This intensive two-day workshop will explore the day-to-day craft of game design through hands-on activities, group discussion, analysis, and critique. Attendees will immerse themselves in the iterative process of refining a game design, and discover design concepts that will help them think more clearly about their designs and make better games. The workshop presents a formal approach to game design in which games are viewed as systems, and analyzed in terms of their mechanics, dynamics, and aesthetics. Before we can even begin to design a game we need to understand our aesthetic goals. In other words, we need to enumerate all the kinds of "fun" that we hope the game will provide its users. We can formalize our understanding of our game's aesthetic goals by formulating an aesthetic model for each goal - a formal description of the goal that identifies its criteria for success and possible modes of failure.
The workshop will present a handful of aesthetic models as examples and encourage attendees to formulate their own. During the game design exercises, attendees will use aesthetic models as a yardstick to measure their progress throughout the design process. Working in small groups, attendees will be given specific games to play and will analyze them in terms of aesthetic goals and models. Several different games will be explored and common game design themes will be identified as different groups share their results.
For each game that they analyze, attendees will be presented with a concrete design exercise to undertake. An exercise might involve adding a new feature, accommodating a new goal or requirement, or fixing a design flaw. These exercises will challenge attendees to analyze and identify the design principles at work in a game, and to think flexibly and creatively while working within design constraints. They will serve as a starting point for discussing how the iterative design applies to games in digital and non-digital media. In addition to these analysis-and-revision exercises, attendees will gain further practical experience working with these models through brief collaborative design projects, brainstorming sessions, critical analysis, and discussion.
A perennial GDC favorite, this dynamic, engaging presentation on the fundamentals of fiction writing is designed for anyone interested in improving the narrative quality of their games. The tutorial starts with a broad overview of narrative content's place in video games, and segues into an introduction to some of the main theories of story, including the Three Act Structure (a la Aristotle, Field, McKee) and the Hero's Journey (Campbell, Vogler). Next, a basic "writer's tookit" is provided, covering vital rules and tools related to exposition delivery, believability, and impact on the audience. Characters and characterization are covered next, followed by a focus on writing and editing game dialogue. Finally, a case study of a shipped game is provided, complete with behind-the-scenes insights and rationales.
Over the past ten years, the complexity of many games has increased, and with that the knowledge needed to create them. Creating the latest code for graphics, animation, physical simulation, even some extent artificial intelligence, requires thorough knowledge of the necessary mathematical underpinnings.
This tutorial continues the tradition of the "Math for Programmers" tutorial by bringing together some of the best presenters in gaming math to concentrate on the core mathematics necessary for sophisticated 3D graphics and interactive physical simulations. The day will focus on the issues of 3D game development important to programmers and includes programming guidance throughout. Topics begin with matrices, bases and curves, building on that to cover rotations, and then sparse basis projections using Orthogonal Matching Pursuit. The use of dual numbers and quaternions will be presented, and then finish up with in-depth talks on various computational geometry topics.
This full-day bootcamp focuses on one of the most critical components of game development: the applied practice of games user experience, which can make the difference between a failed project and a successful game. Attendees will be introduced to the foundations of the games user research discipline, and then dive into how to run usability tests, including designing, recruiting, setting up for the test, running a session, and analyzing the collected data into actionable recommendations. This user testing process is applicable to the full array of video games ranging from AAA titles, to indie projects, to social games. This bootcamp will consist of a series of short lectures, critical analyses of games, hands-on exercises, and group discussions.
Game animation is a tricky beast. Balancing the want for film style visuals against gameplay constraints is a daily occurrence. While these constraints are very real, as games grow in both technology and emotional resonance, animators must break free of the excuses and help drive this industry forward with the unique skill sets they posses. Bringing together a group of experienced and specialized animators, this bootcamp will be a daylong gathering to rally animators from all over the industry, with a focus on deeper, more specific discussions into the needs of game animation, rather than a conference with a more varied discipline set. The day will start by focusing purely on the craft of animation, such as aspects of believability, body mechanics, and facial animation. Throughout the day we will transition into how to best apply that knowledge to game development, from wrangling mocap to applying what is learned to understand game design.
Brought to you with the collaboration of the industry's leading hardware and software vendors, this day-long tutorial provides an in-depth look at the Direct3D technologies used in DirectX 11, and how they can be applied to cutting-edge PC game graphics. This year we will focus exclusively on DirectX 11 and 11.1, and examine a variety of special effects that illustrate its use in real game content. This will include detailed presentations from AMD's and NVIDIA's demo and developer relation teams, as well as some of the top game developers who ship real games into the marketplace. In addition to illustrating the details of rendering advanced real-time visual effects, this tutorial will cover a series of vendor-neutral optimizations that developers need to keep in mind when designing their engines and shaders.
As everyday human computer interaction begins to evolve beyond mouse and keyboard, we should be thinking about how we can leverage these ideas in games as well. The Perceptual SDK enables developers to begin these explorations by providing an easy-to-use toolkit for enabling Natural User Interface based interaction in their games, that integrates into the engines and frameworks they're already using. In this full day session, we will demonstrate using the Perceptual Computing SDK with some of these frameworks including Unity and OGRE. Attendees will also be given a Creative Gesture Camera to continue building and experimenting on their own.
Audio for games and other interactive entertainment has grown far beyond simple mash-ups of technical concepts with linear audio design techniques. Today's games require responsive, dynamic musical scores, and soundscapes that immerse players. They need ambiance, sound effects, and dialog that responds to a player's actions, not to mention AI driven dynamic control of the overall mix. The audio bootcamp offers an introduction to the wide array of topics that comprise the burgeoning game audio industry. The talk will cover technical, aesthetic, logistical, and business-oriented topics for the new interactive entertainment audio content creator, implementer, or programmer. The talk will be relevant for a wide range of members from other game disciplines who want to learn more about how sound is uniquely made and played for games. The tutorial's speakers represent decades of experience, with some of the most prolific and successful composers, sound designers, and audio directors sharing their knowledge. These speakers will be answering questions in both group lectures and small-scale lunchtime conversations.
