Random Booth shots posted 3/29 at 8:18:32 AM PST by Dave Astle
*sniff* It's so sad... posted 3/28 at 7:35:07 PM PST by Gaiiden
It's always a saddening moment when the PA comes alive and the announcer declares that the GDC is now officially over, and people start clearing out of the Expo before they're hussled out. I got to stay a bit longer this year because I snagged an Exhibitor pass from a friend, so I snapped a few pics on my way out. It's amazing how fast they manage to break things down. I was only half way to the door a few scant minutes after the final announcement and most of the booths looked torn down and empty. *sigh* Until next year...
Smartypants posted 3/28 at 7:34:17 PM PST by Gaiiden
One of the AI middleware companies, Stottler & Henke, was at the GDC showcasing their product SimBionic. It's a nice easy-to-use tool for implementing AI in a game. I've tried it myself a little bit since I have a friend in the company, and keep your eyes on GDNet - we may have a product review soon.
Thx to my good friend Coray Seifert, who insisted on taking these pics of me playing Counter Strike with bots programmed through SimBionic
"May I see your Renderware Membership card please?" posted 3/28 at 7:21:01 PM PST by Gaiiden
Jeez, the Renderware booth is turning more and more into a private club. Last year, the booth had a small demo area you could walk around in, but then behind the counter was a comfy press lounge, or maybe even a member lounge of some sort. This year there wasn't even a demo area to walk around in! They had flat panels set up around the top of the booth angled down showing movies, but access to the inside of the booth was roped off, with bouncers to one side (okay, just those green-suited convention center security guards, but still). What was even cooler was that they had their entire API interface graphed onto a backlit wall behind the desk. Neet. I'll have to book something with them next year (didn't I say that last year?) to check it out. Either that or like... crawl up the side of the booth to peek inside. Ninja style.
Va Va Vrrrooooom! posted 3/28 at 6:57:58 PM PST by Gaiiden
Now this is the blingbling, lemme tell you. Of course, now that I'm writing this report I'm telling myself "hey stupid, why didn't you get the full specs?" Yes, I was too busy drooling over all the LCD screens and nitrous tanks (???) and jacked up suspension and PS2 and amplifiers and... and... well there was a lot. The upholstery was nice too. I wish it could have been a giveaway, but I guess they figured us game developers would never be interested in a car anyways.
GarageGames and Torque posted 3/27 at 12:04:06 AM PST by Gaiiden
Since GarageGames couldn't justify the expense for their own booth again this year (can't blame em), they hosted their wares courtesy of NVIDIA. I'm still highly dissapointed I didn't have enough time to stick around for one of their presentations in the mini-theater to catch all the juicy details, but I did have enough time to snag some pics. Keep your eyes on the GG site for more news pertaining to the new Torque shader engine.
Unwind, Unwire posted 3/26 at 11:58:03 PM PST by Gaiiden
Ahhh... no wires. It truly is a wonderful age we live in these days. In years past getting a seat at the internet lounge was a 15 minute wait. Getting a computer could put you there for like half an hour. This year however things were different, thanks to Intel sponsoring a wireless internet lounge on the show floor. Now you can just take your laptop, plop down in a comfy beanbag chair (or regular chair or just stand by a table if all seats are taken) and surf away. Marvelous. While it's easier to get a seat and surf the web in the press lounge, there's still nothing like a nice beanbag chair every now and then.
Games 411 posted 3/26 at 5:42:41 PM PST by John Hattan
Don't know if this is a good idea or not, but these folks have put together a guide of game publishers, producers, studios, etc. Check it out at games411.com
What you find. . .to be Real! posted 3/26 at 5:37:17 PM PST by John Hattan
RealArcade's still around to push their game download service. In their defense, while the royalty rates might not be as high as some places, they can get you a lot of exposure. And apparently their software will now ACTUALLY UNINSTALL, which makes it worth a second look by itself!
Expo Gallery posted 3/26 at 10:18:37 AM PST by Gaiiden
As I wander around the Expo floor I'll be taking random pics and whatnot and post em all up here.
Roll your own XBox! posted 3/26 at 8:03:42 AM PST by John Hattan
Another "solution" S3 was showing off was a motherboard/video card combination that was specifically designed for game-based set-top boxes. It's got all the fast video and processor and such crammed into a very small motherboard. Apparently the roms are designed for playing games directly off removable media without installing. Add yourself a little hard drive and DVD-ROM and joysticks to a tiny case, and you'd have a dandy little game box.
