GeekNights Live at PAX Prime 2015

Sunday July 19, 2015

GeekNights will be live at PAX Prime 2015! These constitute our 33rd and 34th consecutive panels or lectures at PAXes since 2008. Both are brand new never-before-seen experiences for senses.

The Far Future of Gaming
Sunday Aug 30 @ 1:00pm
Sphinx Theatre

Few industries, even on the bleeding edge, are able to make accurate projections even ten years into the future. At thirty years out, all bets are off. Games are no exception. Accelerating technology, evolving design, even entirely new mediums, spring suddenly into being. You probably have some sense of what the next few years hold for games. But what about the next 30? The next 100? Could gaming in 2015 have been predicted from gaming in 1985? What drives it? What will hold it back?

Rym DeCoster [Producer, GeekNights]
Scott Rubin [Host, GeekNights]
Luke Crane [Community Manager for Games, Kickstarter]
Catt Small [UX and Game Designer, Brooklyn Gamery]
Josephine Fu [Lead Game Producer, Date Nighto]
Emily Compton [3D Animator, What Pumpkin]

Sports are Games
Monday Aug 31 @ 4:00pm
Sphinx Theatre

Gaming live streams are some of the most popular television programs in the US. There are entire TV networks covering gaming that have existed for decades. Yet, many self-described gamers will eschew "Football" and "Ice Hockey" as being somehow distinct from "DOTA 2" and "CounterStrike." We even like to use the term "esport" to separate them from "sports." Sports and "esports" are fundamentally the same. American Football is frighteningly like a distributed turn-based strategy game. Esports, regular sports: it's all just sports.

Rym DeCoster [Producer, GeekNights]
Scott Rubin [Host, GeekNights]

Online Story-Driven Games
Wednesday Sep 2 @ 7:00pm

After PAX, don't forget that Rym will be lecturing at CHIFOO in Portland! Games don't just have UX: games are UX.

See our panel at PAX East!

Tuesday March 3, 2015

Come see us at PAX East 2015! We've got an awesome panel called What is Losing?!

What is Losing
Friday, March 6th
4:30pm
Bumblebee Theatre

The point of a game is to win. Or is it? Can you "win" Gone Home or The Stanley Parable? Is losing a game of Dwarf Fortress the same as losing a game of chess? Why is Super Meat Boy's difficulty exciting, while Silver Surfer's is painful? Does one lose Monopoly due to player skill, or because you flipped the table? What if we played games that focused not on the "narrative of victory," but instead on the "narrative of failure?" Do games need to have a way to "lose" in the first place?

Afterward, we will be able to answer some questions in the hall and hang out with you guys before we head back to Tabletop Freeplay!

Live at PAX South and PAX East!

Tuesday January 13, 2015

GeekNights will be in San Antonio Texas for PAX South 2015. We will be presenting (in the very least) a lecture titled "Bad Games."

Bad Games
Sunday, January 25th
4:30pm
Armadillo Theatre

We've all played "bad" games, but what truly makes a game "bad?" Is one's miserable experience not simply subjective opinion? It turns out that the problem is not in defining what makes a game "bad," but in what makes a game a "game." Candyland teaches children colors and counting, but is terrible for a serious tournament. Dungeons & Dragons is great for that heroic fantasy adventure, but not so much for your future cyberpunk transhumanist court drama.

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We are also returning for PAX East 2015, where we will be presenting a lecture titled "What is Losing?"

What is Losing?
Friday, March 6th
4:30pm
Bumblebee Theatre

The point of a game is to win. Or is it? Can you "win" Gone Home or The Stanley Parable? Is losing a game of Dwarf Fortress the same as losing a game of chess? Why is Super Meat Boy's difficulty exciting, while Silver Surfer's is painful? Does one lose Monopoly due to player skill, or because you flipped the table? What if we played games that focused not on the "narrative of victory," but instead on the "narrative of failure?" Do games need to have a way to "lose" in the first place?

Live at PAX South 2015!

Tuesday December 2, 2014

We are happy to announce that GeekNights will be in San Antonio Texas for PAX South 2015. We will be presenting (in the very least) a lecture titled "Bad Games."

Bad Games
Sunday, January 25th
4:30pm
Armadillo Theatre.

We've all played "bad" games, but what truly makes a game "bad?" Is one's miserable experience not simply subjective opinion? It turns out that the problem is not in defining what makes a game "bad," but in what makes a game a "game." Candyland teaches children colors and counting, but is terrible for a serious tournament. Dungeons & Dragons is great for that heroic fantasy adventure, but not so much for your future cyberpunk transhumanist court drama.

Back from PAX Australia!!

Thursday November 6, 2014

We're back from PAX Australia 2014! Rym presented two lectures ("How to Win Every Game" and "Losing") and ended up moderating a third panel with some amazing people - "Geek as a Cultural Identity: Do Fake Geeks exist?". We'll resume our normal schedule next week on Tuesday with talk of PAX and any number of games.

We have video of "How to Win Every Game" from PAX Prime 2014!

We also have tons of our other panels and lectures from previous PAXes and other conventions online!

Live in Australia - Full Schedule

Friday October 10, 2014

We are happy to announce that Rym will be in Australia for PAX Aus 2014 in Melbourne, VIC (October 31-November 2)! He will be presenting two lectures!

How to Win Every Game
Friday 11:00am
Fruitbat Theatre

It seems obvious that, when playing a game of skill, one attempts to win. Interestingly, this is often not the case, and even skilled gamers rarely analyze to any real depth the underlying mechanics and strategy of a given game. By deconstructing the games we play, you too can make them far less fun for yourself and beat the everliving hell out of your friends. We'll hit the theory pretty heavily, but also specific examples from games like "Stratego," "Settlers of Catan," and even "Football."

Losing
Saturday 2:00pm
Fruitbat Theatre

Winning is good, and losing is bad. We strive to win, and this is the basis for most of the games we play. Challenges are binary: we either overcome them, advancing the story, or fail, and must try again. But, what if we were to toss this conventional wisdom aside? Do we really only have fun when we win? Have you ever had that moment in a game where epic and total failure was the most memorable part? What kinds of games would arise if we strove to make losing, instead of winning, the point?


This is the final, updated schedule. Come say hi!

GeekNights Live at PAX Australia 2014!

Wednesday September 10, 2014

We are happy to announce that Rym will be in Australia for PAX Aus 2014 in Melbourne, VIC (October 31-November 2)! He will be presenting two lectures!

Losing
Saturday @ 2:00pm

Winning is good, and losing is bad. We strive to win, and this is the basis for most of the games we play. Challenges are binary: we either overcome them, advancing the story, or fail, and must try again. But, what if we were to toss this conventional wisdom aside? Do we really only have fun when we win? Have you ever had that moment in a game where epic and total failure was the most memorable part? What kinds of games would arise if we strove to make losing, instead of winning, the point?


How to Win Every Game
Sunday @ noon

It seems obvious that, when playing a game of skill, one attempts to win. Interestingly, this is often not the case, and even skilled gamers rarely analyze to any real depth the underlying mechanics and strategy of a given game. By deconstructing the games we play, you too can make them far less fun for yourself and beat the everliving hell out of your friends. We'll hit the theory pretty heavily, but also specific examples from games like "Stratego," "Settlers of Catan," and even "Football."

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