GDC 2017 PlayStation Related Talks

 
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PlayStation Related Talks

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Monday

February 27

Animation Bootcamp: " 'Uncharted 4': Naughty Dog's Animation Workflow" & "Animation Prototyping in 'Uncharted 4' "

Date: Monday, February 27
Time: 11:20 am - 12:20 pm
Location: Room 132, North Hall
Format: Tutorial
Track: Visual Arts

  • Speakers:  Jeremy Yates (Lead Animator, Naughty Dog), Almudena Soria (Lead Animator, Naughty Dog)
  • Uncharted 4: Naughty Dog's Animation Workflow: In this presentation, Jeremy Yates, Lead Animator at Naughty Dog, uncovers the methodologies used by Naughty Dog to bring the characters of 'Uncharted' to life. He will delve into the unique culture of Naughty Dog as well as uncover the animation pipeline from concept to console, including previs, their motion capture process, achieving seamless transitions, tracking assets, and communicating feedback.
  • Animation Prototyping in 'Uncharted 4': In this talk, Almudena Soria Lead animator at Naughty Dog will show how animation prototyping can play a very important role in development. Instead of waiting for design or programming to make decisions about a feature, animators, can help to make those decisions easier by creating prototypes that help visualizing features. Prototypes from 'Uncharted 4' will be showcased.

Art Direction Bootcamp: "Graphic Design Thinking" & "Finding the Soul of a City in 'Infamous Second Son'"

Date: Monday, February 27
Time: 1:20pm - 2:20pm
Location: Room 130, North Hall
Format: Tutorial
Track: Visual Arts

  • Speakers: Jason Connell (Associate Creative Director, Sucker Punch), Liam Wong (Graphic Design Director, Ubisoft)
  • "Graphic Design Thinking" - This session will highlight the importance of graphic design as an art direction tool. Sharing processes for defining the visual signature of a game, focusing on graphic design elements such as: typography, iconography, logo and color to create a unique visual identity for your game.
  • "Finding the Soul of a City in 'Infamous Second Son' " - From the grungy roots in Seattle's 80's and 90's to the unpredictable weather and rain that drenches the region. Dive into the creative direction and art direction that created an impressionistic view of Seattle in 'Infamous Second Son' and 'First Light'.

 

Art Direction Bootcamp: Cinematic Environment Production for 'Uncharted 4'

Date: Monday, February 27
Time: 4:00pm - 5:00pm
Location: Room 130, North Hall
Format: Tutorial
Track: Visual Arts

  • Speakers:  Erick Pangilinan (Art Director, Naughty Dog), Christian Nakata (Lead Environment Artist, Naughty Dog)
  • Uncharted 4', Naughty Dog's latest title, took you on an unparalleled globe-trotting adventure. However, the team at Naughty Dog wanted to complement their larger than life destinations and set pieces with quieter, more intimate moments of exploration and character building. They accomplish that by presenting more down to earth moments in the life of their heroes and allowing the player to soak in the richly detailed environment spaces that tell a lot of the story. In this talk, they wanted to use some of their more narrative-driven spaces to walk the audience through their entire production pipeline, from concept to polish. Naughty Dog hopes you enjoy!

 

Building Non-linear Narratives in 'Horizon: Zero Dawn'

Date: Monday, February 27
Time: 4:40pm - 5:10pm
Location: Room 3016, West Hall
Format: Session
Track: Game Narrative Summit

  • Speakers:  Leszek Szczepanski (Gameplay Programmer, Guerrilla Games)
  • Open world RPGs require deep stories, which emphasize player choice and freedom. The bigger the games grow, the more complex systems managing these stories get. See how Guerrilla Games tackled the issue in 'Horizon: Zero Dawn', by creating a quest system which has non-linearity at its base.

Animation Bootcamp: Tricks of the Trade

Date: Monday, February 27
Time: 5:30pm - 6:00pm
Location: Room 132, North Hall
Format: Tutorial
Track: Visual Arts

  • Speakers:  Kristjan Zadziuk (Animation Director, Ubisoft), Young Vo (Animation Lead, Sparkypants), Mariel Cartwright  (Art Director, Lead Animator and Head of Story, Lab Zero Games), John Paul Rhinemiller (Lead Cinematics Animator, Vicarious Visions), Zach Lowery (Senior Animator and Designer, Boss Key Productions), Almudena Soria (Lead Animator, Naughty Dog)
  • After being last year's #1 rated art talk, the rapid fire set of talks returns to give you a bunch of bite sized tips to take away and start applying to your work immediately.
 
