On Thursday 18 September five workshops will be held at AUT University.  They are free for NZGDC14 ticket holders and run concurrently so you can only register for one.  Note: the workshops all have a lunch break between 12:00 and 13:00 but are not catered.

Interactive Script Writing: Jigsaw Storytelling

Edwin McRae will take attendees on a guided tour of this idiosyncratic form of storytelling.  He will begin by defining what video game storytelling IS and what it IS NOT by comparing game narratives such as Bioshock and DotA with an interactive animated series like The Walking Dead.  He’ll then move on to an autopsy of Path of Exile, an online NZ-made Action RPG, looking at how jigsaw storytelling has been applied to create a cohesive narrative experience.

Finally, Edwin will provide practical guidance to the attendees through a series of writing exercises that will introduce them to the experience of applying ‘jigsaw storytelling’ to their own (previously prepared) game story concepts.

Edwin McRae is Lead Narrative Designer for the award-winning Action Role-playing game, Path of Exile, where he has done everything from designing civilisations and four-act interactive story arcs to writing poetic flavour text for soul-sucking swords.  As well as work on several other NZ and international games, he is a former story-liner and scriptwriter for Shortland Street.

Room WG1101, 10am-3pm, register here.  Capacity 25.

3D Art: From Concept to Completion by Autodesk.

Featuring various local 3D artists and Art Directors, AutoDesk’s David Zwierzchaczewski will facilitate a day-long journey through the complete Maya pipeline for game art.

David Zwierzchaczewski has been working in the Film/ TV and games industry for almost 15 years. Trained as a traditional 2D animator David quickly transitioned over to 3D where he moved up through the production ranks to direct several projects. Some of the recent project he has been involved in are Civilisation V, Dark Siders II, Saints Row the Third, L.A. Noire  He is now the resident 3D specialist at Autodesk, where he is on the BETA development teams for Maya, 3DS Max, MudBox and Motion Builder.

Room WE230, 10am-3pm, register here.  Capacity 170.

Gaming for Export Workshop

This half-day workshop with two leading international games business consultants is for studios serious about taking their business to the next level.  Bob Wallace, CEO of Strategic Alternatives, has worked with THQ, Zygna, Ensemble Studios as well as other New Zealand studios.  David S. Rosenbaum is a leading Los Angeles-based entertainment Ip and licensing lawyer and business advisor.   

Room WF611, 10am-3pm,  register here.  Capacity 25.

Unity3D Project Workflow Techniques

Unity gives you a rich set of building blocks that can be used to construct any type of game. As a result it can sometimes be difficult to know how to set up your game project in a way that’s easy to iterate and build upon. In this hands-on workshop, Unity Evangelist Rus Scammell, will discuss basic architecture structures for your game and point out some commonly overlooked details that can have a major impact on performance. The talk is geared towards designers and programmers with some Unity scripting skills but will be most useful for developers with broad roles in small development teams.

Room WF503, 10am-3pm,  register here.  Capacity 40.

Motion Capture for Games Pipeline


You can register for any one of the workshops here (provided there is still space left and you have a NZGDC14 ticket).