Game physics engines are used to create games like Angry Birds, Half-Life, Tomb Raider, Red Faction, MotorStorm, Limbo, and Diablo 3. Games would be far less compelling without the realistic physics simulation that engages the player's intuition and stimulates their motion awareness. Physics has become a staple of the modern gaming tradition as we try to re-create and re-interpret the world around us. The Physics for Programmers tutorial brings together speakers from Blizzard, Dtecta, Havok, NVIDIA, Sony, and Valve. Topics include collision detection, continuous simulation, constraint solvers, and demos. The focus is on rigid body physics and real-time simulation in games. There will be a mix of introductory topics, recent algorithms, and practical tips. Time is reserved for Q&A.
Making games is fun, but complicated. The complexities of games increases with each new generation of gaming, and customer expectations grow. Production roles have become even more critical, whether you ship to mobile, the web, the latest consoles, or the PC. Successful producers are much more than just schedule jockeys; they are team managers, communication facilitators, conflict mediators, risk mitigators, work enablers, and predictors of the future. The Producer Bootcamp will focus on some of the key skills that are required by both producers who are new to the role and seasoned veterans, in order to be successful in this challenging industry.
Gain deep insights into the level design process for our industry's biggest games, including Gears of War, Bioshock, and Skyrim in this intense day-long tutorial, moderated by Coray Seifert. The most respected voices in level design weigh in on all aspects of their craft, engage with attendees via numerous Q&A sessions, and offer a once-in-a-career opportunity: a mock interview with a panel of the most veteran level designers in the business.
The Facebook global games ecosystem is growing across mobile and web. In this all-day event, the Facebook Games team will present ecosystem trends, discuss new products, and how game developers can be successful. Developers will learn how to grow their games on Facebook and across platforms, build core and mid-core games, optimize revenue, and hear from other developers who build with Facebook Platform.
Ultrabook – Graphics, Power, and Human Interfaces
Developing games for the PC has changed forever with new form factors, new input methods, and significant incentives for reduced power consumption. These changes bring opportunity and challenges for game developers; challenges you will be better equipped to overcome after attending this developer day. Intel games optimization experts will show you how to make your game shine on Ultrabook. Over the course of the day, we'll cover:
Are you a part of the Unity community attending GDC 2013? Be sure to book your space at Unity's March 26 Developer Day. Developer Day sees Unity partners Allegorithmic and Mixamo present alongside Unity's internal teams on topics such as rendering, Asset Store and Mecanim.
Technical art is evolving rapidly. In many studios TAs play key roles in developing efficient tools pipelines, and ensuring art content is visually striking and optimized for performance. TAs bridge content and engineering, helping make both more successful. However, many studios have still not fully embraced the TA role. Their TAs are smart and eager to make an impact, but are not sure how to best prove their value, and be given key roles in development. A group of experienced, respected technical artists from across the industry would like to invite you to sit with them for a day and learn how to be a more effective TA. Speakers will focus on the tools and skills TAs can use to demonstrate their value, and further integrate technical art into their studios' pipelines and cultures. Find the worst development problems at your studio and show them what an TA can do!
A one day crash course in making iOS games. This day long bootcamp will include enough specific technical and platform knowledge for attendees to either go away and start making their own iOS games, or to further understand the tools they are using. The day will be made up of a mix of discussion, deep dives, examples and plenty of opportunities for audience Q&A. Session content includes an introduction to the iOS platform, crash courses in Cocos2d and Unity3d, popular/essential iOS APIs for games, and a deep-dive on game architecture selection and best practices.
Google Cloud Platform provides everything you need to build, run, and scale social, mobile, and online games. Already, tens of thousands of popular applications like SongPop, Angry Birds, SnapChat, and Legend of Monsters are benefiting from the power of running on top of Google Infrastructure. Come join Google as we go deep on how to best leverage our technology to build your next masterpiece. See just how easy it can be to get started, see real code, and hear stories from our customers. Of course, get started today for free at cloud.google.com.
AGENDA: 10-11:30am 2013 Game Changers: Will New Devices Ensure Profitable Publisher Growth? Joost van Dreunen, Ph.D., SuperData 2013 appears to be the year of new platforms and devices with a healthy dose of cloud delivery and service schemes. But what will 2014 bring? Our visionary panelists will discuss their projections on three key topics: 1) new hardware affecting the market (including lessons from past winners and losers), 2) the future of game distribution service, and 3) consumer expectations for gaming access, play and pay. 1:45-2:45pm Games and Toys: Creating the Perfect Union Moderator: Kris Graft, Gamasutra Panel: Jordan Weisman, Harebrained Schemes; Additional panelists to be announced Learn how to successfully execute, create and market games that include interactive and physical elements. Our panel of veteran industry executives will discuss all that's involved: from product design and development, to distribution, marketing and monetization strategies. They'll also share important pitfalls to avoid (also known as lessons they learned the hard way). 3-4pm Wanna Bet? The Future of E-Sports and Gambling in Gaming Moderator: Michael Pachtner, Equity Research Panel: Roxanne Christ, Lathan & Watkins; Wim Stocks, Virgin Gaming; Additional panelists to be announced Are you ready to bet that gambling is the next big growth opportunity in gaming? A lot of people are and they're betting big. This session will review what it takes to support online gambling ? whether a stand-alone, casino-style game or as an element within a game. Our panelists will discuss legal and regulatory considerations as well as the pros and cons of partnership versus constructing your own solution.