A good friend of mine helped host a night for the group Blacks In Gaming at the W Hotel in San Francisco. This ran hand in hand with the GDC [Game Developer’s Conference] and I have to say that the party was OFF THE HOOK!
Now I’ll apologize right off if any is offended by me using the term Blacks instead of African-American, but I would have to say that none of the Black folks there seemed to mine. Besides, having the acronym BiG sounds better than AAiG. The first sounds more like a dig me I’m here acronym while the second sounds like something you’d hear as person grabs their chest and falls to the floor. There were quite a few Black people in attendance, but myself being neither Black, nor a game designer still fit in nicely.
Now I’m sure some of you are asking why I would be invited to such an event since I am neither Black nor a game designer. It turns out that I help my old college friend get their website started and I wanted to see what would come out of it. She told me not to bother eating dinner that night and she was right. The food served up courtesy of sponsor Microsoft was incredible. They had trays of sushi, cheese and crackers and completely across Asia table of cuisine [note the deep fried pot stickers were outrageous]. As I was filling my plate I was tapped on the shoulder and offered a wagyu beef slider that was the hit of the evening for everyone. I also received a free drink ticket which got me a Maker’s Mark on the rocks to wash all the food down with.
While traveling around the room and talking with some of the game designers that had booths there was one in particular that stood out to me. That was Subversus Interactive showing of one of their games called Gyromaniac. It was by far the game that attracted the most attention. Why you ask? It’s a flight simulator that takes it a step further. You’re flying machine is traveling inside a human intestine, blood vessel or fallopian tube. It was pretty weird, but so unique in concept that it was attracting a lot of people to play the game. Note, you can also play it in 3-D which only enhances, umm the effect. Vishal Srivastava of Subversus Interactive who wrote the game did a great job of selling the game and caused a large amount of the people who were trying it out to break out laughing. If you have a fear of aliens and anal probes you might want to stay away from the game, but if you ever had the dreams of being a part of the movie Fantastic Voyage you’ll definitely fine this game fun. Check out the movie teaser at the end.
Overal it was a widely diverse crowd and I was surprised I didn’t bump into Willie Brown making a show there at least for a couple of minutes. I did happen to run into an old friend of mine Derrold Purifoy from elementary school and after 35 years we had lots of catching up to do. It seemed to me that most of the people when they weren’t talking about gaming were talking about the food at the W Hotel. It was a great night out and I managed to make it home before falling into a food coma.