eric Bischoff: How WCW Met Video Games
5:30pm until 6:15pm @ The Garcade Presentation Hall (4)


When Eric Bischoff joined WCW in 1991 as an announcer, no one expected he would be leading the company to the top of the wrestling world a few short years later! During this time, Bischoff scored major licensing deals for WCW video games resulting in many smash hits. Find out what it was like to make these deals, what the talent thought, if he played them, and much more!


Christian Deitering: World of Nintendo Aftermarket Games II

Christian Deitering: World of Nintendo Aftermarket Games II
6:00pm until 7:00pm @ G2B Presentation Hall (6)


Five years after his last presentation, Christian returns picking up where he left off to discuss changes in the aftermarket scene. He’ll cover the effects of deep-pocketed speed buyers, the dash to grab old IPs, and just how exactly the world of hip-hop and NES homebrews may relate. Covering the second half-life of this obscure but growing gaming scene, he’ll wrap up with a final look at what the future holds for this niche of the gaming community.



Sunday, April 14th, 2019


Scott & Roxanne Adams: Creating Clopas - Small Town, Big Dreams

Scott & Roxanne Adams: Creating Clopas - Small Town, Big Dreams
11:30am until 12:15pm @ The Garcade Presentation Hall (4)


In 2016, a dream was born with the conception of Conversational Adventure™ games and the founding of Clopas LLC in a small town of 14,000 people. Scott Adams of Adventureland fame, his wife Roxanne, and a team of ten gifted individuals formed Team Clopas and created their first game, Lost Legends of Redwall: Escape the Gloomer (released on Steam in November 2018). Now they are ready to unveil the successor to the classic 1978 game, Adventureland, with a planned release late summer 2019, and present a behind-the-scenes look at their journey getting there. The developers will be available after the Q&A presentation.


Midwest YouTube Gamers: A YouTube Survival Guide

Midwest YouTube Gamers: A YouTube Survival Guide
12:00pm until 12:45pm @ G2B Presentation Hall (6)


Join YouTube gamers Musty Hobbit of Second Breakfast, The Old A$$ Retro Gamer, The Game Grinder, RisingBluePhoenix, Captain Algebra and moderator Jason of Corpse_flood Gaming for an insightful and fun interactive discussion on how to successfully navigate the modern day YouTube landscape. Topics such as scripted vs. streaming, community building, content selection and more will be discussed.


Ben Heck Builds An 8-Bit Computer

Ben Heck Builds An 8-Bit Computer
12:00pm until 3:00pm @ The BitBuilt Experience (2)


Ben Heck, the crafty creator of computer conundrums, returns! This time around he’ll put together an 8-bit computer from its subatomic constituent parts. Hey, it’s actually rocket science (alright, they might be actually pre-assembled computer parts that he uses)!



Philo Barnhart & Tad Stones: Art to Game

Philo Barnhart & Tad Stones: Art to Game
12:30pm until 1:15pm @ The Garcade Presentation Hall (4)


What’s it like to have your art turned into a game? Philo Barnhart was an animator who worked on the Smurfs, the Little Mermaid and Beauty and the Beast, and Tad Stones created Darkwing Duck and co-created Chip ‘n Dale Rescue Rangers, all of which were featured as games too! Did they have any involvement with the games, have they played them, and what did they think of them? Find out in this fun hosted Q&A session!


Gary Katzer: Clean & Maintain Your Games & Systems

Gary Katzer: Clean & Maintain Your Games & Systems
1:00pm until 1:30pm @ "A Winner Is You" Stage (22)


Gary will focus on the importance of cleaning the games and systems, what to use and what not to use, how to disassemble & reassemble carts and the tools needed. Don’t forget to bring a notebook, or, you know, a smartphone…


Nintendo World Championships: Historical Panel

Nintendo World Championships: Historical Panel
1:00pm until 1:45pm @ G2B Presentation Hall (6)


In 1990, Nintendo turned the fictional Video Armageddon tournament from the film “The Wizard” into the legendary Nintendo World Championships. We gather a bunch of the NWC champions and finalists to preserve the history of what was in many ways one of the first large-scale eSports event series!


