If you are into game development, you know that videogame events have been rescheduled or canceled due to the coronavirus. That is also the case of this year's Game Developers Conference. GDC recently came up with a different idea, though: They decided to stream their talks on their Twitch channel for everyone to see for free.
To be fair, something like this is not unprecedented. A search on YouTube shows that a lot of (on location) events also record and upload their talks for everyone to see, which is not the same, but it's already along the same lines. However, in 2018 we had the first online-only game development conference, called Pro Indie Dev. Shortly after, we also had another virtual conference called The Business of Indie Games (which already had its second edition late last year), and the real-time virtual conference Gamedev World (the first two offered pre-recorded talks, while Gamedev World streamed the talks in real time). All these were free, but the first two had the option to purchase the option you to gain access to an archive where you can re-watch all the talks.
Some people cannot help to wonder if the future of GDC is going virtual. Personally, I can relate to that sentiment. GDC has drawn a lot of criticism for the price of their higher-tier badges (ranging from $1,349 to $2399) and for taking place in one of the most expensive cities in the US, posing a big barrier of entry to regular small or solo developers, and also developers from emerging regions.
You can watch all the talks on Virtual GDC on their Twitch channel starting today, throughout the rest of the week. You can find the full schedule of talks here.