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March 21, 2018
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Ex-BioWare scribe Mike Laidlaw shares storytelling lessons  
by Katherine Cross [03.20.18]
Mike Laidlaw, who recently stepped down as creative director at BioWare, took a break from his new consulting firm to talk to GDC about what he’s learned about writing and narrative design from his many years with the legendary game studio.
Design, GDC

Military-themed video games can promote a damaging vision of real war  
by Simon Parkin [03.20.18]
“We need less killing and more war,” argued writer and veteran Andrew Barron. “Combat is dangerous and game mechanics should reflect this.”
Console/PC, Design, GDC

Crytek will now take a 5% cut from games made using CryEngine 5.5  
by Emma Kidwell [03.20.18]
Crytek announced a new royatly-based business model where the company will take a 5 percent share of profits from games built with CryEngine 5.5.
Console/PC, Design, Business/Marketing

CD Projekt Red acquires and rebrands indie dev Strange New Things  
by Alissa McAloon [03.20.18]
Strange New Things, an indie studio formed by former Techland, IO Interactive, and CD Projekt Red devs last year, has been acquired and renamed Wrocław.
Console/PC, Indie

Growth, toxicity, crunch: Devs talk about what went wrong at Telltale  
by Alex Wawro [03.20.18]
A new feature on The Verge tries to get at the heart of what happened to Telltale Games by speaking to a number of current and former employees, and their comments point to a toxic company culture.
Console/PC, Indie, Production, Business/Marketing

Atari reveals its nostalgic 'Ataribox' game console as the Atari VCS  
by Alissa McAloon [03.20.18]
Atari’s shadow-shrouded return to the hardware business has been detailed this week at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, CA.

Darkest Dungeon devs share golden rules for good creative partnerships  
by Alex Wawro [03.20.18]
“Having two’s not streamlined,” said Red Hook's Tyler Sigman at GDC today. “But we truly believe the game would not have been successful without that messy, imperfect structure.”
Indie, Production, Business/Marketing, GDC

Writing comedic games the West of Loathing way  
by Alex Wawro [03.20.18]
“Taking about comedy is one of the least funny things,” said West of Loathing game dev Zach Johnson as he opened his talk at GDC 2018 today about the art of writing good comedy games.
Indie, Design, GDC

Gorogoa: how the hit indie game derived from a failed comic book  
by Simon Parkin [03.20.18]
"I came to realize that composing the page was more interesting to me that sequential storytelling," shared Gorogoa dev Jason Roberts "I had to do something with it, even if it wasn't going to be a comic."
Console/PC, Smartphone/Tablet, Indie, GDC

The player-directed level design of Tacoma  
by Emma Kidwell [03.20.18]
Fullbright's Steve Gaynor and Nina Freeman discuss the level design of Tacoma and how different facets of design depended on each other during development.
Indie, Design, Production, GDC

Vivendi sells entire stock of Ubisoft shares, Tencent among buyers  
by Alissa McAloon [03.20.18]
After years of grabbing up Ubisoft shares, Vivendi has sold its entire stake in the company and seemingly backed away from its hostile acquisition aspirations.

Lockwood Publishing opens Lithuania studio to support Avakin Life development  
by Alissa McAloon [03.20.18]
Less than one week after opening its third studio in the UK, Avakin Life developer Lockwood Publishing has opened a studio in Lithuania, its first international studio.
Social/Online, Smartphone/Tablet

The Internet Archive uploads handheld retro games 1
by Emma Kidwell [03.20.18]
The Internet Archive adds handheld LCD games for players to access through a web browser.
Serious, Production, Business/Marketing

Oculus introduces hardware reports so devs can make 'data-driven decisions'  
by Chris Kerr [03.20.18]
Oculus devs will no longer have to rely on third-party applications and data providers to find out how their apps are faring on various platforms. 
VR, Business/Marketing

The AI systems that govern Final Fantasy XV's believable NPCs  
by Katherine Cross [03.20.18]
Square Enix veteran Youichiro Miyake talked in detail about the AI that governs NPC behavior in Final Fantasy XV in a fast-paced, data-rich talk: “Eos is Alive: the AI Systems of Final Fantasy XV.”
Console/PC, Programming, GDC

SimCity creator Will Wright's new game will harvest your memories 1
by Chris Kerr [03.20.18]
"This is a game where we actually uncover the hidden you, your subconscious, your inner-Id, and bring it to the surface and bring it to life so you can interact with it."
Smartphone/Tablet, Design, Video, GDC

Unity getting new rendering, machine learning, and performance tools  
by Chris Kerr [03.20.18]
Unity shared a glimpse of its 2018 roadmap at GDC, explaining it'll be focusing on building out next level rendering, machine learning, and performance tools.
Programming, Design, Production, GDC

Blog: Working with pixel art sprites in Unity 2
by Gamasutra Community [03.20.18]
A how-to series about importing, animating, and placing 2D sprites in Unity while using the actual Unity editor as little as possible.
Art, Design

Blog: Designing more social multiplayer games via the Trust Spectrum 10
by Gamasutra Community [03.20.18]
Working with Google, vetern game dev Raph Koster shares a design lens and framework (built on extensive research, prototypes, & metrics) for designing prosocial games that build trust between players.
Social/Online, Serious, Design

Using data to look at what VR games get right (and wrong) about accessibility  
by Alissa McAloon [03.19.18]
Devs are still figuring out VR and, as Owlchemy Labs’ Andrew Eiche and Cy Wise explained, that makes now the perfect time to figure out how to design in a way that addresses accessibility issues.
VR, Design