Panels at DreamHack Austin 2017

DreamHack events give the community a chance to discuss the topics they care about. Learn something new by attending a panel where experts go into detail on topics like: gaming, esports, cosplay, tabletop, technology, industry, coding, and general geek culture! Most panels are interactive, allowing questions from the audience and time to talk with panelists at the conclusion of the panel. Review the full panel schedule below and make sure you plan ahead so you don’t miss your favorites!

Panel Schedule

For full details of each panel, keep scrolling down and select the relevant DreamHack and Day!


BDYHAX: Practical Transhumanism | using technology to craft the ideal self, and a bodyhacking community

Time: Friday April 28th, 11-12PM
Speakers: A.J. Butt, Trevor Goodman, and Susan Butler.
Description: The human body is a system just like any other machine. And just like any machine, shortcuts, hacks, and improvements can be found. Bodyhacks can range from bionics to cybernetic implants, to simple things like fitness plans or a wearable. With so many different people trying to improve themselves, how do you build a community and event around bodyhacks? That’s the goal of BDYHAX, an annual bodyhacking and human augmentation convention in Austin, TX. Come hear the BDYHAX team discuss how they hack their bodies, the future of bodyhacking, and the BDYHAX community.

Gaming Saved the World

Time: Friday April 28th, 12-1pm
Speakers: Peter Perez
Description: Gaming is a world phenomenon. Players have surpassed international boundaries and breached language barriers. All for the GLORY! Gaming grows more inclusive. How that happens depends on the work we do to make it so. This panel will go in-depth into the philosophy of gaming and where it can succeed and where is can utterly fail.

Breaking into an Esports Career: How to thrive in your dream job

Time: Friday April 28th, 1-2pm
Speakers: Sabina Hemmi
Description: This talk is for anyone who has dreamed of being in esports, or who works in esports but has struggled to make a full time career out of it. It will cover the common mistakes people make when pursuing a job in esports. It will get specific about how to make a resume/cover letter that stands out in a pile of them. How do I decide if taking a low paying job is going to help my career? It will help self starters and content creators identify why they aren’t getting ahead. We will be using common language to make the concepts stick in terms that all gamers can understand. Example: Comparing job performance to MMR and relating ranked anxiety to the struggles creative people have with producing content. Sabina is a co-founder of Elo Entertainment the tech company behind Dotabuff and Overbuff that provides analytical tools for millions of competitive gamers. She is a lifelong gamer and has both created a career for herself in esports and employs others in the industry.

Collegiate esports and where it’s heading

Time: Friday April 28th, 2-3pm
Speakers: Kevin Hoang
Description: The goal of this panel is to breakdown the infrastructure of collegiate esports and why it is important. Will be taking a look at the community building aspect of collegiate esports and will dive deeper on the official programs that are taking place.
I will be talking about 3 reasons why collegiate esports is important
Community, Career, Competition

Women in Geek Girl Media

Time: Friday April 28th, 3-4pm
Speaker: Mia Moore
Description: A roundtable discussion with female creators about creating online content in the geek space. How do you get started? What unique challenges do we face? Why do we blog/vlog/podcast? What does the future of women in geek media look like?

Cosplay 101: Cosplay for Beginners

Time: Friday April 28th, 4-5pm
Speakers: Mia Moore
Description: Ready to dive into the world of cosplay? Class is now in session! Learn how to take your idea from imagination into reality. We’ll cover everything from wigs to sewing and lots in between. (Not sure if you can cosplay? Spoiler alert — cosplay is for everyone!)

Opportunity in Esports: Why diversity matters

Time: Friday April 28th, 5-6pm
Speakers: Ashley “Ashni” Christenson, Sabriel “Sabriality/Miko” Mastin, Lee ‘Malic3’ Massie, and Sabina “Lawliepop” Hemmi.
Description:The long term growth of esports depends on an expansion of the audience. We will discuss how normal players can contribute to the growth with a more welcoming environment for diverse players.

Cosplay for Competition

Time: Friday April 28th, 6-7pm
Speakers: Colony Drop
Description: Spend an hour leaning the tricks of the trade to own the Cosplay stage from 14 time award winning, and World Cosplay Summit National Competitor: Colony Drop Cosplay Team! In this panel we’ll start right at the beginning: Choosing your Cosplay costume for competition.
Choosing the right costume is just an important as how you make it or wear it! We’ll talk about the kinds of things we look for as judges and as competitors when we choose our costumes best suited to the stage. Everyone knows the performance is very pivotal to a solid entry, and we’re going to help you learn the best way to work the stage. Covering both walk on style entries, as well as skit building with a mind for the audience and judges eyes. Preparing for the stage at the convention, and what to expect backstage. Most people don’t know much about the prejudging and line up process for cosplay shows are run, so we’ll walk you through the standard procedure on how it’s done, and what you can do to prepare yourself for the “Holding pen” and beyond. As a subject near and dear to us, we want to take time to talk about stage fright, anxiety, and fears,and what you can try to do to cope, and hopefully master these insecurities (well, for at least 30 seconds at a time anyways) to get you hard work across that stage with confidence and poise. We will also talk about the World Cosplay Summit and what can be expected if WCS is yourcosplay goal, and what you can do to prepare now for next year’s qualifiers and beyond! A must watch panel for any novice cosplayer, or cosplayer hopefully, even the veterans out there might pick up a thing or two!

