Welcome to March! By now you've probably all checked out the March Contests Blog, but if you haven't, here are some directions: http://n4g.com/user/blogpos...
Yesterday morning I stopped off at the Microsoft Lobby Bar to play a few games. Regrettably, I fear I may never master the art of playing a game while holding an intelligent conversation and retaining the information from the developer so that I can speak intelligently about it later. Having a go at Section 8: Prejudice it was entirely one or the other - I could listen and talk while having my tush handed to me by enemy AI, or I could play, drop in a turret, capture an area and steal some intel. Fans of Section 8 will be happy (coming to PS3, 360 and PC). In addition to checking out the Section 8 sequel Torchlight was there - you can play it on your 360 on March 9, and we'll have some codes to giveaway soon! All my other Torchlight on 360 impressions are under embargo until this Friday, so shhh...
Also stationed at the MS Lobby Bar is Dream.Build.Play, which opened for 2011 submissions only yesterday. Developers here at GDC have the opportunity to register here, and for all you other super talented types this is your summons to participate as well! Visitors could also play some Fable III or Halo Reach, or even visit the actual bar portion of the MS Lobby Bar…it was 10 a.m. and a cash bar - if I'm going to be drinking at 10 a.m. the drinks should probably be free, right?
Peter Vesterbacka of Angry Birds fame delivered an afternoon session on the franchise, and he should probably have been wearing a crown and a shirt that said "My game rules!" Speaking in favor of mobile to console development, he remarked that the reverse "doesn't work very well". Driving home again and again the belief that mobile does not mean disposable, and advocating frequent updates the unspoken takeaway was this: make a game that doesn't suck. With countless developers seeking to ferret out the key to App Store success, there's only so much concrete framework to be given. Price, for Vesterbacka, is part of that framework, declaring that 99 cents is the price to have and that they based their decision on the Top 20 AppStore games - all priced at 99 cents. Overall, the Rovio team sets bold goals for themselves from monthly updates and seasonal content to creating an in-game purchase item that they want 50% of Angry Birds fans to purchase. Though it hardly seems pie-in-the-sky when they taking over the known world.
PixelJunk Shooter 2 drops into PSN today and was the focus of last night's PlayStation Community Meetup. Held out at Mighty, developers, fans and conference attendees got together for a Shooter 2 tournament, drinks, food and a dash of Patapon 3. Ariel from Q-Games was on hand to congratulate the victors, and if you don't recognize her name try tuning in to the (very entertaining) Q-Games podcast! I'm a PixelJunkie, so most of you already know how fond I am of their PSN titles! What is extra-super-awesome in Shooter 2 is definitely the multiplayer - so have at it!
The rest of the evening saw conference attendees convening in places like the W, where towards the end of the night I bumped into a couple of the guys from Guerilla Games (yes, AutoFire, I passed along your note!).
(Pics added, be sure to check out the last one depicting the iam8bit Paint by Pixels wall, early on Day 1)
The South Hall, MS Lobby Bar
Talking through Section 8: Prejudice
Torchlight! (but I'm playing on 360!)
The birds are ANGRY!
Thinking of playing Angry Birds during Angry Birds, perhaps?
At Mighty, eager gamers waiting to get in
The tournament brings out the best - and the worst? ;)
iam8bit Paint by Pixels wall, early on Day 1