//Game U: IndieCade's Gamemaker 101

Game U
October 7th, 2012
Gamemaker U is a set of sessions for folks interested in learning about the game development process, how to start developing on their own, and what making a game is about and alike.

Game U is a special conference at the IndieCade Festival of Independent Games that focuses on pulling back the curtain on the game development process, and the work that game designers do. Specially designed for a diverse audience from entertainment and media professionals who want to learn about the game development process to amateur game creators who are considering trying to become professional.

IndieCade's Game U sessions take place Sunday, October 7th, the final day of the IndieCade festival, in the intimate environs of the IndieCade village, and will cover an introduction to game development tools, processes, and roles, as well as opportunities to meet working professionals in the game industry.

Click here to view the Game U Schedule

//Game U Chair: Sam Roberts

Sam Roberts is the former director of the Slamdance Guerilla Gamemaker Competition. Roberts has unique hands-on expertise in building and operating an independent game festival, developing guidelines, creating a structured submission and evaluation process, working with a diverse jury, and holding a position of great respect within the independent game making community. He earned a B.S degree from Northwestern University, where he studied theater and cognitive science. He has worked in the entertainment industry as a writer, producer, director and designer in several media. He has also served on the managing board of several production companies, including the Sight Unseen Theater Group, of which he is currently a member.

//Game U Advisor: Laird M. Malamed

Laird M. Malamed holds the position of adjunct faculty in the Interactive Media Division in USC’s School of Cinematic Arts. He is also president and co-founder of Creative Learning Technologies Corp, an education and medical consulting company working with foundations on K-12 education. Prior to focusing on teaching and consulting, Malamed was Sr. Vice President and Head of Development at Activision Blizzard overseeing software, hardware and manufacturing for products like Guitar Hero, Call of Duty and Skylanders. Malamed held a variety of roles at Activision during his 16+ year tenure including key positions in Activision’s internal studios, marketing, and European Studios. Before joining Activision, Malamed worked as a sound editor at Sony Pictures and at LucasFilm. Malamed earned a joint BS degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Aeronautical & Astronautical Engineering and Film & Media Studies. He attended the Graduate School of Cinematic Arts at USC.

//Sessions Outline

From 10 am -12 noon on Sunday, IndieCade's galleries are open exclusively to attending game developers and Game U members for Open Play IndieCade. Following coffee in the PlayStation Creators' Lounge, enjoy a morning of dedicated gaming shoulder-to-shoulder with the talented people behind many of the games featured at IndieCade 2012.

//Gameplay Mechanics

Rob Daviau will help host a panel discussion featuring some of this year's festival nominees talking about their innovative and unique game mechanics, how they developed them, and how it affects the gameplay experience.

Speaker: Rob Daviau

//Well-Played 3

What makes a game good? or bad? or better? Building on the ETC Press books and journal and the success of last year's sessions, our speakers (including Chris Bell, Mattie Brice, Heather Chaplin, Stone Librande, Matthew Sakey) will select a game from the festival finalists and play it live to help analyze the experience and open up a discussion with the game designers. The goal is to help develop and define a literacy of games as well as a sense of their value as an experience.

Speakers: Stone Librande

//Gamemaker 101: Gamemaker 101: Game Design Workshop

Game Design Workshop is a session and workshop based on the work of Tracy Fullerton at the University of Southern California. The Game Design Workshop introduces the concepts of thematic mechanics, game design, and the process of designing a game. A solid top level introduction to the craft and art of game design for beginners as well as an overview of what goes into concepting a game and starting a game design process.

Speaker: Jeremy Gibson

//Gamemaker 101: Tools - Adobe AIR & Flash Builder

Understanding how to build, debug, and deploy applications for Android and iOS devices take a bit of technical knowledge. How do you make this process easier? For one, being able to use one code base with Adobe AIR to target multiple platforms lets you spend more time focusing on your game. What about the hassle of debugging or doing performance profiling to locate those bugs and bottlenecks that only show up on the device? Come learn how Flash Builder gives you an environment to do all this and more.

//Gamemaker 101: Path to Market

What is the process of taking a game concept and design through tools and construction and then bringing it to market? A review of the production process and a discussion of important factors in a game's success and development, with a focus on playtesting and a discussion of marketing and copyright issues.

Speakers: Tracy Williams  •  Laird Malamed

//Gamemaker 101: Crowdfunding - A Conversation with indiegogo

How can crowdfunding provide you funds and start to build your audience? How do you use tools like indiegogo to take advantage of social media and targeted marketing to specific audiences? How can crowdfunding be the first step not just in making your game, but in preparing the world for it's arrival? A focused talk on how to utilize indiegogo and crowdfunding tools most effectively.


It's like a poetry slam, only with games. Bring your game and get ready to unveil it to a group of eager game devs and game lovers. You'll be able to talk the mastermind ideas behind your work, your process of development and your plans for your game's bright future. But keep your spiel short and snappy and make sure to sign up early - there's many eager to show and tell. Our host this year will be Michael John (insert bio). This is an informal affair and a good time for anyone who's made a game, wants to make a game or appreciates that people make awesome games. Come out and see for yourself.

Speaker: Michael John

//Audience / Developer Choice Award Announcements & Closing Reception-Game U passholders welcome