Game Developers Conference 2017

Posted Feb. 18, 2017
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JOIN US AT GDC 2017 
Moscone Convention Center | San Francisco

Wednesday Mar 1 - Friday Mar 3, 2017

SideFX is excited to be back at GDC for another year of educational and inspiring Houdini-related presentations - by both SideFX technical experts and industry professionals.


Join us at the SideFX booth to discover how game studios use Houdini's procedural software to create content for games, virtual worlds and more. You can then join us at one of our demo pods to get a closer look at Houdini and its procedural node-based tools.

Houdini Core Promo

Be sure to ask us about our Houdini Core promotion which offers a 50% discount from the regular price. This promotion celebrates a powerful collection of features including procedural modeling,  terrain generation, animation, character rigging, lighting and rendering, compositing and volumes. Game developers can use Houdini Core to create digital assets that can be opened in game engines such as Unity and UE4 using the Houdini Engine plug-ins.


Houdini Training Day | Room 213/214 
AMA Conference Center | SF Marriott Marquis 

Wednesday Mar 1, 2017

 

Learn Houdini for the first time or beef up existing Houdini skills! All day Wednesday, SideFX and Pluralsight will be conducting Houdini training sessions. These sessions are open to anyone at the show and seats will be available on a first-come first-served basis. Come learn all about Houdini and walk away with skills you can use forever! 

 

Session

Instructor

 

9:00 AM

Intro to Houdini

John Moncrief

Pluralsight

10:00 AM

Houdini 16 for Games

Scott Keating

SideFX

11:00 AM

Terrain Generation

Alex Dracott

SideFX

12:00 PM

Houdini 16 Game Tool Shelf

Luiz Kruel

SideFX

1:00 PM

Houdini and the VR Fight Pit

Mike Murdock

TriHelix///

2:00 PM

Herding Rocks in Shape Of The World

Michael Lyndon

3:00 PM

Multi-Platform 3D Art | Unity

Luis Garcia

Feline Arts

4:00 PM

Procedural Assets for UE4

Robert Magee

SideFX


Meeting Room | AMA Conference Center | SF Marriott Marquis

Tuesday Feb 28 - Friday Mar 3, 2017

SideFX has a meeting room available for studios who want a one-on-one demo or wish to speak with someone about building a Houdini-based gamedev pipeline. Please make arrangements directly with your SideFX Account Manager at sales@sidefx.com.


Booth #942 | Moscone Convention Center

Wednesday Mar 1 - Friday Mar 3, 2017

Visit the SideFX booth to learn more about our latest offerings, meet with other Houdini artists, grab a T-shirt or watch a booth presentation conducted by Industry professionals and SideFX production specialists. Check out the demo pods to ask more specific questions and watch Houdini in action. 

We look forward to meeting with you and learning more about the challenges you face in your day-to-day work. 



Booth Presentations

We have a busy schedule of presentations planned for the show from a variety of industry experts. Here is the presentation schedule and a list of presenter profiles to help you plan your day on the show floor.


 

