The 2016 Game Developer Conference is coming up in March, and we’re hearing all sorts of things about the developers that will be making presentations there. Microsoft, 343 Industries, and Turn 10 Studios will all be present at the event to hold panels, discussing games such as Forza Motorsport 6, Halo 5: Guardians, and Minecraft. Additionally, Crystal Dynamics will be joined by Rhianna Pratchett, daughter of the late fantasy writer Terry Pratchett, for their Tomb Raider panel.
Here’s a list with details of what each of these panels will focus on:
Making Moves: Designing Spartan Abilities for Halo 5: Guardians
Ryan Darcey | Senior Systems Designer, 343 Industries
Halo has a long legacy of delivering highly balanced, competitive FPS gameplay where concepts like “30 seconds of fun” and “golden triangle” lay the foundation for the player experience. After releasing six successful FPS titles spanning the course of 14 years, how do you advance the IP while maintaining the fundamental model & philosophy? How much do you risk alienating the community that helped us arrive to this point? What’s going to make Halo feel fresh again?
Spartan Abilities are just some of the features 343 delivered in Halo 5: Guardians as an answer these questions. During this talk, you will gain insight into the process of taking the new Spartan Charge and Ground Pound actions from concept to final release. More specifically, this talk will focus on:
1) Choosing where to innovate.
2) Mapping actions to controls.
3) Tuning for balance.
Simulating the Race Day Experience: Mixing Forza Motorsport 6
Ask anyone who’s been to a race day event to sum up the experience in one word and there’s a good chance they’ll all say the same thing: “LOUD.” The roar of highly tuned engines screaming past, the reflections from surrounding structures, and the echoing in the distance all make up the aural chaos that is race day.
But how do you simulate all of that to the player and still allow them to hear crucial audio feedback like tire noise that will either send them to the front of the pack or send them careening into a stack of tires?
In this talk, Turn 10 Studios’ Creative Audio Director, Nick Wiswell, and Audio Lead, Chase Combs, will discuss how the team approached the mix of the game, attempting to balance a dense sonic landscape with detailed audio feedback for players.
Taking Minecraft to School: Re-Engineering the Game for Learning
Michelle Dauphiny Becker | Executive Producer, Minecraft in Education, Microsoft
Minecraft is not an educational game. It’s a game used in education. It has gained traction with over 10,000 schools, in spite of the difficulty setting up the Java game and servers in a classroom environment. In this talk, it will be discussed how the Minecraft team and its partners have broken down barriers to entry to make the popular game accessible to K-12 classrooms across the globe. Additionally the talk will cover how the game has been extended with special features designed for education, and make suggestions about how you could make similar changes to your own games.
Raid on Rise: Narrative Creation on Rise of The Tomb Raider
Rhianna Pratchett | Writer, Independent
John Stafford | Lead Narrative Designer, Crystal Dynamics
Cameron Suey | Narrative Designer, Crystal Dynamics
Tore Blystad | Performance Director, Crystal Dynamics
Jeff Adams | Senior Story Artist, Crystal Dynamics
Noah Hughes | Creative Director, Crystal Dynamics
The narrative team behind Rise of the Tomb Raider share how they worked together to build the next successful stage of Lara Croft’s adventures, and demonstrate how a strong story and characterization are fundamental for AAA success.