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GDC 2010 Adds Programming Talks On God Of War III, Starcraft II, More

The organizers of Game Developers Conference 2010 have revealed major Programming Track talks for the March 9th-13th event, including lectures on God Of War III, Splinter Cell: Conviction, Starcraft II, Uncharted 2 and more.
The announcements continue a set of GDC 2010 track-specific announcements, this one focusing on the Programming Track, which "focuses on these challenges and the opportunities presented by next and current generation development including: mature consoles, new handhelds, a highly competitive sales environment, and increased demand for very high production values in games."
The subset of the Game Developers Conference 2010 Advisory Board tasked with programming this track include major industry figures such as Bungie's Chris Butcher, industry veteran Mark Cerny, and former EA fellow Chris Hecker.
Some of the highlighted Programming lectures just announced for the San Francisco Moscone Center-based event include the following:
- Shadows In God of War III
This lecture, conducted by SCEA's Ben Diamand, "provides a detailed view of Sony Santa Monica's approach to shadows in its upcoming title, God of War III. It covers the general techniques employed, and a variety of specific details about what features were supported and what tradeoffs were made."
- Designing for Performance, Scalability & Reliability: StarCraft II's Approach
Blizzard's Dominic Filion will present a detailed lecture "on how Blizzard approached engine development on StarCraft II, centering on aspects of developments that are central to Blizzard's philosophy: scalability, performance and robustness. Lessons learned throughout StarCraft II's development will be demonstrated and a variety of techniques to handle these issues will be presented."

- The Implementation of Rewind in Braid
Braid creator Jon Blow explains in his lecture description regarding his indie hit: "In Braid the player can rewind time at will... the game design required the player to be able to rewind a large amount of gameplay (30 to 60 minutes) and the memory of this gameplay had to fit into a small space (40 megabytes on consoles)." In this technical lecture, Blow will explain the intricacies and practicalities of doing just that.
- The Rendering Tools and Techniques of Splinter Cell: Conviction
Ubisoft's Stephen Hill will present a lecture "covering some of the challenges, advancements and lessons learned in the development of Splinter Cell: Conviction from a rendering perspective." It's noted that, "...together with an overview of the renderer in terms of architecture, rendering passes, optimisation strategies and tools, two aspects in particular -- dynamic ambient occlusion and visibility -- will be presented in depth."
- Animation and Player Control in Uncharted: Drake's Fortune and Uncharted 2: Among Thieves
This "survey of techniques" used in the two games "for implementing the player character's animation and control" is one of two programming lectures on Uncharted 2 at this year's Game Developers Conference, with a discussion on HDR lighting in the Naughty Dog-developed game also scheduled.
Other notable Programming Track talks include EA Maxis' Richard Evans on 'Modeling Individual Personalities in The Sims 3', a duo from Airtight Games on Taking Fluid Simulation Out of the Box: Particle Effects in Dark Void', Zynga engineer Robert Zubek on 'Engineering Scalable Social Games', and Jaymin Kessler of Q Games on fluid and particle physics in PixelJunk Shooter, with a a full list of track lectures available on the GDC website.
Alongside the complete multi-track set of announced GDC 2010 lectures thus far comes news on reduced conference pass prices for the event, with the introduction of optional lunch packages. Early Bird rates for GDC 2010 end on February 4, 2010 -- for more information on the 2010 Game Developers Conference, visit the official GDC 2010 website.


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