[IGDA Albany] Concepts in Worldbuilding (September 26th, 7:00 PM)

IGDA Albany usually has a professional talk every other month, on the 4th Thursday of the month. The talk will begin at 7pm, but feel free to arrive around 6:30 PM and stay until 9:00 PM if you’d like to mingle before and after. This month, we welcome Justin Mitchell with his talk, “Concepts in Worldbuilding!”

Description:

A guide to some procedures and starting points on building a new setting or expanding an existing world. From starting points to material considerations and beyond, we’ll look at ways to incorporate new ideas and how they can translate into gameplay or in-game assets.

Speaker Bio:

Justin Mitchell is a game developer and writer from Richmond, Virginia with a background in many different areas and skill sets. Justin tries to harness his varied knowledge into detailed and interesting approaches to game design.

RSVP at the links below!

[IGDA Albany] Welcome to Game Dev High—A Post-Mortem! (June 26th, 7:00 PM)

IGDA Albany usually has a professional talk every 4th Thursday of the month; this month is a rare exception. The talk will begin at 7pm, but feel free to arrive around 6:30 PM and stay until 9:00 PM if you’d like to mingle before and after. This month, we welcome Astra Wijaya with his talk, “Welcome to Game Dev High—A Post-Mortem!”

Description:

As game development education is gaining ground all over the world, so too is the interest. I would like to share what I have learned in the first year of my teaching Game Design and Implementation at Capital Region BOCES. Some of the things I’d dissect are: students’ interest, support from the school, what I would change, and what we can do to help.

Speaker Bio:

Astra Wijaya has a background in various visual media namely, illustration, photography, and graphic design. He completed his MFA degree at Parsons The New School for Design in 2011 with Game Design concentration and had worked mostly as a paid mercenary. Most recently, Astra has started a full-time teaching position as a Game Design instructor at the Mohonasen Center for Advanced Technology.

RSVP at the links below!

[IGDA Albany] The Virtual Reality of Healthcare (May 23rd, 7:00 PM)

IGDA Albany usually has a professional talk every 4th Thursday of the month. The talk will begin at 7pm, but feel free to arrive around 6:30 PM and stay until 9:00 PM if you’d like to mingle before and after.

Speaker Bio:

Samir has a background in the IT industry and studied Biomedical Engineering with a concentration in Neuroengineering at Drexel University. He is currently the CEO and Game Designer at SIR-VR Studios. Samir will share from his experience about what he has learned in terms of the business development aspect.

Note: unfortunately due to a sudden health issue, the speaker is not able to present the originally-planned, “Entrepreneurship & Business of Indie Games.” His prior recorded talk will be played instead. Original description of the former talk is printed below:

Video games are a multi-billion dollar industry in the United States and added about $11.7 Billion to the US GDP in 2016 (Forbes 2017) and Americans spent $36 Billion on Video Games in 2017 (World Economic Forum 2018). While there is plenty of opportunity to make money in the video game industry and it continues to grow, the video game industry is also very competitive. How does someone that isn’t Triple A get to have a slice of that pie? It will come down to understanding the mindset behind a game industry entrepreneur and what exactly it takes to run an indie game company.

RSVP at the links below!

[IGDA Albany] Data around Players with Disabilities and Introduction to APX (April 25th, 7:00 PM)

IGDA Albany usually has a professional talk every 4th Thursday of the month. The talk will begin at 7pm, but feel free to arrive around 6:30 PM and stay until 9:00 PM if you’d like to mingle before and after. The talk’s description is as follows:

APX is a new approach to making game accessible for players with disabilities. This first of it’s kind data driven approach makes accessible design accessible to everyone. We will go over the data that helped drive the APX system, and then give some examples of the new APX Patterns. In the end, you will have access to the entire 24 patterns, with examples of games that use them. This has been presented at GDC 2019, and is already being used at major studios in the US, Canada and Europe.

Speaker Bio:

Mark Barlet has 25 years of hands-on experience in the technology and assistive technology field. Widely regarded as one of the leaders of 508 accessibility, Mark manages a team of high-end accessibility experts through his veteran-founded business The Barlet Group, as well as the highly trained assistive technology experts at AbleGamers. He has trained, assessed, managed, and supported hundreds of people with disabilities. Mark has worked for the Department of Defense, Homeland Security, and other top-secret departments since leaving the Air Force in 1996 as a service related injured veteran.

