PAX Prime is coming up this soon, opening its doors on August 28th, and the schedule for all panels has been revealed. As usual, there are a ton of panels and events about gaming.
Below you can check out the list, so grab some coffee, because there’s a lot to take in:
- Tales from Game Audio (August 28th, 10:30 AM)
A roundtable discussion of the trials, tribulations, triumphs, and utter nonsense experienced by an array of leading indie game composers and sound designers. Join Ryan Ike (Gunpoint), Alyssa Menes (Hiveswap), Matthew Marteinsson (Don’t Starve), Gordon McGladdery (Rogue Legacy), and John Robert Matz (Artemis: SBS) for a cozy fireside chat (minus the fire) as they relate tales of perilous deadlines, desperate measures, and what it feels like to write calypso music at 3:00 AM with no pants on.
John Robert Matz [Composer / Sound Designer, Voice Actor], Ryan Ike [Composer / Sound Designer], Alyssa Menes [Composer / Sound Designer], Matthew Marteinsson [Audio Department / Voice Actor, Klei Entertainment], Gordon McGladdery [Composer / Sound Designer, A Shell in the Pit Audio]
- A Mighty Chat with Keiji Inafune (August 28th, 11:30 AM)
Storied game creator Keiji Inafune returns to PAX to finish what he started here two years ago: his Kickstart-ed action game Mighty No. 9! Join Kinda Funny Games’ Colin Moriarty as Inafune-san and Takuya Aizu from developer Inti Creates recount inside stories of the highs and lows of the game’s development, give a peek at other projects, answer questions from fans, and – if previous PAX appearances are any indication – maybe even a surprise or two.
Keiji Inafune [Comcept], Takuya Aizu [Inti Creates], Ben Judd [DDM], Colin Moriarty [Kinda Funny Games]
- Microtalks: A Day in the Life of a Game Dev (August 28th, 2:00 PM)
Ever wonder what game developers do all day? Want to be a developer, but not sure which role suits you? Join our amazing panelists, with backgrounds from AAA to indie studios, to receive a humorous and rapid-fire insight into what game devs get up to behind closed doors. Each panelist gets 20 slides, each of which will be displayed for exactly 20 seconds before automatically advancing, giving them 6 minutes and 40 seconds to describe their daily work life as a designer, artist, programmer, or indie developer.
Jenn Sandercock [Game Designer / Founder, Inquisiment], Chris Proctor [Systems Designer (Characters), 343 Industries], Jolie Menzel [Level Designer, Ubisoft], Doanna Neville [Artist / Designer / Developer, NDromeda], David Condolora [Developer, Brain and Brain], Kaitlyn Burnell [Senior Programmer, Rockstar Games]
- JUST CAUSE 3 – THE PLAYGROUND OF CREATIVE DESTRUCTION (August 28th, 3:00 PM)
Join Avalanche Studio’s Thomas Klingstrom (Lead Environment Artist) and Niklas Norin (Lead AI Designer) alongside Havok’s Cormac O’Brien as they reveal how their technology and expertise combines to create the incredible destruction and chaos that lies at the heart of the Just Cause 3.
Hosted by Greg Miller, you’ll learn the how they created the beautiful 400 square mile sandbox packed with possibility, compelling enemies and the largest, most realistic explosions and destruction ever seen in a videogame.
Reilly Brennan [Sr. Director of PR, Square Enix]
- Inside Gearbox Software (August 28th, 4:00 PM)
This is your opportunity to get a behind-the-scenes look at Gearbox Software and get the latest news and updates from the makers of Borderlands, Battleborn, Homeworld Remastered Collection, and more! We will have never-before-seen reveals, exclusives, and surprises, so don’t miss out!
- Deus Ex: Mankind Divided – Bringing Adam Jensen to life (August 28th, 4:30 PM)
Greg Miller hosts Jean-Francois Dugas, Jonathan Jacques-Belletete and Elias Toufexis, respectively Executive Game Director, Executive Art Director and the actor for Adam Jensen on Deus Ex: Mankind Divided. They will provide insight on what it takes to fully realize a character such as Adam Jensen, an augmented covert agent, on the new generation of consoles and PC. While Elias will share his thoughts on doing mocap and recording dialogues, our developers will dive into his story and design, as well as their goals for the experience of playing as Adam Jensen in Deus Ex: Mankind Divided. You will also get the opportunity to ask them questions about the game and their careers in the video game industry.
Reilly Brennan [Sr. Director of PR, Square Enix]
- Surviving Success: How to Handle a Winning Kickstarter (August 28th, 6:00 PM)
Kickstarter has given the world a lot: cool inventions, amazing music, and a lot of awesome games. But for those who have endured that crazy fundraising month, the most stressful part – completing the project and fulfilling the rewards – may be yet to come! Listen to devs from DoubleBear Productions, Hinterland Games, Red Hook Studios, and Owlchemy Labs talk about how to juggle the responsibilities, and give tips to those looking to Kickstart something themselves!
