GDC | Game Producer Bootcamp

Producer Bootcamp

A producer's role often varies from team to team and differs across studios. Good (or bad) production practices and methodologies can make or break a game's overall quality, the team's health, and even define studio culture. The Producer Bootcamp brings together experts and colleagues for a day to discuss best practices in production and team management, as well as share their career experiences.

Producer Bootcamp takes place on Tuesday, March 20, 2018. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.

2017 Highlighted Sessions

All Access, GDC Conference + Summits, or GDC Summits Pass required.

Producer Bootcamp: Embracing Ambiguity: How to Do Good Work When You Don't Know What to Do
Ruth Tomandl (Oculus Research)
The job of a producer is to make sure the right work gets done, but often when you're making a game it's hard to tell what the right work is. What will make your game successful is uncertain, what your team can accomplish is unknown, and whether your new feature is good or not is hard to measure. But as a producer, you have to make it work and guide your project to a successful release. This talk will cover what ambiguity is and what causes it, ways you can tell whether it's a problem that needs to be fixed or a situation that needs to be accepted, and what you as a producer can do to fix the problems and avoid the chaos and anxiety that can result from uncertain goals and lack of information.
Producer Bootcamp: High Performance Producers
Aaron Thibault (Gearbox Software / Borderlands Games)
The stakes are high. Your project, the team's morale, and your leadership are all in play. Your job is complex, possibly difficult, and much is demanded of you. Although the role of producer can be a deeply rewarding experience, the pressure is always on to deliver. Do you have a roadmap for success? This talk follows up Aaron's past presentations on "what the best producers do" with a working session designed for attendees to build personalized progress charts in the pursuit of production master
Producer Bootcamp: Pulling It All Together: Production in These Changing Times
Caryl Shaw (Amazon Game Services)
As game development evolves so does the role that production plays in the creation of the modern video game. New roles, and new types of games, require new skills, new tools and new methodologies. And also the flexibility to work with current systems when you join an established team. In this talk, Caryl Shaw will review the many different producer-adjacent roles that exist today, development directors, product managers, outsourcing producers, program managers, etc.; roles that require similar skills as a traditional production job, but also demand and compliment other areas of expertise someone might be bringing to the table. These different roles are often appropriate paths for producers to take who want to expand their scope of influence on a project. Additionally, this talk will talk about how some of these roles change and shift when moving from small teams to large teams and how different organizational methods can contribute to a successful product, either when you are building out a new team or transitioning into one with an established culture.
Producer Bootcamp: Producer Panel
Laura Fryer (Oculus)
Dave Ranyard (Dream Reality Interactive)
Jessica Brunelle (Ember Entertainment)
Producers are more than just schedule jockeys; they are team managers, communication facilitators, conflict mediators, risk mitigators, work enablers and predictors of the future. The production role covers a lot of ground and there will be unanswered questions at the end of the day.

Producer Bootcamp Organizers

Dave Ranyard
Dream Reality Interactive
Dr. Dave is a self-confessed VR pioneer and CEO of the independent immersive studio, Dream Reality Interactive. The studio is based in London and its mission is to create compelling AR and VR experiences that focus on natural interaction, believable worlds and shared experiences with a special interest in AI. The team is currently working on original games and also the recently announced VR experience, 'Hold The World', which is in association with Factory 42, Sky TV, The Natural History Museum and world renowned Sir David Attenborough.

Prior to founding Dream Reality Interactive, Dave was the director of Sony's London Studio where he oversaw Sony's initial ventures into VR, directing the studio that developed the best-selling PSVR launch title 'PlayStation VR Worlds', featuring the critically acclaimed 'London Heist' and 'Ocean Descent'.

Having studied at Leeds University, Dave obtained a 1st in Computer Science and PhD in Artificial Intelligence. Before heading up London Studio, he had been a research fellow, programmer, audio manager & musician, creative services manager, executive producer ('SingStar' & 'Wonderbook') and released a number of records.

Dave is an active member of the game development industry, holding positions on the BAFTA Games Committee, the Game Developers Conference (San Francisco), Virtual Reality Developers Conference, and the Virtual Reality World Congress.

For further information contact:
Alison Beasley, Lincoln Beasley PR: E:
Dr. Dave can be found tweeting @Dr__Dave

Jessica Brunelle
Jessica started her game career in 2000 when she joined Sony Santa Monica as a producer, then later contributed as a designer on the original 'God of War'. This early career experience instilled the passion she has today for improving process and nurturing collaborative team atmospheres. While she's worked on a range of genres and team sizes, she's most at home in a small studio where individuals wear many hats and have opportunities to grow. Jessica is currently Production Director at Ember Entertainment, an independent mobile game company.
Angie Smets
Angie Smets
Guerrilla Games
Angie is Executive Producer and part of the management team at Guerrilla Games, a video game development studio based in Amsterdam, Netherlands. She earned a master's degree from the Design Academy Eindhoven and started her career as an industrial designer, with a specialization in human-computer interaction. Angie gained her first experience in the video games industry over 18 years ago while developing for CD-I and CD-ROM formats. The medium's combination of creativity and technology ignited a passion for video games, and in 2003 Angie joined Guerrilla to help create the studio's first console title, a first-person shooter for PlayStation 2 called 'Killzone'. Five additional 'Killzone' games for various PlayStation hardware platforms followed, culminating with the release of the PlayStation 4 launch title 'Killzone Shadow Fall'. Most recently, Angie shipped Guerrilla's first venture into the action RPG genre, 'Horizon Zero Dawn', to widespread popular and critical acclaim.

GDC Tutorials offer a full day of in-depth information and cover a range of game development disciplines on Monday and Tuesday, March 19-20, 2018. View all GDC Tutorials on Session Scheduler.


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