Every year since 2011 we at SynaptixGames have eagerly looked forward to the annual Game Developers Conference, and this year was no different. Despite being in the business for over a decade, we still love this industry and always will be players as well as developers. GDC, a business trip and an adventure. For those of you unaware, for the past 30 years GDC has been an annual weeklong conference for the electronic gaming industry. Its purpose: to bring together game developers, publishers, and tech companies and share their upcoming projects and cutting-edge technology coming to the in the next year. With this year’s conference nearing 30,000 attendees it is wonderful place to network and discover new and exciting developments in software, hardware, design, audio, production, and visual arts: all the tools needed to build better and brighter games.
This year we arrived looking forward to advances in Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality. Our goal was not only to meet and greet as many vendors as possible so we could put a face to the name of the technologies we use here at our studio, but to put our own face and name out there to potential clients, previous partners, and colleagues. This year that list included Microsoft, Google, Facebook/Oculus, Amazon, Steam/HTC Vive and many others. We spent the first two days attending sessions by Amazon, Facebook, Unity, and Oculus and more. Each platform and vendor had new and exciting announcements that we are eager to delve into in 2019. So much so we feel each one deserves its own blog post in the coming weeks. For now here are some highlights:
- Amazon announced its new Game Tech Company and the Game Tech Suite, which includes development tools using amazon cloud services to bring intelligence to your games.
- Google officially revealed Stadia, a cloud gaming service and hardware free platform that serves as a way to develop games and deliver to them to the players via streaming.
- Microsoft showed off Microsoft Game Stack, a suite of tools and programs specifically for game development. Some of the tools existed previously and some are new but Game Stack seeks to put them all under one umbrella in order for developers to have access to the right tool for the job as needed.
- Facebook shared several new tools for game developers to aid in the creation and promotion of their games. A Game creator program, N-Stream rewards system, and the Level up Program. All useful tools we will be fully covering in a later post.
On top of the big announcements a few minor developments were revealed as well: Google and their new integrations for advertising for in-app purchases and subscriptions. Facebook revealing new insights on their instant games platform. And one we are certainly looking forward to: Amazon’s new tools that allow programmers to create games for the Alexa. Also during the week we got a chance to check out the new Oculus Virtual Reality sets including the Oculus Quest: the first all in one VR gaming set, the second generation Pico, and the HTC Vive Pro. We visited several vendors related to real time body movement tracking in VR and Haptics feedback. Both fantastic tools to make the immersion in VR even more pronounced. Also in the realms of VR we got the opportunity to explore tools for bringing real world geography and topography into virtual reality. This is exciting as it relates to several of our upcoming projects. Lastly, we met with several potential clients who expressed keen interest in working with us in the coming year as well as two new potential partnerships for collaborating on future projects.
Overall, GDC was amazing and we enjoyed every minute of it. Creating games and being part of this industry still remains as engaging and fun as ever and getting to attend something like GDC not only as a developer but as a fan is a dream come true. Every previous year we have looked forward to it with anticipation and next year will be no different. In the following weeks we will be going into greater details about what we learned and how we are going to apply this knowledge and tech over the next year. Till Next time\
- The Crew at SynaptixGames
_K.D. Morey is a writer, artist, artisan and massive nerd. An author of 3 different published sci-fi works and multiple other creations too numerous to list. You can find here if you dare. _