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Author Topic: I am going to GDC  (Read 8824 times)

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Bongo Bill

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I am going to GDC
« on: February 14, 2008, 05:19:19 PM »

Will I see any of you there? Should I bring back souvenirs? Will I find time to share impressions? TUNE IN NEXT WEEK
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EmaWii

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #1 on: February 14, 2008, 09:00:03 PM »

I'll be there writing about things. Not sure what yet.
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James Edward Smith

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #2 on: February 14, 2008, 10:41:23 PM »

My boss will be there, Steve Grenier with RIM.
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Sharkey

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #3 on: February 14, 2008, 10:54:00 PM »

I'm still there from last year.
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Brentai

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #4 on: February 15, 2008, 12:00:41 AM »

Apparently I can't go to GDC because I have to stay and GD.  Go figure.
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BŁge

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #5 on: February 15, 2008, 06:33:54 AM »

What's GDC?
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Brentai

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #6 on: February 15, 2008, 08:39:05 AM »

It stands for "Google?  Duh.  Click!" and is the proper response to when someone yells at you for asking a question that's easily answered by Google.  For example:

Who is number one?
AL GORE DI'NT INVENT THE INNANET SO YOU COULD BE IG'NANT, MUTHACRACKA!!!
Oh, GDC.   :nyoro~n:


For those of you too lazy to JGI, Pharrell is number one.
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Classic

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #7 on: February 15, 2008, 08:41:59 AM »

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Arc

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #8 on: February 15, 2008, 03:31:17 PM »

I'm still there from next year.

Is it just me, or did this conference blow the hell up in the last two years?
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Kazz

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #9 on: February 15, 2008, 04:56:14 PM »

o rly?
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EmaWii

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #10 on: February 16, 2008, 10:34:44 AM »

I'll be there writing about everything.

Apparently I'm supposed to cover the entire IGF by myself, as well as the rest of the floor.  And then 12 panels (four of which I'll get paid for in money and not just adrenaline). I just hope the parties I rsvp'd for let me in, cuz I'll deserve it at the end of the days I have planned. Of course, this is all assuming I even get a pass. I thought it was more set-up than it is, but apparently I have to go print samples and get a letter Monday morning to wander down there by myself. I can't really see them letting me in...but perhaps optimism is the only way to proceed.

EDIT: I got in.
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Bongo Bill

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #11 on: February 20, 2008, 10:34:10 PM »

Well, Day 1 of the main conference went off without a hitch. Started off with a complementary bagel, then heard from two fellers from the film school at USC (by this time I had already successfully performed the arcane professionals' ritual known to some as "networking" - they are not kidding when they say you need to bring at least twenty dozen business cards), talking about how you can use the various Sciences to improve various aspects of the process of game design. They are apparently participating in the whole sort of "movement" to create a more-or-less unified game design vocabulary. Since they were already aware of danc's efforts, I humbly referred them to my own hovel of a game design blag.

After that was a keynote. The music was too loud and aside from various amusing distractions (most notably, Peter Molyneux's husband being murdered) and announcements, the entire presentation consisted of a Microsoft rep jerking off about XNA on stage for an hour and a half. I like a lot of the technology going into it, though, even if they do seem to think that "cross-platform" means the 360, the Zune, and both flavors of Windows. Kind of surprised that huge, ponderous, embrace-extend-extinguish Microsoft would be the first ones to make a formalized "YouTube for games" but upon further reflection, with .NET and DirectX they were really in the right position for it, technologically speaking. So that's some points for them, I guess.

Attended a roundtable discussion on "Designing Conflict Resolution without Violence" which was very crowded. This might be an issue in some of the other roundtables I'm hoping to check out. Still, it was fertile ground for the whole "networking" thing.

After that, and lunch, I witnessed a very well-attended speech by some apparently popular fellow by the name of Chris Hecker. He was talking about a programming concept of his own invention, "Structure vs. Style" (which isn't what you'd assume), and while I could tell there was some definite meat to the concept I felt that he needed to mull it over for a few more months before I was quite prepared to try to comprehend it fully. Also I kept nodding off.

I stomped around the exposition area for a goodly long while, seeking the companies who desire the skills which I can provide. It reminded me of the fact that I forgot to update my resume before coming here. Which is why I'm now quickly banging something out in another window. For those of you in the audience who are stalking me, there's a possibility that I'll be moving to Scotland!

After that I attended the Independent Games Festival and the Game Developers' Choice Awards, both of which were lovely and both of which you can read better about elsewhere.
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Sharkey

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #12 on: February 21, 2008, 01:11:09 AM »

I've been pretty much focusing on IGF stuff this year. Kind of like every year, except I can be spared camera crews and resources now. The awards were fucking spiff, as always. A few awards I disagreed with, but otherwise incredible. Well, with the notable exception of the nvidia sponsored mobile awards, which were glossed over quickly, and the presenter of the damn things was sneering, sarcastically half-clapping, and just generally being a grade-A prick about it. Still, they were pretty damn class other than that.

