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GDC News and Information Blog

[Welcome to the Game Developers Conference weblog, where you can find the latest news on all of GDC's upcoming events. Don't forget to subscribe to our RSS feed to automatically get the latest news.]

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GDC officials are organizing some great talks for this year's big GDC Europe event in Cologne, Germany, and today they're happy to announce another exciting session taking place at the August conference.

Sophie Vo is an experienced product lead at longtime German game developer Wooga (Futurama: Game of DronesJelly Splash [pictured]) and in her talk "In It For The Long Run -- Sustaining Mobile Hits Over Years" she'll show you how to take an old dog of a mobile free-to-play game, teach it some great new tricks and give it a fresh lease on life.

Wooga has had a lot experience successfully doing just that, and if you check out Vo's talk you'll learn from that experience how to make a maturing casual mobile game profitable and growing again, as well as how to innovate and test new features without harming live operations.

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The big GDC Europe conference in Germany is just months away, and today GDC organizers are happy to debut another excellent, expert talk that will be taking place at the Cologne conference in August.

David Lightbown serves as User Experience Director at Ubisoft, and at GDC Europe he'll be presenting a fascinating take on applying game design principles to improve your game production tools and process. 

Check out his talk, "Hiding in Plain Sight: The Untapped Resource that is Helping Ubisoft to Make Better Tools" to learn how, exactly, Ubisoft has helped its teams work more efficiently by applying game design tenets to its production pipelines.

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Game Developers Conference Europe 2016 organizers are excited to once again open a special call for European indie game developers to submit to the third annual European Innovative Games Showcase.

Taking place during the Independent Games Summit at the Cologne, Germany show this August, the winning creators will be offered 5-minute microtalks at the final session of GDC Europe's IGS, showcasing what's special about their current project.

For an idea of what we're talking about, check out the videos of of last year's EIGS showcase & the inaugural 2014 event via YouTube and GDC Vault - some of the outstanding independent games previously highlighted include Gang Beasts, Beyond Eyes, Future Unfolding, Fabulous Beasts and more.

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GDC officials are lining up some great talks for the big GDC Europe conference this August in Cologne, Germany, and today they're happy to announce another exciting session taking place at the show.

In developing the crowdfunded PC RPG Pillars of Eternity, Obsidian Entertainment sought to create a spiritual successor to beloved '90s PC RPGs like Baldur's Gate and Planescape Torment. That involved a host of technical and creative challenges, as well as the tricky work of designing a game with contemporary sensibilities that could also appeal to fans of those classic games.

At GDC Europe, Obsidian's Josh Sawyer willl speak frankly about those challenges in his talk "Looking Back and Moving Forward with Pillars of Eternity." Make time to check it out, and you'll walk away with insight into the into the benefits and pitfalls of making a "retro classic", especially for a crowdfunding audience that is emotionally (and financially) invested from the start of the project.

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This year's big GDC Europe conference in Cologne, Germany is coming up in August, and today we're excited to announce that game industry veteran John Romero will be delivering a talk at the conference about game coding principles he learned in his early days at id Software.

His talk on "The Early Days of id Software: Programming Principles" is part of the Programming track of GDC Europe talks, and promises to offer unique insights on game production gleaned from Romero's time at one of the game industry's trailblazing studios. 

As co-founders of id Software, John Romero and John Carmack created the code behind the company's seminal titles, including Doom and Quake. The principles they defined through experience in id's earliest days built upon one another to produce a unique methodology and a constantly shippable codebase.

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GDC organizers are working with top game industry talent to line up great talks for this year's GDC Europe conference in Germany, and today they'd like to tip you off to one such talk from the folks at Wargaming about rebooting the classic game Master of Orion.

Come August, GDC Europe 2016 attendees will have the chance to check out "Alien Cultures: Rebooting 'Master of Orion' with a Global Team" and get an in-depth look at the process of rebooting a beloved strategy game in a way that both satisfies diehard Master of Orion fans while simultaneously showcasing the appeal of space strategy games to a new audience.

Wargaming's Chris Keeling and Jacob Beucler both worked closely on the project, and in their talk they'll discuss how the Master of Orion team overcame obstacles and managed remote third-party teams across multiple languages, time zones, and cultures. 

hitmang.jpgOrganizers of GDC Europe 2016 are pleased to announce first sessions for the Cologne, Germany-based European edition of the world's largest game developer event - including a Hitman level design talk from Io Interactive & an inspirational talk from 45-year video game veteran Don Daglow.

The event runs August 15th and 16th at the Cologne Congress-Centrum Ost venue in Cologne, Germany - the same venue as massive trade/consumer games fair Gamescom, which kicks off the next day. All GDC Europe badgeholders will also receive a 'trade fair' pass to attend Gamescom itself, a significant benefit.

With a large amount of session announcements due over the next few weeks, the initial set of talks revealed by organizers are as follows:

- Io Interactive's Jacob Mikkelsen & Mette Poedenphant Andersen will present 'Level design in Hitman: Guiding players in a non-linear sandbox', discussing the latest incarnation of Square Enix's hit stealth action game.

Registration is now open for GDC Europe 2016!

gdc_newlogo1 (1).jpgHeads up, game makers: GDC Europe is taking place this summer in Cologne, Germany and today is the day to register early at a discounted rate.

Organizers of the Game Developers Conference are pleased to announce that early registration for GDC Europe 2016 has officially opened,  there's no better place to find the essential pan-European perspective of game development and business trends currently happening throughout the continent.

Organized by UBM Tech Game Network, the event, now in its eighth year running, will run Monday through Tuesday, August 15th and 16th at the Cologne Congress-Centrum Ost venue in Cologne, Germany.

Register now and you can save 200 euros on an All Access Pass. Plus, this year there will also be a GDC Europe Student Pass made available as a more affordable alternative to the All Access Pass -- one created specifically for qualified students interested in learning and networking at the conference.
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Game Developers Conference officials are happy to announce that the many talks and presentations delivered by game industry notables last month at GDC 2016 are now available to watch on the GDC Vault!

GDC Vault subscribers and GDC 2016 passholders can watch all of the new talks over on either the GDC Vault's new archives of slides and talks from both GDC 2016 and from the inaugural Virtual Reality Developers Conference, which made its debut alongside GDC this year.

All of the slides collected from the event, and lots of the GDC and VRDC 2016 session videos (including all VRDC sessions and all Indie Games Summit, Advocacy Track and Game Career Seminar sessions) are available for anyone to watch completely free, and many of these talks will be added to the official GDC YouTube channel in the months ahead.

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Just a quick reminder that the call for submissions to present lectures and panel sessions at the Game Developers Conference Europe in August ends tomorrow: Friday, April 1st, at 11:59 PM Pacific, to be precise.

If you have a great idea for a talk, now's the time to pitch it! Talk submissions are being accepted for Main Conference tracks in Business, Marketing & Management, Design, Production, Programming, and Visual Arts. Organizers are seeking leading industry practitioners to propose lectures and panels with significant, applicable takeaways for today's video game community.

Content submissions are also being accepted for the Independent Games Summit, so if you have a great idea for either a Main Conference or Indie Summit talk, submit it now! You can learn more about the submissions process and guidelines via the GDC Europe Submissions page.

GDC Europe 2016 announces dates and calls for papers

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Heads up, game makers: The call for submissions to present lectures and panel sessions at the 2016 Game Developers Conference Europe is open through next Friday, April 1st, at 11:59 PM Pacific.

Organized by UBM Tech Game Network, the event, now in its eighth year in Cologne, Germany, will run Monday through Tuesday, August 15th-16th at the Cologne Congress-Centrum Ost.

Once again co-located with the European gamescom trade fair, GDC Europe 2016 will continue to provide the essential pan-European perspective of game development and highlight business trends throughout the continent.

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UBM Game Network's 2016 Game Developers Conference, the world's largest and longest-running event serving professionals dedicated to the art and science of making games has set a record for event attendance, with more than 27,000 game industry professionals at last week's conference in San Francisco'sMoscone Center.

This year, UBM Game Network also debuted the 2016 Virtual Reality Developers Conference, an event dedicated to the creation of new video games, entertainment and technology around virtual and augmented reality, which was held alongside GDC.

