GDC Day 4

Early Morning

After grabbing breakfast, I introduced a friend to an ex-coworker, hopefully starting a conversation for an internship position. We then made our way over to the Razer booth to talk to them and try to get in their development program for their fitness band. In order to get in you were supposed to prove that you have some mobile development chops, but I started talking Twine2Unity, which my only mobile stuff and the guy got extremely excited that somebody was doing something interesting with Twine. I then wandered around and talked to people about what they're currently developing and getting some awesome new shirts.

Anti-Social Behavior Talk

After getting some new swag and talking to developers trying to learn as much as I can, I went to a talk about how design enforces anti-social behavior. It was given by a researcher who has talked to different companies who have recognized that their games have toxic communities. Even though it's hard to design in a way that rewards good behavior without adding to the punishment of the toxic players, it's extremely important to start thinking about it. The earlier we as developers can start iterating on ideas, the quicker we can try and get the problem fixed.

Production Round Table

After wandering around more, and talking with some companies in the career fair I went to a production round table. It was down at the end of what looked like a mostly unused hallway. When I walked down there one of the CA's asked if I was lost, but I just wanted to get their early in case there were a lot of people. After that we started talking, she got extremely excited because she was coming off shift and is wanting to get into production. It started off as a conversation more about how to get into production, which was cool for those of us who are trying to get in. We then moved into more of a discussion around getting better at your job, or just general advice for producers.

There were definitely some interesting conversations going on both during and afterwards. One of the people who was there is a Senior Producer at Blizzard(World of Warcraft), and another is a producer from CCP(Eve Online). After, the producer from CCP had a bunch of questions for the guy from Blizzard. He was trying to learn as much as he can so he can try to bring new things back to his company to make them more successful. I wanted to learn as much as I can to help jump start my career.

After their conversation about how both studios deal with production the guy from Blizzard and I started talking. I talked about my Diabetes add-on, which he seemed extremely interested in, and then we started talking about career advice, and the fact that I was about to be headed to the Blizzard recruitment mixer came up. He told me I should say hi to a specific lady for him when I got there.

Blizzard Mixer

When I made it to the bar that the Mixer was supposed to be at, there was a giant line going down the block and then around the corner. I walked back to where a couple of my friends for waiting for me, and where they were talking with some other friends as well. I ended up speaking with some really interesting people while waiting in line to get in.

After finally getting in, I asked for the Lady that the Blizzard producer had told me to say hi for and found her really quickly. We had an interesting conversation about why I had a lanyard indicating that I wanted to be a programmer but had met the producer at a production roundtable. She then told me that I should talk to a specific programmer who was somewhere in the back of the bar and found someone to lead me back to him.

He was in the middle of a conversation with another developer about what he does as a lead and to me it sounded like he has become more of a producer than a programmer, but he was still able to talk programming with me. I had learned earlier in the week that the UI/UX team and Gameplay programming team use the same API that add-on developers have access to, just with some extra protected functions. I asked him about that - about what it was like to be using something that seems more like it was created with add-on developers in mind, and he said while at times it was annoying, it makes a lot of sense. A lot of the different portions of the game are basically just add-ons that are loaded when the player gets within a certain range of where they would be interacting with.

After that first conversation the rest of the night was me being whirlwinded around and being introduced to a bunch of people or just walking up and introducing myself to people. Which overall was a ton of fun.

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