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IGDA Perspectives Newsletter October, 2010

Charles Rector's Weblog; Nov. 8, 2010; By Charles Rector
Type: Commentary

OCTOBER ISSUE: ONLINE GAMESIn This IssueNegotiation & Trade in Online GamesRuminations on GDC OnlineThe Power of FreeSIG Spotlight: Online GamesThe Magic Bullet for Alternative Revenue StreamsStudio Profile: Gas Powered GamesChapter Spotlight: AustinFaking an EconomyInternational Spotlight: IGDA FinlandCrowning Achievement: Marketing Lessons from Crown of ByzantusMajor News From Around the IGDAGreetings!

Once again, I find myself missing what is now GDC Online. To all of my Game Writing SIG friends out there, I miss you! I promised myself to have my dissertation complete soon so I can re-emerge from this self-inflicted anti-social prison (with something meaningful to talk about, of course).

For those of you who, like me, missed GDC Online, never fear! We have a jam-packed issue focused on online games for October. We have coverage of GDC Online itself from Doug Hill, as well as articles by some of the speakers. There's also an extra-large IGDA News Section this month, with major updates from around the organization. Don't forget to check out the article on the upcoming IGDA Leadership Forum.

So, what do we mean when we say online games? These days, it seems to be everything. massively multiplayer online, mobile, social, console, you name it. With CD keys returning with implications for access to online play, we're hitting the next world of distribution - wholly digital. Although these things are nothing new (downloadable content, exclusive online game play features, microtransactions), they're certainly hitting seamless integration.

As someone who recently has been living on remote reservations in Canada and the United States without Internet access for projects, it has hurt not to be able to access full game play. Here's to being mindful of the digital divide in the age of online games.

Special thanks to our contributors in order of appearance: Matthew Weigel, Doug Hill, Chris Smutny, Erin Hoffman, Mary Kurek, Chris Taylor, Jen Bullard, Brian Green, Sonja Kangas and Pyry Lehdonvirta. And, of course, our copy editors Lisa Brunette and Sarah Woody. And especially Cat Wendt for her lovely design sense. Thanks also to volunteers Arturo Vargas, Craig Ostrin, Andrew Leaf, Alison Flock, Erwin Chan and Jack Bogdan for their help getting out this month's jam-packed issue.

Beth Aileen Lameman

Newsletter PDF
Newsletter Website
Negotiation and Trade in Online Games
By Matthew Weigel
Matthew Weigel gives us reflections and rules for evolving the mechanisms of trade for players in online games.

Ruminations on GDC Online, or the Emergence of a Sister Game Industry
By Doug Hill
Doug Hill highlights IGDA speakers at GDC Online and makes us feel like we were there.

The Power of Free: Maximizing Monetization for F2P Games
By Chris Smutny
Chris Smutny from Adknowledge provides priceless advice on how to make the most out of free-to-play games.

SIG Spotlight: Online Games
Interview With Erin Hoffman
Erin Hoffman fills us in on the history and current activities of the Online Games SIG, which has evolved as the world of online games has grown.

The Magic Bullet for Alternative Revenue Streams
By Mary Kurek
Mary Kurek gets to the nitty gritty of schemes for alternative revenue streams in online games through several alternative viewpoints.
Studio Profile: Gas Powered Games
Interview With Chris Taylor
Chris Taylor marks the growth of Gas Powered Games from its RTS days to innovative online gameplay.

Chapter Spotlight: Austin
Interview With Jen Bullard
Jen Bullard tells us about the activity bustling in the IGDA Austin Chapter.

Faking an Economy
By Brian Green
MMO developer Brian Green points out that a realistic economic simulation in a MMO may not actually be possible or even fun for the players.
International Spotlight: IGDA Finland
Interview With Sonja Kangas
Sonja Kangas offers help from lessons learned in running the very active IGDA Finland Chapter.

Crowning Achievement: Marketing Lessons from Crown of Byzantus
By Pyry Lehdonvirta
Pyry Lehdonvirta gives us useful lessons for marketing new games in Finland taken from experience withCrown of Byzantus.


Upcoming Event | IGDA Leadership Forum Update
There's still time to register! Highlights include keynote Laura Fryer of WB Interactive and the chance to meet industry luminaries John Romero and Will Wright at the IGDA Foundation Charity Dinner.

IGDA Advocacy | AIAS - IGDA Amicus Brief Update
Counsel for the IGDA and Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences filed an Amicus Brief in the U.S. Supreme Court in support of games as art in the case of SCHWARZENEGGER vs EMA.

Announcing New IGDA Sponsor | Hansoft
We are pleased to extend a warm welcome to our new IGDA partner and annual sponsor, Hansoft.

IGDA Podcast | El Juego
15 minutes. 1 amazing new game. El Juego is a podcast presented by the IGDA.

Upcoming Event | Global Game Jam
Global Game Jam time is fast approaching! Join in on the largest game jam event in the industry.

New Member Benefit: Gamesauce
All IGDA members with updated mailing addresses will now receive a complimentary hard copy of Gamesauce. (You can opt-out, if you would like.) Visit the article directly for full details. 

New Staff | Welcome to Sheri Rubin and Ryan Arndt
Sheri Rubin joins the IGDA team as Acting Operations Manager and Ryan Arndt steps into the role of Acting Internal Community Manager. 

New Member Benefit: AudioLinkS
Check out the details on this great new benefit - discounts open to all IGDA members as a result of the special arrangement between Accredited Language Services, an IGDA corporate sponsor, and IGDA's Audio SIG.

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