Game Developers Conference Begins Their Online Stream In Lieu Of Physical Event

Game Developers Conference Begins Their Online Stream In Lieu Of Physical Event
Credit: GDC

At this point, you might be hard-pressed to find an event that hasn’t been canceled by the concerns of the COVID-19 pandemic, gaming world or otherwise. One of the many, many, many events that has been affected was this year’s Game Developers Conference, or GDC 2020.

But the team was also among one of the first to make the call to cancel the in-person events, which gave them plenty of time to prepare for their virtual event instead. Today was the first day of the event, which will be continuing on daily until the final day of March 20th.

There’s still plenty to see, and there are even some perks in the way that the event is being held. Maybe the most pressing draw is that they’re being streamed on Twitch for free. You don’t even have to be subscribed to the GDC Twitch channel, it seems! You can watch the entirety of the first day in the saved videos section of their Twitch channel for about seven hours of free developer speeches – though you’ll be navigating around a good number of lengthy breaks.

Not all of these are live, as it’s difficult to organize something of that magnitude and many of these speakers may not even have the equipment necessary to stream such a thing. The majority of them have been pre-recorded and are being shared en masse for everyone’s viewing pleasure.

It is worth acknowledging that not every last talk that was originally planned will be able to be showcased. It seems that most of them survived the move into the digital format, but don’t expect to find every single one of the original talks shown.

There were a good number of fascinating topics being discussed today, though.  There were discussions on LGBT representation in games, the difficulties of cross-platform design and programming, storytelling mechanics, and the need to intrinsically motivate a team.

And there’s plenty more on the way! Today was only the first day; tomorrow comes with a sizeable stretch of interesting talks, including big names like Gearbox and 343 Industries, who’ll be discussing accessibility in Borderlands 3 and AI matchmaking in Halo, respectively. There’s also going to be discussions on how to market a game while combating feeling like a “used car salesman,” or my personal favorite title of a presentation so far, Owen Goss’s “Failure Workshop: FutureGrind: How To Make A 6-Month Game In Only 4.5 Years.”

It’s great to see that the move online isn’t crippling the event, as many feared that it would. Be sure to tune in when you can, but if you can’t, don’t hesitate to watch the talks in their entirety for free on Twitch!