Special Report: Game Developers Conference, Day 1

Special Report: Game Developers Conference, Day 1

The growth of the Mac market has caught the attention of the gaming industry. At the Game Developer Conference 2007 in San Francisco, several developers showed off games and gaming gadgets that will find their way to the Mac market. Here's a preview of three upcoming product on display at the GDC.

 

Get the word out about your game at the Great Games Experiment.

 

Join the Great Games Experiment. Released to the public late last week, the Great Games Experiment is a free social networking site for developers to network and promote their own games. User can go to GGE to to play games that aren't found on other aggregation sites. GGE hosts games ranging from indie games and free Flash games to old classics and mainstream commercial titles. Better yet, there are well over 500 Mac games. Anyone can create an account and begin entering games into the GGE database.

 

May the ForceWear Vest be with you. TN Games' new gaming peripheral, the ForceWear Vest, is a force feedback device that you wear. It sports eight points of contact within the vest for players to feel impact from weapons shots, hand to hand combat, even falls. Five years of research and development went into the vest, which originally was designed for medical technology. But when Dr. Mark Ombrellaro, CEO of TN Games, realized the commercial potential of the device, the ForceWear Vest was born.

 

An SDK is available for developers to integrate the vest's code and optimize the libraries to your heart's content. Initially only available for Windows, TN Games intends the vest to be used with as many games as possible, and future SDKs will be available for Mac, next-gen consoles, and Linux. The ForceWear Vest comes in black and green camoflauge colors, but future versions will come in city camoflauge and racer flame red. Pricing has yet to be determined, but Ombrellaro said he intends the cost to be reasonable and affordable. As for the future of force feedback and TN Games, Ombrellaro is basically remaining mum, but believes that TN Game will be a force to reckon with.

 

Everyday Shooter is a multiple awards finalist at the Independent Games Festival.

 

Everyday Shooter isn't your everyday shooter. Developed by Jonathan Mak, Everyday Shooter is a finalist in the categories of Design Innovation, Excellence in Audio, and the coveted Seumas McNally Grand Prize at the Independent Games Festival within the GDC this year. Everyday Shooter is an artistic wonder, combining the technology of a first-person shooter with the art of music to bring audio gameplay to a new level.

 

Players shoot at multi-colored and shaped entities floating through space (a la Asteroids), while the game's music is timed to the gameplay. Shooting at various objects will result in different musical riffs sounding over the music already playing, without clashing. Chain reactions, the result of exploding objects encountering the remains of other exploded objects, can return various audio anomalies that combine to create an experimental musical feel. Each level has the potential to be as much a soundtrack unique to the player as a game. Mak is exploring a number of platforms for this not-quite completed game, but fully intends on bringing the finished title to the Mac.

 

Wednesday: More from the GDC. We're just getting started.

 

Omaha Sternberg is the producer and host of the iGame Radio podcast.

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