Every year, the city of Cannes and its Palais des Festivals et des Congrès produce a series of unmissable events, and this year is no exception. For its 37th edition, the Cannes International Games Festival offers games enthusiasts and industry professionals the largest gaming arena in the French-speaking world. Beyond its growing reputation and success, the event has been developing its place on the international stage year after year.

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The Cannes International Games Festival 2024

Over the course of a week and starting on 17 February, no less than 80,000 people are expected to come together for this event! The festival is aimed at both young and old alike, and everything has been designed to improve the festival-goers’ experience, with entertainment, exhibition and tournaments.

All types of games are represented at the festival: board games, video games, escape games, collectible cards and more. Put simply, there’s something for everyone. Read on as we discover what’s on offer for the 2024 edition of the Cannes International Games Festival.

The Cannes International Games Festival 2024 programme

During your visit to the Cannes Games Festival, you’ll be presented with a host of new releases, as well as some great classics of the world of gaming. The program is defined as follows:

  • Over the week, various tournaments and events have been planned: the festival gets off to a relatively calm start on Saturday 17 February with a giant lotto in aid of sick children, then picks up again the next week from Monday 19 February for a chess tournament, with rounds spread over several days. A belote tournament will also take place from the evening of 21 February onwards – and not just any tournament: this will be the qualifier for the French championship.
  • The events will get started on 22 February, with the ‘Socialising through play’ exhibition presented by Envies Enjeux 2022 kicking things off: come and discover edutainment to understand how it can promote learning. Likewise, the Cannes Games Festival will host its yearly As d’Or ceremony on this same evening, an awards ceremony intended to recognise the best games in their categories, as well as to draw the public’s attention to the great diversity of games creation.
  • Finally, the majority of the tournaments, exhibitions and conferences will take place on the weekend of 23 to 25 February: don’t miss the Stigméria tournaments, a puzzle game for all ages with free registration – even for new players. In terms of events, several conferences are on the agenda – on a diverse and varied selection of themes, such as illustration AI, inclusivity and diversity in the world of board games, and much more.

Finally, over the course of 4 nights from Wednesday 21 February, the ‘Nuits du Off’ will welcome enthusiasts to recreate the world of gaming around the games of tomorrow. As such, they will be able to test the latest prototypes of 300 new and established designers and speak with them in an informal meeting space, from 22:00 till dawn. What’s more, the event promises the crowd reserved access, a bigger space for the occasion and reduced waiting times at the entrance.

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Exhibitions around the Cannes Games Festival

This year, the Cannes International Games Festival puts gaming culture and heritage in the spotlight through its exhibitions which aim, in addition to introducing visitors to this world, to highlight the illustrators who bring games to life and to put the creators’ various intentions and inspirations in perspective.

New for this edition: the festival has planned an exclusive masterclass dedicated to games designers. Over the course of a half-day, participants will have the opportunity to learn more about the work of board-games designers through an exclusive workshop. However, it’s important to remember that spaces are limited – so don’t delay if you’d like to take part.

Finally, conferences will be open to all; they aim to allow the public to better understand the world of games, an often-unknown sector. For this edition, as we mentioned earlier, they will highlight inclusivity and diversity in the world of board games, or ‘illustration’ AI, as well as tackling some major themes under the following titles:

  • Recognising cultural products: Stakes and current situation’, a conference seeking to understand the deep social and cultural themes presented by board games;
  • Beyond fun’, a conference exploring the contrast between games and other artistic forms in their treatment of serious subjects, using specific examples of games to tackle this subject.
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Various guests and attendees

Since 2016, the Festival has been developing its professional section for actors in the world of gaming. More and more of them are coming to Cannes to discover the latest market trends and releases, both for big and small publishers and distributors.

The festival’s guests include major groups like La Grande Récré or Vtech, as well as niche publishers like Aurora, a specialist in narrative games. In short, there’s something to suit all tastes.

Cannes International Games Festival 2024: find your accommodation with Immosol

More than just a festival, the Cannes Games Festival is a friendly and lively event accessible to all, offering visitors the chance to discover a diverse and varied range of games, as well as the opportunity to play them, speak about them and debate them in conferences. Beyond the great fun to be had, the festival invites visitors to better understand the world of games, all in the spirit of sharing.

Fancy taking part in this festival? Don’t hesitate: visit our dedicated accommodation website to enjoy a lively and unforgettable weekend in the world of games!