The 2014 Game Developers Conference kicks off next week and online registration closes today at 7 PM ET/4 PM PT, so to drum up excitement we're highlighting some of our favorite upcoming sessions for the Main Conference that you'll want to check out.
Today we're showcasing a handful of GDC 2014 talks that exemplify the breadth and depth of the conference programming, from the #1ReasonToBe Advocacy track panel exploring what it means to be a woman in games to an experimental gameplay workshop that pushes the limits of design and a presentation from Sony about the next step in hardware innovation.
Now in its 28th year, 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.
The future of PlayStation 4 hardware
Don't miss Sony's sponsored talk about the future of gaming, Driving the Future of Innovation at Sony Computer Entertainment. While the talk itself is vaguely aimed at delineating Sony's approach to hardware innovation and it's outlook on the "future of gaming," the speaker lineup suggests it's a talk worth watching. Sony Computer Entertainment president Shuhei Yoshida will be speaking alongside Richard Marks and Anton Mikhailov, the senior director and senior software engineer of SCEA R&D, respectively. Marks' presence is particularly interesting, as he is well-known for his work on PlayStation hardware like the EyeToy camera and the Move motion control system.
#1ReasonToBe panel makes a triumphant return
Inspired by the #1ReasonWhy and #1ReasonToBe hashtagged discussions that erupted across social media in 2013, the GDC 2014 #1ReasonToBe panel promises to be a rapid, fun microtalk-style celebration and exploration of what it means to be a woman in games. Each panelist will share their experience, its highs and lows, and explore a vision for a future industry that is inclusive for all. The panel is hosted by industry veterans Brenda Romero and Leigh Alexander, and panelists include Anna Kipnis, Colleen Macklin, Deirdra "Squinky" Kiai, Laralyn McWilliams and Lauren Scott.
"Last year, the panel was a huge success, far more than the sum of its parts," Brenda Romero recently told GDC 2014 staff. "It ended up being hugely inspirational and fun for everyone who was there - including the speakers! We were grateful to be asked to host the panel last year, and we're excited to bring a new slate of inspirational people to explore the #1ReasonToBe!"
Experimental Gameplay Workshop pushes the limits of design
The jam-packed two-hour Experimental Gameplay Workshop session, curated and organized by leading creators Robin Hunicke & Daniel Benmergui, will showcase an eclectic mix of unusual game prototypes that defy convention and explore new ideas and genres at GDC 2014. Over 20 titles from some of the industry's most creative developers will be shown during this year's workshop, including the work of folks from Tale of Tales, Harmonix, Double Fine and more. Among them will be the recently-announced Chroma from Harmonix, Digital Dreams' upcoming PlayStation Vita game Metrico, QWOP developer Bennett Foddy's new game Speed Chess, the Global Game Jam game Fru, and the work of independent developer Mahdi Bahrami, who worked on the IGF award-nominated Engare.
More essential GDC details
Earlier GDC 2014 announcements include a reminder about the GDC 2014 Code of Conduct, the launch of the Business Matchmaking Service for GDC 2014, and a rundown of some of the cool interactive spaces that will be on the GDC floor. Developers on Papa & Yo, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, and Hearthstone will also be giving talks during the show.
All of the announced talks are now available in the online GDC 2014 Session Scheduler, where you can begin to build your conference week and later export it to the up-to-the-minute GDC Mobile App, coming soon.
GDC 2014 itself will take place March 17-21, 2014 at the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco, California. You can register for the event by visiting the info page on the official GDC 2014 website.
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