This year my expo pass was provided by the fine people at FileCatalyst. They were at the show to talk to companies about their accelerated and managed file transfer solutions. While they asked for nothing in return, I figured I would put their logo up as a thank you.
GDC was considerably more compressed than previous years. Gaming may be recession proof, but trade shows are not. So this time around they put all of the recruiting and demo booths onto the same show floor at Moscone North, where they filled out about 70-80% of the space that either area took up last year or the year before.
Coverage of the show is all over the place. Both Karen and Darren have posts up about what they saw in their days devoted to the show. My own time there was limited and spent mostly talking to people I already knew. (Like Karen and Darren.)
One thing that a lot of people were talking about was PlayStation Move, the motion controllers that Sony was showing for use with the PS3. On the other hand, I couldn’t hear anybody talk about it without mentioning Nintendo or the Wii, so it is already being defined in terms of the competition. And while the tech demo looked good, I didn’t see anything that hinted at a killer app to drive the hardware. My main complaint about the Wii is that most games could just as easily be played with a game pad, and here is Sony bringing motion controllers to a console that already has a game pad. They had better have something in the bag to drive this idea.
I did discover evidence first hand that Activision is indeed evil. Strike one, they were handing out beer. Strike two, it was Bud Light. Strike three, the cup wasn’t worth keeping once the beer was gone. So this was just designed to force engineers use the public restroom as far as I could tell.
I also got my Zombrex vaccination. If you don’t know what that is, you’re not alone. There was a booth where they had faux injection guns that they would put up to your arm to inoculate you against becoming a zombie. You got a bandage that said ZOMBREX on it to cover up your non-existent injection wound, a follow up injection in a box (which turned out to be a pretty cool pen that looks like a hypodermic), and a poster detailing “practical advice to dealing with zombie infection” which I’ll have to scan at some point.
All of which seemed to be in furtherance of nothing, since they didn’t seem to be pushing anything other than their bogus injections. Questioning the booth staff got nothing but blank looks and talk about zombies. The only thing I could find on Google that seemed to relate was a post about Dead Rising 2.
I’m sure we’ll find out what this was about soon enough. The box the pen came in has an expiration date of August 31, 2010. Anything shipping on or around that date related to zombies?
Anyway, their viral (heh) campaign seems to have worked somewhat. I’ve already devoted a couple of paragraphs and a picture in this post towards it.
I did get to see Gary Gannon do one of his Game Breakr Daily GDC Wrap Up broadcasts with Brent and Darren right there on the show floor.
Gary, with lots of behind the scenes support from Todd, got some great stuff there at the show. Be sure to head over to Game Breakr to see the clips.
Then, once the show wrapped up for the evening, it was time to walk over to Le Colonial for dinner.
From left to right, the group in the picture is:
- Darren of The Common Sense Gamer and Shut Up, We’re Talking
- Brent, the man behind VirginWorlds
- Neil Kirby, who was speaking at the Artificial Intelligence in Computer Games Roundtables
- Karen of Journey’s with Jaye and Shut Up, We’re Talking
- Shawn Schuster Editor-in-Chief at Massively
- Lady Sinea of Ringcast
- Brian “Psychochild” Green of Meridian 59 and Psychochild’s Blog
And behind the camera was Seraphina, with whom I did not get much of a chance to speak.
I also got a request for a picture of Shawn and Lady Sinea. Behind them is our waiter who studiously avoided catching my eye once it came time to take a picture.
Dinner was excellent of course, as was the company, but all nights come to an end at some point, and we headed back to our rooms or homes. Until next year!