Wednesday, September 15, 2004

A day out at Stonehenge

Salisbury Plain, Wiltshire, England

Sometimes you just need a day off. This is why I moved to Britain... so
that when I decided to take a day off, I could go to one of the most
amazing places in the world. It's only an hour's drive away.

Photo of EWA at Stonehenge

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Lectures at GDC-Europe and European Developers' Forum


GDC Europe logoSo last week I went up to London for two days to the Game Developers' Conference Europe and its new competitor, the European Developers' Forum, to give a couple of lectures. At GDC-E I spoke jointly with Chris Bateman, the founder of International Hobo, on player-centric game design and the various ways to approach the task of designing a new game. We didn't have a rehearsed talk; we simply chose some topics and then handed the microphone back and forth, like a two-person panel. It went well and I think the audience got something useful out of it.

EDF logoThe following day I headed across town to the big ExCeL exhibition center for the EDF, which was taking place in conjunction with the new trade show, EGN. EGN also seemed to be running its own mini-conference in the back of the trade show hall in addition. At EDF I gave an updated version of a lecture I've done before, called "The Role of Architecture in Video Games" (also sometimes called "The Construction of Ludic Spaces"). If you saw it and want a copy of the slides, you can download them here. [3.31 MB PowerPoint file]

I seldom use this forum to complain about things, but I am distinctly annoyed at whatever personal or political conflicts ended up producing two trade shows and three different game development conferences in London at the same time. This nonsense doesn't serve the industry, nor individual developers, well at all. Few people could afford to attend both conferences, and because of the competition, attendance was low at each. GDC-Europe came out on top, with easily twice as many attendees, or more, than EDF; at the same time, the EGN trade show seemed to do better than its rival, ECTS. This nuisance must cease, or next year I will go to the big German conference at Leipzig instead, which -- as I understand it -- was larger than all these events put together.