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GDC 2011 To Feature StarCraft II Postmortem, Dance Central, Valve Talks

Organizers of the 2011 Game Developers Conference have debuted initial lectures from the Game Design and Programming Track for the Main Conference, spanning a Starcraft II postmortem, Harmonix's Dance Central dissected, Valve on forensic debugging, and much more.

As the overall session list for the event further expands, organizers are specially highlighting the initial Main Conference session announcements around these two areas.

The Game Design and Programming Tracks take place from Wednesday March 2nd to Friday March 4th, 2011 during the pre-eminent, San Francisco-based event, alongside other discipline-specific Tracks dedicated to art, audio, business and management, and production.

All of the above Track sessions are open to those with a Main Conference or All-Access Pass. Some of the top sessions debuting in the Game Design and Programming Tracks are as follows:

Game Design Track

Being revealed as a key Design Track talk for 2011's 25th edition of Game Developers Conference is 'Remaking a Classic: The Game Design of Starcraft II' by Blizzard Entertainment's Dustin Browder.

Drawing from the experience of designing the standout RTS, Browder offers a rare glimpse into Blizzard's core design philosophies, as well as insight into the special challenges of Starcraft II's complex game design and the benefits and costs of designing an e-sport.

Another notable lecture is 'The Design Process and Philosophy of Dance Central', led by Matt Boch and Dean Tate of Harmonix. The duo talk about the nuances of designing for full-body motion gaming on the standout Kinect title, also considering unconventional ways to approach exploratory prototyping when starting from scratch.

GDC 2011 Debuts Initial, Wide-Ranging Summit Line-Up

Organizers of the 2011 Game Developers Conference have announced initial line-ups for major Summits at the 25th edition of the industry's leading digital entertainment event next February.

Held alongside the GDC tutorials on Monday, February 28th and Tuesday, March 1st in San Francisco, a large range of key one- and two-day Summits will kick off GDC week with innovative and informative programs led by industry experts -- including notables from Zynga, Area/Code, Google, Klei Entertainment, MIT, and more.

As the overall session list for GDC 2011 continues to grow, organizers are highlighting the top initial talks for the seven Summits, including the expanded Social & Online Games Summit, the new Smartphone Summit, and the long-running Independent Games Summit -- all open to GDC 2011 pass-holders with a Summits & Tutorials or All Access Pass.

Newly announced GDC 2011 summit sessions of particular note include ones from the following Summits:

- The Social and Online Games Summit is expanding even further for 2011 after a blockbuster 2010 Summit, with initial technical-specific highlights including 'Social Speed: Improving Flash Performance for Social Games' from Zynga director of engineering Amitt Mahajan, centering on the different approaches studios can take to making their social games both "load and run fast."

The full lecture list to date for the Summit includes 'Business', 'Essentials', 'Tech' and 'Vision' themed mini-tracks, and spans everything from Playdom's Peter Fishman on 'Behavioral Economics and Social Games' through Spry Fox's provocative Daniel Cook on 'How to Survive the Inevitable Enslavement of Developers by Facebook'.

GDC 2011 Announces Art, Audio Talks From Final Fantasy, Pixar, Gear Of War 3

Organizers of the 2011 Game Developers Conference have debuted initial lectures from the Art and Audio Tracks for the Main Conference, spanning Gears Of War 3, Pixar, Limbo, Final Fantasy and beyond.

As the overall session list for the event further expands, organizers are specially highlighting the initial Main Conference session announcements around these two areas.

The Art and Audio Tracks take place from Wednesday March 2nd to Friday March 4th, 2011 during the pre-eminent, San Francisco-based event, alongside other discipline-specific Tracks dedicated to programming, design, business and management, and production.

All of the above Track sessions are open to those with a Main Conference or All-Access Pass, with a special Audio Pass also available, and some of the top sessions debuting in the Art and Audio Tracks are as follows:

Art Track

One of the notable Art Track reveals at this early stage is 'Fast and Efficient Facial Rigging in Gears Of War 3' by Epic Games' Jeremy Ernst, showcasing the methodology used for the much-awaited action title.

The lecture is designed to "show developers of any level how to create and think in a way that leads to faster and more efficient ways of building not only face rigs, but any kind of rig or tool."