The organizers have announced that GDC will return to the Moscone Center in San Francisco from Monday, February 27 to Friday, March 3, 2017, and will see the return of VRDC. Call for submissions for both GDC and VRDC will open this summer.

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The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, the open-world fantasy role-playing game from developer CD Projekt RED, was honored with the Game of the Year award at tonight's 16th annual Game Developers Choice Awards ceremony during the 2016 Game Developers Conference at the Moscone Center in San Francisco.

The acclaimed title also received the award for Best Technology for its complex game engine that combines brilliant visuals with a huge game world. 

Her Story, the interactive crime fiction game from independent game developer Sam Barlow, earned the most awards of any nominee tonight, taking home the awards for Innovation, Best Narrative and Best Handheld/Mobile Game. 

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Sam Barlow's Her Story took home the Seumas McNally Grand Prize for Best Independent Game and $30,000 at the 18th annual Independent Games Festival Awards tonight, hosted by the 2016 Game Developers Conference at the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco.

In addition to the grand prize, Her Story also received the top honor for Excellence in Narrative. Her Story is an interactive crime fiction game, which engages players in a riveting murder investigation by cleverly combining taped confessions and a simple computer interface.

The night's other award recipients include Excellence in Design winner Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes from developer Steel Crate Games, which is an exhilarating race against the clock that challenges a single player to survive in a room with a ticking time bomb using the guidance of surrounding friends and teammates who have the manual to defuse it.

Follow Gamasutra's GDC 2016 event coverage!

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Monday March 14 marks the start of Game Developers Conference 2016, the 30th anniversary for the event. Gamasutra will have reporters at the Moscone Center in San Francisco bringing you breaking news along with coverage from developer sessions and interviews throughout the course of the week.

Follow along via Gamasutra's live event coverage page, sponsored by Akamai.

GDC 2016 takes place March 14-18 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. For more information on GDC 2016, visit the show's official website, or subscribe to regular updates via FacebookTwitter, or RSS.

Gamasutra and GDC are sibling organizations under parent UBM.

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As the game industry gathers for the Game Developers Conference next week, organizers want to quickly remind attendees that annual game industry fundraising gala, Nite to Unite is being held alongside GDC -- and GDC passholders are eligible to buy tickets at a discount rate!

This year Nite to Unite is being hosted next Tuesday evening, March 15th at the Westin St. Francis in San Francisco by the ESA Foundation.

The ESA Foundation, of course, is a charitable arm of the video game industry, awarding scholarships to women and minorities pursuing degrees related to the industry as well as making grants to non-profit organizations that use video game technology in the furtherance of their mission.

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As the game industry prepares for the 30th edition of GDC next week, organizers want to quickly remind you that both the Game Developers Choice Awards and the Independent Games Festival awards will be streamed online so everyone can take part. 

Capybara Games founder Nathan Vella returns this year to host the Independent Games Festival awards, now in its 18th year of honoring and celebrating the work of independent game makers.

The same stage will play host to veteran game designer and Funomena co-founder Robin Hunicke, who this year makes her debut as host of the 16th annual Game Developers Choice Awards!

The ceremonies kick off at 6:30 PM Pacific on Wednesday, March 16th during GDC 2016 in San Francisco. The IGF Awards are up first, followed by the GDC Awards.

PSA: Know your GDC Code of Conduct!

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[The 30th edition of GDC is taking place next week, so GM of GDC events and all-around Boss Lady Meggan Scavio is here to highlight the official code of conduct for GDC and all of its related events.]

With the 30th edition of GDC just around the corner, there is no better time to remind everyone of a set of rules we have established for the event. Please take a moment to familiarize yourself with the GDC Code of Conduct, now in its fourth year, as these rules will be strictly enforced.

Our intention is for GDC to be a friendly, safe, and welcoming environment for all regardless of gender, sexual orientation, disability, ethnicity, or religion.

We will not tolerate behavior that suggests otherwise.

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Good news, VR fans: Everyone attending the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco next week will have the chance to stop by the all-new VR Lounge and check out some of the latest and greatest VR games and experiences. 

The new VR Lounge, which is sponsored and curated by Epic Games, will be open to GDC attendees all next week in the West Hall of the Moscone Convention Center to provide visitors the opportunity to get hands-on (and headsets-on) with a selection of the best VR content made for HTC Vive, PlayStation VR, Oculus Rift and Gear VR. 

There will also be a ton of great VR games and experiences to try out, presented by some of the leading innovators in VR design. From one of the most advanced coop VR shooters to a breathtaking VR visit to Everest and an innovative first-person VR adventure game, here's a selection of what GDC attendees will find at the VR Lounge: 

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The 2016 Game Developers Conference is next week, and today show organizers want to let you know about the brave developers who will be participating in the all-new GDC Pitch event at GDC Play this year.

The perennially popular GDC Play will once again showcase some of the most interesting emerging/independent developers and their games, and the new GDC Pitch part will help select GDC Play exhibitors hone their pitching skills in front of a panel of expert judges -- as well as a live audience! 

GDC Pitch will be hosted by Jason Della Rocca of investment platform Execution Labs next Wednesday and Thursday, March 16th and 17th, during GDC 2016. The 10 selected teams (listed below) will each be offered pitch prep and training, then get 5 minutes to pitch, followed by questions, advice, and feedback from the judges.

Reminder: GDC 2016 online registration closes tomorrow!

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GDC 2016 is happening next week, so here's a gentle reminder from the organizers: if you haven't registered yet, now's the time!

Online registration for GDC 2016 will close tomorrow, March 9th at 11:59 PM Pacific. If you miss your chance to register online before the window closes, you'll have to pay extra to register onsite.

Register now for access to a wide variety of talks, roundtable discussions, postmortems and workshops -- including some special surprises! 

For example, this year the popular Game Design Challenge returns for a very a special session to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Game Developers Conference. A panel of talented game designers will be challenged to design a game meant to be played across 30 years - a full human generation!

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Get ready: The Game Developers Conference kicks off next week in San Francisco, and organizers are eager to let you know about all the great sessions, bootcamps, roundtables, interactive spaces and cool events that will be available for you to check out during the week-long show!

There's still time to buy a ticket, too -- online registration for GDC 2016 will remain open through this Wednesday, March 9th at 11:59 PM Pacific, and you can even buy a pass at the door if you like. 

This will be the 30th edition of the Game Developers Conference, and organizers are celebrating the momentous occasion in a variety of ways -- including putting together a beautiful infographic (teaser below!) that will give you a quick overview of 30 great things to see and do at the 30th GDC

Check out the latest VR tech at GDC 2016's VR Lounge

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The Game Developers Conference is a week away, and organizers want to make sure you know about all of the cool interactive spaces and exhibits attendees will have access to during the big event -- especially the first-ever GDC VR Lounge!

Encompassing everything from tabletop games to Train Jam game jam prototypes and the world's leading lineup of alternative controller games, the interactive spaces at GDC are designed to introduce you to a broad slice of the most interesting work being done by game developers from across the industry. 

The new VR Lounge will be open all week during GDC in the West Hall of the Moscone Convention Center providing visitors the opportunity to get hands-on (and headsets-on) with a selection of the best VR content made for HTC Vive, PlayStation VR, Oculus Rift and Gear VR. 

So swing by and discover leading-edge virtual reality experiences sure to inspire and entertain! 

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Good news, game makers: The 2016 Game Developers Conference organizers have announced the eight winners of the Best in Play award program for exhibitors in the three-day GDC Play 2016 event, which allows emerging developers to show their games at GDC.

For the Best in Play award program, all GDC Play exhibitors were judged on their in-development or complete games by a panel of veteran GDC organizers. All Best in Play award winners (listed below) will receive 2 All Access Passes to the 2017 Game Developers Conference.

Winners for Best in Play will also receive special designations (think: booth badges) to display at GDC 2016, where their games will be playable by all GDC attendees. If you're a GDC All-Access Pass holder, you can directly contact all GDC Play exhibitors via the GDC Play Matchmaking Software.

All of these games will be available to play in the GDC Play onsite exhibit this year at GDC Play 2016. The GDC Play exhibit will be open Wednesday through Friday, March 16th-18th, and will occupy a prominent spot on the lower level of the North Hall of the Moscone Convention Center.