Oooooh, new gizmo posted 3/26 at 7:57:35 AM PST by John Hattan
At first, I ignored these folks with the assumption that this was yet again still another oddly-shaped game peripheral for 3D shooters, but it was actually a bit different. Shaped like something outta the latest "Star Wars", this gizmo sits on the floor. Those joystick looking things on the top attach to gloves via a couple of self-reeling strings. Using the gloves, you can do things like punch and wave, and the gizmo can track where your hands are. They were showing off its use with a rather ho-hum fighting game. Seemed like it'd be better suited to a first-person boxing game, but I'm no marketer. They were also showing how you could use the gizmo with a golf club for first-person golf games.
Booth Crawl posted 3/25 at 10:12:48 PM PST by Ron Penton
Today is thursday, and we all know what that means...
Basically you go around and get free food and beer from everyone. Intel was giving away pretzels and hotdogs. Mmmmm, hotdogs. No pies anywhere, though.
Mathematical Origami posted 3/25 at 9:43:28 PM PST by John Hattan
Not especially game related, but the AK Peters booth had a book-signing by a guy who uses Mathematica to model origami figures. On the table below him were plenty of bugs that he folded. On the stands are an eagle and a moose, also folded by him. Not game-related, but unique.
It's like a whole nuther country posted 3/25 at 9:38:16 PM PST by John Hattan
Proving that they're capable of exporting more than freshly-caned juvenile delinquents, the government of Singapore had its own booth. They also gave out these cool metal cans of pick-up-sticks (suitable for caning small rodents) and plenty of anime-themed cellphone games.
And the award for lowest-attended awards show goes to. . . posted 3/25 at 9:33:46 PM PST by John Hattan
Shortly before the GDC, these folks pestered me for a couple of weeks asking if I'd be a presenter at their awards show. Following Groucho Marx's maxim of "I'd never be a member of a club that would have a person like me as a member", I politely ignored the request figuring that it couldn't be a real awards show. DavidRM, however, took 'em up on it and reaped this fine showing. At the Computer Graphics Magazine booth in front of thous. . .hund. . .tens. . .okay just me and one other guy, David proudly announced the award winners. I clapped with extra enthusiasm, but it still seemed somewhat less than the oscars. On the other hand, because there was nobody else there to watch, this means that I had EXCLUSIVE COVERAGE of this event. You will find photos like these nowhere else!
Now you know posted 3/25 at 9:26:23 PM PST by John Hattan
If you've ever seen those dopey ads in Game Developer advertising Gamebryo, you probably said the same thing I did. "Uhh, what exactly IS it?"
Today I got an answer. It's an "Engine" (which is market-droid speak for a library) for doing 3D stuff. In front of their booth they played this adorable realtime movie of a momma penguin leading scores of younguns around a frozen island.
Expo, Day One posted 3/25 at 10:53:54 AM PST by Ron Penton
After frantically running back to the hotel to pick up my business cards, which had finally arrived, I came back to the convention center and started wandering around the expo floor, just to see what can be seen. For starters, it seemed a lot busier this year than last, but maybe that's because I went at lunch time, and everyone wanted their food.
Mmmmm, food. I had an italian sub... but there were still no pies. Bah!
Anyway, here are a bunch of pics from my first pass around the floor.
Look at the big big phone posted 3/25 at 9:58:09 AM PST by John Hattan
AARRGGHH! IT BURNS!!! posted 3/25 at 9:55:54 AM PST by John Hattan
The GDC wisely placed the Intel and AMD booths about eight feet apart. If you look closely at the picture, you can actually see the waves of hatred passing between the two of the. Amazing. Scientific!
Wow, look at all the. . .nothing posted 3/25 at 9:53:40 AM PST by John Hattan
Stormfront Studios was an early nominee in the "emptiest booth" category. At least they posted a sign saying "we've got a pile of money and nothing to spend it on, so we bought an empty booth".
Expo Floor Opens posted 3/24 at 5:05:22 PM PST by John Hattan
11:30 AM Wednesday the expo floor opened. Lots of fun lights and shiny stuff everywhere. And lots of good freebies. Unfortunately, my new laptop has no floppy drive, and my Mavica communicates only by floppy, so it'll be another day before I can post pics.
Also I've got a couple of good pics of booth babes. Contrary to last year, there were booth babes to be had. . .ok, at least photographed. No real standout bits of free stuff yet. Lotsa shiny pens and stickers and silly putty and such. My two year-old is gonna love me.
Newcomer to the booth scene is S3, showing off their new high-performance moderately priced 3D cards. Since they were part of chipset manufacturer VIA, they also had some nice Windows-based set top boxes to show off that's got TIVO-like functionality along with good 3D performance for high-end games.