Archive for the ‘Unreal 4 Engine’ tag

Battle: GDC 2013

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GDC13Photo Credit: Chris Liao

Every March, GDC–the Game Developers Conference, for the uninitiated–rolls around in San Francisco without fail. It is the harbinger of E3 and herald of the non-stop gauntlet of the summer convention/conference/tradeshow season. In contrast to its ritzy and manic infused cousin, GDC forgoes the smoke and bright lights and opts for intimate meeting rooms and extensive one-on-one showcasing of the magic that makes games tick. But make no mistake; a battle is taking place behind the seemingly calm landscape. The gaming world is undergoing a fundamental shift. Developers in droves are choosing to go indie, swearing allegiance not to a console or publisher but to their games themselves.

If the gaming world is a battlefield, developers are the warriors, and the consumers the proverbial spoils…GDC would be their armory. The only impetus guiding a developer’s weapon of choice: innovate or die. The newest, fastest, greatest and latest are shown on the expo floor. Ranging from graphics engines, processors, gadgets, and user interfaces.

There is no lack of cool, shiny new things to discover.  Case and point, Activision’s R&D team and the Unreal 4 Engine blew us away with their respective Real Time Demos–graphics in games are lunging headfirst toward the other side of the uncanny valley, where characters and animations are so realistic they are indistinguishable from reality. Nvidia with their Tegra 4 chips and Qualcomm’s Snapdragon chips are set to level the playing field between traditional consoles and mobile platforms.

And in the chaos of the rise of the indie developer and agnostic gaming, disruptive bleeding edge user interfaces, like the Neurosky Mindwave (a headset that can read your brainwaves) and Oculus VR’s Oculus Rift (a reactive 3D virtual reality) manage to stand out as a beacon of what’s to come.

2013 will no doubt prove that we live in interesting times, indeed. For a gaming industry in flux, we’re eagerly waiting to see how the cookies crumble.

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