 

Tuesday

February 28

Together Apart: Self-Expression and Communication in Social VR

Date: Tuesday, February 28
Time: 3:00pm - 3:30pm
Location: Room 135, North Hall
Format: Session
Track: Game VR/AR

  • Speaker: Elli Shapiro (Senior Developer, Sony Interactive Entertainment)
  • Synopsis: The tools to build the metaverse are in developers' hands. High fidelity virtual reality, tracked controllers,spatialized 3D audio and high bandwidth networking enable powerful experiences. Shared social presence from remote locations is becoming a reality. With full body capture, eye tracking, physical feedback, real time recording and rendering of the human face, the real and the virtual become indistinguishable. However, in the current generation of consumer VR this technology is not quite there. This talk will consider the PlayStation Social VR demo, showcased at GDC 2016, and the ways in which it takes advantage of the power of VR and turns its limitations into its key strengths. This session will examine broadly three types of social interaction: real (e.g. voice chat), fake (e.g. algorithmic eye look) and abstract (e.g. intent driven facial expressions). This talk will look at balancing fun with comfort, the social signals of locomotion, the challenges of network physics and the power of griefing in VR.
 
 

Wednesday

March 1

Multiplayer Roundtable Day 1: Synchronizing Game State

Date: Wednesday, March 1
Time: 11:00am - 12:00pm
Location: Room 123, North Hall
Format: Roundtable
Track: Programming

  • Speaker:  Edward Pereira (Programmer, Naughty Dog), Drew Thaler (TBD, Naughty Dog)
  • Synopsis: One of the first tasks for any multiplayer game is connecting players together and getting them to agree on game state. The way this is handled can be impacted by all sorts of things: the game's genre, the target audience, and the expected variety of internet connections involved. Using the group's interests as a guide, this roundtable will explore different methods to keep the state consistent and talk about solutions to problems that arise when dealing with the vast and complicated internet. Topics can include but are not limited to peer-to-peer networking, latency reduction, and bandwidth management.

Future of Art Production in Games

Date: Wednesday, March 1
Time: 12:00pm - 12:30pm
Location: Room 130, North Hall
Format: Session
Track: Visual Arts

  • Speaker: Andrew Maximov (Lead Artist, Naughty Dog)
  • Synopsis: With the abundance of emerging technologies like photoscanning, procedurally generated content, neural networks, VR, AR one can find of himself understandably confused and lost in regards to the future of production as the industry knows it today. Join this talk and get together to discuss what a video game production will most likely look like 10 years from now and most importantly, how it will affect YOU as a creator.

Steps for Effective Localization

Date: Wednesday, March 1
Time: 12:00pm - 12:30pm
Location: Room 2010, West Hall
Format: Session
Track: Production & Team Management

  • Speaker:  Nadège Josa (Senior Project Manager, Localization Services, SIE)
  • Synopsis: Localization practices across the industry have evolved significantly over the last few years and at Sony Interactive Entertainment things are no different. This session will look at LAMS, the tool used across SIE and how it has changed improving collaboration and workflow. It will cover several features of the system, which developers should consider adding or looking for in their localization tools to support effective localization. These features allow SIE to get quality right earlier in the product life cycle, changing localization testing to a validation process, and harnessing the data in LAMS to be more efficient in that validation. Looking to the future, this talk will show new innovations in a localization test that saw a time saving of 90% on 'Until Dawn'. It will also look at automated naming convention error detection, and how VR presents new challenges in the world of localization, as well as share plans for increasing game data driven validation.