Japanese Street Fashion Show

Time: Friday April 28th, 7:30-9:30pm
Speaker: Catherine Ramos
Description: Local Japanese fashion enthusiasts are ready to strut their stuff in this showcase of fashions straight from Japan!

Rockit Couch Party

Time: Friday April 28th, 9:30-10:30pm
Speaker: Rockit Gaming
Description: Rockit Gaming will be hosting a live “Couch Party” at the main stage at DreamHack! Watch Rockit and Vinny as they perform acoustic songs, banter about video games in their Wayne’s World style comedy special. If you enjoy live music, audience interaction, and a good laugh – this is something you don’t want to miss!

End of Times Live! (Podcast Recording)

Time: Friday April 28th. 10:30-12pm
Speakers: Keaton Moore
Description: The End Media team- Keaton Moore, Logan Lawhon, Breydon Moore, and Hanish Reddy- are at DreamHack for a special recording of their podcast- End of Times! They’ll discuss topics ranging from the nerdy, to inappropriate- from games and movies, to weird and raunchy life stories. What could go wrong?

Austin Historical Weapons Guild, Weapons Training Workshop

Time: Friday April 28th, 11-12pm, 3-4pm
Speakers: AHWG Weapons Masters
Description: Join the Austin Historical Weapons Guild and get an introduction to various weapons, taught from historical sources. Weapon choices include: longsword, dagger, and sword and buckler. Visit the Austin Historical Weapons Guild’s Table to sign up and see weapon times.

J fashion Q&A

Time: Friday April 28th 12-1pm
Speakers: Tiffany Grenier
Description: What is Japanese street fashion? How does it differ from the looks on the runways of New York or Paris? And how can I get some for myself? Learn the answers to these questions and more from our team of fashionistas.

DreamHack Cosplay Contest Prejudging

Time: Friday April 28th 1-3pm
Speaker: DreamHack Judges
Description: Cosplay comp judging.

Prop and Armoring Theory 101

Time: Friday April 28th 4-5pm
Speakers: Colony Drop: Prop Master
Description: Ever wondered “where do I start on this cosplay armor?” Do you have pile of foam that has to be made into weapons for your new group? Colony drop cosplay can help guide you!
Together we’ll explore where to begin on any build, prop or armor wise, we’ve got your back. From concept to finishing we’ll talk about many different kinds of materials including various type of foams, leather, metal, PVC, worba and thermoplastics, and resin. Also how and when to use
them, and the strength of weakness of each kind of material so you can make the best decisions on your next awesome prop! With all this experience, and lots of awesome props to look at and touch, whether you’re an amateur or a pro, you’re sure to learn something you didn’t already know!

Mika Nicole Meet and Greet

Time: Friday April 28th 5-7pm
Speakers: Mika Nicole.
Description: Q&A Meet and Greet. Cosplayer, Actress, Stunt coordinator

Cosplay Q&A

Time: Friday April 28th 7-8pm
Speaker: DreamHack Staff
Description: Come join our Cosplay team getting down and dirty with the cosplayers at the con!

Podcasting 101

Time: Friday April 28th 8-9:30pm
Speakers: Luke Berthot
Learn how to start a podcast from the ground up, including tips for overcoming challenges from recording in different locations, software/hardware recommendations, editing, and publishing.

Iron Cosplay

Time: Friday April 28th, 9:30-12pm
Description: Many cosplayers labor for hours and spend huge sums of money carefully crafting their works of wearable art. But what if you only had an hour and a grab bag of materials to work with? Find out whose seams will reign supreme and impress the judges in this fast paced competition!
Speaker: Tiffany Micheal Thomas


Cartoon Intro Sing-Along

Time: Saturday April 29th, 10AM-12pm
Speakers: Kaylyn Saucedo
Description: Come sing for two hours along with your favorite cartoon openings from the late 80’s, 90’s, and early 2000’s. Come in your pajamas, and get ready for milk and cereal, as well as bingo games to collect candy and other fun prizes! Plus your favorite retro toy and game commercials.