Annie VanderMeer Mitsoda [Writer / Designer, DoubleBear Productions], Eric Chon [Community Manager, Owlchemy Labs], Amanda End [Podcast Host, Bitch Team Alpha], Raphael van Lierop [Founder / Creative Director, Hinterland Games], Tyler Sigman [Co-President, Red Hook Studios]
- HITMAN – THE ART OF ASSASSINATION (August 28th, 8:30 PM)
Join HITMAN Art Director Jonathan Rowe and Lead Writer Michael Vogt for an hour long journey into the design philosophy behind the visual and narrative universe of the world of assassination. Hosted by Game Informer’s Mike Futter, the pair will delve into the process behind the creation of the trademark living, breathing world of HITMAN and give numerous insights and examples into the design process for visual and narrative storytelling in a world where the main character says very little. How does art direction and story design impact the player experience in a complex game like HITMAN? The panel will end with a playthrough demo of the ‘Showstopper’ mission from the upcoming HITMAN game as well as a moderated Q&A.
- Science of Gaming: Video Gaming Addiction (August 29th, 10:00 AM)
Join me (Dr. Tyler Black, BC Children’s Hospital) for a critical review of the latest science on “video game addiction.” There is a tremendous amount of controversy in this area, and we will explore it and see how it is being interpreted (and misinterpreted) around the world. As a frequent PAX presenter, I do my best to present the latest science in an interesting way, and provide personal and professional insights into gaming from a psychiatric perspective.
Tyler R Black, MD, FRCPC [Medical Director / CAPE Unit, BC Children’s Hospital]
- Guild Wars 2 – The Journey Ahead (August 29th, 10:30 AM)
Join ArenaNet President Mike O’Brien and Game Director Colin Johanson for what the studio is billing as a ‘fan and press conference’ defining the future of Guild Wars 2 for both current and prospective players. Included is the worldwide reveal for all-new “challenging group content” coming with Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns.
Mike O’Brien [President, ArenaNet], Colin Johanson [Game Director, ArenaNet]
- Queering up Misconceptions: LGBT Game Industry Life (August 29th, 11:00 AM)
A fun and candid discussion of LGBT life and careers in the game industry! What’s it like? How do you balance identity and fitting in? Queer vets from all facets of the craft share their experiences from the inside!
Gordon Bellamy [Visiting Scholar, USC Games], Chris Wright [Founder, Hangry Studios], Daniel Lingen [Sr. Conversation Manager, Electronic Arts], John Gavin Polson [Business Development, Humble Bundle], Bryanna Lindsey [FX Artist, Volition]
- Big Data in Call of Duty (August 29th, 11:30 AM)
Every time you play an online match in Call of Duty, Activision collects megabytes upon megabytes of data. What do we do with it all? Lots of different things, obviously, but in the Game Science division, our goal is to use that data, along with lots of fancy math, to make better games. Join some of Activision’s data scientists and learn how we try to catch cheaters, tune weapons, and keep players engaged in our games.
Justin Shacklette [Principal Data Scientist, Activision], Spencer Stirling [Senior Data Scientist, Activision]
- FINAL FANTASY XIV: Koji & Soken’s Wild Ride (August 29th, 12:00 PM)
Join FINAL FANTASY XIV Sound Director Masayoshi Soken and Localization Lead Michael-Christopher Koji Fox as they discuss the music and lore of FINAL FANTASY XIV! What does Soken have up his sleeve? You won’t want to miss out!
Michael-Christopher Koji Fox [Localization Lead, Square Enix], Masayoshi Soken [Sound Director, Square Enix], Stephanie Chang [PR Manager, Square Enix], Matt Hilton [MC, Square Enix], Aimi Tokutake [Translator, Square Enix]
- Testers vs. The Game: The Life of a Game Tester (August 29th, 12:30 PM)
It seems like a dream job, right? Like every dream, there exists the duality of nightmare. Come sit with our seasoned panel of testers. We’ll share our glorious moments, our horror stories, and predictions for the next year. When we’re done ranting, we’ll open up the floor to your questions. Ask us anything, no holds barred.
James Costello [Associate Game Producer, Big Fish Games], Bex Bradley [Lead Software Developer, Microsoft], Chris Chamberlain [Senior Producer, Microsoft], Jennifer Fairbanks [Senior Tester, Big Fish Games], Kevin Darby [Test Lead, Microsoft], Brander “Badger” Roulette [Test Manager, Big Fish Games]
- Designing a Procedurally Generated Game (August 29th, 2:00 PM)
More and more games are different every time you play, but how are they designed? Game designers are looking past roguelikes for new inspirations and new ways of working. Hear the creators of Dwarf Fortress, Darkest Dungeon, Crypt of the NecroDancer, Moon Hunters, Wayward Souls, and more discuss their processes, problems, and philosophies when creating their unpredictable game worlds.
