When you think about your favourite place, I bet it’s not just a location – it’s the people who are there with you, and the things you are feeling. It’s a magical place. I think the job of a storyteller, particularly a visual one, is to elicit wide-eyed, open-mouthed wonder from their audience. And great stories make us feel like we belong inside them, they transport us to different places.
When you experience a good story, you feel like you’ve gone on a journey, returning to your own life changed by the experience. The first time I saw The Breakfast Club when I was 15, I felt like I came back older, wiser and a bit taller. And I remember watching Urotsukidoji: Legend of the Overfiend one afternoon when I should have been in school and emerging blinking into the sunlight a changed person. That was a seriously messed up place to visit, especially on a Tuesday.
I’m rambling on about this stuff because I think it’s particularly interesting given the surge in 360 degree video and virtual reality; advances that might herald a new era of immersive storytelling. Anyone who’s a cinephile and telephile knows what its like to want to live inside a favourite film or show. Good stories have always allowed us to do that, but using head-sets and 360 degree environments, we might take one step further.
Stories are places we go to. Good virtual reality stories could be places you want to stay.
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Building games is hard and it’s taxing physically, mentally and emotionally. So being around a community that understands that is great – there’s a comraderie here.
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Develop:Brighton’s a great conference. It’s got a spread of people from all parts of the games industry talking about such a wide range of topics.
There’s something creative about Brighton, so it’s the perfect place to have the conference.
I’ve been to every single Develop in the last 12 years. One thing you get here is networking - you will meet the most amazing individuals in the video games industry.
A lot of the opportunities that come from being here are speaking to other developers who are doing exactly the same thing as you. And there are some good parties – it’s very much a pleasurable work experience!
We are so lucky to have Develop here in the UK. It’s a unique event where you can come and discover new things with people who care passionately about video games. It’s a sea full of new ideas.
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There’s really something for everyone at Develop and the experience of being around like-minded people is really useful.
If you really want to have a good interface with the British game developer community then this is the place to come.
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