The games industry clearly remains the most exciting and varied sector for a programmer to go to work in. In the Coding Track our seriously knowledgeable and experienced technical speakers will show you exactly how to rise to the many challenges and opportunities facing game programmers today - including new and emerging platforms like VR, AR and MR.
The last few years has seen the term "Artificial intelligence" become increasingly ubiquitous: as sensationalised headlines dominate our media and new projects and initiatives use the term in an effort to garner attention. In amongst all this is video games: an industry that has historically used artificial intelligence as means of performance theatre, with a variety of bespoke tools and methodologies designed to support these goals, but in-turn alienating games from other industries given the unique challenges faced. In the last few years AI has seen major breakthroughs in the area of Machine Learning - and more specifically 'Deep Learning' - but what does it do? How does it work? And more importantly, how is it relevant to the video games we make and how we make them? In this talk we're going to establish the state of play for AI and video games: how it has being used up until now, explaining how machine learning differs from 'classical' AI, the risks and opportunties of deep learning, but also some of the more novel innovations and opportunties emerging in corporate and academic research that will shape our working practices and the games we make in the coming years.
Our goal is to deliver a constant stream of high quality interactive stories to the mass market, concentrating on themes with wide appeal rather than genre specific niche audiences. To do this we have to build a frictionless content pipeline that allows our writers to put stories in the hands of our customers as rapidly as possible.
This talk will outline the architecture of the cloud gaming pipeline we developed at Polystream. Attendees will learn why there is a need for an alternative to video streaming and how to virtualise the GPU to stream compressed graphics commands in APIs such as D3D11. We will detail how to stream AAA titles, in under 16 milliseconds, without source changes. A description will be given on how to use Renderdoc for automated graphics testing and how to leverage ISPC to extract the maximum performance out of AVX-512 on cloud servers. We will also discuss the unique challenges and tradeoffs of creating bespoke tools and algorithms for visualizing and compressing real-time GPU data.
Procedural generation is being applied to every game genre, mechanic and system you can think of, but actually sitting down and trying to use it can often be a scary process of unexpected problems, catastrophic failures, and head-scratching statistics and probabilities. If you don't feel like rolling the dice with your game, never fear. In this talk, procedural generation expert and AI researcher Mike Cook will walk you through some useful ways to analyse, troubleshoot and discuss procedural generators, using some of the latest ideas from academic research. We'll look at how to work with designers to clearly specify what we want from a procedural generator, how to analyse generative spaces to find the limits of what your generator can do, and how to use parameter space search to explore the deepest, darkest reaches of your generative system. Along the way we'll also look at why Slay the Spire is a procedural generator, how Spelunky solves its problems by blowing them up, and why the real procedural content is the friends we made along the way.
Attendees will learn how to
A visual, technical and entrepreneurial adventure through more than two years developing the spiritual successor to Her Story with a highly distributed team. Lizi will present the developmental journey of the project using a visual timeline showing progression of the software as it came into being, all the way through to a description of the small incremental polish that went in at the end. Showing screenshots to demonstrate the iterative process and describing the technical implementation of some specific features. Such as how it was localised into eleven languages, when the gameplay is heavily dependent on the subtitle text and the searches that the players make. As well as how videos are played just as smoothly backwards as they play forwards. All along the way with an underlying nod to the way that Furious Bee works with its clients and operates a profitable business.
Satisfactory is a first-person open-world factory building game with a dash of exploration and combat built using the Unreal Engine. To ensure a game with nearly endless scalability will run on a wide range of hardware requires a great deal of optimization techniques.
Why would you throw away your entire backend 3 months before launching to your community and rewrite it from scratch? It sounds insane but it was the best decision we made. Come explore the journey why we ditched the popular modern design of microservices and NodeJS and went to an old school C++ hand-coded server. This is not a post mortem but rather a roadmap and argument why I think more developers should take this path.
The benefits of adding machine learning (ML) to your development arsenal are becoming increasingly hard to ignore. Whether used to adapt gameplay to user tastes and improve retention or to automatically create content, done correctly, its effects on both player and developer can be remarkable. But for studios with no prior ML experience, where should devs begin?
In this talk, Andrew Webb, machine learning engineer at vTime, will take delegates from zero to ML hero with the help of a virtual presenter, created during the session using ML avatar generation.
Offering invaluable advice on getting started, Andrew will take you through what is and isn't achievable with current machine learning tech, data acquisition, and how to make use of freely available and state-of-the-art work for your own projects. The talk will also cover how to get ready for your first ML hire, including preparing the data for initial projects and the hardware and resources you‚Äôll need to hit the ground running.
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Develop is an excellent way of catching up with people – there’s a really nice community feel here.
Mike Bithell Games
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Ian Livingstone, CBE
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Dr Mata Haggis-Burridge
It’s really nice to see some of the younger people in our studio come to Develop, interact with other people in the dev community and make new contacts. I think it’s really important to learn from other people.
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.
Develop is a really great way to network, it’s also great for going to talks and finding that little tip that you didn’t know before and thinking – oh I’ll bring that back to the team!
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.
By coming to Develop what you get is the opportunity to network like you can’t in any other situation. Everyone knows everyone and it’s such a wonderful community feel.
I absolutely love coming to Develop, it’s a brilliant, brilliant conference – you just know you’re guaranteed to meet everyone.
Jo Twist, OBE
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