The highlight of the whole thing, though, had to have been last night. After the 1up awards party and the 9bit party I got it into my head to go home. Maybe have a few more beers with some of the IGF kids. Somehow this ended up becoming more than a dozen of them following me up the hill. I was kind of distracted having a rant with Derek Yu and didn't realize just how many people were tagging along before I looked over my shoulder a few blocks later. I decided to take the lot to Jenn's, which was a hell of a surprise for her, if a pleasant one. Got to know a lot of them even better, and a generally fantastic time was had by all. They're each brilliant in their own way, and there's such a range of personalities and philosophies between them all. Also somewhat shockingly naive, and really, at the heart of it, just interested in making their ideas real. It's refreshing after a year of cynical industry shit, and it'll help toward a good personality piece at some point. The last of them didn't trickle out the door until after dawn, and a few of us just slept all over the place. Kind of murdered me for today, but it was a great decision. A hell of a lot better than being up in time for the MS keynote or whatever such horseshit.

Looking forward to the rest of the thing, but really, these first couple days are usually the best for me, and the busiest.
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Arc

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #13 on: February 21, 2008, 02:34:06 AM »

Skilled independent developers throw me the hell off. You're aren't supposed to be approachable and productive, and you sure as hell aren't supposed to be under the age of Wil Wheaton while as such... Dammit.


MS keynote or whatever such horseshit.

But... But... One billion achievements! B-grade teasers!

The solipsism of Itagaki & Molyneux forming into one corporeal form!
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Zaratustra

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #14 on: February 21, 2008, 11:11:01 AM »

I like that Microsoft wants us to make games for them for free, and then pay to play them.

...

Actually, you guys go ahead and make games for them. I'll be here, uh, taking notes.

James Edward Smith

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #15 on: February 21, 2008, 11:14:08 AM »

Guess I'll post this here. Fez was made by an indie game making consortium of sorts based out of Montreal Quebec and it looks pretty swank to me despite what some nay-sayers have had to say about it on this or that blog. A dream of mine is to work with them on something in the future.
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Thad

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #16 on: February 21, 2008, 11:18:44 AM »

Very cool.  That's what I pictured when I first read the description of Super Paper Mario -- which I liked, but this looks like it's got the mechanic nailed down much better.
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Zaratustra

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #17 on: February 21, 2008, 12:12:10 PM »

It is rather nice, very Cave Storyish. I'm just wondering if there's actual content to the game or if it's just a glorified tech demo.

Sharkey

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #18 on: February 21, 2008, 01:10:21 PM »

Oh, Fez. I still need to get to the floor and get some real time in playing it, but by all accounts it's fantastic. Phil's a frighteningly passionate guy about it, and while my first exposure to the thing was actually a product of the drama surrounding it, it was very, very easy to discard all that after a second of talking to the guy and seeing the game itself in action.

It was good to see them get an award last night. And even better to watch him bypassing the guest list at the Sony party by pulling it out and thunking it on the desk.

The award, that is.
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James Edward Smith

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Re: I am going to GDC
« Reply #19 on: February 21, 2008, 01:13:26 PM »

Very cool.  That's what I pictured when I first read the description of Super Paper Mario -- which I liked, but this looks like it's got the mechanic nailed down much better.

Well so far, some people have been dismissive. The game did just win an award at GDC for artistic accomplishment or something, and I think we can all agree that it looks pretty awesome, but many judges and other people have been critical of the actual gameplay. The current release isn't much more than a tech demo, but the game hasn't been in development very long, only three months so far. Work was put into the engine itself (trixels) for quite a while before that, but they've only been making it an actual game for that time.

The problem that people have been putting forth about it is this: The view point swapping looks really cool and makes the game very stylistic, but puts the player into too complicated of a situation to actually be used skillfully to solve a level. Keeping track of a 3 dimentional level/map when you can only view and interact with one viewpoint of it at a time is too confusing and doesn't really allow players to use it gracefully. Instead players too often find themselves just wandering around to the edges of their current view and then pressing the change view button a few times until the solution becomes obvious.

I dunno, I'll have to play it before I can form an opinion, but I'm pretty sure that even if this really is a noticable and annoying detractor, it can probably be remedied with appropriate level design and ques in the right places. One judge said it would be better of the player didn't actually have control of when the view point swapped and instead there were just certain scripted places where if you stood there, the view would swap automatically. That might be a good idea if it could be done such that where you had to go to swap the view could be made predictable with level design.
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