All Bang for No Buck: Get Your Game Trending

Date: Wednesday, March 1
Time: 12:45pm - 1:10pm
Location: Overlook 3018, West Hall
Format: Poster Session
Track: Business & Marketing

  • Speakers: Alex Moyet (Commercial Strategist, Media Molecule)
  • Synopsis: Every year thousands of games are released to an increasingly crowded and complex market place, making it harder to get your game noticed and into the hands of players. It is easy to get sucked in by big marketing and PR agencies who promise big followings (at a huge cost), or feel frustrated that this is out of reach when you need to dedicate every last penny to making the game of your dreams. But there are lots of clever ways to make a big impact on social media by spending wisely or even not at all. In this session, Alex will take you through the key 7 areas you need to consider to achieve significant results on social media, from building an overall strategy, to creating genuine engagement and conversation with your audience.

Tools for Effective Localization

Date: Wednesday, March 1
Time: 12:45pm - 1:10pm
Location: Overlook 2018, West Hall
Format: Poster Session
Track: Production & Team Management

  • Speaker:  Christopher Burgess (LAMS Project Manager, SIE)
  • Synopsis: In this poster session Chris Burgess will talk in detail about the implementation and interface to features of the localisation management system (LAMS) used within SIE, and the challenges and benefits of utilizing them across multiple projects within SIE.
    This will act as a deep dive on the features mentioned during the talk "Steps for Effective Localisation" by Nadege Josa where she will be broadly discussing them and the improvements they bring to the localisation process. The poster will chart the development of a title showing when each of these features can be best used along with the specific benefits seen in each scenario.

Tools for Effective Localization

Date: Wednesday, March 1
Time: 1:20pm - 1:45pm
Location: Overlook 2018, West Hall
Format: Poster Session
Track: Production & Team Management

  • Speaker:  Christopher Burgess (LAMS Project Manager, SIE)
  • Synopsis: In this poster session Chris Burgess will talk in detail about the implementation and interface to features of the localisation management system (LAMS) used within SIE, and the challenges and benefits of utilizing them across multiple projects within SIE.
    This will act as a deep dive on the features mentioned during the talk "Steps for Effective Localisation" by Nadege Josa where she will be broadly discussing them and the improvements they bring to the localisation process. The poster will chart the development of a title showing when each of these features can be best used along with the specific benefits seen in each scenario.

Community Management Roundtable 1

Date: Wednesday, March 1
Time: 2:00pm - 3:00pm
Location: Room 122, North Hall
Format: Roundtable
Track: Business & Marketing

  • Speakers: John Lindvay (Community Manager, Red Hook Studios), Abbie Heppe (Communications Manager, Media Molecule)
  • Synopsis: The Community Management Roundtable brings cat herders, fire fighters, and iron hands together to gain new insights and refine their best practices when it comes to interacting with and managing your game's community. How do you draw the line between toxic entitlement and positive activity and contributions? How much transparency is too much? As new features and patches roll out, how do you handle the inevitable mixed feelings from the loudest players? How can you improve the kinds of feedback you get? Game communities can be active for years, what are some long term strategies you can employ to help maintain a good community over time?

Higher Res Without Sacrificing Quality, plus Other Lessons from 'PlayStation VR Worlds'

Date: Wednesday, March 1
Time: 2:00pm - 3:00pm
Location: Room 2016, West Hall
Format: Session
Track: Programming

  • Speaker: Simon Hall (Principal Programmer, Sony London Studio), Joe Milner-Moore (Senior Principal Programmer, Sony London Studio)
  • Synopsis: With the abundance of emerging technologies like photoscanning, procedurally generated content, neural networks, VR, AR one can find of himself understandably confused and lost in regards to the future of production as the industry knows it today. Join this talk and get together to discuss what a video game production will most likely look like 10 years from now and most importantly, how it will affect YOU as a creator.