Tanya Short [Co-Founder / Designer, Kitfox Games], Kepa Auwae [Owner, Rocketcat Games], Tyler Sigman [Co-Founder / Designer, Red Hook Games], Ryan Clark [Founder / Designer, Brace Yourself Games], Tarn Adams [Toady One, Bay 12 Games]
- Firaxis Megapanel (August 29th, 2:00 PM)
Join the strategy masterminds behind the award-winning XCOM 2 and Sid Meier’s Civilization: Beyond Earth – Rising Tide at the Firaxis Megapanel. This is your chance to meet the developers and go behind-the-scenes of some of your favorite games!
- Obsidian Entertainment Presents: A Pillars of Eternity Retrospective Discussion! (August 29th, 3:00 PM)
Join Obsidian Entertainment’s Josh Sawyer (Game Director), Adam Brennecke (Executive Producer / Lead Programmer), and Brandon Adler (Lead Producer), as they delve into the development highs and lows of creating the critically-acclaimed Pillars of Eternity.
Get an exclusive, never-before-seen look into Pillars of Eternity’s creation – jam-packed with stories about the team’s successes and failures as they created the Kickstarter-backed game. You’ll even get a sneak peek into the future of Pillars of Eternity games, including a discussion of new game features.
Shane DeFreest [Marketing Director, Obsidian Entertainment], Brandon Adler [Producer, Obsidian Entertainment], Josh Sawyer [Project Director / Game Director, Obsidian Entertainment], Adam Brennecke [Lead Programmer, Obsidian Entertainment]
- FINAL FANTASY XV Active Time Report LIVE! (August 29th, 4:30 PM)
Fans will be in for a treat as FINAL FANTASY XV Director Hajime Tabata will be taking the stage in North America for the first time at PAX Prime as part of the ongoing Active Time Reports. In addition to sharing a few personal stories about the development of the game, he will be sharing some insights into the recently revealed trailer. Join us as we discuss one of the most highly anticipated games from Square Enix!
Hajime Tabata [Director of Final Fantasy XV, Square Enix], Mat Kishimoto [Brand Manager, Square Enix], Elijah Smolko [Localization Specialist, Square Enix], Ami Funaki [Translator, Square Enix], Emily Shoji [PR, Square Enix]
- A History of Beat ‘Em Ups: When Culture & Brawlers Collide (August 29th, 5:30 PM)
While working on Treachery in Beatdown City (a new beat ’em up), we at Nuchallenger dug deep into the history of brawlers and unearthed a rich, buried civilization of culture and design. Did you know that the first beat ’em up, which gave way to classics like Double Dragon, was based on the creator’s frustration in high school? Join us on this fascinating audio/visual look at the history of both beat ’em ups and pop culture!
Shawn Alexander Allen [Game Designer, Nuchallenger]
- Igarashi Panel: “WHIP IT GOOD: KICKSTARTING IGA” (August 29th, 6:00 PM)
What inspired famed Castlevania-game producer Koji Igarashi to leave a cushy job at his former employer and go indie? What are the latest plans for his next game Bloodstained now that its amazingly successful Kickstarter run has ended? And how did they pull off that record-breaking crowdfunding campaign in the first place? Come ye, oh Army of the Night, for answers to these queries and more (including your own questions as part of a fan Q&A)!
NOTE: AFTER PANEL: Igarashi Autograph Signing (Westin Autographing Area), Saturday 7:30pm – 9:30pm
Koji Igarashi, Takuya Aizu, Ben Judd, Dan Moore
- Telltale Games LIVE Crowd Play (August 29th, 8:30 PM)
Join the Telltale Games devs and cast members to play one of our very latest episodes LIVE on the big screen! All 500 audience members are encouraged to participate and help us steer the decisions in an evening that should be loads of fun (and maybe just a little bit ridiculous). Cosplay if you can, and be prepared for special giveaways!
- CD PROJEKT RED Presents: The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt Panel (August 30th, 4:30 PM)
Join members of CD PROJEKT RED’s narrative design team to discuss the pros and cons of developing a video game based on literature
Jakub Szmalek [Senior Writer, CD PROJEKT RED], Travis Currit [Translator, CD PROJEKT RED]
- Scalebound Gameplay Demo and Q+A (August 31th, 3:30 PM)
Join us to see a gameplay demo of Scalebound, the next great adventure from critically-acclaimed developer PlatinumGames and renowned Game Director Hideki Kamiya.
Hideki Kamiya [Game Director], Atsushi Inaba [Executive Producer], JP Kellams [Creative Producer]