GDC 2011 Reveals Major Roster Of Full-Day Tutorials

Organizers of the 2011 Game Developers Conference have revealed a packed full-day tutorial line-up -- including notables from Epic, Blizzard, and Valve -- for the 25th edition of the industry's leading event for game creators.

With the overall session list for the event starting to fill out, organizers are taking the opportunity to reveal the full-day tutorials available to attendees during the GDC 2011 registration process.

These lower-capacity, first-come first-served tutorials will once again be held alongside the GDC Summits on the first two days of the San Francisco-based event, Monday, February 28th and Tuesday, March 1st.

They will be open to those with a Summits & Tutorials or All-Access Pass, and interested parties can select their preference during the process of registration.

Newly announced GDC 2011 tutorials of particular note include the following:

- A special one-day 'Producer Boot Camp' is being assembled by key GDC Advisory Board members including Laura Fryer, VP and General Manager of WB Games Seattle; Epic Games executive producer Rod Fergusson and Media Molecule's Siobhan Reddy (LittleBigPlanet franchise).

The trio will assemble a full day tutorial -- including themselves and other yet to be announced speakers -- that "focuses on some of the key skills required by producers, both new to the role and seasoned veterans, to be successful in this challenging industry."

GDC Celebrates 25th Conference With Official History Outreach

The organizers of the 2011 Game Developers Conference are announcing a call for written memories, photos and videos from the past twenty-four iterations of the Game Developers Conference.

The public call comes as the event approaches 'GDC 25' in February 2011 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, and organizers plan an unprecedented digitization push from its own archives, utilizing an official GDC historian.

With almost a quarter-century at the forefront of the art and business of game creation, the first ever GDC (at that time the Computer Game Developers Conference) took place all the way back in 1988.

There were two events in the show's inaugural year, and a yearly conference going forward, growing to over 18,000 attendees and encompassing events like the Game Developers Choice Awards and the Independent Games Festival.

Along the way, GDC has seen keynotes and signature lectures from Shigeru Miyamoto, event founder Chris Crawford, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, design legends like Sid Meier, futurist Ray Kurzweil, and a host of others - and inspired tens of thousands of game creators to take their skills and inspiration to the next level.

To celebrate 'GDC 25', the conference organizers have appointed an official historian for the show in the form of noted technology archivist Jason Scott, known for his Textfiles.com digital archive and his history of preserving important digital artifacts.

Canadian Games Conference Announced For May 2011, Including 'Best Of GDC' Track

Event organizer Reboot Communications is announcing a new wholly-owned event, the Canadian Games Conference, debuting in Vancouver in May 2011 alongside the second annual Canadian Videogame Awards.

This newly branded event will offer cutting-edge keynotes, lecture and roundtable content from local, national, and international game creators, focusing on core topics like game design and programming alongside emerging smartphone and social game areas. It will also include a bustling expo floor.

In addition, the 2011 Canadian Games Conference is also the first-ever event to feature a special 'Best Of GDC' content track, including some of the best speakers and topics from the worldwide Game Developers Conferences.

This unique agreement for the 'Best Of GDC' content at the Canadian Games Conference evolves a partnership built around the former Game Developers Conference Canada event, which the Canadian Games Conference replaces and expands on. Reboot also ran the popular Vancouver International Game Summit from 2006 to 2008.

The official dates for the Canadian Games Conference will be May
19-20th, 2011 at the Vancouver Conference Centre. Once again, the show
will be preceded on May 18th by the 2nd Annual Canadian Videogame
Awards, also produced by Reboot Communications in conjunction with
Greedy Productions and DigiBC.

GDC 2011 Opens Registration, Extends Summit Submission Deadline

Organizers have announced that registration and an improved hotel booking system have opened for next February's Game Developers Conference 2011 in San Francisco, also reminding attendees of impending deadlines for GDC Summit lecture submissions and IGF game entries.

GDC showrunners have confirmed that passes are now purchasable for GDC 2011, which returns to the Moscone Convention Center from February 28th to March 4th for five days of summits, tutorials, lectures, panels and roundtable discussions presented by leading industry experts.

The first deadline for purchasing passes for this historic 25th GDC show is December 10th, for Alumni registration, and GDC 2010 attendees should be receiving an email with special registration codes in the next few days.

However, early registration passes -- with up to 35% off final pass prices -- can be bought by prospective attendees at any time.

