It's really hard not to sit here, look back on GDC, and not be seriously fucking depressed. Simply put, there's just too much to do in 5 days, and when you're sick (I picked up some sort of con crud on the way in to San Jose, and am still recovering), that makes it even harder. I know I made a lot of great connections, I met lot of really awesome people, I didn't miss too much at the parties (I saw nothing NEAR roomba frogger level at GDC, which obviously means people weren't drinking enough), but still, when you go through your daily blogs and realize "Oh SHIT, that person was there?!", it's kind of a downer. Now, you've gotta realize, there's like, 12,000 people at GDC, and it'd be impossible to ferret out everyone I wanted to meet, but I suppose that'll just drive me for next year. I'm nothing if not oblivious to common sense.

Here's the coverage I've found of the Sex In Games Lecture:

4Gamer Coverage - Japanese Link

YoshiNogi Coverage - Japanese Link

Linden Ops - Phoenix Linden's Observations

While the lecture did go very well, I think the much more important event was the "Murder, Sex, and Censorship" panel, which has been getting a good bit of coverage. Whether you liked their arguments or not, it was good to see some discussion on the issue at a game conference.

In terms of other things bloggable, well, I'll be talking about the AmBX presentation over on Nonpolynomial Labs here in a bit, but I'll just go ahead and say that I was slightly underwhelmed.

Anyways, my takeaways from GDC:

  • Don't get sick before conferences.
  • Driving sounds nice until you're doing it.
  • 15 hours into driving, nothing sounds nice. NOTHING.
  • This is a conference about making things that people use to have fun. The bet for the best contacts is to find the people who look/sound like they're having the most fun making things that make other people have fun, and listen to them well.
  • Only CEOs can do their hair like that. Don't even try. They go to college for this stuff.
  • "Game Design Ninjas" need to learn some social ettiquite
  • No one in the game industry wants to hire a robotics engineer. Remember the last robot in gaming? The NES ROB? Yeah. (All of you who know about the Aibo PS2 interaction game Deka Voice get a gold star next to your name.)
  • Therefore, be a software engineer. Yes. Software. Recruiters like software.
  • It's kinda weird to wave sex toys at a conference and then go hand out your resume. Just make sure to put away that tag that proclaims you "GOD OF TELEDILDONICS" before you hit recruiters row. While it may strike up a fun conversation, it can be a little offputting when you ask "So, what positions do you have open?".
  • The talk you go to will probably be good. The other 10 you miss going to that one will be just as good.
  • Game design is hard. But really fucking neat.
  • Tutorials are way, way better when the presenter is wearing a top hat. (The fact that it's a renowned game designer doesn't hurt either, but the hat, it rules.)
  • Come to think of it, hats are an VERY important thing, as long as your hat isn't like anyone else's hat. The Hat People will always find each other. The Hat People are powerful. You will know the Hat People. You will know us by our Hats.
  • If you are introduced to someone stupidly famous, STFU and enjoy listening to them talk to someone they actually know. You'll learn way more than just blurting out "HOLY SHIT DID YOU KNOW YOU MADE (insert game here)?!"
  • Just because it's a game conference doesn't mean the art wall can't resemble something from a Sci-Fi/Fantasy con. When the Sex in Games lecture features your art wall, maybe you should take a step back and consider your judges (and the "FBI: Female Boob Inspector" pins they're wearing).
  • If you are wearing a shirt that lets other people know you are you, make sure that shirt doesn't happen to match the volunteer shirt color.
  • Someone will always have a cooler business card than you. Business card envy is a very, very serious matter. If you are at the top of the business card food chain, you wield a position of supreme, ultimate power. Just flash your card and people will "Oh Shinyyyyyyyy" into submission. I'm looking at you, Amaze Entertainment. You know what I'm talking about.
  • If you're new and made one decent, lasting connection to someone who's been in the industry a while, consider it a successful conference. However, for every contact you got completely shitfaced with and can't remember their name or what you said, subtract two meaningful contacts.
  • And, by far the most important lesson, a lesson I learned from a wise, hat wearing man: everything tastes better in glasses lit up by LEDs, but especially martinis. Having had a lit up LED martini, I must say, motherfuckers need to lay off on the vermouth, but I'll let it slide 'cause damn, it was pretty.

My relatively small flickr set from GDC is behind this link. Mostly driving pictures. And a really shiny dumptruck.

Next up, SIGCHI in Montreal, April 23-24, 2006. Until then, back to Sex Toys.