Noah J Nelson on Tuesday, Oct. 27th
The honeymoon between video games and the broader entertainment industry that is taking place in the Virtual Reality suite will continue next year in the form of VRDC–the Virtual Reality Developers Conference–which is going to be held alongside the venerable Games Developers Conference.
The new conference demonstrates just how much promise has been built up around VR, and the structure of it shows that–at present–VR and it’s augmented reality cousin are being viewed as future avenues for both games and other entertainment.
The VRDC advisory board has been separated out into two tracks, with representatives from places like HBO and Legendary Entertainment on the entertainment track and Owlchemy Labs and Funomena on the games side.
It’s easy to speculate that at some point in the future the distinction might just evaporate all together, but for now here’s a rundown of the Board straight out of the announcement that GDC offered to journalists:
The Advisory Board for the Game VR/AR Track includes the following members:
- Colin Northway – Northway Games – Former CEO and founder of Kuju Entertainment with more than 20 years of experience as a developer and investor in the games industry, including four years as the Chairman of TIGA, the UK game developer’s trade association. Colin now co-leads independent game studio Northway Games.
- Alex Schewartz – Owlchemy Labs – CEO and Chief Scientist of game studio Owlchemy Labs. Alex and company have pioneered the VR space as one of the first studios dedicated to virtual reality experiences. Alex is also the founder of the VR Austin group advocating and speaking about VR.
- Robin Hunicke – Funomena – Co-founder of indie game studio Funomena and a Professor of Art, Games & Playable Media at UC Santa Cruz. Robin has been designing, making and teaching about games over her 12 year development career, which has included roles in the development of titles like Journey, Boom Blox, The Sims 2 and many more.
- Chris Pruett – Robot Invader – Leads game development team Robot Invader. Chris previously worked at Google working as a developer advocate for the Android platform. His years of dev experience includes engineering work on various console titles as well as creation of REPLICA ISLAND, an Android side-scroller with 1.5 million users.
- Dan Hurd – Playful Corps – Now the Studio Design Lead for Playful Corps, Dan previously served as Senior Game Designer for successful apps including Hanging with Friends, Matching with Friends and Gems with Friends.The Advisory Board for the Entertainment VR/AR Track includes the following members:
- Pete Isensee – HBO Code Labs – With more than two decades in the digital entertainment industry, Pete serves as a software engineer at HBO unlocking the storytelling potential of VR with the creative power of the film industry.
- Aaron Lemke – Unello Design – Aaron is an independent VR designer and musician who has created seven VR experiences and is currently creating relaxing and meditative experiences blending visuals and audio on Samsung Gear VR, HTC Vive and Oculus CV1, as well as exploring medical applications for VR.
- Ikrima Elhassan – Kite & Lightning – Co-founder of Kite & Lightning, a boutique creative development studio focused on VR. His past work has included surreal art pieces and experiential installations for NBC and GE.
- Ethan Stearns – Legendary Entertainment – The Director of Production Resources at Legendary, Ethan Stearns has helped usher the creation of specialized VR experiences using visual assets from movies like Pacific Rim, Warcraft and Crimson Peak.
The inaugural VRDC–that being the 2016 edition– will be right there at the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco, California from March 14th-18th. All Access and Summit pass holders for GDC 2016 will also be able to attend.