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GDC Europe adds Witcher 2, Love postmortems, and more

The lineup for GDC Europe 2012 continues to grow this week, as show organizers have released three new talks featuring a look at the production of CD Projekt RED's The Witcher 2, a programming-heavy postmortem on the online indie game Love, and a look at Cryptic's approach to user-generated content in MMOs.

Like the rest of the sessions at GDC Europe, these talks will take place Monday through Wednesday, August 13-15, 2012 at the Congress-Centrum Ost Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany.

The full details on these new sessions are as follows:

- As part of the Game Design track, CD Projekt RED developers Maciej Szczesnik and Marek Ziemak will host "The Witcher 2: Between Dreams and Deadlines: AAA RPG Design and Pre-Production," offering a behind-the-scenes look at the Polish developer's recent RPG hit.

During this session, the pair will look back on The Witcher 2's production cycle to explain how CD Projekt RED crafts its complex hardcore titles from pre-production to full-scale development and beyond. Along the way, they'll share some of the studio's missteps, and explain how those hard lessons have informed the team's approach to production going forward.

- Over in the programming track, independent developer Eskil Steenberg will peel back the curtain on the tech behind his 2010 release Love, an unusual online game that combines procedurally-generated elements with the structure of an MMO.

The session, "Love Engine Postmortem: Lean and Mean C Engine Design," will detail how Steenberg single-handedly wrote the game's engine, noting the unconventional techniques he used to create a complex game with some surprisingly simple code.

- Finally, Cryptic Studios COO Craig Zinkievich will host a talk in the Social Games Summit dubbed "User-Generated Content In MMOs - From Champions Online To Neverwinter."

Here, Zinkievich will showcase Cryptic's user generated content tools known as "The Foundry," and will share insight on how the studio aims to extend an MMO's lifespan by letting the users influence how the game evolves. Of course, allowing players to create their own content can really affect a game's balance and overall appeal, so Zinkievich will make sure to outline the various factors developers need to consider to ensure such a model succeeds.

GDC Europe adds Journey postmortem, major publisher panel

In the latest update for GDC Europe 2012, show organizers have unveiled three new talks, including a postmortem on thatgamecompany's Journey, a panel on how publishers need to react to the latest industry trends, and a look at SOE's approach to social media.

These talks all fall within GDC Europe's Main Conference, which takes place Monday through Wednesday, August 13-15, 2012 at the Congress-Centrum Ost Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany.

The full details on these new sessions are as follows:

- As part of the Game Design track, former thatgamecompany producer Robin Hunicke (now of Tiny Speck), will look back at one of the most highly-regarded downloadable titles of this generation in "The Long Journey."

During this postmortem, Hunicke will outline how the PSN-exclusive Journey embraced the unknown to create meaningful social gameplay without relying on traditional video game tropes. The game took three full years to make -- double thatgamecompany's original goal -- and Hunicke will reflect on its production to determine whether the title lived up to its initial vision, while sharing some key lessons learned along the way.

- Over in the Business & Marketing track, a handful of major publishing executives will discuss their thoughts on the biggest trends facing game development in, "Ask the Publishers - Adapting and Succeeding in a Changing Games Industry."

In this panel, speakers from major companies including Microsoft, Konami and Capcom - moderated by Remedy (Alan Wake) head Matias Myllyrinne - will discuss the latest digital distribution models, new funding options like Kickstarter, and much more. The panelists will examine all of these trends, offering their take on how they will impact the industry and what developers and publishers need to so to survive in the years ahead.

- Also in the Business & Marketing track, Sony Online Entertainment's Linda Carlson will host "Surviving Social Media - Experimentation Leads to Innovation," detailing how companies can improve their online community outreach and better take advantage of the latest online developments.

Carlson will share SOE's own social media efforts, noting that the best way to find success with these initiatives is to experiment, abandon unsuccessful tactics, and constantly seek out new ideas. Attendees will walk away with a better understanding of how to leverage online media, regardless of their studio's size, structure, or ambition.

GDC Europe adds Game of Thrones art, Ernest Adams, Bigpoint talks

In the latest update for GDC Europe 2012, show organizers have revealed three new sessions, which cover the ways in which Game of Thrones can inspire concept artists, how developers can visualize and create new game mechanics, and how studios should react to the saturation of the free to play market.

These talks all fall within GDC Europe's Main Conference, which takes place Monday through Wednesday, August 13-15, 2012 at the Congress-Centrum Ost Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany.

