Monday, February 26, 2018

IGDA Game Design SIG at 2018 Game Developers Conference

Apologies for the late update!

I was at Northwestern University speaking about Games and Gamification in the Classroom as part of the TEACHxpert Series and I also have been busy with my various classes and event planning.

To note, I'd like to inform you of the planned activities for the IGDA Game Design SIG (GDSIG) at the 2018 Game Developers Conference (GDC) next month.

We will be holding the following roundtable open to All Pass Holders, including the Expo Pass:

Professional Ethics for Game Designers Roundtable (Presented by the IGDA)
Location: Room 105, Moscone South Hall
Date: Wednesday, March 21
Time: 5:00pm - 6:00pm

With gaming disorder a mental health concern, do game designers have an obligation to refrain what would be considered 'exploitative design,' that is, game design that takes advantage of player addictions and/or mental defects? Join game designers and other professionals in determining what are our main areas of ethical concern and in voicing an opinion as to whether or not game designers need a professional code of ethics much like the Hippocratic oath for doctors.

If you cannot make the roundtable, you can join us for our GDSIG Social MeetUp/Dinner where we will meeting outside Room 105 to go for a quick dinner. If you cannot meet in the conference area, please make arrangements with me to meet in the lobby of Moscone South. We also hope to have our special GDSIG GDC ribbons distributed at this time (*quantities limited to 200) and I also usually have the MIT name badges for MIT gamealums.

Location: Outside Room 105, Moscone South Hall, or Moscone South Lobby (If arranged)
Date: Wednesday, March 21
Time: 6:00pm - 7:00pm

Plus, don't forget the other IGDA events at GDC.  There will be the IGDA Networking Event in addition to the Mentor Cafes. If you're not yet a IGDA member, there is a special promotion running until March 25, 2018.  It is 25% discount on all individual IGDA memberships. To sign up or look at IGDA member benefits, go here.

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

New Session: Game Writing Primer Course

4 Weeks to Learn the Basics of Narrative Design and Build a Game
When:  Tuesdays and Thursdays, Feb 20 - Mar 15, 2018, 6:30 - 9:00 PM
Where:  Microsoft NY, 11 Times Square, New York, NY 10019 

I'm pleased to announce that Game Writing Primer is starting up again in 2018!  Come to the free info session this Thursday, February 8 and hear from former students Mary Georgescu and Jon Aiello.  Sharang Biswas, winner of the Dark Horse award at last year's Indiecade, also described his experiences with the course in this Student Spotlight. If you can't make it in person and have questions about the course, you can submit questions through the link on the course information page or attend the Virtual Info Session on February 13.

Whether you’re brand new to making games or looking to level up your skills, all are welcome. You can bring an existing game you’re working on in the engine of your choice or start from scratch to create an entirely new story-based game. In four weeks, you’ll gain an understanding of how to tackle the challenges of writing for games. By the end of the month, you’ll be on your way towards a playable version that can be featured in any one of Playcrafting NYC’s Expos for thousands in the community to play.

Sign up for the 4-week intensive course here.

Sande Chen is a writer and game designer with over 15 years of experience in the game industry.  Her writing credits include 1999 Independent Games Festival winner Terminus, MMO Hall of Fame inductee Wizard101, and the 2007 PC RPG of the Year, The Witcher, for which she was nominated for a Writers Guild of America Award in Videogame Writing.  She is the co-author of the book, Serious Games: Games That Educate, Train, and Inform, and was a contributor to Secrets of the Game Business, Writing For Video Game Genres, and Professional Techniques for Videogame Writing.

Friday, February 2, 2018

GameACon 2016: Breaking Into Game Writing

In this podcast, game writers Sande Chen, Jennifer Estaris, David Kuelz, Matthue Roth, and Ant Tessitore, along with moderator Patrick Coursey, give inspiring and encouraging advice on how to break into the game industry as a writer.

I am really thankful to Michael Beeghley for salvaging this audio recording.  He has really worked wonders with the material, revealing previously inaudible portions.  You'll still hear water glasses clinking or other sound quality issues, but I found that after turning up the volume and listening to the panel, I was not bothered by the crowd noise.  

It was a very well-attended session.  Thank you to everyone who came to the panel! 

Breaking Into Game Writing
GameACon 2016
October 30, 2016

There are as many ways to break into game writing as there are writers, so taking your first steps can be daunting. Join our panel of award-winning writers and designers as they share their successes and struggles with getting a foot in the door of the industry. Whether you dream of writing the next big AAA game or an indie interactive novel, we’ve got the info to set you on the right path.

Moderator: Patrick Coursey
Panelists:  Sande Chen, Jennifer Estaris, David Kuelz, Matthue Roth, Ant Tessitore

You can find other download options here.

Patrick Coursey is a writer and narrative designer based out of Baltimore, Maryland. In 2015, he teamed up with Blindflug Studios as writer on the mobile roguelike, Cloud Chasers. The game received four awards including Grand Prize at European Indie Game Days and was an official selection of the Indie Arena at Gamescom. Before that he worked at Fourth Wall Studios in Los Angeles as a transmedia experience designer. He once again joined Blindflug Studios as a writer for their new game, Airheart. He infrequently tweets at @pjcoursey, but would like it if you followed him anyway.  

A writer and game designer, Sande Chen has over 15 years experience in the industry. Her first game writing credit was on the epic space-combat RPG Terminus which won 2 awards at the 1999 Independent Games Festival. She was later nominated for a 2007 Writers Guild of America award in Videogame Writing for the dark fantasy RPG The Witcher. She is SIG leader of the IGDA Game Design SIG. Find her on Twitter @sandechen. 

Jennifer Estaris is a writer, game designer, and mother to a spinning 3 year old. She has worked on games for Nickelodeon, Disney, Tiltfactor, and Dreamworks, and is currently developing indie art games at her studio Astra Rise. Jennifer received her M.F.A. in fiction at Columbia University and why hasn’t my daughter stopped spinning?

David Kuelz is the founder of Awkward Pegasus Studios, a writing and story consultancy for game developers. Since starting Awkward Pegasus in 2012, he has written and consulted for game developers nationwide and has led workshops on video game writing and narrative design all across the Northeast, including for the Gotham Writers' Workshop and Playcrafting. He’s currently designing the narrative for an unannounced RPG at Juncture Media. 

Matthue Roth is a game designer and writer on 30+ acclaimed and award-winning games for iOS and Android. From 2012-2015 he was lead game designer at Amplify, an educational games company that won awards from the iTunes Store, BAFTA, and Games for Change. Most recently his games swept the 2015 Serious Play Conference, earning 3 out of 4 gold medals awarded that year. He’s also the author of six novels, and the New Yorker called his writing “eerie and imaginative.” 

Ant Tessitore is currently working as creative lead on a to be announced TCG and freelancing as a names and flavor text writer for Magic: The Gathering, Ant Tessitore is an avid gamer, writer and narrative designer. Ant most recently worked on Oath of the Gatewatch, and has cards to be released in both Conspiracy: Take the Crown and this year’s Commander product. Ant has also written for Artist Noah Bradley’s The Sin of Man Project, weekly articles at Gathering Magic, and supplement products for Dungeons and Dragons.