In addition, GDC organizers have worked with lodging experts Passkey International to set up a special GDC-specific hotel finder, making booking your GDC 2011 hotel much easier. A dedicated site compiles space in all the hotel blocks for the show, making search and finding one or multiple rooms a single-step process.

GDC 2011 Announces Summit Line-Up, Calls For Submissions

Game Developers Conference organizers have announced additional Summits for GDC 2011, including a new GDC Smartphone Summit and the return of the Social & Online Games Summit. The organizers have also opened up a call for Summit lecture submissions until October 14th.

The GDC Summits take place Monday, February 28th and Tuesday, March 1st, 2011, the first two days of the historic 25th annual Game Developers Conference. They offer deep-dive content on a variety of notable game industry topics, ahead of the main conference which runs Wednesday, March 2nd through Friday, March 4th.

This year, the conference is introducing the GDC Smartphone Summit, which brings top developers from around the world to share knowledge and concrete takeaways on the smartphone and related platforms.

These include breakout game platforms like Apple's iPhone, the iPad, Android OS phones and tablets, Blackberry and a variety of other notable handheld devices.

The summits also include the vibrant Social & Online Games Summit, with a packed agenda devoted to social network games, free-to-play web titles, and microtransaction-powered online games.

2011's GDC will also see the return of the signature Independent Games Summit, highlighting the top indie game creators and lessons. the Summit will run as part of the Independent Games Festival at the show.

GDC 25: Behind The Scenes Of GDC Lecture Submissions

[As Game Developers Conference approaches its 25th anniversary next February, a series of posts will give insight into the process and history behind the show. This time, organizers take a look at the Main Conference submission process, as first-round acceptances are sent out.]

Although there's still plenty going on around other GDC shows -- with GDC Online taking place in a couple of weeks and GDC China still on the agenda for December, organizers are well into the process of picking talks for GDC 2011.

The 25th annual Game Developers Conference -- celebrating a quarter-century of existence giving inspiration and practical take-away by developers for developers, is being held in San Francisco's Moscone Center next February 28 through March 4, 2011.

Last year, then-board member Simon Carless discussed the background of how talks get picked for GDC, explaining at the time:

"One initial point that is worth making strongly. I know that in some conferences (both outside the game industry and in), the Advisory Board can take a much smaller role in actually directly picking the content.

But one of the reasons that Game Developers Conference is so well respected, I believe, is that all of the talks are either empirically chosen from submissions, or carefully and specifically invited by the official GDC Advisory Board. The GDC organizers don't pick your talk -- key members of your own peer group pick your talk.

So rather than being hands-off 'advisors', multiple Advisory Board members grade every single submitted talk. They also discuss submitted and invited talk specifics via email, phone, and during the course of multiple in-person meetings. Finally, they coach and mold conditionally accepted GDC talks into a better end product."

We're doing the same this year, and after submissions that ended in August, GDC 2011 lecture selection has again been extremely competitive -- with more than 800 submitters vying for the opportunity to present at the next Game Developers Conference.

GDC 2011 Celebrates 25th Anniversary, Calls For Papers, Adds Board Members

Game Developers Conference organizers have announced the opening of the call for submissions for the show, to be held in San Francisco on February 28th to March 4th 2011. The call for submissions to present lectures, roundtables and panel sessions for the 2011 Game GDC -- the historic 25th anniversary show -- is now open through Wednesday, August 25th.

The main GDC advisory board is looking for submissions in the following game-related areas/tracks: Audio, Business and Management, Game Design, Production, Programming and Visual Arts, to be showcased on the prestigious Wednesday to Friday main conference of Game Developers Conference 2011. (Submissions for the GDC Summits will open later in the year.)

A talk abstract is required alongside a more detailed description and speaker information, and the GDC Call For Papers page has multiple annotated examples of previous submissions, giving detailed, precise instructions on speaker criteria and the selection process.

Alongside this year's call for submissions, the GDC 2011 advisory board has been expanded, adding several leading industry figures in the social and independent gaming spaces.

In particular, new board members include Media Molecule studio director Siobhan Reddy (LittleBigPlanet 2), EA2D designer/programmer Soren Johnson (Civilization IV, Spore), independent developer Adam Saltsman (Canabalt, Flixel), and Playfish San Francisco GM Dan Fiden. Also added for their art and audio expertise respectively are Undead Labs' Steve Theodore and Microsoft's Scott Selfon.

