Thursday, August 02, 2007

AGC: schedule OPTIONS

Alright, so it took me an hour (or more), but I've browsed through all the panels and presentations being offered at this year's AGC and I've narrowed down the possibilities to the one's I'm interested in. There was stuff I was interested that I'm not including in this list, but these are the ones I'm going to need time to consider before choosing one over the other.

Yep, it's just like last year... for every presentation I'm going to, there are at least two I want to see but can't, due to the time overlap. I'm a Renaissance man, so I have a great interest in every little crevice of the industry, and I'd love to hear it all.

I wouldn't be surprised if you others who are going haven't really looked at the presentation summaries yet. But when you do, let me know which of these is on your lists, too.

Two other quick notes before I go on:
  • I chose according to the topics and summaries, not according to the hosts.
  • Brent and Michael, I hate you. ;) There are three presentations at the same time that I'd love to see, but they conflict with yours; and I'd really like to hear that one, too.
Without further ado, the list...


  • Everything I Needed to Know about Writing I Learned from Star Trek; Speaker: Evan Skolnick (Editorial Director, Vicarious Visions)
  • Designing for Everywhere; Speaker: Raph Koster (President, Areae, Inc.)

  • Familiarity breeds contempt: Building game stories that flow; Speaker: Patrick Redding (Narrative Designer/Game Designer, Ubisoft Montreal)
  • Form and Function: Designing MMOs for Emerging Technologies; Speaker: Shannon Posniewski (Director of Game Programming, Cryptic Studios), Stieg Hedlund (Perpetual Entertainment)

...and I should stop by afterward to say hi to Cindy Bowens, who did a great job as community manager for Sigil before the game was released.

  • Breaking the In-game / Out-of-game Barrier; Speaker: Todd Northcutt (GameSpy), Sean Flinn (GameSpy)
  • Identifying, Engaging and Empowering Community Influencers; Speaker: Troy Hewitt (Director, Community Relations, Flying Lab Software), EM Stock (Senior Community Manager, SOE Austin TX), Alan Crosby (Director, Global Community Relat, Sony Online Entertainment), Paul Della Bitta (Sr. Community Manager, Blizzard Entertainment), Charles Dane (Community Manager, CCP Games)
  • Increasing Enjoyment & Decreasing MMO Churn through Intrinsic Need Satisfaction; Speaker: Scott Rigby (President, Immersyve, Inc.)



  • Negotiating Mind Games; Speaker: Michael Gibson (Producer, Zapdramatic)

  • Dupes, Speed Hacks and Black Holes: How Players Cheat in MMOs.; Speaker: Tim Keating (Director of Development, Heatwave Interactive)
  • Emerging Legal Issues for Online Games; Speaker: S. Gregory Boyd (Attorney, Kenyon and Kenyon)
  • One World: Developing Story and Gameplay Together; Speaker: Matt Costello (Writer & Game Designer, Polar Productions)
  • Who Are Your Customers, And How Will They Pay?; Speaker: Kevin Higgins (CEO, PayByCash)

  • Building MMOS is EASY...; Speaker: George Dolbier (Sr. IT Architect, IBM)
  • From One-off to Franchise - Finding the Holy Grail; Speaker: Flint Dille (Writer, Designer, Producer, Bureau of Film & Games)
  • Gameplay Metrics for a Better Tomorrow; Speaker: Darius Kazemi (President, Orbus Gameworks)
  • The Zen of Online Game Design; Speaker: Damion Schubert (Lead Combat Designer, BioWare Corp.)


  • Combining Conventional MMO Gameplay with a Mini-game Mindset; Speaker: Tim Holt (Oregon State University), Peter Smith (Research Faculty, University of Central Florida)
  • Startup Lessons from Recent Online Games; Speaker: Daniel James (CEO, Three Rings), Anthony Castoro (President and Founder, Heatwave Interactive), Raph Koster (President, Areae, Inc.), Joe Ybarra (VP Product Development, Cheyenne Mountain Entertainment), Nabeel Hyatt (Founder, CEO)
  • The Big Board Debate!; Speaker: EM Stock (Senior Community Manager, SOE Austin TX), Paul Della Bitta (Sr. Community Manager, Blizzard Entertainment), Chris Mancil (Senior Community Manager, Vivendi Games), Chris Launius (Lead Community Manager, Perpetual Entertainment), Cindy Bowens (Consultant, Seashadow Consulting), Troy Hewitt (Director, Community Relations, Flying Lab Software)
  • Writing, the BioWare Way; Speaker: Drew Kapyshyn (Principal Writer, BioWare), Mike Laidlaw (Lead Writer, BioWare), Mac Walters (Game Designer/Writer, BioWare Corp.)


  • Creating a New Age of VO in Games; Speaker: DB COOPER (Voice Actor,, Patrick Fraley (Voice Talent, Teacher)
  • The 4 Most Important Emotions of Game Design; Speaker: Nicole Lazzaro
  • The New Kids on the Social Networking Block; Speaker: Kathleen Craig (Producer, Millions of Us, Millions of Us), Michael Steele (VP/Evangelist, Emergent Game Technologies), Ron Meiners (Community Manager, Multiverse Network)
  • What Do I Do Now? Narrative Devices for Guiding Players; Speaker: Chris Bateman (Managing Director, International Hobo Ltd)

  • Literate Gaming: How We Can and Must Do Better at Writing for Games; Speaker: Austin Grossman (Writer)
  • Truly Original Melodies For Game Music: Use Your Head To Escape Your Head; Speaker: Gerard Marino (composer, G-Musique)
  • Where are the Biggest Online Gaming Opportunities?; Speaker: Matt Firor (Consultant, Ultra Mega Games), Mark Jacobs (VP EA, Studio GM EA Mythic, EA Mythic), John Smedley (President, Sony Online Entertainment), Erik Bethke (CEO, GoPets, Ltd.), Raph Koster (President, Areae, Inc.)

There it is. It's killing me how badly I want to see more than one at a time. That last set is a perfect example. I'm a composer/songwriter, so I'd love to hear Marino's lecture, but Grossman's could be invaluable, too... and the third lecture might help point me to a job. Gah!

Anyway, let me know what wets your whistle.

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