Make the most of GDC (if you aren’t attending)
By Courtney Carlson | February 23, 2017
GDC is one of the games industry’s most exclusive events, and attendees pay top dollar to have access to influencers, talks, networking events, and meetups that come at a premium. Lucky for you, the digital age has made exclusive events more accessible than ever, no matter how far you are from the action.
We’ve put together a list livestreams, resources, and tips to help you make the most of GDC, even if you can’t be there yourself!
Streams and Live Coverage
Live streaming is one of the best ways to experience conference events as they are happening and puts you right in the center of the action by capturing both sound and space. As live streaming becomes more popular and the many streaming platforms push for market dominance, it can be difficult to track year after year (or month to month) where organizations/streamers are housing their streaming operations. Social networks are jumping in with Facebook’s Live Video features and Twitter’s Periscope, and this turns everyday attendees into the eyes and ears of stay-at-home participants. We have a few new streaming events confirmed for this year, and a few that have been used historically for some degree of GDC coverage.
Google Developer Day
Kick off your live coverage viewing on February 27 at 10am-4pm (PST) with Google for Developer Day! This livestream includes the Google Keynote, Lightning Talks, and conversations on mobile, indie, VR development, and more. Check out the full schedule, content, and stream here!
see also: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gv5Bd3YswXw)
AMD Capsaicin Stream
This year, AMD’s Vega and Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 TI go head to head on February 28th with product showcases. AMD is bringing back their 2016 Capsaicin event and offering livestream coverage for those back home. Expect to see what AMD has cooking in VR hardware support and cutting edge graphics. Tune it at 10:30am (PST). Check out the full details on the event page: (http://www.eventbrite.ca/e/amd-capsaicin-cream-developer-sessions-tickets-31885769194) and tune in for the stream here.
Game Developer Choice Awards
Last year, GDC and Twitch partnered to give industry insiders and fans alike a front row seat to the Game Developers Choice Awards. This awards show puts the focus on peer-recognition and acknowledges the contributions and accomplishments of industry talent instead of titles. We hope to see this broadcast again this year on the GDC Twitch.tv channel!
Can’t wait for GDC 2017 to start? The GDC Official Youtube channel has you covered. GDC is presenting a second year of GDC Flash Forward, giving you a sneak peek of the talks and content that will be covered this year (a great aid to help you decide which competing talks you really want to attend in about 1-2 minutes). Hear from the speakers directly on what they’ll cover. Similar to the coveted GDC Vault collection, the GDC Youtube channel also indexes some of the most popular presentations and talks, so even if you do miss out on one, you may find it here later!
No time (or way) to livestream during your 9-5? Catch coverage when it’s most convenient for you. Our favorite coverage for GDC comes from Gamasutra, the media affiliate of GDC, and GameSpot, who is conveniently headquartered a short distance from the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco. GameSpot brings experts and development teams directly to their studio for their GDC Sessions coverage. Keep up at your own pace here: http://www.gamasutra.com/gdc2017 and http://www.gamespot.com/gdc/
Sometimes, even if you are able to attend or catch a talk live, you’ll find yourself wanting to relive the magic (or need a refresher on that storytelling for gameplay session you loved 5 years ago.) The GDC Vault archives almost all talks from previous GDCs, and while the annual cost of membership access is $495, there are dozens of free talks open and available to the public. Talks cover everything from design, technical, and inspirational talks, and many of these come complete with the slides and presentation materials to help you track along.
…But I need more!
It is likely that not all live streams and coverage has been announced, and some might pop up on your own social news feeds. Keep an eye out on Twitter, Facebook, Reddit and Twitch for opportunities to follow the conference!
All your buddies are at GDC and you’re slumming it. But it doesn’t have to be so…
Keep up with everyone on social, and show your support! Don’t forget to check in on who is in attendance with the Twitter name tags (user @ GDC) and pass along some goodwill and encouragement by liking tweets, retweeting, and responding to posts as information hits. Your friends speaking, exhibiting, and attending will appreciate it (and won’t be allowed to forget about you at home!) Get started today by boosting the signal on talks your company or friends are participating in. Don’t forget to check in later and ask them how it went (public speaking is the number 1 universal fear, after all!)
There but… Not There
So you’re in San Francisco between February 27-March 3 and no badge or pass. GDC is a huge, and plenty of activity spills out onto the streets and throughout downtown SF. If you’re in town but won’t be making onto the floor, take advantage of the parties and events surrounding GDC. Check out Pocket Gamer’s Ultimate GDC 2017 Party list here (look for ones that don’t require a badge or invite!) and set up some personal meetings downtown. Pick out a coffee shop or restaurant and make time to meet with old colleagues or to discuss business opportunities with new prospects. Look for places that aren’t overly crowded and loud- and always come prepared with business cards and materials to remind your contact to get back in touch with you after the conference has wrapped!
How Else Can I Take Advantage?
Who is Hiring?
GDC has expanded recruitment and employment opportunities this year. Want to know who is looking for talent? Download the GDC Mobile App to find the Who’s Hiring @ GDC Brochure. How do you make sure your resume doesn’t get lost in the pile of submissions? Get in touch with DAM at info(at)damagents.com and let us know if you’re interested in having representation with one of these companies- because there is no substitute for having direct access to the hiring managers with a powerful recruiter at your side.
Last but not least, GDC offers several ways to attend in the future, even if you don’t have the financial means today. Consider taking advantage of the GDC Low Income Attendee Pass Lottery next year and scholarships ranging from student to diversity-focus. This includes scholarships for Girls Make Games, Glitch, Global Game Jam, Pixelles, and more!
What are your tips for making the best out of GDC without a pass? Let us know at social(at)damagents.com!