With a bevy of inspirational sessions, specialized summits and tutorials, exciting keynotes, numerous networking and social events, Expo Floor and Career Pavilion, GDC remains the most important and largest industry gathering for videogame professionals.
The beginning of my day was the same as most of the attendees at GDC, sessions and sessions. As I may have noted already most of my time was spent at the Indie Summit, today was no different. The first talk was on failure and how to best plan around or plan not to fail when making a Indie title. They had a handful of speakers like Amir Rao of Supergiant Games (Bastion) who talked about the years worth of development that had been spent on the since removed gardening section of the game. Enemy Airship spoke on how Shadow Physics will never see the light of day (HA punny) and a few other designers as well.
I was going to attend the next talk with a handful of experienced composers who write music for indie games but I ran into some old friends out in the hall from Tripwire Entertainment. We had a fantastic chat about the detailed voice acting component from Red Orchestra 2. If there is ever a cocky Russian in a future patch because of a high D/K ratio you can thank me for the idea.
The next event I listened too was one on video game clones. The developer Vlambeer (Radical Fishing) talks about how they dealt with clones. It has created a lot of discussion based on a few things like how the act of cloning could be dangerous to up and coming indie developers. After that it was a Galcon post-mortem with Phil Hassey, quite entertaining even if his games are not any of my favourites. The main talking points he brought up where that even though he has re-re-re-released Galcon over the years it still is his only main source of income, even though he has other projects.
After that I wondered over to the GDC Play booth where our old friends from Contagion were there in full swing showing up some extended gameplay videos of Contagion and a prop showreel. I was asked to have a session with them for the game but as you are about the find out I quickly ran out of time for anything else.
After that, it was time to sword and board as I was heading to the Paradox show room to see their new game War of the Roses.
The gameplay is quite similar to that of Age of Chivalry and possibly the new version Chivalry. However the combat feels really good due to the the mixture of old and new mixing the mount and blade combat with some modern trippings. I also had the chance to quiz the designers on a few things, first War of the Roses will be 90% MP which was a little disheartening for me personally. There will be dedicated servers day one, there is mounted combat but they were not showing that off just yet, modding will be a featured part of the game with server mods being supported as well.
So far it is looking very awesome, weapons feel heavy and lethal, bows act like a bow should, and the combat is fast. You can (right now) spawn on your team mates after kicking the bucket, or you can wait for a revive (if you have not been stabbed in yo face already). Keep an eye on this one!
I also got to pick up a sweet sword and shield which Scotty promptly stole, packing something like that for international travel was a joy...
It does look awesome though.
Day three all things considered was a quiet one, I only had two things I needed to do. The first was to meet up with the lovely Mike Kasprzak who is the current organiser for the Ludum Dare a monthly game dev game that lasts for 24 or 48 hours (depending on your commitment level. We had a long chat about well everything. It sounded something like "oh yes server server server loads on the server server backlog server server video games". The second thing I had to do was watch some horrible video game themed karaoke. Never watch video game themed karaoke.
A final thought: Why is it that American food sizes are larger then everybody else (US Medium = or > AU Large), however when ordering dinner from a nice restaurant they only give you 8 boiled potato balls in spinach? Have some consistency America!
We're on day 3 and today the floor was open for all the big names! But to our surprise GDC Play was still bringing in more people than we could have hoped for though legs are sore and breaks were few and far between. We got to show off our game to Activision, Blizzard, Epic, Tripwire, DesuraNET, Bandai, and so many more and received nothing but positive feedback which we're grateful for.
We showed you a video yesterday showcasing our models and today we have more alpha gameplay with another track composed by our very own Ulrich Gollick (No dubstep this time). We hope you enjoy it as much as those who were viewing it at our kiosk yesterday and today-
Special thanks to the guys at Cho-media.org again for their editing skills.
The day was long and all are exhausted so the team has come together for dinner to celebrate a hard days work, discuss all that went on and all that they met, but most importantly to rest dem legs.
On to day 4 and the end of GDC Play so be sure to keep up on the final days of this years GDC with live coverage by following us on Facebook & Twitter
As you all know Monochrome is one of the Exhibitors at this years Game Developers Conference and here we are on Day 2 with the opening of GDC Play where our Kiosk is showing off media to the public. Not all of us could make it to San Francisco for GDC and so on Day 2 we want to reveal one of the video's we have looping and which has received a lot of positive feedback
Special thanks to the guys at Cho-media.org for editing and we look forward to sharing more media as we go so be sure to keep eyes open for the next update!
