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Posts with tag game-developers-conference

GDC Roundup, day four

The tenth annual Game Developers Conference is in full swing in San Francisco, CA, and our sister sites Joystiq and Massively are on the scene! No matter what kind of games you're into, there's a ton of news on its way out of the convention, and we're compiling some of the stuff that might matter to you in daily roundups just for you. If you want the whole GDC news experience, check out all of Massively's and Joystiq's coverage, or previous roundups. I apologize for my appalling lack of Michael Sacco-ness. Saccosity?


Massively's Interview with DC Universe Online
"We're hitting major milestones right now. We're pushing as hard as we can right now to get a launch date out there. [...] We're trying to get it in your hands as quick as possible. The great thing about Sony is we really are taking our time. We have been given the opportunity to make this right."


Fable 2 Episodes Massively Successful
"That was hugely successful. There were something like over half a million. I think it was 600,000 downloads of the first episode, which was very, very cool."




"Save your fork, there'll be pie"
After confessing to having a big appetite for Borderlands, the Gears of War developer used the pie analogy to explain to Joystiq how games without any sort of DLC "hooks" are becoming increasingly rare.





GDC 2010 Microtalks: Big ideas, tiny speeches
Ten lecturers -- all from different sectors of the game industry -- each spoke for five minutes and each were allowed to use 20 different slides. Naughty Dog's Richard Lemarchand set the stage for the speakers, announcing the theme of the talks as "come play with us."




Massively's Interview with Dungeons and Dragons Online
Today, the numbers speak for themselves. Their revenue is up 500%, they've had over one million new players, and you'll be hard-pressed to find anyone who would refer to the game as "forgotten." Turbine has arguably set the standard for a hybrid free-to-play business model, and it's paid off very well. However, it wasn't always a sure thing and it certainly wasn't a snap decision.



GDC 2010: The Future of Champions Online
At the end of our brief discussion on the future of Champions, Bill had this to say, "Past that, I think it's just about remaining as responsible as possible to what the community is telling us they want." That sounds the right approach to us.

Filed under: News items

Rob Pardo speaks about Blizzard game design

The tenth annual Game Developers Conference is in full swing in San Francisco, CA -- and yesterday included a panel by Rob Pardo, Executive Vice President of Game Design at Blizzard Entertainment. Pardo spoke about design philosophy and how Blizzard approaches it, sharing not only Blizzard's success stories, but where they failed along the way, and what they did to fix it. Blizzard's design philosophy follows some key elements:

Gameplay First: Before anything else, you want to concentrate the game on the fun. All aspects of the game -- the design, the mechanics of encounters, the quests and story are focused on making the game fun to play. Not only fun to play -- but fun to play for players, not developers. The challenge is to keep players jumping through the correct hoops, while making those hoops fun. Sometimes this involves making some changes -- for example, only night elf males could be druids in Warcraft III, but for the sake of making the druid class, something that sounded like all kinds of fun, they had to be made accessible to both genders, and both sides. So the lore was adjusted so that females and tauren could both be druids -- otherwise they couldn't have introduced the class at all. And that wouldn't be any fun.

Read more →

Filed under: News items

Mac drivers to be available for all Razer mice


World of Warcraft players using a Mac should be pleased to hear that gaming peripherals manufacturer Razer pledged their commitment to supporting the Mac gaming community at the Game Developers Conference. They announced that all upcoming Razer products will come with Mac driver support, including the Razer StarCraft 2 peripheral suite scheduled for release later this year.

Prior to the Razer DeathAdder Mac Edition in 2008, all Razer mice and peripherals only had native Windows support and drivers. While these products would generally work with a Mac through its plug-and-play technology, customizing them was more difficult and in some cases, impossible. In order to configure my Razer Lachesis to make all its buttons usable on my Mac, I had to configure it on a PC and mapped some of the buttons as little used keyboard keys because the Mac wouldn't recognize click-throughs from more than a few mouse buttons.