The full details on these new sessions are as follows:

- As part of the Visual Arts track, concept artist Tobias Mannewitz (who's worked on games including Anno 1404, Gothic 4, and Killzone 3) will demonstrate what game artists can learn from television in "Concept Art Learnings From Game Of Thrones To... Games!"

In addition to working in the game industry, Mannewitz has also contributed concept art to Season 2 of the hit HBO television series Game of Thrones (pictured), and in this session, he will discuss how artists can learn from the show and use several filmmaking techniques to improve their pipelines and artistic output.

- Over in the Game Design track, veteran game designer and teacher Ernest Adams and gameplay engineer Joris Dormans (who holds a PhD in game design) will introduce a new and invaluable tool for creating gameplay mechanics in "Machinations: A New Way to Design Game Mechanics."

During this session, the pair will showcase how the free Machinations software will help developers visualize and diagram their ideas for new gameplay systems. Attendees will also get a chance to try the software for themselves, giving them hands-on experience in using the new game design tool.

- Finally, Bigpoint founder Heiko Hubertz will present the Business & Marketing track lecture, "This Town Ain't Big Enough for Both of Us - Trend Compendium for the F2P Online Games Industry," offering an in-depth look at the maturation and saturation of the free to play market.

Over the past few years, the free to play space has only grown more competitive -- companies are beginning to fight over larger and larger segments of the market, and users are beginning to expect more from the games that use the free to play model. In this session, Hubertz will outline these key trends, and will offer his advice on what developers need to do to survive as the market evolves.

GDC Europe adds GoldenEye N64 'classic postmortem', Ngmoco, Ubisoft Blue Byte talks

GDC Europe 2012's session lineup continues to grow this week, as show organizers have debuted new sessions including a 'classic postmortem' on seminal N64 title GoldenEye 007, as well as talks on working with a distributed team and how music can influence user experience design.

These talks all fall within GDC Europe's Main Conference, which takes place Monday through Wednesday, August 13-15, 2012 at the Congress-Centrum Ost Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany.

The full details on these new sessions are as follows:

- Over in the Game Design track, former Rare game director Martin Hollis (now of independent studio Zoonami) will debut the first ever GDC Europe 'classic postmortem', chronicling the development of seminal Nintendo 64 title Goldeneye 007.

Hollis led the creation of this hit movie tie-in game, and during this session he will detail how the game came to be, detailing its roots as a Virtua Cop-influenced on-rails project all the way to its eventual release in 1997. It'll be a rare chance to get an inside look at the much-loved 8-million unit selling title that paved the way for the future of console based first person shooters.

- Over in the Production track, Ngmoco senior development director Senta Jakobsen will host "Changing How Games Are Made - Building and Working in a Distributed Team."

Here, former Crytek director and DICE COO Jakobsen will explain the ins and outs of working with a team that's spread all over the world, discussing everything from hiring processes, tools, overall guidelines, and more. In addition, she'll share a number of common mistakes so other studios know what to avoid.

- Finally, Simon Davis of Ubisoft Blue Byte (Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Online) will discuss how to refine overall user experience in the Game Design track lecture, "The Wonderful World of UX: How We Can Make Games That Resonate Better and Learn From Approaches to Music."

By using musical genres such as Jazz and Blues as an overall template, Davis will outline what user experience design is, and how developers can use it to create better games. In addition, he'll analyze a number of different approaches to applying user experience design, and the results they generate when applied to games.

GDC Europe 2012 adds Google, Spec Ops, Daglow talks

GDC Europe 2012 is inching ever closer, and this week show organizers have unveiled three new talks in its growing lineup, featuring Google on the evolving economics of the industry, industry veteran Don Daglow on reaching North American audiences, and a look at Spec Ops: The Line's visual effects.

These talks all fall within GDC Europe's Main Conference, which takes place Monday through Wednesday, August 13-15, 2012 at the Congress-Centrum Ost Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany.

The full details on these new sessions are as follows:

- First, Google's Koh Kim will present the Business & Marketing track lecture, "The New Economics of Games," examining the industry paradigm shifts that brought us the indie renaissance, free-to-play games, virtual transactions, and more.

Kim, who works on games partnerships for Chrome and Google+ at the company, will pick apart all of these major trends in order to uncover the economic principles guiding the industry and what developers can do to take advantage of the latest business models. Attendees will not only walk away with a better understanding of the market at large, they'll also be better prepared to sustain their games in today's economic climate.