From 2005-Present, Mark has traveled around the globe giving speeches about accessibility, assistive technology, and videogame adjacent disability topics for organizations such as Microsoft, Yahoo, and other Fortune 500 companies to bring the inspirational message of his perseverance, bringing fun and returning joy to those in need.

In 2004, Mark founded AbleGamers after Multiple Sclerosis attacked his best friend, Stephanie Walker, nearly taking away her ability to interact and connect through video games. His vision was to ensure that no one with a disability would ever be without answers on how to conquer disabilities and continue enjoying one of the world’s largest past times.

This vision for an inclusive world has won awards from AAPD, the mayor’s office of New York City and many more for excellence in leadership. He has been interviewed by The Atlantic, CNN, MSNBC, NPR and dozens more. During the summer of 2016, Mark and his AbleGamers partner, Steven Spohn, were invited to the White House to discuss accessibility and technology. Mark has infused his passion into a global movement changing the way multibillion-dollar companies operate to stop ignoring accessibility.

RSVP at the links below!

[IGDA Albany] Lightning Talks (December 5th, 7:00 PM)

IGDA Albany usually has a professional talk every 1st Wednesday of the month. The talk will begin at 7pm, but feel free to arrive around 6:30 PM and stay until 9:00 PM if you’d like to mingle before and after. Join us as we have our inaugural Lightning Talks, a series of 5-minutes-or-less talks which is presented by people like you! To submit your talk, just fill out the form below:

goo.gl/forms/kC2XqMBLLULS2Nut2

RSVP at the links below!

[IGDA Albany] Scoping it Out: How to Plan Your Next Game Project (November 7th, 7:00 PM)

IGDA Albany usually has a professional talk every 1st Wednesday of the month. This month, game designer Amanda Kirk will provide her talk, “Scoping it Out: How to Plan Your Next Game Project.”

The talk will begin at 7 pm; feel free to come in as early as 6 or stay until 9 if you’d like to mingle.

Talk Details

Do you have a great game idea or maybe even a working prototype, but the idea of taking it and turning it into a fully featured game seems daunting? Come listen to this presentation where we discuss how to properly document your game design, estimate a reasonable scope of work and discuss simple tools that can be used to develop your game.

About the Speaker

Amanda Kirk is a freelance game designer and coordinator for RPI’s Digital Game Hub. In the past 10 years she has worked on entertainment, educational and serious games for a variety of platforms including DS, 3DS, iOS, Android and Windows. Some of her 20+ shipped titles include interactive experiences in AR/VR and educational software.

RSVP at the links below!

[IGDA Albany] So You Want to be an Artist (October 10th, 7:00 PM)

IGDA Albany usually has a professional talk every 1st Wednesday of the month. This month, Penelope Barbalios will present “So You Want to be an Artist.”

The talk will begin at 7 pm; feel free to come in as early as 6 or stay until 9 if you’d like to mingle.

Talk Details

You’ve always taken a liking to drawing and design, but now it’s something you want to make a living doing? Here’s a brief guide from one artist to another on how to navigate obstacles ranging from setting your Commission Rates, Time Management, Social Media presence, and keeping your daily motivation, so your “job” doesn’t have to feel completely like “work” 🙂

About the Speaker

Penelope is a Freelance Illustrator who grew up in Troy, NY drawing and sketching comic book and anime characters on everything as a kid. She then decided to go to school for Video Game Design in Pittsburgh PA, learned terms like “Understructure” and “Anatomy”, as well as the “business side” of being an Artist. After college and an autoimmune disease diagnosis, she found her place in the world wasn’t necessarily in cubicle, but continuing to draw and design things from home. Now back in Troy NY with her Family, each day she’s working on building a brand name of Art Prints, Stationery, Apparel, and visualizing all the crazy ideas in her head so they can brighten a part of people’s everyday lives.

RSVP at the links below!

