In the midst of my second year pursuing my Masters in Game Design & Development, working with my team of students on my Capstone game, The Pact, a unique opportunity presented itself. Selected among a handful of students from our esteemed Game Design Masters Cohort, I was granted the privilege by my department to embark on an unforgettable adventure—the chance to attend GDC 2023. This opportunity not only allowed me to represent our capstone creation but also marked my inaugural voyage to California, a mesmerizing experience in its own right.
With the stage set, I eagerly share some cherished memories from my transformative five-day journey to GDC 2023 in the vibrant city of San Francisco.
Attended Niantic's Event on Lightship VPS
Immersed in the captivating world of GDC, I delved into Niantic's event on Lightship VPS, where I not only learned about cutting-edge technology but also had the chance to interact with the developers steering the ship.
I got an opportunity to talk about some of my work from a AR school project that I worked on called "Tiger Tales AR" by using Google's ArCore and Mapbox . Engaging in discussions on incorporating Lightship VPS into Unity for projects of this nature was truly enlightening.
I also randomly met Nik Pantis one of my connections whom I got introduced to from the Game Production Guild and Game Production Community.
Fun time having our capstone game "The Pact" play-tested by Industry folks
My team members and I attended two events where we had our "The Pact" available for playtest. This marked our inaugural foray into obtaining valuable feedback from seasoned game industry experts. A lot of the feedback was based on how polished the game felt and looked based on the fact it was just a game made by a few students.
We also received constructive criticism, providing a roadmap for future enhancements. My team and I made our notes and drew some points for future work from all the feedback.
We are really glad that we were able to attend this event and create reachability for our game.
Witnessing so many people interestingly watching others play from distance and then also waiting for their turn to experience our creation was a gratifying sight.
Explore more about this event on my LinkedIn post
Try out "The Pact" on my team's itch.io page
Indie BYOG at Buzzworks
Indie Carnival by Game Jolt and YAHAHA
Walking around the Expo floor
Day three unveiled the sprawling Expo floor, a bustling mosaic of booths featuring developers and tech companies. Networking became the order of the day, as I forged new connections, exchanged business cards, and rekindled ties with familiar faces. Engaging recruiters in discussions about my portfolio and resume.
I got a chance to meet Mr. Dayanidhi Malagondanahally, Co-founder & CEO at Studio nCore from India. This studio was responsible for producing the popular Indian Game FAU-G
I was able to connect with people at Iron Galaxy studios, Visual Concepts, Unreal Engine, and a lot of other studios.
Swag items filled my bag, turning the Expo into a delightful treasure trove, HAHA
Interacted with Producers at the Microsoft "Game Production as Craft" seminar
A highlight of GDC was the insightful seminar by Microsoft on "Game Production as Craft," featuring experienced Game Producers from various Microsoft studios. The post-session interaction allowed me to share my student producer experiences, garnering invaluable feedback that will undoubtedly shape my journey in the field.
We attended a social playtest event featuring RIT alumni, faculty and students. This was a great place to engage with the Alumni and other students attending GDC like me.
This informal gathering allowed for meaningful connections and invaluable lessons from those who have carved successful paths in game development.
Hear more about this experience from my LinkedIn post
Spending my last Day in San Francisco
As the GDC curtains drew close, my friends and I embarked on a memorable evening, exploring the iconic Golden Gate Bridge and savoring the diverse delicacies of China Town. We created some great memories by just walking around and experiencing this city.
Until next time GDC!
Being a part of GDC was a dream realized. From childhood love for video games to the pursuit of creating immersive experiences, GDC brought me closer to my goal. The emotional fulfillment derived from conversations and connections made at the event reinforced my passion. Until next time, GDC—here's to creating more magic in the world of game development.
Finally, I extend my heartfelt thanks to my Capstone team members, as well as the faculty and staff of the Game Design and Development department at RIT for their unwavering support.
Explore my reflections on GDC on my LinkedIn Post
Experience "The Pact" on my team's itch.io page