The Future of Real-Time Lighting: A Panel (Presented by ARM)

Date: Wednesday, March 1
Time: 2:00pm - 3:00pm
Location: Room 3022, West Hall
Format: Sponsored Session
Track: Visual Arts

  • Speaker:  Sean Cleaver (Deputy Editor, Develop), Ivan Pedersen (Staff Technical Artist, ARM), Yuriy ODonnell (Rendering Engineer, Frostbite / EA), Matthew Cooke (Senior Lighting Artist, Ready at Dawn), Neil Thompson (Head of Art and Animation, Bioware), Andrew Maximov (Lead Technical Artist, Naughty Dog), Remi Driancourt (ATD Lead, Square Enix)
  • Synopsis: Real-time lighting is a relatively young field within games. It is also one of the most important. As cinematographers have long known, it can make or break the final image, set the mood or enhance the story. But creating real-time lighting in games comes with a unique set of creative and technological challenges.
    This panel of industry experts will explore current issues in real-time lighting and discuss what the future holds in terms of opportunities and challenges. We will conduct the session in a town-hall style with a moderator and the opportunity for attendees to ask questions to the panel.

GPU-Based Run-Time Procedural Placement in 'Horizon: Zero Dawn'

Date: Wednesday, March 1
Time: 5:00pm - 6:00pm
Location: Room 3001, West Hall
Format: Session
Track: Programming, Visual Arts

  • Speakers: Jaap Van Muijden (Senior Programmer, Guerrilla Games)
  • Synopsis: Jaap van Muijden from Guerrilla Games will describe the GPU based procedural placement system that dynamically creates the world of 'Horizon: Zero Dawn' around the player. Not limited to just rocks and trees, the procedural system assembles fully-fledged environments while the player walks through them, complete with sounds, effects, wildlife and game-play elements. He will show the entire pipeline, from the graph editor where artists can define the procedural placement rules to the GPU algorithms that create a dense world around the player on the fly. He will demonstrate the power of this procedural approach by showing how painting in a tree line and redirecting roads can be just as easy as moving mountains and changing a desert into a tropical swamp.

Realistic Performances in Games

Date: Wednesday, March 1
Time: 5:00pm - 6:00pm
Location: Room 132, North Hall
Format: Session
Track: Design

  • Speaker:  Ryan M. James (Lead Editor, Naughty Dog, Inc.)
  • Synopsis: There's a perceived stigma about the narrative experience in the video games industry: that the average game has (at best) a thin story with cardboard cutout characters. But many companies have worked tirelessly to write relatable characters, capture them though subtle performances with their actors, and translate them into their games. At Naughty Dog, the praise and awards they've received are due to not only the methods they have for writing and recording those performances, but also the ways they seamlessly implement them, and later reconform them as the game evolves. Each developer has their own way of doing this, and in this session, Naughty Dog's lead editor will share some of the methods that they employ.

Crash Course in Online Features for Programmers

Date: Wednesday, March 1
Time: 5:00pm - 6:00pm
Location: Room 2001, West Hall
Format: Session
Track: Programming

  • Speaker:  Claire Blackshaw (Senior Online Consultant, Sony Computer Entertainment Europe)
  • Synopsis: All titles can benefit from some easy wins with online features. This talk will introduce a wide range of online features, highlighting easy features most platforms provide. At the same time, this talk will highlight the various rabbit holes inexperienced network programmers can fall into. After this talk, you will be familiar with most of the online feature buffet and able to select some which would enhance your game, providing an outline of implementation, basic terms and an idea of difficulty. You'll learn which online features best fit and about the realistic costs of adding some larger features, such as how platform features offer no running costs while some cloud features may be cheaper than you expect. This talk is aimed at smaller studios and indies.

Creating Compelling Characters: Insights from a Panel of Character Concept Artists

Date: Wednesday, March 1
Time: 5:00pm - 6:00pm
Location: Room 2020, West Hall
Format: Session
Track: Visual Arts

  • Speaker:  Justin Thavirat (Senior Art Department Supervisor, Blizzard Entertainment), Richard Lyons (Concept Artist, Naughty Dog), Laurel Austin (Principal Artist, Blizzard Entertainment), Claire Hummel (Art Director, Campo Santo)
  • Synopsis: Creating compelling, memorable characters can be a critical step in the game development process. There are many approaches towards creating characters that resonate with players and audiences and no one technique can always get the job done. In this panel, four characters designers and concept artists from diverse development backgrounds will share some of their philosophies and ideas on how to create compelling characters from four very different perspectives. Their artistic approaches, design philosophies, practical tips, and general wisdom will be explored to help the audience think about character design in a different light.
 
