In one week the first French Game Developers Conference takes place. Lyon GDC promises a mix of sessions and talks looking at a variety of issue relating to modern games production through all the disciplines from coding to business. Here, we pinpoint some of the key lecturesâ?¦

Lyon GDC – Editors’ Choice


9.00 – 10.00: KEYNOTE: The Making of Crysis
Crytek MD Cevat Yerli looks back at how his studio’s new title evolved to become one of the most talked about PC games of recent times, looking at the team’s approach to non-linear gameplay design and bringing an innovative concept to life.

10.15 – 11.15: Competing With Free (Business/Management)
David Edery of Microsoft’s Xbox Live Arcade team examines how studios can compete with the rising tide of free content, from microtransaction- and ad-supported titles and plus retro rereleases and user-made content.

11.30 – 12.30: An Inside Look at the Business of Casual Games (Business/Management)

The Casual Games Association’s Jessica Tams offers up an overview of the inner workings of the casual games industry with information to help developers understand the pros and cons of the $2.25bn market.

13.30 – 14.30: Shared Design (Game Design)

Crystal Dynamics’ Arnab Basu and Riley Cooper look ‘through the lens of design and production’ to examine the best practices used at their studio for ensuring new concept development goes well.

14.45 – 15.45: One Console Future (Business/Management)
Denis Dyack of Sillicon Knights argues the case for what he calls a foregone conclusion for the future of game development: “a standardized, one-console future that will allow for mainstream broadening”.

16.00 – 17.00: Visual Storytelling (Art)
Independent art director Viktor Antonov looks at how studios can use the new powerful consoles at their disposal not just for pretty graphics, but for visuals that can relay details and tell a story in their own right.

17.15 – 18.15: Is it fun yet? (Game Design)

NCsoft’s Janus Anderson (creative director) and Dallas Snell (director of business development) discuss how developers could use player metrics to analyse the ‘fun factor’ in a game improve the quality of the title.


9.00 – 10.00: KEYNOTE: Rayman and the Raving Rabbids
Key Ubisoft execs Nicolas Normandon (creative director) and Loïc Gounon (international product manager) look at how the publisher established a new franchise using social fun from minigames and ‘absurd humour’.

10.15 – 11.15: Marketing Your Development Studio (Business/Management)
Kuju’s Ian Baverstock takes attendees through the company’s decision to go from a singular brand to a multi-branded collection of studios and offers advice on how to self-publicise your studio to publishers.

11.30 – 12.30: Research Sessions (Programming)
Two short sessions: the first sees Pascal Barla discusses rendering for interactive applications; the second sees Arnaud Carré (Darkworks) and Hubert Sarret (Kylotonn) discuss French games technology.

13.30 – 14.30: Scrumming the Big Teams (Production/Project Management)
Ubisoft Annecy’s Stéphane Baudet talks through how the publisher’s development team has implemented SCRUM, introducing the small production unit approach to a bigger organisation, and the benefits it has reaped.

14.45 – 15.45: A Potted History of Four Years of EyeToy Technology Development (Programming)
Mark Lintott from SCEE examines how Sony’s camera tech has evolved since its release.

16.00 – 17.00: Memories of Emotions and Emotions of Memories (Game Design)
Darkworks’ Antoine Villette looks at how developers can move beyond creating good-looking if hollow characters to emotion-evoking characters, which can be narrators as strong as any screenplay.

These are just some of the sessions organised for Lyon GDC – the full list of sessions can be found here.

Lyon GDC takes place on December 3rd and 4th at the Centre de Congres in Lyon France.

Game Connection Europe runs alongside the event, from Decmeber 4th to 6th.

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