- In the Game Design track lecture, "5 Things About American Online Gamers that Surprise European Developers," seasoned developer Don Daglow will explain why European online game developers need to prepare for some unique challenges when creating a title for players across the Atlantic.

Daglow helped create the original Neverwinter Nights (the AOL graphic MMO), and has been working on online games for more than 25 years, and in this session he'll detail some of the counter-intuitive behavior patterns he's observed in North American game players. With this knowledge in mind, European studios will be more prepared than ever to make a game that can succeed overseas.

- Over in the Visual Arts track, Florian Zender of German studio Yager Entertainment will share some useful visual effects tips in "Bringing Home the Bacon - Developing the VFX of Spec Ops: The Line as Thin Slices."

Using examples from Yager's upcoming third-person shooter, Zender will detail the studio's "quick and highly iterative approach" to visual effects production, offering advice on how to "cope with a quickly growing team, buffer various schedule changes and keep morale high when finalizing the project."

GDC Europe debuts Infinity Blade, Sony pitching, lighting design talks

In the latest update for GDC Europe 2012, show organizers have unveiled a brand new keynote from Epic Games on Infinity Blade and mobile graphics, as well as new sessions on pitching your game and using effective lighting techniques.

These talks all fall within GDC Europe's Main Conference, which takes place Monday through Wednesday, August 13-15, 2012 at the Congress-Centrum Ost Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany.

The full details on these new sessions are as follows:

- In Epic's Programming track keynote, "Bringing AAA Graphics to Mobile Platforms," senior engine programmer Niklas Smedberg will discuss how the studio works with mobile devices to create the high quality visuals seen in games the developer's own Infinity Blade 2 and Infinity Blade: Dungeons.

Along the way, Smedberg will explain how a tile-based GPU architecture works, detailing "how to modify and adapt the implementation of various graphics effects so that they become viable for this kind of GPU." With this knowledge, attendees will talk away understanding how to maximize their graphical output on mobile platforms.

- Over in the Business & Marketing track, Pete Smith, the executive producer of Sony XDev Studio Europe, will offer tips on getting your game published in: "Pitching to Publishers: How to Impress and What to Avoid."

Smith, who has helped establish Sony franchises such as Motorstorm and LittleBigPlanet, will explain what publishers are looking for and what developers need to do to impress them. In addition, he'll provide practical hints on preparing a pitch to make sure it sends the right message.

- Finally, Robert Yang, a student at the New York-based Parsons School of Design, will host the Design track session "Lighting Design for Level Designers," where he will offer tips to help level designers understand how to effectively use and implement lighting techniques.

Yang himself is a level designer with lighting design training (he created the acclaimed 2011 FPS mod Radiator), and in this session he will "summarize a body of lighting theory and common patterns, contextualize it within the affordances of player behavior, and discuss case studies / lighting strategies."

GDC Europe 2012 adds Hitman, Bigpoint, breakdancing talks

In the latest update for GDC Europe 2012, show organizers have debuted a trio of notable sessions, including a look at Hitman: Absolution's crowds, and an eccentric talk on how breakdancing can make you a better developer.

These talks all fall within GDC Europe's Main Conference, which takes place Monday through Wednesday, August 13-15, 2012 at the Congress-Centrum Ost Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany.

The full details on these new sessions are as follows:

- First, Kasper Fauerby of Danish studio IO Interactive will host a Programming Track session explaining how the studio implemented the upcoming Hitman: Absolution's impressive looking crowd system, which includes as many as 500 onscreen characters at once.

In the aptly named "Crowds in Hitman: Absolution," Fauerby will discuss the system's design and implementation, giving attendees some insight into the benefits and complexities involved in creating believable and dynamic virtual crowds.

- Next, it might seem like an odd comparison at first glance, but Codemasters' Robbert-Jan Brems will explain how breakdancing relates to game development in the Visual Arts track session, "How Breakdancing Taught Me to be a Technical Artist."

Though relatively new to being a professional technical artist, the unconventional talk from Brems will outline how his nine years as a breakdancer have influenced his approach to solving day-to-day problems on the job. (Pictured: Break Dance, Commodore 64)

- Finally, over in the Business and Marketing track, Philip Reisberger, the chief revenue officer of the major German-headquartered online game company Bigpoint, will discuss free to play pricing strategies in a lecture dubbed "Dynamic Pricing."

Here, Reisberger will discuss how free to play games have changed the fundamentals of the video game business, while explaining why "intelligent collection and reading of the mass of data accruing from assessment can be the key to real improvement in monetizing free to play games."

