The lights are on
The D.I.C.E. Summit is one of our favorite video game conferences because we are given the chance to peer behind the curtain to see the topics and trends video game luminaires view as important. Free from the agenda of pushing a particular project or product, the game creators tackle issues facing the industry and offer insight into how they approach making games in a fast-changing era where one false step could bury your development studio (or an entire publisher).
This year's conference had several amazing talks, but these are the five we enjoyed the most and want to pass on to you. Courtesy of Variety, here are our favorite lectures of the show.
Storytelling Across Platforms: Who Benefits Most, The Audience Or The Player?
Valve's Gabe Newell sits down with A-list Hollywood mogul J.J. Abrams (Star Trek, Super 8, Lost) to discuss the strengths and weaknesses of film and video game narratives. At the end of the talk they also share the news that they plan to collaborate on both a film and a game project.
The Secret Mechanisms
Schell Games CEO and Carnagie Melon professor Jesse Schell returns to D.I.C.E. to discuss how his prognostications on the spread of gamification panned out and to issue a stern warning about the free to play business model as it relates to consumer psychology. This lecture is very insightful and highly entertaining.
A View On Next Steps
Gabe Newell gives us a glimpse into the thought process behind the direction Valve is headed in relation to digital storefronts, the fabled Steam Box, and game development. His comments on the latter topic may surprise (and potentially scare) fans of single-player games.
Video Games Are Magic
Gearbox president and co-founder Randy Pitchford uses his background as a magician (yes, you read that right) to share his insights about using sleight-of-hand and creating an illusion of choice to give players a sense of agency and accomplishment.
Hey, You Kids! Get Outta My Yard! Or, The Graying Of Gaming
Deus Ex and Thief creator Warren Spector talks about how his priorities as a player and a game designer have shifted as he's grown older. This evolution has drawn him away from sci-fi and fantasy adventures fueled by adrenaline and twitch skills and toward more accessible games with mature subject matter that relate in some way to his real life.
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