GDC Vault Adds Game Design Challenge, Indie Game Maker Rant

Game Developers Conference organizers have made free streaming video of two major GDC 2009 events, the Game Design Challenge and the inaugural Indie Game Maker Rant, available as part of the newly launched myGDC Vault service.
The myGDC Vault website allows GDC 2009 All-Access Pass holders to view hundreds of specially video-recorded sessions from this year’s Game Developers Conference, with synchronized slides and easy one-click viewing.
In addition, organizers will be making select GDC lectures available for free to the general public, and the first set of GDC 2009 lectures are now available. These include the following talks:
Game Design Challenge: My First Time
The popular Design Challenge series has spanned everything from an “inter-species game” to 2006’s ‘Nobel Peace Prize’ challenge, won by Will Wright.
This year’s Challenge saw Infocom veteran Steve Meretzky, Habbo lead designer Sulka Haro and last-minute substitutes Heather Kelley (Thief: Deadly Shadows) and Erin Robinson (Spooks) entertainingly twinning ‘sex and autobiography’ in their entertaining, warring game concepts for the theme ‘My First Time’.


Indies: Beyond Single-Player
In an Independent Games Summit lecture, Jason Rohrer, creator of the critically acclaimed indie titles Passage and Gravitation, shares his thoughts on games as a new expressive form. Rohrer’s thesis? To push games forward artistically, we may need to return to the medium’s pre-digital roots: multiple players seated around a game and using it as an interface for communion.
Only multiple players allow game mechanics to blossom into their full, emergent potential, he suggests in this lecture — something he’s been exploring in the IGF Nuovo Award-winning Between, commissioned as part of an Esquire article.
The Indie Game Maker Rant
One of the most explosive and entertaining lectures at the Indie Games Summit earlier in GDC’s week, a multitude of indie game makers assembled by Fez creator Phil Fish rant, using slides and examples, about everything from game demos through Roger Ebert.
Some of the highlights of the Pecha Kucha-style rant session, recapped at indie site TIGSource if you’d like a key to the order and background of speakers, include Steve Swink (Minotaur China Shop) on ethical game design, thatgamecompany’s Kellee Santiago (Flower) on changing the game biz, and an amazing finale from Crayon Physics‘s Petri Purho.
In addition to these free, non-registration based sessions, a number of GDC sponsors have made their own lectures available freely in video form in the myGDC Vault Sponsors section, if basic name and email information is filled out by users. Viewers can click on the + sign next to ‘Free Sponsored Content’ to reveal the list of lectures.
(Sponsors Nokia has additionally helped to make the entire GDC Mobile program, including a number of interesting editorial lectures, watchable for free under this system.)