The 2014 Game Developers Conference is happening next week, March 17-21 at the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco, which means we're just days away from the year's premiere conference for game industry professionals.
While you're putting together your GDC 2014 session schedule in the Schedule Builder, don't forget to check out the show's lineup of Tutorials and Bootcamps, which take place next Monday and Tuesday, March 17-18.
If you've never attended one of these day-long events, the lineup for this year's Level Design In A Day bootcamp should give you a taste of what you're in for.
Level Design in a Day, which takes place next Tuesday, March 18, brings together notable level designers from all over the industry to present unique perspectives on the art and science of level design. From the haunting world of The Last of Us to the frenetic pacing of Diablo III, speakers share their insights on creation, implementation and evolution of the craft during a full day of sessions. Here's a truncated version of the day's lineup:
- A Series of First Steps - Overcoming the Digital Blank Page (10:00-11:00am)
This talk will explore a number of "step one" strategies used by professional level designers targeting specific games, as well as high-level concepts which can help you make your own games.
- How We Used Iterative Level Design to Ship Skyrim and Fallout 3 (11:15am-12:15pm)
This level design oriented talk from Bethesda Softworks' Joel Burgess will share insights into the iterative approach used to help their level design team plan, implement, test and polish massive amounts of content.
- Lunch and Mock Interviews (12:15-1:45pm)
During lunch, attendees are invited to share their level design portfolios and answer a short battery of hard-hitting interview questions from the tutorial panel. Attendees will get a glimpse into the level design hiring process and gain valuable insights into what hiring managers are looking for in potential candidates.
- The Importance of Everything: Analytics of Map Design (1:45-2:45pm)
This talk will cover some of the successes and failures of level design metrics and analytics, and show how they can be used improve your design process.
- The Last of Us: Casting Shadows (3:00-4:00pm)
This talk will focus on speaker Elisabetta Silli's experience of joining Naughty Dog during the last months of development of The Last of Us, her work on the combat tutorial, and how her involvement on it led to her training and understanding of a very different genre than she had previously worked on.
- Decisions That Matter - Meaningful Choice in Game and Level Design (4:30-5:30pm)
This talk takes a deeper look at choice in games: why it is important, how it ties into the psychological underpinnings of why we play games, and how it connects to other fundamental concepts of game design like the space of possibility, motivation, player agency and the actual level design of a game.
GDC 2014 itself will take place next week, March 17-21, at the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco, California. Advance online registration for the conference is now closed, but you can still register onsite in Moscone's North Hall.
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