November 12, 2015

Unity GameDevs Keeping It Weird in Austin

Events
Integration

Robert Brackenridge and Finn Staber, leaders in the Austin GameDev community, have a vision: to make Austin the mecca of the $100B gaming industry. After hearing about the Unity event we hosted at PopCap Games in Seattle last spring, they reached out to us to see if we were interested in working with them. 

For those of you who aren't familiar with Austin, "nestled in the green bit of hippish Texas," it's home to a powerful creative community that includes games, music, movies, and technology. It's also growing at a blistering pace and primed to takeover as the new epicenter for game development in this country. 

With that in mind, Perforce took it to Austin a few weeks ago, where we hosted the Austin Unity Meetup at a local joint called Mister Tramps. The event attracted a mix of indie developers, university game program students and faculty, and giants of the gaming industry. Besides eating some great BBQ, my colleague Gabe Weiss and I gave a short demo of how to integrate Unity with Helix Cloud using P4Connect. A fairly extensive Q&A session followed that included lots of room for us to share industry standard best practices.

What did we get out of it besides bellies full of good BBQ? A lot!

We opened up avenues to continue to connect and work with leaders in the Austin community. This gives us a huge opportunity to build presence and contribute thought leadership in a market that's integral to Perforce’s continued success. 

Specifically, the feedback and insights we received from the event will help set the direction for us to work on future offerings. These tools will better help current leaders in the game industry to support the upcoming generation.

Thanks to a diverse team that includes community, technical support, engineering, product management, and strategic partnerships, we've got a great vision and a plan to put together a Game Starter Developer Kit and a JamBox. The G-SDK is "an easy to get started" gamer developer kit that helps small shops and indies setup a game engine like Unity and Unreal, a version control system, plus an issue tracking system and project management tools. JamBox is a virtualized environment of tools used to host game development jams or hackathons. We're aiming to have something in the hands of the community by Global Game Jam in January.

If you're a gamer or interested in the gaming industry, there's a ton of technical and non-technical opportunities to contribute to the ecosystem and community. Come talk to me at sturner@perforce.com to find out how you can get involved.