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GDC 2016 is happening this month, and organizers would like to quickly let you know about a cool talk from longtime game artist Mark Ferrari about neat ways you can create 8-bit and "8-bitish" graphics for your game. 

Ferrari has created art for everything from Lucasfilm Games' Zak McKracken and the Alien Mindbenders to veteran adventure game designer Ron Gilbert's Thimbleweed Park, and he'll share what he's learned from all that work in "8-Bit & '8-Bitish' Graphics -- Outside the Box."

Check out this talk to see Ferrari demonstrate some of his techniques for drawing 8-bit game graphics, including his celebrated methods for use of color cycling and pallet shifting to create complex and realistic background animation effects without frame-animation.

He will also discuss his ongoing work on Ron Gilbert's retro adventure game in deeper detail and demonstrate techniques for using Photoshop to create what he calls '8-bitish' graphics for retro games today.

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As the game industry continues to prepare for GDC 2016 in San Francisco later this month, conference organizers want to make sure you don't miss out on hearing about some of the great talks -- direct from the speakers themselves.

This year is the 30th anniversary of GDC, so we're kicking the show off with a very special Flash Backward event that will see veterans from across the game industry gathering to reflect on how the landscape of game development has changed in the past thirty years.

It's a riff on the annual Flash Forward talk showcases which give GDC attendees a quick peek at what to expect from the show every year, and like those events the Flash Backward will take place Wednesday, March 16th at 9:30 AM in the big ballroom in the west hall of Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco. But that doesn't mean we aren't doing Flash Forward talks this year!

In fact, right now the official GDC YouTube channel is filling up with videos submitted by a broad array of GDC 2016 speakers. Each one is a very brief, personal pitch for why you, dear GDC 2016 attendee, should come to that person's talk.

gdc_newlogo1 (1).jpgWith less than two weeks remaining before the 2016 Game Developers Conference organizers want to give you a heads-up about the great lineup taking the stage at this year's Experimental Gameplay Workshop.

This jam-packed session -- which takes place Friday, March 18th at 1:30pm in Room 135 of the San Francisco Moscone Center's North Hall -- will showcase an eclectic mix of unusual game prototypes that defy convention and explore new ideas and genres.

This year the EGW is once again curated and organized by leading creative minds Robin Hunicke and Daniel Benmergui, and it promises to be an exciting opportunity for presenters and attendees alike to explore some fresh territory in game design.
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The game industry is gathering itself for GDC 2016 later this month, and today show organizers would like to quickly give you the rundown on a very special event that's taking place at the conference this year to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Game Developers Conference.

"Flash Backward: 30 Years of Making Games" is a very special event where game industry luminaries will gather to look back on the last three decades of game development. The series of five-minute microtalks kicks off with GDC's founder, Chris Crawford, speaking about the state of the industry when GDC was born (in 1988!) and progresses through to present day.

The idea is to offer attendees a look back at significant trends through the eyes of the people who helped shape them, from the age of adventure games through to the heyday of MMORPGs, the rise of smartphones and tablets and the advent of virtual reality.

gdc_newlogo1 (1).jpgGame Developers Conference organizers are highlighting the Game Career Seminar today in order to showcase some of its lectures, panels, and presentations aimed at helping new and aspiring developers kickstart their careers in the game business.

This one-day program will take place Friday, March 18th at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, closing out GDC week by offering attendees the chance to learn about the industry and network with leading professionals and HR representatives, both within sessions and at the show's robust Career Pavilion.

The Game Career Seminar is open to all GDC pass holders, including Expo Pass holders. It's also accessible via a special one-day Student Pass for currently enrolled students over the age of 18 -- available on-site on Friday for just $79.
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Heads up, coders: GDC 2016 organizers would like to give you a preview of the cutting-edge discussions taking place during the day-long Math for Game Programmers tutorial which will help kick off the conference next month.

And of course if this isn't quite up your alley, remember that it's just one of many excellent Bootcamps and Tutorials scheduled during the first two days of GDC (Monday and Tuesday, March 14th and 15th this year.)

But shucks, if the Math for Game Programmers tutorial sounds at all intriguing to you then you're in for a treat. Because as games and gaming platforms continue to evolve and diversify, so has the complexity and variety of problems facing the modern game programmer.

After all, creating the latest code for graphics, gameplay, animation, physical simulation, and artificial intelligence requires thorough knowledge of the necessary mathematical underpinnings.

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The 2016 Game Developers Conference is happening later this month, and organizers are eager to let you know about some of the great talks on free-to-play game design that will be taking place during the March conference.

Each of these talks is part of the GDC Free to Play Summit, one of eight that will take place Monday, March 14th and Tuesday, March 15th at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, CA during the first two days of the conference.

Each Summit offers a comprehensive overview of a specific game industry discipline, and the Free to Play Summit is shaping up to be particularly interesting this year with insightful talks from leading F2P game makers.

Land a job interview at GDC 2016!

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Going to GDC 2016? You could qualify for on-site job interviews with major companies attending the show!

Qualified job seekers using Gamasutra's industry-leading job board now have the chance to get their job board profiles and resumes in front of high-profile game companies exhibiting at GDC 2016. To apply, simply follow the link below:

I'd like to land a job interview at GDC 2016!

(A free Gamasutra job seeker account is required.*)

If you do qualify, employers will contact you directly with meeting information. Meetings will be on-site in San Francisco at GDC 2016, which takes place March 14-18, 2016. Further questions can be answered by emailing jobsfeedback@gamasutra.com

Applicants who meet the job requirements and qualifications of employers will be contacted for an interview. Not everyone who registers will land an interview -- employers will be considering resumes based on discipline, location (or ability to re-locate), and experience. All candidates must have at least three years of experience.

Recruiters who are interested in connecting with Gamasutra job board users can find more information here.

*If you do not have a job seeker account, get started here.

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Today Game Developers Conference organizers would like to quickly give you a heads-up about some of the great day-long sponsored developer days from game engine makers Unity and Amazon at GDC 2016 next month. 

These developer daysessions take place during the first two days of GDC: Monday and Tuesday, March 14th and 15th at the Moscone Center in San Francisco.

On Tuesday, perenially popular developer day sponsor Amazon is hosting a full day of developer-oriented presentations about its new game engine Lumberyard, which is aimed specifically at game makers who want to make games that tie into complementary Amazon services like Twitch and Amazon Web Services.

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As everyone gears up for the 2016 Game Developers Conference next month, organizers would like to quickly shine a light on one of the many great VR-focused programming talks taking place at the March conference.

Valve's Alex Vlachos is returning to GDC to deliver an expert session about "Advanced VR Rendering Performance." Reliably hitting 90 fps in VR is a significant challenge for contemporary developers. In his talk, Vlachos will present a method developed by Valve for adaptively scaling fidelity to consistently maintain VR framerate without using reprojection techniques, even on very low-end GPUs, while also having the ability to increase fidelity for high-end GPUs and multi-GPU installations.

The Aperture Robot Repair VR experience Valve brought to GDC last year required an NVIDIA 980 to maintain framerate, but this talk will use that same experience as an example of how Valve can now adaptively scale fidelity to maintain 90 fps on an NVIDIA 680 -- a 4-year-old GPU.

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Game Developers Conference organizers are excited to highlight a great Production talk from a Supercell designer and artist that will be taking place at GDC 2016 next month.

In "Quality Is Worth Killing For" Jonathan Dower will discuss the inner workings of Supercell, how the games are made and the importance of the small, truly independent teams making huge decisions.

Dower worked on soft-launched Supercell hit Clash Royale (pictured), but he also worked on Smash Land -- a promising Supercell project that was eventually killed. During his talk, he'll provide practical examples of why it's important to kill your darlings, and what important lessons teams can learn from killing a project.

It's a great session, part of the GDC 2016 Production track of talks, so check it out to get new perspective on how a team's independence and the ability to kill a game is crucial to quality, learning and longevity.

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With GDC 2016 right around the corner, organizers are proud to quickly highlight some of many great talks taking place at the inaugural Virtual Reality Developers Conference in March.

Think of VRDC like a sister conference to GDC proper, one divided into Game VR/AR and Entertainment VR/AR tracks to help attendees find the talks most interesting to them.