GDC Europe adds new sessions on player choice, crisis management, and more

As the regular updates for GDC Europe 2012 continue, event organizers have debuted a trio of new talks covering everything from limiting player choice, moving to free to play development, to PR crisis management.

These talks fall within GDC Europe's Main Conference, which takes place Monday through Wednesday, August 13-15, 2012 at the Congress-Centrum Ost Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany.

The full details on these new sessions are as follows:

- Over in the Game Design track, Joerg Friedrich, lead level designer on 2K and Yager Development's Spec Ops: The Line (pictured), will examine how to build an emotional response by manipulating player choice in "Making the Player Feel Bad - Breaking Rules of Player Choice for Emotional Impact."

While most games use an established set of rules to provide satisfying player choices, Friedrich will argue "designers sometimes should break these rules to create emotional impact on the player and tell a serious narrative." To illustrate his point, he will offer a number of examples where this has worked, and where it hasn't.

- Also in the Game Design track, Travian Games senior game designer Jan van der Crabben will explore how to make the transition from blockbuster games to free to play development in "AAA goes F2P: Same Skills, Different Mindset."

Previously, van der Crabben worked on Empire: Total War and Napoleon: Total War, and during this talk he will outline how he eventually moved toward making free to play games like Travian's browser-based Imperion. Along the way, he'll offer advice for other developers looking to make a similar switch.

- No matter how hard you try, sometimes it's simply impossible to avoid a public relations disaster. Valerie Massey, the director of community development at the community analytics company Clara, will offer some advice on how to deal with these scenarios in the Business & Marketing track talk, "DEFCON: A Basic Guide to Public Relations Crisis Management."

Building upon talks she's given at previous GDC events, the former CCP PR director will focus on the inevitable crises that arise during game development, and will outline "the tips and tools you'll need to calmly weather the storm and get things back on track."

GDC Europe 2012 adds new social game talks on Kabam, Draw Something, and more

In the latest update to GDC Europe's ever-expanding lineup, show organizers have debuted a trio of talks covering the free to play and social game markets, featuring speakers from Kabam, Couchbase, and more.

These sessions all fall within GDC Europe's Social & Online Games Summit, which will be held Wednesday, August 15th, and will offer a robust lineup of talks covering the most important trends facing developers on Facebook, mobile devices, the web, and beyond. This Summit is open to attendees with VIP, All Access, and Summit passes.

GDC Europe itself will take place Monday through Wednesday, August 13-15, 2012 at the Congress-Centrum Ost at the Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany.

The full details on these new sessions are as follows:

- In a session dubbed "Game Design is Business Design," Ethan Levy (formerly of BioWare Social) will discuss how the rise of the free to play market has transformed the role of the modern game designer.

Using examples from BioWare's own social titles, Levy will point out the ways in which the digital landscape has changed the industry, noting why "the successful designers of our digital present are not only masters of fun, but also masters of business models and monetization."

- In another talk on free to play design, Andrew Sheppard, president of Kabam (The Godfather: Five Families, Kingdoms of Camelot) will discuss how developers can appeal to core players on mobile and social platforms.

His talk, "Freedom to Play - Unlocking Unprecedented Creativity in F2P Games," will outline how studios can "balance the tension between creativity and finances," offering advice on how to evaluate metrics, how to deepen player engagement, and much more.

- Finally, James Phillips, the co-founder and SVP of products for the data-management company Couchbase, will host a social games talk titled, "How Draw Something absorbed 50 Million New Users, in 50 Days, with Zero Downtime."

Using the popular Omgpop title as an example, Phillips will explain how to build and launch a large-scale social game while maintaining a steady and healthy business. Along the way, he will help developers select a data management model that will help them support their games even as they (hopefully) experience rapid growth.

GDC Europe 2012 debuts new sessions on Sine Mora, browser game design

The industry-encompassing E3 Expo may over, but the new announcements for the upcoming GDC Europe keep on coming. This week, show organizers have unveiled a trio of new talks featuring a postmortem of the XBLA shoot 'em up Sine Mora, as well as talks covering Chinese free to play titles and the lifespans of casual browser games.

These talks fall within the Game Design track of GDC Europe's Main Conference, which takes place Monday through Wednesday, August 13-15, 2012 at the Congress-Centrum Ost Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany.