We've also set out some swag for those at the conference and Josh was kind enough to grab a pic of what is being handed out-
We also had the pleasure of meeting up with our friends Dave and Scott of DesuraNet/IndieDB/ModDB. Still more to come so for live coverage remember to follow us on Facebook & Twitter
Wow everyone. Wow. We are in San Fransico for the Game Developer Conference (also known as GDC or getting drunk constantly). We have been making the trip so far for 5 years now, and each year it get better. Let me start from the beginning.
The first day after the outbreak
The first real day of our trip was the longest day of our lives. I mean this emotionally and physically. We set off from Melbourne Australia at 8.30 am and finally arrived in San Francisco the same day just two hours later, however due to the time zones, the whole trip was only 16 hours or so. Yeah we time travelled.
After we had settled into our new lodgings and finally got to have a shower we had some time to spare before our first event for the trip. So what does any self respecting tourist do when in SF? Go to Alcertraz of course!
After we finished there we headed on over to an IGN Press/Indie mixer where we saw a lot of old and new faces. A few of the Dejobaan guys where there as well as the Overgrowth dudes and who could forget the lovable Andy and Andy who are hard at work with Monaco. However the biggest suprise was Davey Wreden the brains behind last years hit mod release The Stanley Parable. More of this meeting will be apparent in the next few days.
After our exhausting day (basically two days), we were dead that night, the only thing that could wake us was the sound of the early morning curtsy call.
An early start today, I made my way into the press section of the GDC convention which was already swarming with people of all ages. Three floor up and hidden in a moderately sized room I saw a familiar face. Tom Killen from The Voxel Agents who we just happen to share an office space with back in Australia was working the door to the press room like a boss. You see he was volunteering to help run the GDC event, in return he got an all access pass and a free lunch every day. Normally something like that would set you back a few hundred dollars, its worth knowing if you ever plan to attend.
My first stop as always when attending any of our GDC events is the Indie Summit which for a fine gentleman as myself running the websites I do makes a lot of sense, and I always find what the selected developers speaking interesting and knowledge worth knowing. First up we had a post-mortem on QWOP and GRIP and where he got started. Next was a talk on folk/submersive games from one of the guys responsible from Johann Sebastian Joust. The talk was on mostly swapping the idea of new technology which makes better games. For example taking advantage of how everyone in the world (well most of us) own a smart phone and what that means for traditional games free from virtual worlds, aiming to bring back traditional folk/carnival games with the use of popular and already existing tech. Quite interesting.
After lunch it was a post mortem on Magical Ponycorns Adventure which is a point and click designed by a 5 year old girl and her father Ryan Henson. He also mentions how instead of being passive when trying to get people to notice him he struck out and made a big splash by stealing a heap of plastic coins and pouring it on himself in a room full of people. Interesting ideas where presented in this speech. Finally my last session for the day was on making awesome game trailers for your indie title and how to best approach it.
After a long meeting with our fellow Indie Royale owners it was time to see the long awaited Indie Game the Movie, which was outstanding. The best way to describe this would be if you have a member in your family who just does not "get" why you spend your time making games or mods show them this film and everything will make sense. IGTM gets deep into the subject matter of working with people, building a game, why artists do the things they do and the results of their labours. It shows respect developers at their breaking points and how they bounce back. If you get the chance to see this film I highly recommend you do.
Final word before I drift off to lala land. I have no idea why American Seagulls are so big. What on earth are you feeding the bloody things???
A good number of the team are now sleeping after a long day getting setup and sight seeing. Let them sleep and catch up a bit on GDC2012 Day 1.
We will be using our Facebook & Twitter pages to cover events as they unfold so be sure to "Like" or "Follow" to stay up to date on our progress out in San Francisco at this years Game Developers Conference and to catch new media as soon as it's posted!
Day 1 started with the Team coming together for the first time from all over the world. There was sight seeing, lunch, checking out our Kiosk, dinner, and dreams of what else awaits our team in the following days.
Remember to follow us on Facebook and/or Twitter as we head into Day 2 and the floor opens to GDC Play.