In the Belly of the Industry

Time: Saturday April 29th, 12-1pm
Speakers: Kat Wenske
Description: In the Belly of the Industry is an open discussion delving into the mysteries of game development. Gain more insight on the pipelines, processes, and non-glamorous knowledge that goes into the industry.

In The Trenches: A Game Development Q&A BioWare

Time: Saturday April 29th, 1-2pm
Speakers: Bioware Devs
Description: A small panel of developers from Bioware and EA Austin sit down to discuss what it’s like working day-to-day at a AAA game development studio

Pro Gamer The Movie (screening)

Time: Saturday April 29th, 2:30-4:30pm
Speakers: Smyth Entertainment
Description: A documentary about the real ups and downs of professional gaming

Avatar: The Last Airbender Quiz Bowl

Time: Saturday April 29th, 4:30-6pm
Speakers: Ted Wang
Description: Avatar: The Last Airbender is an American animated cartoon series that aired on Nickelodeon. We will be playing a quiz bowl theme packet based on the three seasons. Colony Drop Cosplay will be cosplaying as characters from the series taking on a team of audience member contestants.
(There will be no questions from the disgrace of a feature film.)

Weapons Demonstration: Introduction to Historical European Martial Arts

Time: Saturday April 29th, 6-8pm
Speakers: AHWG Weapons Masters
Description: Are you curious about Historical European Martial Arts? Do you just like swords and seeing people get hit? Come and see what all the talk is about, complete with actual sword fighting.
The Austin Historical Weapons Guild, a local HEMA group, will give a brief introduction to HEMA, demonstrate some historical techniques and finish with full contact sparring.

Rogue Signal: Everything is Better as a Game | adding custom, robust gamification to events

Time: Saturday April 29th, 8-9:30pm
Speakers: A.J. Butt, Trevor Goodman, and Susan Butler.
Description: How do we bring games into the real world and bring fiero and “WHOO!” to mundane experiences? Join Rogue Signal as we discuss our new project to bring actual games, not just boring checklists, to events across the US, and how we got from building our own games and tracking with pen and paper and everything under the sun to building a custom application called Scramble! to host amazing games at events everywhere.

Evolution of Games Media

Time: Saturday April 29th, 930-12pm
Speakers: Tiffany Michael Thomas
Description: Traditional games media has gone by the wayside and has steadily been replaced by non-traditional forms of media. We Are Error talks about this new era of games media, and its focus on personality and experience-based presentations for those interested in games. They also offer advice to aspiring podcasters/entertainers about getting a foothold in games media.

Austin Historical Weapons Guild, Weapons Training Workshop

Time: Saturday April 29th, 10am-11am, 3:30-4:30pm
Speakers: AHWG Weapons Masters
Description: Join the Austin Historical Weapons Guild and get an introduction to various weapons, taught from historical sources. Weapon choices include: longsword, dagger, and sword and buckler. Visit the Austin Historical Weapons Guild’s Table to sign up and see weapon times.

Everyday Kawaii

Time: Saturday April 29th, 11-12pm
Speakers: Mylo
Description: Learn how to work the adorable stylings of Japanese street fashion into your everyday looks with the help of our panel of experts.

DreamHack Cosplay Contest Prejudging

Time: Saturday April 29th, 12-2:30pm
Speaker: DreamHack Judges
Description: Cosplay comp judging.

From a galaxy far, far away to a charity near you!

Time: Saturday April 29th, 2:30-4pm
Speakers: Brian Williams (501st Legion), Paul Trupia, Cass Garcia (Saber Guild / Rebel Legion), Jamie McShan (R2 Builders).
Description: LFL Costuming groups (501st Legion, Rebel Legion, Mandalorian Mercenaries, Saber Guild, and the Cental Texas Droid Builders) unite to answer your questions on how to make a difference in your community through Star Wars costuming, droid building, and lightsaber choreography. Representatives discuss their clubs, what makes each unique and how to join. Panelists will also field questions from fans.

Mechanical Keyboards

Time: Saturday April 29th, 5-6pm
Speakers: Jose Soltren
Description: Gamers obsess over every detail in their rigs: displays, CPUs, memory, cooling, graphics, mice, and keyboards. This panel will focus on that last piece.
Drawing from my experience in the vintage and modern keyboard world, we’ll take a deep dive into how keyboards work. We’ll explore the differences between membrane and circuit board based keyboards and who only the latter can achieve true N-key rollover. We’ll talk about what parts of the keyboard are responsible for the way they look, the way they feel, the way they sound, and the way they work. We’ll talk about ghosting, debouncing, and even backlighting. We’ll compare some boards from the past and help attendees pick the best keyboard for them. At 60 FPS, a frame of video ticks along every 16.67 milliseconds. If your keyboard can’t up, you’ll miss frames! A good keyboard will sense in 2-5 milliseconds consistently.

