So the GDC has come and gone, and I have updated the Experimental Gameplay Workshop page to show the presentations we had: http://experimental-gameplay.org. If you like wacky games, check it out, since it’s likely there’s something there that you haven’t heard of yet.
I got lots of good feedback from folks on Qt3 back when we were planning this year’s event. So I was wondering if any of y’all had attended this year, if you thought your suggestions had been applied effectively, etc; or if you just have any comments in general.
It was a good show again this year, if weighted much more towards the academic side of the scale this time around. The result is that a lot of those displays felt closer to electronic toys rather than experimental games. Not a bad thing, but then you get lots of questions like those two asking how the EGW has influenced (or might influence future) commercial development.
I hadn’t thought of it that way, but now that you say that, I see you’re totally right. I guess we had 5 “academicy” presentations, but it seemed like less to me because 2 of those were actually from real game people (Chaim works at Maxis, and whereas Robin is at a university, she is about as much of a game industry person as you can be without working on a game). But, the fact that they were giving talk-only presentations about other peoples’ games makes them de-facto academicy.
We did actively seek out academic stuff when looking for submissions. Part of the reason for that is that we feel like the academic world has a lot of people who really don’t know what they’re doing re: games. And there’s not much of a pathway to fix that, because academic people generally get refereed for academy-oriented conferences by other academics. So we figure by providing a conduit into the actual game industry for stuff that seems “relevant” we can help make something of a better connection between the communities.
All the same, if I had sat back and realized we had 5 very academic presentations (and they were all piled in a row at the end!) I would have done something about it, like dropped at least one of them and put something else there instead. (Which would have been difficult, because we really didn’t have enough good real-game submissions. Maybe there would just have been more discussion time). Ah well, to be fixed next time. It’s a good thing our non-academic presentations were pretty strong.