SOLVING GAME DESIGN'S TOUGHEST PROBLEMS
Solutions to some problems require the efforts of more than one person. Some problems are simply too big to be fully understood by any individual working alone. Project Horseshoe provided a unique think-tank atmosphere that nurtured deep discussions and collaborative problem solving efforts. From 2006 through 2019, Project Horseshoe formed a strong and supportive community of brilliant and talented games industry professionals who were deeply interested in exploring and pushing the frontiers of game design.
Providing a unique think-tank atmosphere, Project Horseshoe was an annual conference that brought together a group of highly skilled and experienced games industry professionals, who had a primary or strong background in game design, with the goal of using the combined knowledge and skills of these people to positively influence the art and science of game design.
Because of the dynamic nature of this industry and the variety of interests of the Project Horseshoe attendees, official workgroup topics were chosen by consensus on the conference’s first morning. Topics were discussed on the Project Horseshoe website and e-mail reflector just prior to the conference, with additional topics presented and discussed on site. This approach gave all present a chance to steer the direction of the powerful assembly, and to simultaneously benefit from immediate feedback and input from the other remarkable attendees.
Each group tackled a problem that had been identified as one of the industry’s most important, spending two days of facilitated brainstorming to formulate its best shot at a solution. Typically, a workgroup’s effort resulted in a report detailing the problem space, discussion, and solution(s).
PROJECT HORSESHOE CO-FOUNDERS
TECHNICAL ADVISERS EMERITUS
Game Designer and Writer, www.bobbates.com
Chief Creative Officer, Spry Fox
Director of Live Operations for Xbox Game Studios Publishing, Microsoft
R&D Lead Designer, Stadia @ Google
President, XEODesign, Inc.
Patricia A. Pizer
CEO, Where’s the Fun?
Professor of Practice, Indiana University
Design Director, Hidden Path Entertainment