The full details on these new sessions are as follows:

- In an effort to offer insight on making games for niche genres, Prior Games CEO Theodore Reiker and business development director Balazs Horvath will look at Sine Mora, the recent downloadable shoot 'em up from Digital Reality and Grasshopper Manufacture.

In this session, dubbed "Postmortem: Sine Mora - The Struggle to Reboot a Genre," Reiker (who designed, wrote, and directed the title) will pick apart the game to examine its strengths, its weaknesses, and why, in the end, the risky title just couldn't find an audience.

- Elsewhere, Jared Psigoda, the CEO of the Hong Kong based Reality Squared Games, will host "$100,000 Whales - An Introduction to Chinese Browser Game Design."

Here, he will outline the basics of free to play design in China, and how it has attracted enthusiastic players that spend exorbitant amounts of money on online games. By examining a number of Chinese development trends, Psigoda will share some insight on how to get the most from your free to play titles.

- Finally, Bigpoint executive producer Jan Michel Saaksmeier will host, "Bring Them in Casual; Hook them Core - Keys to Prolonging User Lifetime in Casual Games."

This session will examine the current state of casual browser game development, offering some key insights into how developers can extend the lifespan of their own casual titles. In addition, attendees will "discover the importance of integrating high-quality game content in an easy way that casual gamers will engage with."

GDC Europe 2012 adds Assassin's Creed III design keynote

In the latest update to GDC Europe's ever-expanding lineup, show organizers have revealed a major keynote in the Game Design track covering the history of Ubisoft's Assassin's Creed franchise, chronicling its evolution leading up to this year's upcoming installment, Assassin's Creed III.

GDC Europe 2012 debuts Total War, MMO design, rendering sessions

With the buildup to this year's GDC Europe now in full swing, show organizers have debuted even more notable talks, including in-depth presentations on the Total War franchise, the essentials of MMO design, and a tech talk on forward rendering pipelines.

These talks all fall within GDC Europe's Main Conference, which takes place Monday through Wednesday, August 13-15, 2012 at the Congress-Centrum Ost Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany, co-located with major consumer/trade show gamescom.

The full details on these new sessions are as follows:

- As part of the Game Design track, The Creative Assembly lead designer James Russell will discuss the creation of the successful Total War series in "Designing Grand Strategy: Making the Mechanics of Total War."

Russell will look at the many complex elements that make up this strategy game franchise, and will offer insight into the successes, failures, and lessons learned that come from making these complex PC titles. The talk promises to address topics such as "'realism' and simulation versus game rules, mystery versus clarity, gameplay depth versus micromanagement," and much more.

- In another Game Design talk, Funcom creative director Craig Morrison will host "Surviving the Jungle of MMO eco-systems." Funcom previously developed MMOs including Anarchy Online and Age of Conan, and is just launching its latest title The Secret World, and during this session Morrison will draw from the studio's experience to examine the essentials of MMO design.

As online games have evolved, MMOs have needed to become more dynamic and engaging to maintain their players, and "this session will explore the complex relationships that players have to virtual worlds and how designers need to understand the forces at play."

- Finally, AMD lead engineer Jay McKee and researcher Takahiro Harada will host the Programming-focused talk, "Forward rendering pipeline for modern GPUs." Here, the pair will present Forward+, "a forward rendering pipeline which allows for scenes with the same number of lights expected from a modern deferred renderer (on the order of thousands)."

According to the developers, "Forward+ retains all the benefits of traditional forward rendering while eliminating all the downsides found with deferred rendering." The session will detail how this new solution will benefit modern game development using examples from the company's own live demos.

GDC Europe 2012 adds Indie sessions on The Dream Machine, Vlambeer, and more

The regular updates for GDC Europe 2012 continue this week, as show organizers have unveiled the first batch of talks in the Independent Game Summit, featuring sessions on The Dream Machine, Derrick the Deathfin, and Vlambeer (Super Crate Box)'s approach to in-game fiction.

As part of the Independent Games Summit on Wednesday, August 15th, these talks represent the voice of the indie developer at GDC Europe, and cover essential lessons that affect game creators from throughout the industry.

These talks will be part of GDC Europe, which takes place Monday through Wednesday, August 13-15, 2012 at the Congress-Centrum Ost at the Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany.

The full details on these new sessions are as follows:

- In "The Dream Machine Postmortem: How To Make A Hard Thing Even Harder," the Swedish-based Cockroach Ink designer and director Anders Gustafsson will explain how he and his partner, Erik Zaring, set out to make the acclaimed point and click adventure game based on stop-motion animation.

