Thursday, March 23, 2006

GDC '06 - Part 1

While writing last week's post, I completely forgot that the GDC (Game Developers Conference, for the uninitiated) was going to be happening this week. The aforementioned conference makes up the bulk of this post, but not the entirety. Warning - there are a whole lot of links to Gamasutra, which may require you to register at some point. You can probably use BugMeNot, but honestly I'd deem Gamasutra as a register-worthy site.

First things first. Reaffirming that good things can still happen to good people, Darwinia won the top prize at the Independent Games Festival Awards - something I was hoping would happen. The awards ceremony's bigger, louder brother - the Game Developers Choice Awards, was basically swept by three games. Shadow Of The Colossus was the big winner, an event I have absolutely no problems with. Nintendogs and Guitar Hero were the other big winners, with Psychonauts putting in a small appearance.

On to the GDC. There were two major keynotes at the event yesterday, the first of which was the Sony keynote. Phil Harrison was the main speaker, although there were quite a few others showcasing PS3 demos. Apparently, what was shown was not that different than what we've seen and heard before, but there was a very interesting tidbit thrown out in the Q&A session after the keynote - the PS3 will be region free. Not the system itself, of course, but the software. That's great news already, but it gets me wondering if it will play PS1/PS2 games region-free as well. Not being a mod chip type of fellow, this could finally give me the chance to get my hands on some imports I've always wanted.

The next keynote speaker was Ron Moore (Slashdot link so you can see Cylon misspelled as Pylon), formerly of Star Trek fame, who is now working on Battlestar Galactica. It didn't have an awful lot to with games, from the coverage I've read, but it does give me a long-awaited opportunity to mention who much of a Battlestar Galactica fan I am. The original show I watched for the same reason I watch MacGyver - the cheese factor. The new one is just, well, I don't know what to say except that it's the only show on television I try not to miss an episode of.

That's it for now, but there are two keynotes of interest going on today that I'd like to cover - Satoru Iwata with some info on the Nintendo Revolution (I believe that keynote is going on as I type this) and Will Wright (Spore, man, Spore!), so if I get the chance, I'll be back later today with more on those. Otherwise, you'll get more GDC goodness next week.


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