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GDC 2019: Google’s Play for Gaming Ubiquity, Rise of Ray Tracing, Store Wars

The Game Developers Conference finished up Friday evening, wrapping one of the most exciting GDCs in recent memory with Google’s splashy entrance into AAA video gaming, the emergence of real-time ray tracing as a compelling technology for film, TV, and games, and the growing war between two global estore powerhouses: Valve’s Steam and the Epic Games Store.

Those big announcements, proclamations, news, and game reveals were mixed in with a rich selection of talks that offered insight into the artistry, technology, and methodology of video game development. Talks included insight from Disney’s famed Imagineers, discussions of esports, deep dives into historically famous games and last year’s massive hits.

And then there were the awards; celebrations of the past year’s biggest independent titles, the biggest mainstream hits, and a celebration of audio in game design.

Below you’ll find all of Variety’s coverage of this year’s Game Developers Conference to date, with much more to come.

Awards

‘God of War’ Named Game Developer Choice Awards Game of the Year

‘God of War’ Wins Six G.A.N.G. Awards, Including Audio of the Year

‘Return of the Obra Dinn’ Wins IGF Seumas McNally Grand Prize

Epic Versus Steam

Events, Library Overhaul Coming to Valve’s Steam Store

Epic Game Store Redesign, User Reviews, Gifting Inbound

Epic Talks Exclusives, Tencent, ‘Metro’ Backlash

Epic Store Won’t Sell Unrated, ‘Adults Only’ Games

Epic Gives Away Online Services Behind ‘Fortnite’

‘Control,’ ‘Outer Worlds,’ ‘Ancestors’ Among Dozen Games Coming to Epic Games Store

Epic Game Store Exclusives Coming to Humble Store

‘Heavy Rain,’ ‘Beyond Two Souls,’ ‘Detroit’ Coming to PC Via Epic Games Store

Epic Games Unveils $100 Million ‘MegaGrants’ for Film, Game, Other Creators

Games

Cinematic Platformer ‘Stela’ Focuses on Depth, Mystery

Vertigo Games Believes ‘Location-Based Virtual Reality’ Is Future of VR

‘After Party’  Builds Off of ‘Oxenfree’ Design to Create Hellish, Hilarious Gameplay

How ‘Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2’ Builds on Series’ Legacy

‘Speaking Simulator’ and the Fine Art of Talking

Rebellion Is Putting Players Back Behind Enemy Lines in Remastered ‘Sniper Elite V2’

‘Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden’ Coming to Nintendo Switch

After ‘Dead Cells,’ Developer Motion Twin Is Open to Anything

Magic Leap Unveils Latest Multiplayer VR Prototype at GDC 2019

‘System Shock 3’ Gets Brief Teaser (Watch)

‘Call of Duty: Mobile’ Public Beta Hits This Summer (Watch)

Supernova Uses Funding, Leadership Coaching to Reduce Risk of Game Development

Ray Tracing

Nvidia’s Big Bet on Ray Tracing Pays Off

Unreal Unveils Astounding Real-Time Cinematic Tech Demo ‘Troll’ (Watch)

Unity Pushes For Unreal Parity as Next-Gen Approaches

Unity’s Latest Demo is Visually Stunning ‘The Heretic’ (Watch)

Stadia

Google Stadia is a Net Neutrality Nightmare

Google’s Cloud Platform Pushes Into AAA, Stadia Won’t Require Its Use

Game Industry Has Mixed Reactions to Google Stadia

Google’s Stadia Aims to Turn Any Screen Into a Powerful Gaming Console

Watch Google’s Game Stream Tech Unveiling Live Here

Google Pop-Up Museum Teases New Logo, Possible Gaming Hardware

Talks

What Game Workers Can Learn From Other Labor Organizations

‘Pokemon Go’ Creator on Augmented Reality’s Massive Potential

Ex-Westwood Devs Reminisce About Making Original ‘Command & Conquer’

To Survive, ‘EverQuest’ Must Honor Past, Embrace Future

Disney Parks Attraction Creators Compare Crafting Video Games With Real-World Experiences

Xbox Woos Mobile Developers With Xbox Live Functionality

How to Build an Inclusive Game Studio Culture

‘Astro Bot Rescue Bot’ Creator Explains Celebrated VR Game

9 Games Industry Veterans Offer Insight at GDC Microtalks

‘Tetris Effect’s’ Development Was Anything but Zen-Like

‘No Man’s Sky’s’ Disastrous, Wonderful, Amazing Journey

How Blizzard Reduced Toxic Behavior With ‘Overwatch’s’ Endorsement System

GDC Women in Gaming Rally Puts Spotlight on Inclusion, Accessibility in Industry

How IBM Is Using AI to Build the Future of Esports Casting

Indie Devs Sound Off on Diversity, Ethics, Deadlines Without Crunch

Doctors Look to Virtual Reality to Treat Chronic Pain

The Struggles of South African Indie Game Development

Amazon Focused on Building the Game Industry’s Digital Infrastructure

Jason Rohrer: Design ‘Unique Situation Generators,’ Not ‘Consumable Games’

Altruism is Paramount in Thatgamecompany’s ‘Sky’

The Problem of Toxicity in Esports (and Two Solutions)

‘ICO,’ ‘Shadow of the Colossus’ Animator Explains Challenges of Creating VR Characters

The Changing Face of Video Game Crowdfunding

Road to GDC: Missed Opportunities

Road to GDC: The Future of Gaming Is AI

Road to GDC: Curating Video Games

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