Wednesday | March 1

Thursday | March 2

Friday | March 3

10:30 AM

Multi-Platfrom 3D Art | Unity

Luis Garcia | Feline Arts

Realtime FX

Luiz Kruel | SideFX

Realtime FX | Battlefield 1

Andreas Glad

11:00 AM

Realtime FX  

Luiz Kruel | SideFX

Ghost Recon Wildlands

Benoit Martinez | Ubisoft

Multi-Platfrom 3D Art | Unity

Luis Garcia | Feline Arts

11:30 AM

Herding Rocks | Shape Of The World 

Michael Lyndon

What's New in Houdini 16

Scott Keating | SideFX

Herding Rocks | Shape Of The World

Michael Lyndon

12:00 PM

What's New in Houdini 16

Scott Keating | SideFX

Multi-Platfrom 3D Art | Unity

Luis Garcia | Feline Arts

Procedural Assets for UE4

Robert Magee | SideFX

12:30 PM

Mafia 3

Ewan Croft | Hangar 13

Procedural Assets for UE4

Robert Magee | SideFX

Hair FX in Games

Saber Jlassi

1:00 PM

Procedural Assets for UE4

Robert Magee | SideFX

Herding Rocks | Shape Of The World

Michael Lyndon

Ghost Recon Wildlands

Benoit Martinez | Ubisoft

1:30 PM

Hair FX in Games

Saber Jlassi

Castle Defense VR

Gabe Valdivia | SideFX

Realtime FX

Luiz Kruel | SideFX

2:00 PM

Castle Defense VR

Gabe Valdivia | SideFX

Hair FX in Games

Saber Jlassi

What's New in Houdini 16

Scott Keating | SideFX

2:30 PM

What's New in Houdini 16

Scott Keating | SideFX

What's New in Houdini 16

Scott Keating | SideFX 

Castle Defense VR

Gabe Valdivia | SideFX

3:00 PM

Realtime FX | Battlefield 1

Andreas Glad

Realtime FX | Battlefield 1 

Andreas Glad

3:30 PM

Ghost Recon Wildlands

Benoit Martinez | Ubisoft

Procedural Assets for UE4

Robert Magee | SideFX

4:00 PM

Realtime FX

Luiz Kruel | SideFX

Terrain Generation

Alex Dracott

4:30 PM

Terrain Generation

Alex Dracott

Realtime FX 

Luiz Kruel | SideFX

5:00 PM

Castle Defense VR

Gabe Valdivia | SideFX

Hair FX in Games

Saber Jlassi

5:30 PM

Procedural Assets for UE4 

Robert Magee | SideFX

Castle Defense VR

Gabe Valdivia | SideFX




PRESENTERS:


Michael Lyndon

Herding Rocks in Shape Of The World
Michael Lyndon is a visual effects artist, teacher, mentor and team leader. He has a broad range of experience creating computer graphics for commercials, films and video games. His fascination with the world around us and the desire to blend art with his technical tinkering has led to his work making rolling cloudscapes in Ender's Game, destroying buildings and generating raging fires in Gears of War 4 and trapping penguins in an avalanche of snow for Happy Feet 2. Eight years ago he caught the Houdini bug and hasn't been able to shake it. Now he  spends his days looking for problems that are uniquely suited to a procedural solution and losing himself in the process.

Michael's talk will be Herding Rocks: Procedural animation in Shape Of The World. Discover how a mix of art directed simulation and procedural animation techniques helped create the construction of a monument from hundreds of rocks in the exploration game Shape of the World. 


Mike Murdock

Houdini and a VR Fight Pit / TriHelix /// 
Mike Murdock is a VR Designer and Creative Director at TriHelix ///. His Virtual Reality experiences have been shown worldwide including Sundance New Frontiers, The World Economic Forum, Tribeca, and South by South West. He earned his MFA from the USC School of Cinematic Arts in Interactive Media and Games. In his free time, he makes retro sci-fi interfaces (In Houdini) and sick beats (In Bitwig).

In his talk, we're going to dive into using Houdini for Virtual Reality art production. We'll start by talking about the challenges of VR game design, both conceptual and technical. Then we'll look at how Houdini's procedural approach allows for flexibility in level design, look dev, and asset creation. Finally we'll go behind the scenes of his current VR project: an epic battle pit! We'll deconstruct a few scenes to show you how Houdini was used to explore concepts, refine the scene layout, and ultimately make entire worlds for players to enjoy!


Ewan Croft

Hangar 13 Games | Mafia 3

Ewan Croft is a video-game artist at Hangar 13 Games, a 2K Games studio north of San Francisco where he works as Technical Art Director on story driven, open-world games such as Mafia 3. In addition to managing the technical art teams and delivering simulation and dynamics content, Ewan helps design and drive art tools and pipelines for the studio’s proprietary game engine. He began his career as a CG visualization artist before moving into games as an outsource artist with a 6 year stint in between as an interactive and graphic designer. Ewan joined 2K Games in 2008 to work on the Bioshock franchise before transitioning to Hangar 13 Games in 2013.

Ewan's talk will explore how Hangar 13’s use of Houdini evolved from a content production tool for simulations and dynamics, to an integrated - via Houdini Engine - tool-building development solution,  supported by a dedicated team of procedural content artists and engineers focusing on delivering life and variety to our large, open-worlds through proceduralism.


Saber Jlassi

Hair FX in Games
Saber Jlassi is a California-based VFX artist working as a Senior Technical Director at Blizzard Animation, as well as a Houdini instructor at CG Master Academy. His current job consists of writing tools and scripts to improve the Lighting, FX and Compositing pipeline, in addition to collaborating with Production to solve challenging tasks. Prior to this, he worked as a Senior Lighting TD at Framestore and Generalist TD at MPC in London.

In his talk, Saber will create a custom grooming system from scratch that offers most of the features found in high-end grooming tools, and learn how to manipulate the hair look and create custom deformers. Then he will take a high resolution hair model and setup a Houdini network to generate a game-compatible version using geometry mapping with baked textures that will appear very close to a high-res hair model when viewed in real-time. Then he will show how to translate the high-res hair into a highres real-time version using Nvidia hair-works system.