Arlo: Q & Arlo

Arlo: Q & Arlo
1:30pm until 2:15pm @ The Garcade Presentation Hall (4)


Ask popular YouTube content creator Arlo questions to find out what he really thinks about big topics like the news of the new Switch consoles coming later this year, or small topics like if he thinks that making the Toki remake a GameStop Exclusive was the right call, and anything in between. Who knows, maybe you’ll even learn some secrets!


Adam Ruben: Pinball - From Controversy to Glory

Adam Ruben: Pinball - From Controversy to Glory
2:00pm until 2:45pm @ G2B Presentation Hall (6)


Pinball’s past is fraught with controversy, starting with citywide bans in the 1930’s and ’40’s (to the point where the mayor of New York smashed them in the street with a sledgehammer), to its re-legalization decades later, to its supremacy in the ’80’s and ’90’s, to how it almost disappeared from the face of the earth at the end of the millennium. The most interesting time in the history of pinball might actually be right now – the game is more popular than it’s been in a quarter century. This talk will examine the rocky road pinball has traveled and the unlikely reasons that, in an era when everyone carries unlimited video games on a glass rectangle in their pocket, a 250-pound behemoth of plywood, plastic, and steel is somehow growing in popularity.


Gary Katzer: Why Clone Game Systems Aren’t EVIL!

Gary Katzer: Why Clone Game Systems Aren’t EVIL!
2:15pm until 2:45pm @ "A Winner Is You" Stage (22)


Many people dismiss clone systems with the belief that the only way to play retro games would be on a CRT or PVM, using either original consoles via CART/Framemeister/OSSC and that anything else is just cheap Chinese garbage. Gary Katzer disagrees, and will show some of his favorite clone systems with the idea that as long as people are playing games and having fun, that’s what it’s all about!


Gamers (Who Happen to Be Women)

Gamers (Who Happen to Be Women)
2:30pm until 3:15pm @ The Garcade Presentation Hall (4)


We put together a panel of some super influential gamers… that happen to be women! Jordan “Savage Giggles” Price was a NOS Sponsored competitive Halo player and has worked for various gaming companies for 9 years. Roxanne Adams is a co-founder of Clopas, innovator of engaging and immersive Conversational Adventure games. Erika “Verika” Philipp runs MilCog tabletop gaming with her husband Jamey and has been a model for different board games. And Sarah Weissman and Allison DiMichele are the top two ranked women air hockey players in the world! Join them all to hear about their experiences being some of the top gamers in the world… who happen to be women!


Watch Out for Fireballs: Playing Creation with Mario Paint

Watch Out for Fireballs: Playing Creation with Mario Paint
3:00pm until 3:45pm @ G2B Presentation Hall (6)


Watch Out For Fireballs! is finding the fun in Mario Paint and games like it in this talk about games that let you make stuff! Mario Paint to Mario Maker to MTV Music Generator to Unlimited Adventures to Pinball Construction Set to RPG Maker, we’re doing an overview of this subset of games in hopes of explaining what makes the act of creating a game in and of itself, and what makes these titles so fun.


Ted DiBiase: This is Your Life (in Games)

Ted DiBiase: This is Your Life (in Games)
3:30pm until 4:15pm @ The Garcade Presentation Hall (4)


Perhaps best known as the “Million Dollar Man,” Ted DiBiase accomplished what most wrestlers can only dream of in his career, including headlining a Wrestlemania and the first ever Summerslam! The timing was also perfect for DiBiase to be featured in multiple video games, including WWF Wrestlemania for the NES and WrestleFest for the arcade! We’re going to ask him what it was like for him to be featured in these and other games while dissecting how his character was presented in these games!


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