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GDC 2011 Adds Biz, Production Talks From Sony, WB, CCP Veterans

Organizers of the 2011 Game Developers Conference have revealed Production and Business & Management Track talks spanning Sony, Warner Bros. and CCP veterans for the Main Conference at the 25th edition of the industry's leading digital entertainment event next March.

The Production and Business & Management 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, programming and game design.

As the overall session list for the event further expands, and following notable Game Design/Programming Track and Art/Audio Track highlights, organizers are spotlighting these two final Main Conference tracks.

All of the above Track sessions are open to those with a Main Conference or All-Access Pass. Some of the top new sessions debuting in the Production and Business & Management Tracks are as follows:

Production Track

Newly revealed as a key GDC 2011 Production Track lecture, 'More Pirates on a Burning Ship and Other Leadership Challenges' sees WB Games Seattle GM and Microsoft veteran Laura Fryer discussing key game business learnings.

Drawing upon lessons from shipping the Xbox and Gears of War, and building WB Games' studios in Seattle, GDC Advisory Board member Fryer will explore the challenges of leadership and the importance of building a strong team foundation.

Another newly announced talk, given by Chris Bruce of Sony Computer Entertainment America, focuses on how emerging social and casual gaming mechanisms can be exploited by game franchises on a range of platforms.

In 'Your Best Weapon is Your Community! How to Create a Social Ecosystem Across Multiple Platforms', Bruce explains how user generated content "has the potential to turn players into powerful advocates of your game".

Other Production Track sessions from the full set of confirmed sessions are 'Strategies for Firefighting Troubled Projects', a talk addressing major production challenges given by Kuju Entertainment's Chief Technical Officer, Adrian Hawkins, as well as 'It Can Work - Distributed Development of a AAA Game' by Ian Bell of Slightly Mad Studios (Need For Speed: Shift), and a discussion on the correlation of faults in human perception, team dynamics and project success given by Schell Games' Chuck Hoover.

Business & Management

Newly announced in the first batch of GDC 2011 Business & Management Track lectures is 'Data Analysis on Player Behavior in EVE Online' by CCP Games' Brynjolfur Erlingsson, who is the Lead Data Warehouse and Business Intelligence Developer at the Icelandic game creator.

Offering a fascinating glance into data mining, Erlingsson draws from real case studies from extensive data analysis experience with the company's complex and intriguing MMO title EVE Online, while also emphasizing the importance of behavioral data logging.

Another notable Business & Management Track session is '1-Hour Video Game MBA' given by Charlie Cleveland of Bay Area studio Unknown Worlds Entertainment. Independent game studio head Cleveland (Natural Selection 2) aims to provide practical tools and ideas that 'a traditional MBA still might not provide you' for building and running a successful game company.

Other Business & Management Track talks from the session list thus far confirmed include one on current market trends for digital distribution on the next-generation consoles given by EEDAR president Geoffrey Zatkin, a lecture examining five key concepts of social game metrics from Lauren Bigelow, Chief Operating Officer of WeeWorld, and a panel of international lawyers taking a practical look at four important legal issues that will affect your game business.

In recent weeks, Game Developers Conference -- part of the UBM TechWeb Game Network, as is this website -- has also confirmed a host of GDC 2011 Summit lectures, with even more Main Conference and keynote content announcements to come over the next few weeks.

Game Developers Conference 2011 -- the 25th iteration of the industry-leading show -- will be held at the Moscone Center in San Francisco from February 28th to March 4th, and early registration is now open. For more information on all aspects of the show, visit the official GDC 2011 website.

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