On the former track you'll find forward-looking, thought-provoking VR game design talks like "This Is Your Brain on VR: A Look at the Psychology of Doing VR Right" from Riot Games senior technical designer Kimberly Voll (who has worked on a variety of game projects, including VR game Fantastic Contraption.) This talk will focus on what game developers absolutely need to know about the brain to design truly immersive experiences in VR, while avoiding pitfalls, nausea, and common misinformation.

Plus, there are plenty of other great VR game design-centric talks at VRDC, including "Going Off the Rails: The Making of 'Bullet Train'" from Epic Games' Nick Whiting and Nick Donaldson, Crytek designer Riho Kroll's talk on "Building 3-Dimensional UI for VR" and "Rebel Rebel: Challenging the Rules of VR" by Three One Zero (Adrift) founder Adam Orth.

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Technical artists, take note: GDC 2016 organizers would like to give you a quick highlight preview of the informative, intensive sessions taking place during the day-long Technical Artist Bootcamp that helps kick off the conference next month.

Iit's just one of many Bootcamps and Tutorials scheduled during the first two days of GDC (Monday and Tuesday, March 14th and 15th this year) which offer attendees the chance to spend time focusing intently on a core discipline of game development.

GDC 2016 attendees are invited to attend the Technical Artist Bootcamp on Tuesday and join experts who will discuss how technical art continues to march forward and at a faster pace than most disciplines, as it is both wide-reaching and wide open.

Rigging, Python, pipelines, shaders and unit tests are all known and understood, but bootcamp organizers believe it's time to push forward and stretch our legs a bit. Large studios need more powerful tool-chains with more professional development environments, and small teams need each and every member to be very technically capable.

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With the Game Developers Conference is coming up fast, and we're excited to announce that indie video game showcase collective Wild Rumpus will once again make an appearance at GDC 2016 to welcome attendees as honored guests in their "Mild Rumpus" game lounge.

Last year, Wild Rumpus encouraged GDC attendees to stroll through the trees and into the welcoming heart of their GDC 2015 Mild Rumpus woodland grotto.

This year the grotto returns as a comfortable oasis where GDC 2016 attendees can seek respite from the hum and drum of the action-packed GDC week. 

Grotto-goers will also discover a fresh, hand-picked selection of independent games, and they may even have a chance to catch a live talk or performance from one of the games' talented designers. 

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As the game industry prepares to attend GDC 2016 next month, conference organizers would like to quickly highlight one of the more exciting Independent Games Summit sessions: the perennially popular Indie Soapbox.

If you're not familiar with the Indie Soapbox, know that it's a long-running panel presentation in which ten indies take the stage to share their unique perspective on the game industry and the world at large.

It's often a raucous, cathartic way to close out the two-day Summit on Tuesday evening of GDC week, and while individual topics range as widely as the individuals themselves, these microtalks are sure to provoke, inspire, and broaden your horizons.

This year, soapbox speakers were asked: What's been on your mind a lot these days? Their answers could be an inspiration, obsession, worry, goal, or fascination. Regardless, attendees will be sure to leave the session with ten new perspectives on ten totally different topics.

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Heads up, game makers: Passes for the Game Developers Conference 2016 are still available, and as the conference draws closer we're highlighting more cutting-edge sponsored sessions at the March event that you won't want to miss.

If you're at all interested in the latest graphics technologies, make time to check out some of the talks ARM is sponsoring at the show. From mobile virtual reality insight to practical advice on how to prepare your game's graphics engine for Vulkan, you won't be disappointed.

Attend ARM senior software engineer Daniele Di Donato and staff engineer Marius Bjorge's talk on "How to prepare your graphics engine for Vulkan," for example, and you'll learn how to get the best performance benefits out of the new cross-platform Vulkan open graphics standard.

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GDC 2016 is nearly upon us, and today we'd like to quickly highlight a great talk at the March conference from game designer and educator Colleen Macklin about the new "third wave" of the games for change movement. 

Macklin's Advocacy track talk "Games for Change: Turn to Face the Strange," is exciting because it's designed to offer game makers from across the industry an insightful look at the history of the games for change movement and community of those dedicated to driving social change through digital games.

She'll also illuminate important, even surprising connections between games like FoldIt and The Witness (pictured), and speak to how it's more important than ever for designers to be aware of how games can influence society and affect social change -- even if they aren't explicitly designed to do so.

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Nice bit of news today from the organizers of GDC 2016 and its Game Narrative Summit, who are proud to announce the winners of the 2016 edition of the annual Student Narrative Analysis Competition, who will all receive passes to attend the March conference.

If you're not familiar with the competition, here's how it works: Every year, leading game design programs at universities across the country integrate the competition into their academic curricula. Each participating student conducts a detailed structured analysis of the narrative elements of a game title of their choice.

The resulting papers are submitted to the GDC Game Narrative Summit advisors for review, and the entrants with the most promising submissions are then invited to present poster sessions of their work to their future professional peers at the Game Narrative Summit.

Past winners (which you can watch right now on GDC Vault) have explored a variety of games in their sessions, from big-budget blockbuster games to smaller, critically-acclaimed indie titles, including games renowned for their storytelling and games designed with no formal narrative at all.

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As the game industry prepares for GDC 2016 next month, organizers want to remind all attendees that the popular Game Design Challenge returns this year for a special session to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Game Developers Conference.

This year, a panel terrifyingly talented game designers will be challenged to to design a game that is meant to be played across 30 years - that's 11,000 days, or 250,000 hours, or 15 million minutes... A full human generation.

Why 30 years? Game designers too often think about only the next technology cycle. Designers in other fields - from architects to typeface designers - think of their audiences in terms of decades or even centuries. So what happens when designers take the long view?

Find out at GDC 2016, where on Wednesday, March 16th game designer, NYU professor and GameLab co-founder Eric ZImmerman will once again serve as MC for the hour-long Game Design Challenge on the Design track of GDC talks.

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The Game Developers Conference is one month away, so now's the perfect time for attendees to sort out their schedules to ensure get the most from the March conference.

(And if you're not attending, don't worry -- there's still time to register now!)

To help streamline your planning process, conference officials encourage you to take advantage of the free GDC 2016 Session Scheduler to plan out which talks you'd like to attend and ensure you don't miss anything the show has to offer.

If you've never used the Session Scheduler before, it's a fairly straightforward process to get started: simply select "Create Account" from the Session Scheduler page and provide a valid email address, then start adding talks to your personal GDC 2016 schedule.

GDC 2016 attendees, don't miss the Nite to Unite charity gala

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As the game industry prepares to gather in San Francisco next month for the Game Developers Conference, organizers would like to encourage all attendees to make time in their schedules for the smorgasbord of events happening at and around the March conference.

Among them is the annual fundraising gala, Nite to Unite, which is being held the evening of Tuesday, March 15th alongside GDC in San Francisco by the Entertainment Software Assocation Foundation. Given its charitable nature, GDC organizers wanted to take a moment to ensure its on the radar of all conference attendees.

The event which is supported and attended by members of the association and the entertainment software industry, raises funds for the ESA Foundation's two key programs - providing scholarships to college students interested in video game technology and related coursework, and supporting non-profit organizations that utilize video game technology in the furtherance of their mission.

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Now that we're about a month out from this year's Game Developers Conference, organizers are eager to let you know about some of the great education-focused talks that will be taking place during the March conference.

Each of these talks is part of the GDC Education Summit, one of eight that will take place Monday, March 14th and Tuesday, March 15th at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, CA during the first two days of the conference.

Each Summit offers a comprehensive overview of a specific game industry discipline, and this year the GDC Education Summit has a strong lineup that features talks like Eric Zimmerman's "How I Teach Game Design: Lessons for Working Game Designers."

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The Game Developers Conference is weeks away, and today organizers are happy to reveal more details about the games that will be playable at the show as part of the inaugural Day of the Devs interactive space at GDC 2016.

More than a dozen games from an assortment of the industry's most intriguing minds will be taking up residence inside San Francisco's Moscone Convention Center in the Day of the Devs area, which is conveniently located near the iam8bit interactive space. 

GDC attendees are encouraged to swing by between talks and appointments to play the games and chat with their creators, which include folks who have worked on everything from Papers, Please and LittleBigPlanet to Guacamelee! and Super Time Force.