 

Thursday

March 2

Demo Derby: Sound Design

Date: Thursday, March 2
Time: 10:00am - 11:00am
Location: Room 3002, West Hall
Format: Session
Track: Audio

  • Speaker:  Alex Brandon (Founder, EarGames), Kristen Quebe (Senior Sound Designer, Riot Games), Garry Taylor (Audio Director, Sony Interactive Entertainment's Creative Services Group), Scott Gershin (Creative Director / Director of Editorial, Technicolor)
  • Synopsis: The G.A.N.G. Demo Derby is a longstanding tradition at GDC, and has been a cornerstone event for new and emerging audio professionals. Attendees can submit 120 seconds of their best work for a detailed critique and feedback from a team of leading audio directors and professionals. They can also participate in an active discussion with fellow panelists and audience members. The Derby is open to GDC attendees across all disciplines.

Multiplayer Roundtable Day 2: Server Architecture

Date: Thursday, March 2
Time: 10:00am - 11:00am
Location: Room 123, North Hall
Format: Roundtable
Track: Programming

  • Speaker:  Edward Pereira (Programmer, Naughty Dog), Drew Thaler (TBD, Naughty Dog)
  • Synopsis: More and more multiplayer games these days have become full-fledged services that players invest their time and money in. As such, programmers need to build the back-end systems that manage all of this data, foster social connections, and even track financial transactions. In this roundtable, attendees will talk about server technologies to fill these requirements like matchmaking, friends lists, player profile storage, virtual currency, cloud computing, and any other topics the group is interested in.

 

Physics Animation in 'Uncharted 4: A Thief's End'

Date: Thursday, March 2
Time: 10:00am - 11:00am
Location: Room 130, North Hall
Format: Session
Track: Visual Arts

  • Speaker:  Michal Mach (Technical Animator, Naughty Dog, Inc.)
  • Synopsis: For 'Uncharted 4', Naughty Dog, Inc. chose to take a risky step and experiment with adding a layer of physics simulation on top of their gameplay animation for added fluidity and momentum, with hopes that they could also save some production time by creating less assets and letting the physics do the awesome.
    Initial results were pretty terrible because of the physics' tricky nature and physically absolutely unrealistic gameplay animation. Players tend to prefer responsiveness over reality, after all. But one day, their physics programmer found a way to drive the physics objects with animation more predictably, with minimal distortions and almost absolute artistic control.

Player Traversal Mechanics in the Vast World of 'Horizon: Zero Dawn'

Date: Thursday, March 2
Time: 11:30am - 12:30pm
Location: Room 2001, West Hall
Format: Session
Track: Programming, Visual Arts

  • Speakers:  Paul Van Grinsven (Game Programmer, Guerrilla)
  • Synopsis: During this lecture, Paul will show what is needed to make Aloy traverse the vast world of 'Horizon: Zero Dawn' with its complex and organic environments. Various traversal mechanics will be covered from a gameplay programmer's perspective, focusing on the interaction between code and animations. The different systems and techniques involved in the implementation of these mechanics will be explained, and he will look at the underlying reasoning and design decisions.

The Science of Off-Roading: 'Uncharted 4's' 4x4

Date: Thursday, March 2
Time: 2:00pm - 2:30pm
Location: Room 130, North Hall
Format: Session
Track: Programming

  • Speakers: Edward Pereira (Programmer, Naughty Dog)
  • Synopsis: Creating a vehicle for a AAA adventure title like 'Uncharted' requires an enormous amount of iteration on several aspects of the vehicle in order to make it fun and easy to use for as wide an audience as possible. This session will break down individual physical elements of Uncharted 4's 4x4, such as tire collision response and the motor simulation, and explain how Naughty Dog's team tuned it to handle the rugged terrain of Madagascar. Furthermore, the talk will explain how they added an AI element to the 4x4 in order to allow designers to direct the vehicle around the same spaces the player can drive around.