Dogs in Gaming

Time: Saturday April 29th, 6-7pm
Speakers: Olivia Kuchik
Description: Move over lolcats, it’s time for man’s best friend to shine, and he’s up for a lot more than a game of fetch. We’ll be talking about some of our favorite canine companions from video games. (Spoilers: They’re all 10/10)

DreamHack Cosplay Chess

Time: Saturday April 29th,7-9:30PM
Speakers: DreamHack Guests
Description: Welcome to the first ever Cosplay chess! Thats right be the pawn or the master. Watch the game unfold as Cosplayers fight to the death.

DreamHack Cosplay Chess (MA)

Time: Saturday April 29th, 9:30-12PM
Speakers: DreamHack Guests
Description: Welcome to the first ever Cosplay chess MA! WIth a twist of the knife deadpool pops out of a box. What box you ask well the box of lucky charms and sunshine! Is that snake? Did he just… Oh not not that don’t use the box… Why is peach smoking a cigarette? Are you wondering why we are all crazy come join us for Late night Mature chess 18+ only.


The Music of Final Fantasy

Time: Sunday April 30th, 11am-12pm
Speakers: Tracy Nguyen
Description: Exploring the Final Fantasy video game series through its music as envisioned by composer Nobuo Uematsu

5v5 Battle

Time: Sunday April 30th, 12-6pm
Speakers: Rev, Order
Description: Unknown (come see us at the INN)

Volunteers Unite

Time: Sunday April 30th, 11-12pm
Speakers: Austin Allen
Description: Ever wanted to work at a convention? Great! Come to this panel and learn more about what it takes to be a volunteer at conventions. What they actually do, how their mindset even works, and get to know the people behind the shirts.

Cosplay Senpai’s adv. Cosplay tech

Time: Sunday April 30th, 12-1pm
Speakers: Colony Drop Cosplay
Description: Cosplay Senpai’s Advanced Cosplay Techniques + Workshop
Ever wish you had a Cosplay Senpai all your own? To whom you could ask every question about cosplay you ever wanted to know? Fear not, Kohai, I notice you! QueenofSpace from Colony Drop Cosplay (professional seamstress by day, costumer by moonlight) is here to share 18 years of cosplay experience techniques with you! Together, we will learn and explore advanced sewing techniques that will help you over the next plateau towards greatness! In this workshop will you will be working in pairs (so bring a friend) to drape, and make your own lined vest to take home with you. With Senpai by your side, you’re sure to make something great! Starting with draping for pattern making, and moving into techniques such as: Easing, lining, the (laughabley named) ‘burrito method’, understiting vs top-stitching, high quality applique work, and other advanced tricks that will really kick you cosplay game up a knotch!
We will also go over some tools you might not even know you needed, and how to use them and what other resources could you be using for cosplay and hadn’t thought of! A wealth of reference materials will be on hand for those who just can’t get enough! And on top of all of this knowledge, I’ll be fielding questions about techniques and tips you are interested in for your next cosplay! Stuck on something? Just don’t know how to pull off that dream cosplay? FEAR NOT! Cosplay Senpai is here and ready to help you achieve your dreams!

Austin Historical Weapons Guild, Weapons Training Workshop

Time: Sunday April 30th, 1-2pm, 4-5pm
Speakers: AHWG Weapons Masters
Description: Join the Austin Historical Weapons Guild and get an introduction to various weapons, taught from historical sources. Weapon choices include: longsword, dagger, and sword and buckler. Visit the Austin Historical Weapons Guild’s Table to sign up and see weapon times.

The rise, fall and rebirth of Neo Geo

Time: Sunday April 30th, 2-3pm
Speakers: Colony Drop Cosplay
Description: The rise, fall and rebirth of Neogeo Are you a die hard Neogeo fan? Or just a casual metal slug player? A seasoned King of Fighters veteran? No matter what you love from their library of games, you’re going to learn something today!Tracing Neogeo from it’s early roots in the later 1970s, through it’s glory days of the 90s, through this decline, death, and then rebirth right up to today! Ozma Wars to King of Fighters XIV and everything in between (including the failed Metal slug MMO, don’t think we forgot either!) come on a journey with us as we retrace the foot steps of one of the unsung granddaddys of modern video games: Neogeo.

Performance Psychology in esports

Time: Sunday April 30th, 3-4pm
Speakers: Dan Himmelstein
Description: Gain insight on how Sport and Performance Psychology can impact eSports teams and individuals. Learn tips and tricks to improve efficiently and perform consistently!