The DeanBeat: The top 12 trends from the GDC

Too often, I flit from one conference to another like a wayward butterfly, trying to catch up with all the news. But the Game Developers Conference is one of my favorite events of the year because it places such a high value on creativity in the game industry. It is fitting to dwell upon it and to figure out what this year’s conference in San Francisco, which ended Friday March 9, was all about.

See what Tim Schafer is doing with all your (his) money

Remember that time game maker Tim Schafer asked for $400,000 on Kickstarter and the world gave him $2.5 million? You might be wondering what he’s done with said riches, and how he’ll be putting them to good use. Last night Schafer provided the following images as inspiration for Cliff Bleszinksi, who took over hosting duties at this year’s Game Developers Choice Awards.

Psychonauts 2: An update from Double Fine’s Tim Schafer

Double Fine’s Tim Schafer has been fielding questions for years about a potential followup to his much-loved 2005 3D platform game Psychonauts. Buzz about a sequel grew even louder earlier this month when Minecraft creator Markus “Notch” Persson expressed an interest in funding the project on Twitter. During a recent interview with VentureBeat, however, Schafer said there’s still a lot of stuff that needs to be worked out first.

The top 10 family games of 2011: Kinect Disneyland, Sesame Street, and more

They may not be the most glamorous ticket in town during the holiday buying season, but family games are one of a very small number of video game genres where the adults can have as much fun as the kids. Family games have seen a resurgence in recent years thanks to the advent of motion-gaming technologies like Nintendo’s Wii, Sony’s PlayStation Move and Microsoft Xbox Kinect that simplify play mechanics beyond memorizing button placements or manipulating two analog joysticks in tandem. Family games are more about getting everyone in the room involved than spending 18 hours clawing and scratching your way through a singular adventure.