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GDC highlights and 2018 dates confirmed

GDC organisers have revealed that 26,000 games industry professionals attended this year’s conference, taking in more than 500 lectures, panels, tutorials and roundtable discussions.

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GDC 2017

GDC organisers have revealed that 26,000 games industry professionals attended this year’s event, taking in more than 500 lectures, panels, tutorials and roundtable discussions.

570 companies were also at the show, exhibiting at the GDC Expo and around the conference, as were a number of interactive spaces, including Double Fine’s Day of the Devs, the Indie MEGABOOTH, Art Boss from iam8bit, and the GDC Train Jam.

It has been confirmed that GDC 18 will be held at San Francisco’s Moscone Center from March 19 – 23, 2018.

Among this year’s session highlights were Niantic lifting the lid on worldwide phenomenon, Pokémon GO, and Nintendo’s detailed examination of how they broke series conventions with The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. Notable games from the past were also re-examined in a series of Classic Game Postmortems, which saw retrospectives from Yutaka “Yoot” Saito on Seaman, Don Rawitsch on Oregon Trail, Warren Spector on Deus Ex, and Sid Meier and Bruce Shelley on Sid Meier’s Civilization.

Our personal favourites included Marc Flury on the development of Thumper, and Mick Gordon’s fascinating deep dive on composing the Doom soundtrack.

The achievements of game developers over the past year were also celebrated at the Independent Games Festival (IGF) Awards and Game Developers Choice Awards (GDCA). Blendo Games’ Quadrilateral Cowboy won this year’s Seumas McNally Grand Prize at the IGFs, and Blizzard’s Overwatch took home the GDCA Game of the Year award.

Meggan Scavio, general manager of the Game Developers Conference, said:

“Every GDC gives us a deeper appreciation of the hard work that goes into every aspect of game production, and every role requires attention and deserves respect. With GDC, we aim to honour the commitment, passion and love that all game creators put into each project, I’d like to think we’ve done that this year. Games can be scary, exciting, funny, and above all else, fun. They run the gamut of emotions and themes, and there’s a game out there for everyone. GDC embraces this spirit, and we welcome developers of all backgrounds. The last few months have seen lots of challenges and changes, but also some truly amazing gameplay and VR experiences. If GDC 2017 is any indication, we should be in for a hell of a year for games.”

You can watch selected conference sessions on the official official GDC YouTube channel and catch up with our coverage, here.

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Thumbsticks editor, and connoisseur of Belgian buns. Currently playing: Fire Emblem Three Houses, Skyrim (still), and Grid.