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Heads up, game creators: GDC 2016 organizers would like to give you a preview of the informative and intriguing sessions taking place during the day-long Art Direction Bootcamp which will help kick off the conference next month.

This is just one of the many Bootcamps and Tutorials scheduled during the first two days of GDC (Monday and Tuesday, March 14th and 15th this year) and offer attendees the chance to focus on the critical components of a game's art direction, and its creators' broader artistic vision.

GDC 2016 attendees are invited to attend the Monday bootcamp and join the leading artistic forces of our industry as they share their experiences and discuss some of the most important issues of the day.

Attend VRDC at GDC to learn from Lucasfilm's VR experts

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VR creators, take note: GDC 2016 organizers are excited to welcome VR experts and experimenters from Lucasfilm's cutting-edge ILMxLAB to speak at the Virtual Reality Developers Conference in March.

VRDC is a bit like a sister conference to GDC proper, one divided into Game VR/AR and Entertainment VR/AR tracks to help attendees find the talks most interesting to them.

As part of the latter track, ILMxLAB head Rob Bredow, principal engineer Lutz Latta and Skywalker Sound audio engineer Kevin Bolen will be delivering a great talk about "Immersive Cinema: Stories from the experiments underway at Lucasfilm's ILMxLAB."

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The 16th Annual Game Developers Choice Awards, the peer-awarded highest honors in video game development, has revealed this year's recipients of the Pioneer and Ambassador awards. The Game Developers Choice Awards ceremony takes place on Wednesday, March 16th at 6:30 pm at the Moscone Convention Center during the 2016 Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, and will be livestreamed on the GDCA Twitch channel.

The Pioneer Award, which honors breakthrough tech and game design milestones, will this year honor Markus "Notch" Persson, the famed creator of the 2011 GDCA and IGF Award-winning indie sandbox title, Minecraft. The Ambassador Award, honoring someone who is helping video games advance to a better place through advocacy or action, will be bestowed upon experimental game designer and educator Tracy Fullerton, in recognition of her work at the Game Innovation Lab, which has produced several influential independent games like fl0w and Darfur is Dying.

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Game Developers Conference organizers are excited to highlight some promising day-long sponsored developer days for GDC 2016 next month that offer cutting-edge insights into the art and business of game development from Amazon, Imagination Technologies and Google.

These developer day sessions take place during the first two days of GDC: Monday and Tuesday, March 14th and 15th at the Moscone Center in San Francisco.

Google is back this year to host a full day of fresh insight, announcements and discussion. In the morning, you'll hear about how to develop great games, grow your user base and earn more money. Then download a ton of tips from Google's Lightning Talks.


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GDC 2016 is coming up next month, and today the folks putting it together would like to let you know about a brilliant talk from EA DICE senior artists on how the studio used photography and photogrammetry techniques to create the striking visuals of Star Wars Battlefront.

If you're not familiar with photogrammetry, know that it's essentially the work of processing still images to produce high-resolution 3D meshes. To see how the DICE team used it on Battlefront, check out "Photogrammetry and Star Wars Battlefront", part of the popular Visual Arts track of talks at GDC 2016, to see DICE technical art director Kenneth Brown and lead environment artist Andrew Hamilton breaking down how and why they used photogrammetry tech to recreate the world of Star Wars.

This talk will cover Battlefront's use of of the technology from pre-production to launch as well as some of their philosophies around photogrammetry as a tool. Many visuals will be included!

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Game Developers Conference officials are excited to announce that voting for both the Game Developers Choice Audience Award and the Independent Games Festival Audience Award is open now, and will remain open through next Friday, February 19th at 11:59 PM PT.

These Audience Awards offer the public an opportunity to weigh in and cast a vote for their favorite nominees. Anyone who would like to do so can visit the links below, select the name of the game they'd like to vote for from a list of nominees, and enter a valid email address. Voters will then confirm their vote via email, and have their opinions heard in these prestigious award shows.

Anyone who would like to vote for the GDCA and IGF Audience Awards can cast their votes using the links below. Voters simply need to select the game they are voting for, and enter a valid email address. Email addresses will not be distributed, and organizers will delete your information after the poll has closed.

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With the 2016 Game Developers Conference right around the corner, organizers would like to highlight some of the great talks taking place at the conference's Smartphone & Tablet Games Summit to ensure you don't miss out on some great mobile game development insights.

If you're at all interested in the art and business of making successful mobile games, these talks are worth making time for because they'll help shed some light on how contemporary game designers are adapting and applying their skills to the rapidly-shifting mobile landscape.

Niantic's upcoming augmented-reality Pokemon mobile game Pokemon GO is a fine example, and you can learn how it's being developed from Niantic chief John Hanke in his Summit session "Catch 'Em All: Pokemon GO and Real World Gaming."

Spend a day sharpening your level design skills at GDC 2016

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Heads up, game makers: GDC 2016 organizers would like to give you a preview of the informative and intriguing sessions taking place during the day-long Level Design In A Day tutorial which will help kick off the conference next month.

This is just one of the many Bootcamps and Tutorials scheduled during the first two days of GDC (Monday and Tuesday, March 14th and 15th this year) and offer attendees the chance to focus on the critical components of a game's art direction, and its creators' broader artistic vision.

GDC 2016 attendees are invited to attend the Tuesday tutorial and join the leading design minds of our industry as they share their experiences and discuss some of the most important issues of the day.

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Heads up, eSports enthusiasts: GDC 2016 is just weeks away, and today organizers are pleased to announce another great talk for the March conference that should shed light on the rapidly-evolving art of designing mobile games for competitive play.

Kristian Segerstrale, COO and executive director of Super Evil Megacorp, will share some lessons learned from the development and promotion of the studio's standout mobile MOBA Vainglory.

In "The Vainglory Story -- 5 Lessons From Building a Touch Screen eSport," Segerstrale intends to share key learnings from building Vainglory from nothing into an emerging eSport with hundreds of teams and millions of views in less than a year.

It's one of many excellent talks in the GDC 2016 eSports Summit, and attendees will glean concrete examples and lessons from evolving a game into an eSport in under a year from launch with plenty of practical advice for developers and publishers alike.

The talk is one of many that will take place during the eight focused Summits at GDC, which fill the first two days of the event with lectures, panels, postmortems, and more to foster community-building within specific sectors of the game industry.

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The 2016 Game Developers Conference is just around the corner, and today organizers would like to let you know two things:

1. Passes are still available, so get yours now!

2. The Indie MEGABOOTH Showcase is back at GDC for the third year running, and today we have the full list of games that will be playable in the MEGABOOTH by all GDC passholders (from Expo to All-Access) at various points during the March 14th-18th week of GDC 2016.

The Indie MEGABOOTH Showcase is a collection of independent developers banding together to show off the latest and greatest indie games at conventions across the world. The MEGABOOTH exists to support indie developers and help pool their resources to enable them to showcase their work prominently, despite not having access to publisher support.

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If you'd like to get familiar with the developers of the Independent Games Festival, leading online game dev destination Gamasutra has an easy way to do that! 

Check out Gamasutra's Road to the IGF series, where you can learn about the tools, inspirations, and backgrounds of developers behind games such as Panoramical, Darkest Dungeon, Her Story, Oxenfree, and the rest of the 2016 IGF finalists.

Some choice quotes from this year's series (which is updated daily): 

"Developing in Early Access is like working while naked in a transparent cube suspended above Times Square." - Tyler Sigman, Darkest Dungeon 

"My first foray into making games was in the form of modifying Half-Life, which at the time I felt didn't include enough Pokemon nor Steven Seagal." - Ben Kane, Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes 

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As the GDC 2016 lineup locks into place, organizers would like to highlight another great Design track talk at next month's conference that you should know about.

With "History In Game Design" Paradox Interactive senior game designer Chris King is going to delve into the tricky balancing act that comes with making games about historical events.

Not all history naturally lends itself to good mechanics, so you need to develop solutions to bring history into your game, while at the same time ensuring you have a fun and compelling gameplay.

Paradox is no stranger to this tricky balancing act, having created game series like Crusader Kings (pictured) and Europa Universalis, and during his talk King will share some of the solutions Paradox has devised. Don't miss it!

