Bosslady Blog: China, Europe, Canada, GDC Lecture Debuts

[In her latest Bosslady Blog update, Game Developers Conference event director Meggan Scavio discusses the announcements of GDC China and GDC Europe, and reveals the first lectures from GDC, including Braid‘s David Hellman, MGS’ David Wu and FF Tactics composer Hitoshi Sakimoto.]
There is so much going on around here these days, I don’t even know where to start. I know…reverse chronology!
Let me take you on a journey to the future. Picture it: October 11, 2009, Shanghai. Do you see it? Are you there? You’ll know because you’re at GDC China. That’s right — we launched GDC China back in 2007, ran into, let’s call them ‘hurdles’ in 2008, and are forging our way back in 2009. Keep your ears and eyes open for more information. The first GDC China exceeded all expectations — and without sounding too cheerleadery, I predict the second one will be even better.
OK, now stay in the future, just in the not-as-distant one. Picture it: August 17, 2009, Cologne. That’s right, GDC Europe. Now this gets a little complicated, see if you can stay with me. GCDC, run by Frank Sliwka, was the developer event that was co-located with Games Convention in Leipzig, Germany. Frank is now going to run GDC Europe, which is being presented in conjunction with gamescom in Cologne and is supported by BIU, the largest European publisher trade body. GDC Europe will be a truly pan-European developer conference and will follow the model of the GDC in San Francisco.
Last but by no means least is GDC Canada. Vancouver. May 2009. Be there!
New Sessions Announced!
Now we arrive at GDC in San Francisco. March, 2009. Today, we announced our first round of conference sessions, and there are some real gems:


One of the highlights, and a session I’ll be in for sure, is ‘The Art of Braid’, presented by David Hellman. Braid was a two-man show. Jon Blow, the man behind the Experimental Gameplay Sessions at GDC, among other things, designed it, and David Hellman made it really freaking pretty. Everything Jon touches has multiple layers and deeper meanings, and it will be really interesting to hear (and see!) how David visually translated Jon’s philosophies.
Another one to mention is ‘Momentum vs. Character Animation’ presented by Microsoft Game Studios’ David Wu. David, who you might know from Pseudo Interactive (Full Auto) and the XNA ‘Crash’ demos, is one of those really smart guys who’s been there, done that and mastered the other. In the world of game physics, he is The Man — and not in the bad stop-holding-me-back kind of way, more like in the I-want-to-top-the-universe kind of way.
In his own words: “This lecture will cover techniques designed to accomplish the following goal – characters that preserve the personality and style of their animations, seamlessly interact with a physically simulated world and take orders from the gamepad of abusive players and confused AIs.” All in one hour.
Hitting out of the ballpark early are the audio guys scoring (see what I did there?) a talk from acclaimed composer Hitoshi Sakimoto. A pioneer of live orchestra (hi Tommy!), Sakimoto is best known for his amazing scores for Vagrant Story, Final Fantasy Tactics and Final Fantasy XII.
In his lecture, ‘Experiences and Rare Insights into the Video Game Music Industry’, Sakimoto will talk about the past and present state of video game music, from a Japanese composers point of view, as well as where he thinks the industry is heading. Expect a real behind-the-scenes look into his long and inspiring career.
Neat stuff, huh? Stay tuned for more updates!
[Meggan and her colleagues will be posting regular updates from behind the scenes through the lead-up to next March’s Game Developers Conference 2009, including content reveals and other helpful information. You can subscribe individually to the GDC News blog via its RSS feed.]