GDC 17 Panel Picks: Wednesday March 1st

gdc 2017GDC 2017 is off to a great start, and we’re very excited to bring you some of the highlights on the GameDev Cafe. Although the conference officially started on Monday February 27th, the Expo floor opens on Wednesday March 1st and marks the kick off of some great panels we are eager to attend. Take a look at our GDC panel picks for Wednesday March 1st from the Lightning Rod Games team, and be sure to let us know if we’ve overlooked anything awesome!


Awesome Video Game Data 2017GDC Escalator – 9:30am Room 2006 (West Hall)
A close look at what is happening (and what is trending) in the video game industry from a macro perspective, with EEDAR co-founder and Experiment 7 creative director, Geoffrey Zatkin.

Rewards in Video Games – 9:30am Room 3006 (West Hall)
Travis Day, Senior Game Designer at Blizzard Entertainment, shares insight that can help developers better understand how rewards can help your game or hurt it.

Vikings! How We Tapped a Non-Game Community to Build Support for Our Release on Steam (and Gave Away a Sword) – 11:00am Room 2002 (West Hall)
Understanding multiple target markets and how to identify/understand their behaviors and motivations. Emmy Jonassen will also show how to build a campaign that uses these markets to generate results on Steam.

Snap to Character: Building Strong Player Attachment Through Narrative – 11:00am Room 3005 (West Hall)
Harrison Pink of Hangar 13 Games offers actionable methods to focus the narrative and characterization in their games and allow players to fall in love with them.

Get Journalists to Cover Your Game: Lessons from Online Dating, Praying and ‘No Man’s Sky’ – 12:00pm Room 135 (North Hall)
Learn whether PR is worthwhile for your game along with 5 key facts to understand how the western media landscape works, and 5 golden rules on how to get your game covered by press and influencers.

All Bang for No Buck: Get Your Game TrendingMild Rumpus GDC – 1:20pm Overlook 3018 (West Hall)
Alex Moyet of Amcade Games discusses the building blocks of creating successful social media campaigns without having to resort to paying for expensive agencies.

Play Your Way to Higher Pay: What Leaders Can Learn from Game Designers – 3:30pm Room 2010 (West Hall)
Scott Crabtree, Chief Happiness Officer at Happy Brain Science, reveals the science of engaging others and how to apply it to your leadership. Learn the three most important internal motivators for human beings, and how to get others to happily give you their best.

Rules of the Game: Another Five Techniques from Particularly Crafty Designers – 5:00pm Room 134 (North Hall)
Learn five very specific, practical, unique, and personal game design rules from veteran, respected game designers, including Richard Rouse III (Director, Designer, Writer, Paranoid Productions), Luke Muscat (Creative Director, Prettygreat), Christina Norman (Lead Designer, Riot Games), Damion Schubert (Creative Director, Boss Fight Entertainment), Hal Barwood (Writer / Designer, Finite Arts LLC) and Chelsea Howe (Creative Producteur & Owl Overseer, Owlchemy Labs).


We’ll post our picks for Thursday March 2nd shortly – if you have any suggested panels OR if you’re a game dev with a story to share at GDC, reach out to us at @thegamedevcafe – we’d love to talk to you!


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  • On February 28, 2017