Tutorial at the GDC 2006

Four relevant tutorial I'd like to attend if I could be at the Game Design Conference 2006:

  • Do-It-Yourself Usability: How to Use User Research to Improve your Game (by guys from the Microsoft Game Studios): basics of usability testing for game developers. It covers all major steps involved, including designing and setting up a test, running participants, analyzing data, and reporting actionable results. The tutorial consists of a combination of lectures, illustrative examples from the game industry, hands-on exercises, and small-group activities run by experts in the field. At the end of the day, participants gain a deeper understanding of usability testing and how they can incorporate usability testing into their own product.
  • Game Design Considerations for Alternate Controllers (by the guys from Harmonix Music Systems): More and more gamers are connecting to their games with cameras, bongo drums, microphones, plastic guitars and a host of other unconventional controllers. Games using alternate controllers have the ability to provide fundamentally new experiences to the gaming audience, and to welcome new gamers who wouldn't normally think to pick up a console gamepad. This session uses the development of three different Harmonix games: Karaoke Revolution, Eyetoy: AntiGrav, and Guitar Hero to illustrate a common design methodology adopted by Harmonix for all three titles. We will analyze the player experience provided by each game, and describe the fundamentally similar design approach that was applied to all three projects, with very different results in each case.
  • Games on Instant Messenger: Tapping into 170 Million Interactive Users (by Bryan Tussel from MS): Instant messaging has revolutionized the way scores of people - from trend-setting teens to savvy CEOs - communicate. As a result of the technology's broad demographic adoption, casual game developers have a unique opportunity to interact with a host of new and diverse audiences. This session will explore how to leverage characteristics specific to the platform to engage players as well as Microsoft Casual Games' key learnings, successes and vision for the future.
  • The Social Dimensions of Digital Gaming (by a huge list of great speakers): This tutorial brings together expert social scientists doing research on game design, play and culture to work with designers in generating useful vocabularies for making sense of the social dimensions of digital games. Content will focus on identifying and mobilizing key sociological concepts for design practice, reviewing methodological tools useful for studying gamers and game culture, and present current research findings by a number of academics working in the field.

Why do I blog this? among all the topic the GDC deal with, those 4 topics are interesting with regards to my interests.