We started it by going to Berkeley to tour Stupid Fun Club, a business started by Will Wright, and it creates games and interactive products. They were focusing on creating items that could be controlled by smartphones and tablets. I could not take pictures of many of the things, but we got to talk to them for a long time about their projects and the industry in San Fran. Our tour guide was Mike Winter, and he came to visit the University of Iowa last spring.
Afterwards we went to IGN, a media outlet for video games. Their studios in San Fran were amazing, for they had so much video game memorabilia and knowledge, it was like going through a game museum. Each conference room was decorated like a different video game, and everyone’s cubicles had an amazing amount of objects and story behind it.
After our tour of IGN, we had to a break, so Casey Lynch, our tour guide, showed us an amazing burrito place and we went to a park by SFMOMA until our next meeting at Double Fine productions. There were many opportunities for photos there, and much inspirational material.
After the break we went to Double Fine productions, an independent game studio. We talked to artists and and managers there to find out about the development of games and the difference between independent game studios and larger ones. We had to sign an NDA, so I can not probably divulge too much, but overall I learned a lot and it was amazing it see a real game studio.
Afterwards we had dinner as a group with a person from Pixar and an independent animator, which was an fun q&a session that offered much insight also.
Another day filled with much networking and learning, but overall it was great to see these studios exist, hear the stories of how everyone got to where they were, and see how they work.