Monday, March 10, 2008
GAMES DEVELOPER CONFERENCE 2008
I had never attended to any previous GDC before, and I didn't have the intention to do so this year. I had taken a look at the speakers and it didn't look particularly interesting. However, my company manager told a group of employees (including me) that they'll pay us the trip, the hotel and the GDC registration. As the Godfather would say, it was an offer I couldn't refuse.
The convention took place in San Francisco's Moscone center. Nice place in the city downtown. For those who never attended, the convention features dozens of different conferences, most of them at the same time. So you really need to schedule your attendance heavily in order to be in those you really want to be. As I said, I didn't feel this year's conferences were extremely interesting but anyway there are always some subjects that could be useful for your work.
More than that, we had a problem with the schedule. It was also our intention to meet with our publisher, and so we had a couple of conference-free days for that. However, they put no effort in setting the meetings in those days. So we had to meet them during the sessions. I was attending meetings with my mobile on, and when needed I had to run away to go join the others. Not too professional from Universal's side but ey, they pay our salaries.
My general feeling about the content of the (few) design sessions I could attend was that there were too many 'pajas mentales' (mental masturbations) and few useful day-by-day applicable solutions for designers. Most of the speakers seemed to be more interested in show how cool they were, how many 5-syllabled words they could put in the same sentence, and talk about 'what is design?', 'Are videogames art?' and all that academic shit, more than sharing with us the problems they have and how they solved them.
I would have loved to have the time to talk with people. I'm sure that's the real way to make the conference useful for you but, as I said, we didn't have the time to be at the conference all the time we should have. Anyway, I bought some interesting design books, had a nice experience, had dinner with other spaniards (see the pictures here) and had the chance to see San Francisco again, which is one of my favourite cities.
Not bad in any sense, I think.