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GDC 2011 Adds Battlefield 3, Failure Workshop, Thief Talks

Organizers of the 2011 Game Developers Conference have debuted key new talks including Battlefield 3 tech talks, a fascinating 'failure workshop' and a reveal of the new Thief's generative music system.

As the overall session list for the February/March event further expands, organizers are specially highlighting new Main Conference session announcements released in the last few days.

These talks are part of the Main Conference, which takes place at the Moscone Center from Wednesday March 2nd to Friday March 4th, 2011 during the pre-eminent, San Francisco-based event, featuring discipline-specific Tracks dedicated to programming, design, art, audio, business and management, and production.

Some of the top new lectures added to the GDC roster include the following:

  • One high-profile talk is 'The Failure Workshop', featuring rapid-fire presentations from notables including PopCap's George Fan (Plants Vs. Zombies), 2D Boy's Kyle Gabler (World Of Goo), Stardock's Brad Wardell (Galactic Civilizations franchise).

The talks, which also feature Kyle Gray (Henry Hatsworth), Chris Hecker (SpyParty) and Matthew Wegner (Offroad Velociraptor Safari), feature "successful developers on their less-than-successful projects", as "the Failure Workshop focuses on the glorious failures we all have, and the successful games that emerged as a result."

- In 'Stealing Sound: Generative Music in Thief', Eidos Montreal's Paul Weir will make the first public presentation regarding the upcoming fourth iteration in the noted stealth franchise, based around the fact that "innovative audio has been at the heart of the original Thief titles".

Weir explains: "This talk will argue for the benefits of using generative music in games... I will show our custom generative system (GRAMPS), demonstrate its key design features and suggest some best practice techniques". Weir intends to show "how using a single person as the composer, sound designer and audio director on a AAA title can help create a unified sound field."

- Multiple talks on the innovative tech around DICE's Battlefield 3 are also planned, including Christina Coffin talking on 'SPU-based Deferred Shading in Battlefield 3 for Playstation 3'. The talk "presents a detailed programmer oriented overview of our SPU based shading system implemented in DICE's Frostbite 2 engine and how it enables more visually rich environments in Battlefield 3 and better performance over traditional GPU-only based renderers."

In addition, Kenny Magnusson presents 'Lighting You Up in Battlefield 3', with the visual arts talk showcasing " a detailed overview of the new lighting system implemented in DICE's Frostbite 2 engine and how it enables us to stretch the boundaries of lighting in Battlefield 3... avoiding costly and static prebaked lighting without compromising quality."

Also notable and new from the nearly 200 thus-far confirmed lectures are talks from Playfish's Jeferson Valadares on 'It's in the Game: The Making of FIFA Superstars, showing how the hit Facebook title was put together, as well as a panel on 'Strategy Games: The Next Move', featuring luminaries such as Civilization franchise designers Jon Shafer and Soren Johnson, Starcraft II's Dustin Browder and Robot Entertainment's Ian Fischer.

At the forefront of game development, Game Developers Conference -- part of the UBM TechWeb Game Network, as is this website -- continues to deliver the most pertinent and informative updates in digital entertainment, with a host of GDC 2011 Main Conference and Summit content announcements to come over the next few weeks.

Game Developers Conference 2011 -- the 25th iteration of the industry-leading show -- will be held at the Moscone Center in San Francisco from February 28th to March 4th, and registration is now open. For more information on all aspects of the show, visit the official GDC 2011 website.


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