Audio Adventures in 'VR Worlds'

Date: Thursday, March 2
Time: 4:00pm - 5:00pm
Location: Room 3002, West Hall
Format: Session
Track: Audio

  • Speaker: Joe Thwaites (Composer & Music Producer, Sony Interactive Entertainment Europe), Simon Gumbleton (Technical Sound Designer, Sony Interactive Entertainment Europe)
  • Synopsis: The sound and music teams worked very closely over three years of development on Sony London Studio's 'PlayStation VR Worlds'. Through this process, they have been building up the knowledge and experience required to create immersive and compelling VR experiences, and see them through to master and release. This talk will discuss and reflect on each of the 'VR Worlds' experiences in turn, and follow how their approaches, technology and workflows evolved, how they took lessons from one experience to another, how a demo-driven schedule shaped development, and what it took to bring all this work together in a cohesive product.

Authored vs. Systemic: Finding a Balance for Combat AI in 'Uncharted 4'

Date: Thursday, March 2
Time: 4:00pm - 5:00pm
Location: Room 3001, West Hall
Format: Session
Track: Design

  • Speakers: Matthew Gallant (Game Designer, Naughty Dog)
  • Synopsis: While combat in the 'Uncharted' series has historically been tightly authored by the design team, Naughty Dog knew early in development that 'Uncharted 4' was going to be different. The open-ended gameplay and large complex environments led them to explore a more systems-driven approach to artificial intelligence. After over-steering in that direction, they ultimately found a balance between authored content and systemic behaviors. This talk explores the development process of 'Uncharted 4', and the lessons they learned about partitioning control of the AI between design and engineering.

Creating a Tools Pipeline for 'Horizon: Zero Dawn'

Date: Thursday, March 2
Time: 4:00pm - 5:00pm
Location: Room 2016, West Hall
Format: Session
Track: Programming

  • Speakers: Dan Sumaili (Senior Tools Programmer, Guerrilla Games), Sander Van der Steen (Principal Tools Programmer, Guerrilla Games)
  • Synopsis: Developing a new IP is a challenging process for a company's tools pipeline. Developing a new IP while changing to a new genre is even more challenging. At Guerrilla Games, they have done just that. With 'Horizon: Zero Dawn', they transitioned from linear tactical first person shooters to a vibrant open world RPG, while completely rebuilding their tools pipeline from scratch. In this session, Dan and Sander will explain how Guerrilla Games defined and implemented a framework that would provide a robust basis of functionality, on which they built an integrated game development environment. They will present a clear picture of how the framework's capabilities took shape over time, by detailing systems they developed and how those systems interact. Redesigning Guerrilla Games' tools pipeline while in production was a significant risk, which paid off and greatly benefited the final quality of their game.

Community Management Roundtable Day 2

Date: Thursday, March 2
Time: 5:30pm - 6:30pm
Location: Room 122, North Hall
Format: Roundtable
Track: Business & Marketing

  • Speakers: John Lindvay (Community Manager, Red Hook Studios), Abbie Heppe (Communications Manager, Media Molecule)
  • Synopsis: The Community Management Roundtable brings cat herders, fire fighters, and iron hands together to gain new insights and refine their best practices when it comes to interacting with and managing your game's community. How do you draw the line between toxic entitlement and positive activity and contributions? How much transparency is too much? As new features and patches roll out, how do you handle the inevitable mixed feelings from the loudest players? How can you improve the kinds of feedback you get? Game communities can be active for years, what are some long term strategies you can employ to help maintain a good community over time?

The Mix: Understanding Your Tools & How to Use Them

Date: Thursday, March 2
Time: 5:30pm - 6:30pm
Location: Room 3002, West Hall
Format: Session
Track: Audio

  • Speaker: Rev. Dr. Bradley D Meyer (Audio Director, Sucker Punch Productions)
  • Synopsis:The audio mix of a video game is often considered a final piece of the production puzzle, but in reality it is a complex, continuous balancing act of content and technology. This talk will briefly trace the history of mixing for video games, outline Sucker Punch Productions' current toolset, then demystify the core concepts of mixing for game audio and provide best practices for using each one. Using examples from various titles and personal successes and failures, this talk aims to demystify the process of mixing and provide a framework which others can learn from and utilize in the their own work. 
 