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The 16th Annual Game Developers Choice Awards, the premier peer-based awards celebrating game development, will be recognizing Bethesda Game Studios' Todd Howard, who has created some of the industry's most successful games by pioneering open world gameplay, with the Lifetime Achievement Award for his indelible contributions to the world of gaming.

The Game Developers Choice Awards ceremony takes place on Wednesday, March 16th at 6:30 pm at the Moscone Convention Center during the 2016 Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, and will be livestreamed on Twitch at the following link: http://www.twitch.tv/gdca

Todd Howard, distinguished video game creative director, designer and executive producer, has been at Bethesda for 22 years and is behind some of the industry's most successful and beloved games, including a number of blockbusters within the Fallout and The Elder Scrolls series.

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We're just over a month out from GDC 2016, and organizers would like to let you know about a brilliant talk from EA DICE senior lighting artist Fabien Christin on how the studio is creating the unique look of Mirror's Edge: Catalyst.

Christin's talk, evocatively titled "Lighting the City of Glass: Rendering Mirror's Edge: Catalyst," is part of the popular Visual Arts track of GDC talks and aims to explore the tools and technology used to render the world of the new Mirror's Edge game.

From the physical sky to the reflection tech, this talk will show how DICE tamed the new Frostbite 3 PBR engine to deliver realistic images with stylized visuals. Check it out, and you should walk away with fresh insight into technical and artistic techniques used to create a dynamic time of day system with updating radiosity and reflections.

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With GDC 2016 coming up fast, organizers are excited to announce another great behind-the-scenes talk that will be taking place at the conference in March.

Playful Corp design director Dan Hurd and engineer Evan Reidland will be delivering a cutting-edge talk on "Lucky's Tale: The Unexpected Delight of Third-Person Virtual Reality, a Technical Postmortem" as part of the inaugural Virtual Reality Developers Conference at GDC.

The talk, one of many that will be a part of the Game VR/AR track of VRDC talks at GDC 2016, will cover specific details about how the Lucky's Tale team tackled third-person camera design and movement, scale, level and game design in the pursuit of comfort, presence, and delight.

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Passes for the Game Developers Conference are still available, and today we're excited to announce more details about the second annual 'Shut Up & Sit Down' GDC board game exhibit, which will be open to all GDC 2016 passholders (from Expo to All-Access) at various points during GDC week, March 14th-18th.

The exhibit will once again be curated by the clever minds behind the tabletop game enthusiast hub Shut Up & Sit Down, and will offer GDC 2016 attendees a calm oasis where you can relax and play some of the best tabletop games of 2015.

This year the plan is to fill the space with comfortable places to sit and play games like Vlaada Chvatil's Codenames, Hobby World's Spyfall, the medium-inhabiting game Mysterium and the bullet-flicking game Flick 'Em Up.

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GDC 2016 organizers would like to give you a preview of the informative and intriguing sessions taking place during the two-day Game Design Workshop which will help kick off the conference next month.

This is just one of the many Bootcamps and Tutorials scheduled during the first two days of GDC (Monday and Tuesday, March 14th and 15th this year) and offer attendees the chance to study critical components of the game design craft.

GDC 2016 attendees are invited to attend the two-day workshop and take part in 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.

Reminder: Last day to save up to $700 on GDC 2016

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Less than 24 hours remain until early registration for Game Developers Conference 2016 ends February 3rd at 11:59 PM Pacific, so conference organizers are encouraging anyone interested in attending to register now at a discounted rate.

When you register you'll be securing access to a wide variety of game development talks, roundtable discussions, postmortems and workshops during the show, which runs March 14th-18 this year.

All passholders also have access to the GDC Expo Floor, located within the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco, which serves as a showcase for cutting-edge technology from some of the industry's biggest and most influential companies.

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GDC 2016 is a month away, and today the GDC team is excited to highlight a talk from Bethesda Game Studios on the modular level design of Fallout 4 that will be taking place during the March conference.

But first, conference organizers would also like to gently remind that today is the last day to register early for GDC 2016 at a discounted rate! If you register to attend GDC 2016 after 11:59 PM Pacific today you'll pay full price, so if you're thinking about coming to GDC this year, register now!

GDC 2016 attendees will have the opportunity to attend a Design track talk from Bethesda Game Studios' Joel Burgess and Nathan Purkeypile on "Fallout 4's Modular Level Design" that promises to be intriguing and informative. 

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GDC 2016 is next month, and today organizers are excited to announce another insightful talk about the business of making games for the March conference.

Tim Train, game industry veteran and CEO of Big Huge Games 2.0, will be taking to the stage at GDC 2016 to share what he and his team learned from developing, launching and maintaining their free-to-play strategy game DomiNations for an entire year.

His talk, "DomiNations Year One: History Games As Live Service", will be part of the GDC 2016 Free-to-Play Summit and offer you an earnest look at how the studio handled operating a F2P game that launched great, then slowly slipped off the top-100 grossing chart and continued to fade until Big Huge managed to reverse its decline and ensure the future stability of the studio. 

Don't miss all these great Summit sessions at GDC 2016

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Game Developers Conference 2016 is next month, and those interested in attending can register to do so at a discounted rate until this Wednesday, February 3rd 11:59 PM Pacific. After that you'll have to pay full price, so if you're thinking about coming to GDC this year, register now!

To give you a better idea of the sorts of in-depth game development talks taking place at this year's event, GDC organizers today highlight a handful of great sessions announced for the eight focused Summits that will take place Monday, March 14th and Tuesday, March 15th at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, CA during the first two days of the conference.

During the Indie Game Summit, for example, Frictional Games' Thomas Grip will talk about what it was like to explore the finer points of conveying existential dread in "Soma - Crafting Existential Dread." 

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GDC 2016 is coming up next month, and today organizers would like to let you know about a notable session at the March conference that should offer you some guidance in how to create a more positive culture for your studio.

This Advocacy track talk, "Depression-Proof Studio Culture: A How-To For Mental Wellness," will see Take This, Inc. president Russ Pitts offering advice and techniques for identifying and coping with mental issues in the workplace without sacrificing productivity or "making things worse."

Pitts' talk will offer simple, effective advice on how to de-stigmatize mental health issues in your studio, help yourself and others create a positive work experience, effectively reach to those who may be suffering silentl; and create a culture with a positive resistance to mental health issues.

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With just days to go before early registration for Game Developers Conference 2016 ends on Wednesday, February 3rd 11:59 PM Pacific, conference organizers are encouraging anyone interested in attending to register now at a discounted rate.

This year, as in years past, GDC will feature a diverse lineup of lectures, panels, and tutorials during the show proper, and show organizers will continue to debut new sessions as the event draws ever closer. Today, organizers highlight a handful of the announced talks to shed light on the diverse array of topics that iwll be tackled during the show.

David Brevik, the veteran game developer best known for co-founding the studio that became Blizzard North, will be delivering a Classic Game Postmortem of the studio's groundbreaking game Diablo at GDC 2016.

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GDC 2016 organizers are offering an early look at the informative and intriguing sessions taking place during the Audio Bootcamp that helps open the March conference.

Of course, the Audio Bootcamp is just one of many Bootcamps and Tutorials that take place during the first two days of GDC (Monday and Tuesday, March 14th and 15th this year) and offer attendees the chance to dive deep and explore focused topics like level design, game production, art direction and animation.

 This year the Audio Bootcamp takes place Tuesday, March 15th, its 14th anniversary at GDC. Make time to attend the bootcamp to see expert talks focused on the technical, creative and logistical topics needed to successfully navigate the field of sound for games.

Sharpen your community management skills at GDC 2016

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Now that the 2016 Game Developers Conference is nearly here, organizers want to offer a quick heads-up about some of the great forward-thinking talks you can see at the GDC 2016 Community Management Summit.

For example, Blizzard Entertainment's Saralyn Smith is coming to the show to deliver a great talk on "Influencers: The Opportunity And Responsibility." 

From cosplayers (pictured) to YouTube content creators and Twitch personalities, the opportunities for players to wield influence over your brands expands every day -- so Smith will share lessons learned at Blizzard about how you can best support your greatest community champions while protecting your customers in accordance with FTC regulations.

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Game Developers Conference officials are happy to announce that GDC 2016 in March will host an earnest, insightful postmortem of an extraordinary game by one of Japan's most innovative creators.