[IGDA Albany] The Pragmatism of Inclusivity: Social Justice in the Gaming Industry (September 5th, 7:00 PM)

IGDA Albany usually has a professional talk every 1st Wednesday of the month. This month, Muse en Lystrala will present “The Pragmatism of Inclusivity: Social Justice in the Gaming Industry.”.

The talk will begin at 7 pm; feel free to come in as early as 6 or stay until 9 if you’d like to mingle.

Talk Details

In this frank and open talk, gamer and musician Muse en Lystrala focuses not on the moral considerations of social justice, but the practicality of its inclusion in the gaming industry. Relaying industry statistics and both personal anecdotes and others’ stories of successes and failures relating to the paradigm of social justice, Muse illustrates how the pragmatism of inclusivity has benefited both individuals and companies – and how it can positively transform and expand the gaming industry.

About the Speaker

Muse en Lystrala is a musician, writer, artist, and humanities scholar. She is the director of classical ensemble Geek Musica – an ensemble specializing in the performance of video game and film music – for which she arranges works and performs on voice, viola, and percussion. Earlier this year, she began composing for video games. She is the progenitor of darkwave/EBM project Sirenne and the lead singer and programmer of symphonic metal band Crown of Melusine. Muse teaches music and acrylic painting, and undertakes regular modeling work for several local art classes. Originally from Providence, Rhode Island, she resides in Albany with three cats, many musical instruments, and far too many tubes of paint.

RSVP at the links below!

[IGDA Albany] Nina Stanley (August 1st, 6:30 PM)

IGDA Albany usually has a professional talk every 1st Wednesday of the month. This month’s IGDA Albany speaker is Nina Stanley, as she discusses her experience in the industry as an artist.

The talk will begin at 7 pm; feel free to come in as early as 6 or stay until 9 if you’d like to mingle.

About the Speaker

Nina Stanley started out rather by accident working for a small 8bit Nintendo games developer called Color Dreams, later rechristened Wisdom Tree. After 3 years of doing a variety of 8bit games, half of them religious, she went on to work on games for PC, Sega Genesis, stand up arcade, Nintendo 64, PS 1 and 2, Game Boy, GBA, and DS. After 15 years she transitioned out of games and into teaching, following her passion for providing real and meaningful foundation training in the arts as the basis of all good Visual Communication. She has been teaching on ground and online in a wide variety of concentrations, from Typography, Photoshop, and entry level 3d to storyboarding, character development, UI, basic animation, and of course, drawing and painting, especially the figure with a special interest in anatomy. Currently full time faculty for the Art Institute of Pittsburg Online Division in Game Art and Design and Media Arts and Animation while moonlighting in the Art Foundation department teaching Observational Drawing. She takes on a few passionate and motivated private students for painting and drawing in her studio in Albany.

RSVP at the links below!

[IGDA Albany] Communicating Your Way to a Better Sounding Game (June 6th, 6:00 pm)

IGDA Albany usually has a professional talk every 1st Wednesday of the month. This month’s IGDA Albany speaker is Amanda Laven, and she will provide the talk, “Communicating Your Way to a Better Sounding Game.” The presentation will provide a list of unique game design challenges VR brings to the table.

The talk will begin at 7 pm; feel free to come in as early as 6 or stay until 9 if you’d like to mingle.

Talk Details

They say music is a universal language, but at times trying to discuss audio can feel more like sending a transmission into deep space and hoping an alien lifeform can decipher it. In this talk, Amanda will discuss how to communicate with a composer, including how to structure a deliverables list and the best (and worst) ways to talk about how you want your game to sound. The discussion will include an interactive component for those interested to see how a composer might interpret their musical requests as well as a glimpse into the pre-composing process.

About the Speaker

Amanda Laven was born with an NES controller in her hand…not really, but she was handed one shortly thereafter and has been a rabid gamer ever since. She has a BA in Music from Union College, then went on to earn her MFA in Music Composition with a focus on scoring for media from the Vermont College of Fine Arts. She is a member of the Game Audio Network Guild, the International Game Developers Association (Albany, NY chapter), and the Materia Collective.

RSVP at the links below!

rsvp-facebook rsvp-meetup