This situation improved with the release of the Razer Naga, which shipped with native Mac support, although the key-mapping functionality for the Mac came several weeks after the PC version. Currently, newer mice come with basic Mac support, although Razer promises the same functionality and customizability as their PC counterparts through future updates. Razer also promises to release Mac drivers for all existing products, which presumably includes their line of headsets and keyboards. While Mac gamers have always been treated as second class citizens by most peripheral manufacturers, it's encouraging to see a major player pay the community some attention. I mean, the Magic Mouse is awesome and all, but there's nothing like having a real gaming mouse to play WoW.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items

GDC roundup, day two

The tenth annual Game Developers Conference is in full swing in San Francisco, CA, and our sister sites Joystiq and Massively are on the scene! No matter what kind of games you're into, there's a ton of news on its way out of the convention, and we're compiling some of the stuff that might matter to you in daily roundups just for you. If you want the whole GDC news experience, check out all of Massively's and Joystiq's coverage, or yesterday's roundup.

Sony has the power to Move you
Though it might look like a black Wiimote topped with a scoop of sherbet, Sony's PlayStation Move motion peripheral aims to take the motion-sensitive gaming field to eleven. Joystiq's got all the Move info you need, and you can dance to it.
38 Studios swings for the fences with two new titles
World Series champ Curt Schilling's 38 Studios is developing an "epic single-player RPG" codenamed Copernicus, and an MMO project codenamed Project Mercury. Oh, and fantasy novel fans: R.A. Salvatore is in charge of building the universe where both games take place.
Welcome to Poisonville, population 4,000
Bigpoint Studios says their browser MMO Poisonville is the most expensive browser-based MMO to date, with a budget of two million dollars. It certainly seems to have been spent in the right places in this full-featured GTA-alike.
It's the DLC Age at EA
EA's John Schappert says that Dragon Age: Origins downloadable content has made over a million dollars so far! Digital distribution in total netted them $575 million last year and projections place next year's DD profits even higher. EA is ready with DLC strategies for several upcoming games.
Monkey Island 2 Special Edition overflowing with new booty
LucasArts' beloved Monkey Island franchise saw a resurgence with the release of a remastered Secret of Monkey Island last year, and now Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge is getting the same treatment, with new art, developer commentary, and improved controls.
Sakaguchi's latest Story looks like a picture book
Final Fantasy creator Hironobu Sakaguchi's Mistwalker Studios is hard at work on a new RPG, and they released some truly beautiful artwork of the game's island locale to whet our appetites.

Filed under: News items

GDC 2010 roundup, day one

The tenth annual Game Developers Conference is in full swing in San Francisco, CA, and our sister sites Joystiq and Massively are on the scene! No matter what kind of games you're into, there's a ton of news on its way out of the convention, and we're compiling some of the stuff that might matter to you in daily roundups just for you. If you want the whole GDC news experience, check out all of Massively's and Joystiq's coverage!

Sword of the New World: Let's get political
GamersFirst's achingly pretty MMO import Sword of the New World, née Granado Espada, is getting new content in its Political PvP system, allowing players to "run for office, control the colonies, and be a tyrant" in the SotNW universe's bizarro-America.
Battlestar Galactica MMO on its way to your browser
TV space opera Battlestar Galactica follows in the footsteps of that other popular space show and gets its own MMO -- right in your browser. That's right, you can be a forsaken and a Cylon at the same time if you so desire. Somebody knows their audience. Massively gives it an in-depth look right here.
Indie Fund wants to help your indie game get off the ground
Ron Carmel of 2D Boy -- creators of indie superhit World of Goo -- unveiled plans for Indie Fund, an innovative funding and mentoring system for indie developers who might not have the capital to get a game completed and published on their own.
Taikodom blasts its way to America
Taikodom takes the mine-space-rocks economy of EVE Online and throws in a dash of twitch shooter for flavor, and GamersFirst is launching it stateside, with plans for a closed beta by summer and a release by year's end.
Fallen Earth iPhone app is, well, basically Fallen Earth
Icarus Studios wants you stay connected to their post-apocalyptic romp Fallen Earth, and to that end, they're developing an incredibly comprehensive FE experience on the iPhone, allowing you to check out your inventory, browse the auction house, chat with friends, and even craft items, all on the go.
Civilization V is bringing hexy back
Firaxis' latest entry into the Civilization series doesn't want you bogged down worrying about stuff like cardinal directions. You don't even need most of those anyway! Civ V goes old-school with its hex-based grid. Oh, and they also built a whole new engine from the ground up. Hug that DX11 card.

