Full Sail faculty members report back from GDC 2012

Wish you had made it to San Francisco for the Game Developer’s Conference, which kicked off March 5 and wraps up today? Don’t worry. We’ve got you covered. Several Full Sail faculty members (and alumni) were in San Francisco to take part in the five-day event, and we asked Game Art Program Manager Chad Kendall and Game Design Program Manager Chris Keeling to send us some commentary through email and Twitter. Check out the pictures, comments, and tweets and feel like you’re (almost) there.

Game Studies, Computer Animation and Career Development faculty and staff represented Full Sail at the GDC

Tuesday, March 6 
“The first two days are just sessions and summits – no keynotes, no expo,” said Game Design Program Manager Chris Keeling. There was, however, a very packed Full Sail alumni party!

Wednesday, March 7
As if there wasn’t enough going on at the GDC inside San Francisco’s massive Moscone Center – on March 7, Apple staged its iPad 3 launch event at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, right across the street.

“First off, it seems larger than I’ve seen it in terms of attendance and this is my tenth GDC,” wrote Game Art Program Manager Chad Kendall. “It was also particularly busy outside because the Apple iPad 3 event was going on.”

Chad Kendall’s Notes on “Get Over Yourself: Making Someone Else’s Game” with Laralyn McWilliams, VP of Creative, iWin Inc.” 

“This session was about how to get your team to be excited about a game they are developing that falls outside the developer’s demographic,” wrote Kendall.

“She made a big point about [how] the game needs to be made for the player,” he commented via email. “That seems to go without saying, but far too often, game developers (and grads looking to get in the industry) only get excited about hardcore titles when it can be just as rewarding to work on a children’s game or Barbie because you love making games.”

Great session to start. Making Barbie should be just as fun and rewarding for a developer as making Gears of War. – @Chad_Kendall

Just because a game is not for 20 year old guys, does not mean it sucks #GDC – @Chad_Kendall

Keeling Talks Booths and Sessions:

“A few booths that I liked – nVidia (video cards), BigWorld (MMO game engine), and Autodesk (development tools),” wrote Keeling. “I got a free Blackberry PlayBook for attending one of their developer sessions. Great rants on game education yesterday from Ian Bogost, Jesse Schell, and others. Awesome talk by Raph Koster on good game design vs. bad game design vs. great game design. Sid Meier’s talk today was so jammed I couldn’t get in.”

Chad Kendall’s Notes on “Asking the impossible on SSX: Creating 300 tracks on a ten-track budget” with Caleb J Howard, CG Supervisor: EA Canada” 

“I went to a session about tools for procedural content creation to build the tracks in the newest SSX,” wrote Kendall. “Cool content, nothing conceptually that was all that new, but he built most of his tools in Houdini, and I have been hearing a lot about Houdini at game companies, particularly for technical artist related jobs.”

Been hearing a lot of noise about Houdini in games over the last couple of days. #FSGA should take a look. – @Chad_Kendall

Keeling and Kendall Wrap it Up:

“No big announcements, but lots of activity,” wrote Keeling. “Seemed like more people than last year, which is definitely a good sign that the industry is growing!”

Congrats to Keith Guerrette and @Naughty_Dog for the wins tonight at the Game Developer Choice Awards. #GDC – @Chad_Kendall

Want to see more GDC tweets and commentary? Check out Gamasutra’s GDC coverage and follow @Chad_Kendall and @FSGameDev on Twitter!