The pair of developers "had no idea if it would work or not," but after more than three years of hard work, their game is now available on Steam, has earned numerous industry awards and has been displayed in art exhibits around the world. It's a very unusual tale, and this session will reveal how it all came together.

- Elsewhere, Lilt Line creator Gordon Midwood and London street artist Ron Zo, who've teamed up to create indie studio Different Tuna, will provide an in-depth look at the aesthetic design of their PSN papercraft-inspired sidescroller, Derrick the Deathfin.

During this session, dubbed "Derrick the Deathfin: How to Create a Uniquely Styled Game," the duo will share some tips and tricks to help developers create striking and unusual visual styles for their games. Not only will these tips "help you make your games look better, it'll also help them stand out from the crowd."

- Finally, indie developers Rami Ismail and Jan Willem of Dutch studio Vlambeer will explain how to create interesting game worlds, scenarios, and stories in "Sensible Nonsense: On Fiction in Games."

Using examples from notable Vlambeer-developed titles including Super Crate Box, Yeti Hunter, Luftrauser, and Gun Godz, the developers will "explain the tricks behind a consistent and complete fiction and how being conscious about your fiction is a way to creating a great game."

GDC Europe 2012 adds Dead Island, startup, playtesting sessions

With the lineup for this August's GDC Europe growing ever larger, show organizers have debuted new talks on Techland and Deep Silver's Dead Island, bootstrapping tips from social startup PerBlue, and the essentials of in-house playtesting.

These talks all fall within GDC Europe's Main Conference, which takes place Monday through Wednesday, August 13-15, 2012 at the Congress-Centrum Ost at the Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany.

The full details on these new sessions are as follows:

- The first of these new sessions is a Production track lecture from Deep Silver's Guido Eickmeyer, titled, "Dead Island: How To Create A Mega Seller On A Moderate Budget." During this talk,  Eickmeyer will share brand new user and market data from the successful Techland-developed open world zombie game.

Along the way, he will discuss the importance of Metacritic, and how a strong trailer, multiplayer co-op, and a small-scale open world helped the game defy industry conventions and find unexpected success.

- Elsewhere, highly rated GDC 2012 speaker Justin Beck will share some essential tips for getting a startup off the ground in the Business, Marketing & Management track session, "Bootstrapping 101: How College Kids Built a Thriving Game Company in Under Three Years."

During this session, Beck will share lessons learned from the social startup PerBlue (Parallel Kingdom), detailing "why we turned down seed funding and how we compensated team members when we had no money."

- Finally, Graham McAllister, founder of the playtesting studio Player Research (who has worked with studios including EA, Sony, Disney, Sega, and Splash Damage), will present the Production track lecture, "Implementing an in-house playtesting process."

Here, McAllister will offer practical advice to help studios establish a robust testing procedure to improve the quality of their products. The techniques discussed in this session "are designed to remove biased opinion and give evidence for making key design decisions."

GDC Europe 2012 debuts new Mafia II, hacking, fundraising talks

GDC Europe 2012 lecture announcements are gathering pace, as show organizers unveil new talks covering the development of 2K Czech's Mafia II, how to prevent online game hacking, and how to successfully raise the funds for your next game.

These talks all fall within GDC Europe's Main Conference, which takes place Monday through Wednesday, August 13-15, 2012 at the Congress-Centrum Ost Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany.

The full details on these new sessions are as follows:

- As part of the Production track, 2K Czech designer Jarek Kolar will chart the tumultuous eight years between the original Mafia title and its major console-led action game sequel.

The session, "Postmortem: Mafia II," will outline Mafia II's "development from inception to release... and also focuses on how the local development team Illusion Softworks has changed into a premium international development house 2K Czech."

- Elsewhere, Stephan Payer of the veteran German online game developer CipSoft will host the Programming track session, "Cheaters, Hackers, Script Kiddies -- The Dark Side of Online Games." Here, Payer will discuss the numerous security issues his team has encountered while operating the 15-year-old online games, Tibia.

Along the way, Payer will explain how these issues apply to other online titles, and will offer tips to help developers make their games more secure.

- Finally, Paul Heydon, managing director at Avista Partners, will share some key financial advice for game developers in the Business, Marketing & Management lecture, "Fundraising 101 for Game Companies."

In today's market, many venture capitalists are eager to invest money in budding game studios, and Heydon, also part of prominent game investment firm London Venture Partners (Gunshine.net, Supercell), will explain how developers can make sure that they receive that funding on fair terms.

 

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