Filed under: News items

Blizzard developers to speak at GDC 2010

Following the pattern held in previous years, Blizzard will again be loaning out some of their top developers for panels at this year's Game Developer's Conference in San Francisco, CA. WoW's former Lead Producer Jeff Kaplan, a.k.a. Tigole, presented the keynote speech at last year's GDC, and this year two top developers will be on tap to give horribly esoteric panels.

Brian Schwab, Blizzard's Senior AI/Gameplay Engineer, will be presenting a lecture on AI architecture ...

"AI programmers rarely use a pure architecture such as a State Machine, Planner, or Behavior Tree in isolation. Rather, several symbiotic architectures are mashed together, resulting in an overall architecture that is unique and powerful in its own way. This lecture is designed as a series of three mini-lectures where you will hear about several mashed up AI architectures along with intriguing lessons and insights."

... and Erin Catto, Blizzard's Principle Software Engineer, will be presenting a workshop on physics engines.

"This one-day tutorial continues the 10-year tradition of the Math for Programmers and Physics for Programmers tutorials by bringing together some of the best presenters in gaming physics. Over the course of a day they will get programmers up to speed in the latest techniques and deepen their knowledge in the topic of physical simulation."

More information, including panel times and availability, can be seen on BlizzPlanet's writeup of the announcement. This is basically total nerd talk -- it's very unlikely that we'll have any new WoW-related info from these panels, unlike Kaplan's keynote, but anything is possible. We'll keep you posted.

Filed under: Blizzard, Interviews

Kaplan to speak at the Game Developers Conference

Jeffrey Kaplan (also known as Tigole) is scheduled to speak at this years Game Developers Conference, which should prove to be really, really interesting for us WoW players. The conference is aimed at sharing knowledge among game developers, and Kaplan's panel is aimed at discussing World of Warcraft's questing system, as well as how gameplay has an effect on lore and story.

As someone who regularly geeks out about the lore of Warcraft, it disappoints me that I can't be there to listen to it in person. Gameplay always has a really large effect on how the lore of a video game world is allowed to play out (especially in MMOs) but a lot of those constraints have been overcome with the advances made in Wrath of the Lich King. The things they've done to overcome those issues largely come from Tigole's team of developers.

I very much hope that transcripts of GDC's panels find their way to the web shortly after the conference. One of my favorite parts of BlizzCon and BlizzCast is the somewhat behind the scenes look into the process, and the philosophy that goes into how and why Blizzard does what they do. This pretty much sounds right up my alley, and I know a lot of you have expressed the same sentiment each time a new BlizzCast has gone live. I'll definitely be watching for any transcripts that pop up.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Events, Blizzard

Rob Pardo to keynote at the Paris Game Developers Conference

Blizzard's Rob Pardo, Senior Vice President of Game Design, has been recruited to keynote the Paris GDC this summer, which will take place on June 23rd and 24th at the at the Coeur Défense Convention Centre in Paris. He'll participate in a Q&A session in which he will discuss his inspirations and challenges, as well as Blizzard's future plans.

The official press release should appear soon on the Paris GDC site.

The Paris GDC will be taking place a few days before Blizzard's World Wide Invitational in the same city. We're expecting a lot of choice WoTLK news to drop there, but certainly, Pardo may say something juicy ahead of time at the Paris GDC, and we'll be sure to find out if he does.

Filed under: Blizzard, News items, Worldwide Invitational

Rob Pardo to speak at the 2008 Game Developers Conference

The 2008 Game Developers Conference is underway in San Francisco right now, and this means there should be quite a bit of gaming news and juicy bites to report on in the next few days. Blizzard's own Rob Pardo is there as a featured speaker, participating in a panel on the future of MMORPGs and giving a talk on Blizzard's approach to multiplayer gaming design. Hopefully that means we might even get a few pieces of new information about Warcraft and the expansion, or even beyond.

Our colleagues at Massively will be watching the whole conference closely, as will we, and we'll be sure to keep you up to date if Blizzard drops any bombshells of the Lich King variety or otherwise.

And speaking of conference news, Gamespot's posted more video coverage of the DICE 08 Summit, including Blizzard's presentation, which you can watch here.

Filed under: Events, Blizzard, News items

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