Tetsuya Mizuguchi, the remarkable designer best known as the creator behind critically-acclaimed works like Space Channel 5Lumines and Child of Eden will be delivering a Classic Game Postmortem on his groundbreaking game Rez at GDC 2016!

Mizuguchi's life work has revolved around activating our imaginations and elevating human consciousness through various forms of media, including music video games, live performances and music itself. At his newly-established studio, Enhance Games, he continues to lead an effort to develop synesthetic entertainment experiences with the power of mobile and virtual reality technology.

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The 2016 Game Developers Conference is coming up quick, and today organizers are happy to announce the details of the Day of the Devs and iam8bit interactive spaces you'll find at the March conference.

Spoiler: There's a photo opp involved.

Would you believe that the very first Game Developers Conference was conducted in a dumpy 80's living room? Well, it was - so believe it! And in the stubborn instance that you refute such a story, the magicians of nostalgic arts, iam8bit, will make you regret your pitiful attempt at instilling doubt. They'll do so by way of their most audacious GDC installation to date, putting all previous collaborations to embarrassing, tearful shame.

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With GDC 2016 on the horizon, organizers are excited to announce another great behind-the-scenes talk that will be taking place at the conference in March.

David Edery, CEO of multifaceted development studio Spry Fox, will be delivering an earnest postmortem of the studio's popular mobile puzzle game Alphabear.

Simply titled "Alphabear Postmortem," this talk will be part of the GDC 2016 Free-to-Play Summit and offer attendees a rare glimpse into the design, production and testing of a mobile game that quickly outstripped its expected development time. 

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Results from the fourth annual Game Developers Conference State of the Industry Survey are in, revealing trends in the games industry based on the feedback of more than 2,000 game developers ahead of GDC 2016 in March.

The survey revealed that development of virtual reality games has more than doubled among participating developers, with 16 percent currently developing for VR -- up from the 7 percent of developers were working on VR projects in last year's survey.

But what specific VR platforms are they working on, and why? Today we dig a bit deeper into the VR platform data within the 2016 State of the Industry Survey to get a better sense (and a better visualization of) of where VR developers are focusing their efforts. 

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As the GDC 2016 lineup locks into place, organizers would like to highlight some more notable Design track talks you should know about ahead of the March conference.

Red Hook Studios cofounder Tyler Sigman will be there this year delivering what promises to be an insightful, engaging look at the making of the studio's flagship game. In "Darkest Dungeon - A Design Postmortem," Sigman will reveal the greatest design challenges that faced the Darkest Dungeon team -- and how they overcame it to create a critically acclaimed game.

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Game Developers Conference organizers are proud to continue their partnership with leading childcare provider KiddieCorp to offer GDC 2016 attendees access to an on-site children's program. However, the advance deadline to register for the program is February 15th -- less than one month away! 

You want to register early, because registration is handled on a first-come, first-served basis. It's also possible to register on-site, but there is no guarantee KiddieCorp will be able to accommodate on-site registrations and doing so is not recommended.

Back by popular demand, the KiddieCorp children's program is for children ages 6 months through 12 years old and will be located within the Moscone Center in San Francisco, California. The KiddieCorp team charges an affordable hourly rate for their services and snacks and beverages will be provided, but meals do need to be supplied by parents each day.

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We're less than two months away from GDC 2016, and today organizers would like to let you know about a great talk from 80 Days writer Meg Jayanth highlighting some concrete things you can do to make more diverse games.

Jayanth's Advocacy track talk, titled simply "10 Ways to Make Your Game More Diverse," invites attendees to consider ten straightforward ways to ensure they're engaging with fresh ideas about inclusion, representation and cultural respect.

It's a process, one that touches on everything from your game's narrative, art and visual aesthetic to its design and production process. Make time to hear what Jayanth has to say, and you'll walk away with specific examples to learn from and approachable strategies for improving your own projects.

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So One Life Left is coming back to Game Developers Conference to record some shows with Gamasutra, and -- wait -- we should probably explain what One Life Left is.

One Life Left is a radio show about video games. For an hour a week, every week, three of us (me, Simon Byron and Ann Scantlebury) chat live on actual radio about games with people who make games, and fill the rest of our allotted airtime with news, features, music and (mostly) stupid jokes.

We broadcast on Monday nights on London's brilliant Resonance 104.4FM, a station that supports the arts scene in the capital, and we've been doing that consistently for 10 years which is ridiculous. I think it means we're the longest-running video game radio show in the world, which means we are number one at something, which is great because I'm not exactly sure we're number one at making slick, professional radio.

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Passes for the Game Developers Conference 2016 are still available, and as the conference draws closer we're announcing even more sessions for the Main Conference that you'll want to check out.

Today we're highlighting a number of informative sponsored sessions from Nvidia, Intel and other influential tech companies. If you're looking for an opportunity to learn about how cutting-edge hardware and software works from a game developer's perspective, you'll want to keep these talks on your radar.

VR enthusiasts should make time to check out "Magical Realism: The Art of Creating Everest In Your Living Room with VR." Presented by Nvidia, it will feature Solfar Studios chief Kartan Perre Emilsson talking about the development of the studio's Everest VR experience and how the team pushed the limits of Unreal Engine 4 while also using 'brain hacks' to manipulate users' perceptive realism and create a more engaging, realistic VR experience.

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As the 2016 Game Developers Conference approaches, organizers would like to highlight a multi-faceted panel discussion about the narrative design of Crystal Dynamics' Rise of the Tomb Raider that's taking place as part of the GDC 2016 Game Narrative Summit.

The panel, "Raid on Rise: Narrative Creation on Rise of the Tomb Raider," will feature game writer Rhianna Pratchett discussing the finer points of writing the strong story and characters of Rise of the Tomb Raider alongside a cadre of Crystal Dynamics lead narrative designers John Stafford and Cameron Suey, performance director Tore Blystad, senior story artist Jeff Adams and creative director Noah Hughes.

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 GDC 2016 organizers are offering an early look today at the scope and ambitions of the Advanced Graphics Techniques Tutorial Day that will help kick off the March conference.

It's just one of the many Bootcamps and Tutorials that take place during the first two days of GDC (Monday and Tuesday, March 14th and 15th this year) and offer attendees the chance to dive deep and explore focused topics like level design, art direction and storytelling fundamentals.

Brought to you with the collaboration of the industry's leading hardware and software vendors, the day-long Advanced Graphics Techniques Tutorial provides an in-depth look at how DirectX technologies can be applied to creating cutting-edge PC game graphics.

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Results from the fourth annual Game Developers Conference State of the Industry Survey are in, revealing trends in the games industry based on the feedback of more than 2,000 game developers ahead of GDC 2016 in March.

The survey has revealed that development of virtual reality (VR) titles has more than doubled among participating developers with 16 percent currently developing for VR, up from the 7 percent of developers were working on VR projects in last year's survey.

The 2016 State of the Industry Survey marks the fourth entry in the ongoing series of yearly reports and serves as a snapshot of the games industry and illustrates industry trends ahead of GDC 2016 in San Francisco. Organized by the UBM Tech Game Network, GDC 2016 takes place March 14-18 at the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco, California.

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Game Developers Conference officials are pleased to release the full results of the fourth annual GDC State of the Industry survey today, and now you can download a copy of the full report for yourself. 

Highlights of this report, which is based on results of a survey of more than 2,000 game developers who have attended GDC across the past three years, have already been widely published, and include a significant uptick in interest in eSports and VR game development.

Further analysis of the full results suggests that developers are gaining renewed interest in working with publishers, and that Android and iOS are now neck-and-neck in terms of mobile game developer interest.

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We're just weeks away from GDC 2016, and a group of developers who want to ride the rails from Chicago to California in time to attend the March conference in San Francisco -- and make a game along the way -- have signed on to do so as part of the third annual Train Jam game jam.

The brainchild of indie developer Adriel Wallick, Train Jam has become a valuable place for developers to collaborate in close proximity with the promise (and the pressure) of knowing their work will be part of a unique showcase on the GDC show floor the following week.

This year the third annual Train Jam will once again last a little over two days and take place entirely within an Amtrak train. Participants have from when the train departs Chicago's Union Station on Thursday morning, March 10th until it arrives in Emeryville on Saturday afternoon to make the greatest game they can with whatever tools they can bring, borrow or build.