 

Friday

March 3

Multiplayer Roundtable Day 3: The Ecosystem

Date: Friday, March 3
Time: 10:00am - 11:00am
Location: Room 122, North Hall
Format: Roundtable
Track: Programming

  • Speaker: Edward Pereira (Programmer, Naughty Dog), Drew Thaler (TBD, Naughty Dog)
  • Synopsis: Beyond the gritty details of synchronization and servers, there's a lot more to multiplayer games. Tournaments, streaming, community building and management, promotions, telemetry, and a host of other topics. This session will be a higher level discussion about all these things and your dreams for the future of multiplayer technology.

 

Community Management Roundtable Day 3

Date: Friday, March 3
Time: 1:30pm - 2:30pm
Location: Room 122, North Hall
Format: Roundtable
Track: Business & Marketing

  • Speaker: John Lindvay (Community Manager, Red Hook Studios), Abbie Heppe (Communications Manager, Media Molecule)
  • Synopsis: The Community Management Roundtable brings cat herders, fire fighters, and iron hands together to gain new insights and refine their best practices when it comes to interacting with and managing your game's community. How do you draw the line between toxic entitlement and positive activity and contributions? How much transparency is too much? As new features and patches roll out, how do you handle the inevitable mixed feelings from the loudest players? How can you improve the kinds of feedback you get? Game communities can be active for years, what are some long term strategies you can employ to help maintain a good community over time?

 

Modern Networking for Diverse Game Communities

Date: Friday, March 3
Time: 1:30pm - 2:30pm
Location: Room 3020, West Hall
Format: Session
Track: Advocacy

  • Speaker: Anna Megill (Gamewriter & Narrative Designer, Independent), Toiya Kristen Finley (Narrative Designer/Game Designer/Game Writer/Editor, Schnoodle Media, LLC), Fiona Cherbak (Lead Recruiter, Worldwide Studios, Sony PlayStation), Elizabeth Sampat (Senior Game Designer, PopCap Games)
  • Synopsis: Everyone who has ever looked for a job knows the value of "networking." But how many people can do it well? And what if boozy night-time "mixers" just aren't your thing? If you've been struggling to build your network as a woman, a minority, or just an introvert, come hear this collection of microtalks from women who have built broad networks of contacts despite the odds. Each speaker will cover a different angle, such as: Networking at Work: How to make the most of your work relationships, both day-to-day, and as they disperse to new companies and opportunities. Networking Online: How to make the best use of online tools and apps to discover and secure career opportunities. Networking at Conferences: How face-to-face networking lets you build communities that will reinforce supportive behaviors. Creating Your Own Networking Events: How to create networking events and opportunities in your own community.

'DriveClub' Audio: From Console to VR

Date: Friday, March 3
Time: 
3:00pm - 4:00pm
Location: Room 3002, West Hall
Format: Session
Track: Audio

  • Speaker: Nicholas Ward-Foxton (Tools & Technology Manager, Sony Interactive Entertainment)
  • Synopsis: Porting a game from traditional console platforms to VR can be a daunting task from an audio perspective. This session will explore how this was done for a AAA PlayStation VR launch title. The talk will centre on how Ambisonics was chosen for the intermediate audio encoding format and how this helped deliver a full 3d audio soundscape whilst maintaining the mix structure for the original title and incorporating b-format recordings. Getting the best of the old and new worlds can be difficult but this may be a way in which it can be achieved for your title!

Technical Art Techniques of Naughty Dog: Vertex Shaders and Beyond

Date: Friday, March 3
Time: 
3:00pm - 4:00pm
Location: Room 2002, West Hall
Format: Session
Track: Visual Arts, Programming

  • Speaker: Andrew Maximov (Lead Technical Artist, Naughty Dog)
  • Synopsis: In this talk, Andrew Maximov is going to do a deep dive into vertex shader pipelines and process using features implemented at Naughty Dog for 'Uncharted 4', as an example. From wind systems to interactivity, to ambient animations, to optimizations, there is a lot of use you can get out of vertex shaders. He's going to cover theory, practice, roadmaps for advancing this technology, and will offer the audience both interesting solutions and interesting problems to solve. There is a lot of unrealized potential for creative solutions in vertex shaders and his hope with this talk is to inform you about another powerful tool in your technical quiver as well as inspire you to do some tinkering of your own. Come by, it's going to be fun!