GDC Vault Adds Ngmoco, Moshi Monsters Emerging Market Lectures

Continuing their Game Developers Conference 2010 free video lecture series, show organizers have debuted well-received lectures on social/free to play games by Ngmoco's Neil Young and Moshi Monsters' Michael Acton Smith.
The two new lectures, both highly rated by GDC attendees, are part of a free bi-weekly update published at the GDC Vault website, and feature video technology that allows users to simultaneously view a presenter's slides alongside video and audio of their presentation.
Firstly, organizers are presenting Neil Young's Business & Management Track keynote from GDC 2010, 'Things to Unlearn Moving From Traditional Development to the New Digital World'. Young, who is CEO & founder of iPhone/iPad centric publisher/developer ngmoco (TouchPets, We Rule, Rolando) "talks candidly about the challenges that traditional game developers face" in this new market.
Young, who was previously a long-time EA executive (Majestic) discusses "transitioning from long development cycles, packaged goods and the one time sale to the essential new models of games as a service, virtual goods, data driven design & minimum viable products" in this highly-rated GDC lecture.

GDC Vault Adds Talks From Brathwaite, geoDefense Creator

GDC organizers have debuted two new free lecture videos recorded at Game Developers Conference 2010, including acclaimed talks from Train boardgame creator Brenda Brathwaite and iPhone geoDefense maker David Whatley.
The two new lectures, both highly rated by GDC attendees, are part of a free bi-weekly update published at the GDC Vault website, and feature video technology that allows users to simultaneously view a presenter's slides alongside video and audio of their presentation.
Firstly, Brenda Brathwaite's Design Track talk 'Train (or How I Dumped Electricity and Learned to Love Design)' sees the Slide creative director and veteran developer (Wizardry) discuss why she "shut off her computer and consoles and began to consume dozens of non-digital games from all over the world", after "playing a run of games that both looked and played the same."
In this lecture, Brathwaite talks about the design process of her series the Mechanic is the Message and specifically the award-winning board game Train, and "shares what she learned from our brothers and sisters in that other medium when she cut the cord, became incredibly inspired, and learned to love design."

GDC Vault Adds Free 2D Boy, Bungie GDC 2010 Video Lectures

GDC organizers have released two new free lecture videos recorded at Game Developers Conference 2010, including 2D Boy's Ron Carmel on funding independent games and Bungie's Brian Sharp on compassionate leadership in game development.
The two new lectures, published at the GDC Vault website, feature video technology that allows users to simultaneously view a presenter's slides alongside video and audio of their presentation.
First, the Independent Games Summit at GDC this year was kicked off by Ron Carmel's lecture, 'Indies and Publishers: Fixing a System That Never Worked', for which the full video presentation is now available.
Carmel, co-founder of World Of Goo creator 2D Boy, is one of the key movers behind the recently-announced Indie Fund, an "angel"-style funding source for indie game makers, and his lecture and Q&A discusses his thoughts on the future of funding for independents.
The lecture begins with IGS co-organizers Matthew Wegner and Steve Swink introducing the Summit and making remarks about the state of independent games - click on the 'Indies and Publishers' link in the navigation window if you'd like to move straight to Ron's talk.

GDC Vault Debuts Free Videos, Slides From GDC 2010

Game Developers Conference 2010 organizers have revealed plans for the GDC Vault, including free videos featuring Zynga, Ernest Adams and more, and regular free updates planned throughout the year.
The newly launched GDC Vault website is designed to hold free speaker slides from all GDC events, as well as specially synchronized video recordings of Game Developers Conference lectures and historical audio recordings.
The GDC Vault video technology allows users to simultaneously view a presenter's slides alongside video and audio of their presentation.
As an initial offering, the GDC Vault free videos section has made the 5 Expo Pass-included GDC 2010 sessions available for completely free viewing.
Free GDC 2010 Lecture Recordings
Free videos debuted thus far include the following notable hour-long GDC 2010 lectures, all available permanently online:
- 'Engineering Scalable Social Games' by Dr. Robert Zubek of Zynga, a programming talk in which the veteran developer "introduces best practices for building highly scalable infrastructure for social and web games" from the viewpoint of the Farmville creators.

 

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