GDC Next


|   GDC NEXT 10

As part of GDC Next's focus on the future of games, we will be picking ten innovative, yet-to-debut games to highlight, called the GDC Next 10. Each game's designer will share about the concepting, inspiration and design behind the title. Every GDC Next 10 game has been picked by GDC's organizers as a game to watch for the future, and a title that is doing something decidedly different in today's increasingly crowded game market.


D4: Dawn of the Dreaming Director's Drama
Hidetaka 'SWERY' Suehiro (Access Games)
With the advent of next-generation consoles, the experiences video games can provide have become even more diversified. Graphics keep improving, along with sound effects and dynamic expressions. New services are also possible with cloud technology. Midst all these changes, D4 has been developed with a strong focus on "recreating sensory experiences," and empathy, one of the cornerstones of game design.In this session, the creator of the mysteriously-titled D4 will explain his unique approaches as professionally as possible, while occasionally digressing into personal anecdotes from the process.
Using Plot Devices to Create Gameplay in Storyteller
Daniel Benmergui (Ludomancy)
Literature and cinema make use of many kinds of mechanisms to create plot: amnesia, sudden revelations, character initiatives, deus ex machina, etc. But most of us experience these passively as an audience. In this talk, Daniel will walk through several levels of Storyteller, showing how it makes you think about these mechanisms in order to solve story creation challenges.
Gathering Your Party with Project Eternity
Josh Sawyer (Obsidian Entertainment)
This talk will feature the retro-evolution of classic 2D RPG elements in Obsidian Entertainment's Project Eternity. From the challenges of creating massive, dynamically-lit isometric environments to trusting in players' vivid imaginations and problem-solving capabilities, Project Eternity poses some interesting challenges to its veteran team. To find the right balance between using contemporary development practices and meeting classic RPG expectations, the developers have solicited community feedback, returned to past titles and, of course, played a bunch of D&D. Join us on an adventure fraught with wonders and perils more dazzling than the Warlock's Crypt!
How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Making CounterSpy
David Nottingham (Dynamighty)
David will introduce Dynamighty's first title, CounterSpy, being developed for PS3, PSVita and Mobile. He will walk us through the development path of the game and how the concept has taken shape according to the creative values of the company's founders. The recent explosion in indie gaming has brought forth many amazing voices and new interactive experiences into the world. David will discuss the challenges, fears and anxieties that any new studio faces creating original work in such a high quality, competitive field, and how he has learned to stop worrying and focus on making CounterSpy. DISCLAIMER: This talk will include the sharing of personal anecdotes, inspirations, fears and failures that may not work for others. Viewer discretion is advised.
An Odd Collaboration: How Neil Gaiman and The Odd Gentlemen Decided to Make Wayward Manor Together
Matt Korba (The Odd Gentlemen)
An "ordinary" Lego play session turned into a unique collaboration between game makers and a storyteller. A seemingly one of a kind collaboration led not only to a new way to approach game development, but also a unique way to approach the working relationship. This discussion will deal with a peculiar type of creative process, one that involves a game maker and outside talent from another creative field: literature. We'll talk about how to set up a collaborative environment to build a unique game and world. This unusual collaboration influenced the inception of Wayward Manor, and led to the creation of every single character, level, mechanic and story element of the game. Our play session quickly became one of brainstorming, and those little Lego bricks became representations of classic Hollywood style and the characters of old comedy horror films. As we worked, we knew the collaboration would have to combine what we were both best at. We set our pillars for the creative design and agreed that we wanted to create a living story with a dead protagonist that we could unveil across multiple games. Much like Gaiman's writing, we wanted to leave the player breadcrumbs and hints to discover more about the story as it unfolds, in a way that only could be done in games. Wayward Manor came to life through the process of Lego prototyping. With these simple tools, we were able to develop the story beats, systems and character relationships at a minimal cost. Simultaneously, we defined old Hollywood tropes to develop a game that captured those fun, iconic characters and scenarios which exemplified the genre.
Rethinking a Classic Genre for the Modern Era
Oliver Franzke (Double Fine Productions)
Lee Petty (Double Fine Productions)
Greg Rice (Double Fine Productions)
Tim Schafer (Double Fine Productions)
After the success of their record-breaking Kickstarter campaign, Tim Schafer and the team at Double Fine were tasked with developing a brand new point-and-click adventure game in the vein of Tim's early work at Lucas Arts. The demand for this type of game was clear, but much has changed in the 15 years since Tim last visited the genre. In this talk, we'll hear a multidisciplinary panel of members from the Broken Age team discuss ways in which they leveraged modern technology and methodologies to deliver a game that preserves the ideas and experiences core to the traditional adventure game.
Graphics Technology Challenges and Innovations for iOS in Supernauts
Harri Hatinen (Grand Cru)
Supernauts is an MMO with creative gameplay and user-generated content for mobile platforms, with modern 3D graphics and a procedural user-built world. This session will introduce you to how Grand Cru designed, implemented and optimized our algorithms to generate the graphics for the worlds users have created, and how our systems generated the lively impressions and details into that world.
Doki-Doki Universe: Sweet, Simple and Genuine
Greg Johnson(HumaNature Studios)
Greg Johnson will introduce his studio's new PS3, PS4, Vita and mobile title, Doki-Doki Universe, being published first-party by Sony and being released worldwide in December. He'll describe the design objectives behind this title, and talk about some of the challenges the studio dealt with in creating an emotionally-based, interactive story game that has a huge diversity of characters and stories. He'll also talk about why they chose to build a personality test and an animated messaging app into the game, and what it has been like working with Sony as a publisher.
From Game Jam to Full Game - Super TIME Force & Other Shining Examples
Nathan Vella (Capy Games)
Game jams - where small teams create a playable experiment on a micro-schedule - have risen from a tiny following to a full-fledged piece of the game dev world. With global, local, themed and in-studio jams happening all the time, it's no wonder that every so often a jam game transcends its three day dev cycle and becomes something larger: a "full" game destined for a major platform. This talk will discuss the process Capy took in bringing Super Time Force from game jam to console title, including the many positives and negatives this style of development entails. In addition, it will take learnings from other developers who have gone from jam to release, including Greg Rice (Double Fine Amnesia Fortnight), Itay Keren (Global Game Jam), Ben Esposito (Molyjam) and Kyle Pulver (local jam in Phoenix, AZ).
Project Spark: Enabling and Inspiring the User to Make (Almost) Anything
Soren Hannibal (Team Dakota/Microsoft)
Project Spark is a new free-to-play creation engine that allows players of all skill levels to make their own games and share them with the world. Project Spark will ship across multiple platforms and support multiple input devices. Come hear some of the ways in which Project Spark encourages players to become creators, using layers of simplicity to ease the learning curve, adding a deceptively powerful visual programming language, and encouraging players to cooperate and specialize in different areas. We'll cover how to design and engineer an experience that not only turns the very act of making a game into a fun game itself, but enables players to create the unexpected. We'll also cover some of the broader challenges with making a sandbox creation framework that supports multiple game genres, pushing the limits of what consumers and developers expect.
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