The lineup for this summer's Game Developer's Conference in Europe is shaping up, as a newly announced discussion includes BioWare on post-DLC lessons from Mass Effect and Dragon Age. Video game fans have a ton to look forward to on the development side of gaming as well, with Bigpoint discussing free-to-play game design.
The conference will take place in Cologne, Germany from August 13th through 15th at the Congress-Centrum Ost Koelnmesse. At the event's Business and Marketing track, BioWare plans to detail the long-term strategy for each of its major new releases, according to a press release from GDC. The company's director of online development Fernando Melo, who has worked on titles such as Mass Effect and Dragon Age, will outline the studio's future plans for these games and other major titles.
Another session known as Leveling Up Your AAA Game- BioWare's Post Release Content Insights, delves into the strategies behind downloadable content, online game passes, microtransitions, and more. Melo will also argue as to why these elements can make big-budget titles far more successful.
BioWare's Mass Effect 3, which launched on March 5th, has already seen downloadable content releases such as From Ashes and the Resurgence Pack. Gamers are gearing up for the DLC that could reveal more insight into the game's controversial ending with the Extended Cut expansion. This will include new cut scenes and cinematic sequence revolving around the conclusion of Mass Effect 3. Another multiplayer pack was also recently unveiled, known as the Rebellion pack.
It will be interesting to see if the panel addresses any recent scandals surrounding DLC, such as the Capcom controversy that sent gamers into a fit. Fans were not pleased with the on-disc DLC strategy implemented into titles such as Street Fighter X Tekken, which included characters that were exclusive to the PlayStation Vita that would need to be unlocked on console version at a later date.
We would like to assure you that we have been listening to your comments and as such have begun the process of re-evaluating how such additional game content is delivered in the future, Capcom's Christian Svensson said pertaining to the policy earlier in May, according to GameRanx.
The Design Track of Europe's GDC will feature Jan Richter, CTO of the major German-headquartered online gaming company Bigpoint, who will examine free-to-play business models. Richter will reveal some of the positive implications from these systems in the session titled: Free to Play Game Design Is F*#!1ng Awesome.
The Bigpoint CTO will be citing examples from games such as Dark Orbit and Battlestar Galactica Online to answer the question: What does it truly mean to make a free to play game? He will also share some free to play design secrets and the latest design evolutions that developers should know.
YoYo Games CTO Russell Kay will explain how older development philosophies relate to new technologies in a Programming Track presentation known as Applying Retro Techniques to HTML Development.
Kay says that modern web technologies such as HTML5 make it difficult to give consistent performance across target platforms, particularly for mobile and lower powered devices. However, he does believe that these issues can be related to those faced in the early days of games, which will be explored through a number of tips and techniques used to improve HTML5 game performance.
Panels that have previously been announced include talks from the creators of Dear Esther and Amnesia: The Dark Descent and presentations covering the death of traditional gaming consoles. Discussions will also delve into the future of the game industry press and more.