Andreas Glad

Realtime FX | Battlefield 1 
Andreas has spent over 8 years working as a VFX artist in the games industry. During that time he has worked on projects like Battlefield 1 and Mirror's Edge Catalyst. Right now he is running a remote VFX company called Partikel while studying Mechanical Engineering as a side project.

His presentation will cover Realtime VFX techniques forged in the trenches of Battlefield 1. The talk will include a walkthrough of how to crerate the meshes needed for goopy, shiny, nasty, volumetric looking liquid effects. He will also explain how his team took some Houdini clouds and turned them into a dogfighting paradise in a game level set in the skies over London. The talk is tailored to beginners so even people new to Houdini will be able to follow along and perhaps apply the techniques to their own game.


Alex Dracott

Terrain Generation
In his booth presentation, Alex will be  going over the basics of the Houdini 16 Terrain Generation tools showing how he used them to help create a real-time environment in Unreal Engine 4. This overview will give audiences a small glance into the potential of these new tools, while exploring an example of how they can fit into a game production pipeline.

In his Houdini Day class, Alex will take an intermediate-level look at the H16 heightfield Terrain tools including a basic demonstration of a simple terrain being exported to Unreal Engine 4. Afterward, he'll show off a finished project he created to demonstrate the potential use of heightfields in game production environments. In the end he will share some tips and tricks he learned along the way.


Luis Garcia

Feline Arts | Multi-Platfrom Procedural Art for Indies | Unity
Luis Garcia, also known as “Lune” Is an indie game developer at “Feline Arts”, based in Mexico, mostly with a 3d artist background Lune is currently working on the project “Suki & the Shadow Klaw” for Playstation 4, Xbox One, Playstation Vita and PC platforms.

In this talk you will learn the importance of knowing your target platforms and how to speed up your pipeline by creating procedural assets with Houdini and Houdini Engine for Unity in order to achieve greater art quality with less time. Lune will also share his art workflow and the steps to follow to create the art for his project “Suki & the Shadow Klaw” and how the game is being optimized for different platforms while maintaining the most possible quality.


John Moncrief

Pluralsight | Intro to Houdini 
John is the resident Houdini and dynamics author at Pluralsight. In college, he had the opportunity to work at SideFX as an intern and has been able to teach dynamics and visual effects to numerous creative industry professionals over the years. He lives for the rush of seeing his pupils experience "light bulb" moments. John's latest passion has been breathing new life into the Pluralsight Houdini training library and making sure that no software or tools can get in the way of an artist expressing their creative vision. 

If you are new to Houdini and ready to experience your own "light bulb" moment, join John on Houdini Day for his Intro to Houdini class.


SIDEFX PRESENTERS:


Scott Keating

SideFX | What's New in Houdini 16
Scott Keating is a production specialist at SideFX specializing in the user experience needs of Houdini artists. He is also an award-winning commercial illustrator, designer, and comic-book artist and his work has been published worldwide, in magazines, books, comics, and commercial products.

Scott will be talking about all the new features found in Houdini 16 that will help game developers create procedural game art. He will be reviewing all the new features in the booth presentation and taking a more in-depth look in his Houdini Day talk.


Luiz Kruel

SideFX | Realtime FX
Luiz is a Sr. Technical Artist at SideFX Software. He is a part of our games team and responsible for developing tools to bridge the gap between Houdini and Game Engines. 

In his booth presentation, Luiz will show the new Games Tool Shelf that is included with Houdini 16. He will go over the new normal map nodes for COPs, Flowmap Tools, Make Loop SOP, RBD to FBX exporter, and the new Vertex Animation Texture workflows to get meshes with changing topology from Houdini into Unreal. On Houdini Day he will be going into more detail on how these nodes work and how to modify them to fit production pipeline needs. 


Gabriel Valdivia

SideFX | Castle Defense VR

Gabriel is a Game Intern at SideFx.  He graduated from Drexel University with a B.S. in Digital Media and an interest in Houdini for game development.

In his booth presentation, Gabriel will talk about the Castle Defense VR project.  He will walk through the creation of the Houdini Digital Assets used to build the cartoony environment, along with how they were implemented using Houdini Engine.  He will also talk about the process of creating the game characters in Houdini from modeling to rigging to animation. 


Robert Magee

SideFX | Procedural Assets in UE4
Robert Magee is a Senior Product Marketing Manager at SideFX who has been working with Houdini for 15 years. He has created lots of learning material and demos designed to help artists understand how going procedural with Houdini can benefit their work.

In his presentation and Houdini Day lesson, Robert will show how you can create procedural assets in Houdini that can be loaded into Unreal Engine 4 using the Houdini Engine plug-in. He will talk about how assets can be built in Houdini's node-based environment and then how to best deploy them into the game engine.