Discounted early registration for Game Developers Conference 2014 is now open, and the first set of announced Main Conference talks include devs on Splinter Cell: Blacklist, Skylanders Swap Force, and Dragon Age.
Now in its 28th year, the Game Developers Conference (GDC) is the world's largest and longest-running professionals-only game industry event, and will once again take place at the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco, California during March 17-21, 2014.
You can register for the event by visiting the info page on the official GDC 2014 website. Early Bird pricing, with discounts up to 30%, will remain in effect until January 31st, and some passes including the Indie Games Summit pass have limited amounts, so interested parties should register now.
GDC 2014's Main Conference, held on Wednesday-Friday, will contain the following seven Tracks: Advocacy, Audio, Design, Production, Programming, Visual Arts, and Business, Marketing & Management.
To kick off, conference organizers have announced three talks in the Design and Production Tracks - just a few of the hundreds of talks going live between now and the show:
Learn how to make effective tutorials in-game through different communication channels in Ubisoft Toronto lead game designer Laurent Malville's talk, 'Super-Spy Crash Course: Teaching Players in Splinter Cell: Blacklist.' Malville's Design track talk will show how this new approach to tutorials helped make the game more accessible, and how important it is to highlight core mechanics at the beginning of the game (pictured).
Elsewhere, Activision Blizzard user testing lead Gareth Griffiths will discuss how to playtest with a very young demographic in 'Child's Play: Playtesting with Children in the World of Skylanders'. In this Design track talk, Griffiths will offer tips on how to ensure participants are able to give meaningful responses, and explain their techniques for collecting and making sense of the data on character creation, level design, and more.
Lastly, BioWare development manager Ian Mitchell and producer Melanie Faulknor will offer insight into the nonlinear production cycle of Dragon Age's narrative in 'Building a BioWare Story: Producing Choice and Consequence' . For this talk in the Production Track, attendees will learn how to help organize multidisciplinary teams and gate production processes to allow for the prototyping and iteration necessary to deliver the dynamic and personal narrative experiences BioWare is known for.
Organizers also recently revealed that the Independent Games Festival, whose awards are given during GDC 2014, has hit record-breaking 1,000-plus entries for the Student and Main Competitions. All entries are available online to browse, with finalists to be announced in January.
GDC 2014 itself will take place March 17-21, 2014 at the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco, California. More information about Game Developers Conference 2014 is available via its official website.