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Today Game Developers Conference organizers are proud to highlight another great talk for the Virtual Reality Developers Conference, a sister conference that will take place alongside GDC 2016 in San Francisco this March.

Like the eight focused Summits at GDC, the VRDC jumpstarts the week with two full days of lectures, panels, postmortems, and more to foster community-building and knowledge-sharing within the nascent VR/AR development industry. 

Conference officials are pleased to welcome VR experts Ikrima Elhassan and Cory Strassburger, co-founders of the VR production house Kite & Lightning, to share their knowledge in a talk simply titled "VR Production & Development: A Deep Dive Into Kite & Lightning's Workflow."

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With GDC 2016 on the horizon, organizers are excited to announce another great talk that will be taking place at the conference in March.

Epic Games director of user experience Celia Hodent will be taking the stage alongside Epic senior producer Heather Chandler to share the story of "How We Introduced UX to Epic Games' Production Pipeline."

It's a great session, part of the GDC 2016 Production track of talks, in which attendees will learn how to implement some of the critical techniques that helped Epic foster collaboration between its user experience team and development team.


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As the GDC 2016 lineup begins to come together, organizers would like to highlight a few notable Design track talks you should know about ahead of the March conference.

Chief among them is "The Gamer's Brain, Part 2: UX of Onboarding and Player Engagement," Epic Games director of user experience Celia Hodent's follow-up to her popular talk at GDC last year on the psychology of player engagement.

Engaging your players within the first few minutes of play is a delicate endeavor, but it's become a critical aspect of development in the era of free-to-play games. Drawing on her experience at Epic on games like Fortnite (pictured), Hodent will show you the common onboarding pitfalls of F2P game design and offer some basic brain facts related to how people learn -- and how you can apply this knowledge to improve your game's design.


Attend GDC 2016's AI Summit and learn to make games smarter

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As the 2016 Game Developers Conference draws nigh, organizers are eager to let you know about some of the great AI-focused talks that will be taking place during the March conference.

Each of these talks is part of the GDC AI Summit, one of eight that will take place Monday, March 14th and Tuesday, March 15th at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, CA during the first two days of the conference.

Each Summit offers a comprehensive overview of a specific game industry discipline, and the AI Summit is no exception. This year, Insomniac senior programmer Jan Mueller will be participating by delivering a talk on "Mind Your Step: Avoiding 3 Common Pitfalls in AI Development."

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Good news for all GDC 2016 attendees: the Game Design Challenge is back for a special session to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Game Developers Conference!

Here's how it works: a panel of ferociously talented game designers at GDC 2016 are given a strange and unusual design constraint.

In years past, notable panelists including Will Wright, Keita Takahashi, Brenda Romero, Alexei Pajitnov & Warren Spector have been challenged to design things like humanity's last game, or a game that's also a religion. 

This year the challenge is to design a game that is meant to be played across 30 years - that's 11,000 days, or 250,000 hours, or 15 million minutes... A full human generation.

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The 2016 Game Developers Conference is weeks away, and with that in mind organizers want to give you the lowdown on all the cool interactive spaces and exhibits attendees will have access to during the March event.

Encompassing everything from tabletop games to Train Jam game jam prototypes and the world's leading lineup of alternative controller games, the interactive spaces at GDC are designed to introduce you to a broad slice of the most interesting work being done by game developers from across the industry. 

So while you're putting together your GDC 2016 session schedule in the Schedule Builder, don't forget to set some time aside to check out the variety of lounges, exhibits, and other events that will be happening across the Moscone Center throughout the week

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Crafting entertaining, compelling narrative in video games is tricky business, and anyone interested in honing their storytelling skills should make time to check out the "Storytelling Fundamentals In A Day" tutorial at GDC 2016 in March.

Storytelling Fundamentals In A Day is one of many Bootcamps and Tutorials that take place during the first two days of GDC (Monday and Tuesday, March 14th and 15th this year) and offer attendees the chance to dive deep and explore focused topics like level design, game production, art direction and animation.

This dynamic, engaging presentation on the fundamentals of story development is designed for everyone interested in improving the narrative quality of their games. 

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The 2016 Game Developers Conference is coming up fast, and today organizers highlight an informative talk that's part of the March conference's Smartphone & Tablet Games Summit about how, why and where to soft-launch your next mobile game.

If you're at all interested in the art and business of making successful mobile games, this talk is worth making time for because it affords you a look at how soft-launching your game in a market like Canada or Australia can help you understand how players respond to your game and adjust accordingly, before you launch worldwide.

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Given that the 2016 Game Developers Conference is coming up in March, conference organizers are eager to let you know that developers of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt will be there sharing with fellow attendees some of the hard-won lessons they learned shipping one of the biggest games of 2015.

"Here Be Dragons, or Lessons Learned in the Development of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt" is a talk from CD Projekt Red principal programmer Balzs Torok about the many hardships The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt team faced (and overcame) while creating a huge open-world role-playing game for three disparate platforms.

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Organizers of the Game Developers Conference are finalizing the lineup of great talks for GDC 2016 in March, and today they're excited to highlight one about the remarkable soundtrack of The Chinese Room's Everybody's Gone To The Rapture.

"The Music of Rapture: Scoring For The End of The World" will be part of GDC's popular Audio track of talks, and feature celebrated composer and studio director Jessica Curry speaking frankly about the process of creating a world-class score for your game.

In addition to showcasing how she scored Everybody's Gone To The Rapture, Curry plans to detail (using musical examples) the ways in which the music functions in the game and will also talk about the ethos of how you create such a score. 

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Organizers have revealed the nominees for the 16th annual Game Developers Choice Awards, the leading peer-based video game event celebrating the industry's top games and developers. The host for the ceremony will be veteran developer Robin Hunicke, co-founder of Funomena.

Winners in all categories will be honored at the Game Developers Choice Awards ceremony, taking place on Wednesday, March 16th, 2016 at 6:30pm at the San Francisco Moscone Center during the 2016 Game Developers Conference alongside the Independent Games Festival Awards. The ceremonies will be livestreamed on Twitch at the following link: http://www.twitch.tv/gdca

Among the esteemed nominees, two games have earned the most nominations in four categories each. The open-world entry in Konami's legendary action stealth franchise, Metal Gear Solid V, has earned nominations for Best Audio, Best Design, Best Technology and Game of the Year. CD Projekt RED's vast open-world action role-playing game, The Witcher 3, received nods for Best Visual Art, Best Narrative, Best Technology and Game of the Year.

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The 2016 Game Developers Conference is coming up fast, and today show officials want to remind you about the new career growth and networking opportunities attendees can take advantage of through the GDC Career Center.

A popular hub for game industry recruiting, the Career Center returns to GDC 2016 to complement the expansive, vibrant Expo Floor. Stop by the Center, located on the lower level of Moscone Convention Center's North Hall, to get practical career-building advice, attend sessions focused on game industry career growth, and meet folks working at some of the largest and most prestigious publishers and studios in our industry.

This year, GDC's Career Center team aims to make it easier than ever for companies to hire great talent at GDC by bringing the best and brightest right to you via their new Concierge Service.

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Heads up, VR game enthusiasts: GDC 2016 organizers are excited to welcome VR experts from Epic Games, Crytek, Playful Corp and more as speakers for the inaugural Virtual Reality Developers Conference in March.

Think of it like a sister conference to GDC proper, one divided into Game VR/AR and Entertainment VR/AR tracks to help attendees find the talks most interesting to them.

Each of these sessions is part of the Game VR/AR track of talks at VRDC, which will take place Monday, March 14th and Tuesday, March 15th at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, CA during the first two days of GDC 2016.


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Heads up, game artists and animators: GDC 2016 organizers are offering an early look at the informative and intriguing sessions taking place during the two-day Animation Bootcamp that kicks off the March conference.

As always, the Animation Bootcamp is one of many Bootcamps and Tutorials that take place during the first two days of GDC (Monday and Tuesday, March 14th and 15th this year) and offer attendees the chance to dive deep and explore focused topics like level design, game production, art direction and animation.

 This year the Animation Bootcamp kicks off on Monday with a series of great talks aimed at exploring new animation techniques, processes, and dimensions of what game animation is capable of contributing to a project.

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