(See the game trailers below)
The University of Southern California held their bi-annual GamePipe Laboratory Demo Day on May 4th, 2011, soon after USC's Games Programs were recognized as the best in the world. Students celebrated the end of the semester by showing off their creations at the 12thGamePipe Lab Demo Day. This year's event boasted 500 attendees consisting of industry representatives from Intel, Electronic Arts, Activision, Microsoft Game Studios, Zynga, Bally Technologies, Konami, Wild Needle, Bungie, Rock Software, Happynin Games, Intrinsic Games, Sony, Disney, Heavy Iron, THQ, Aielo, LucasArts, LucasFilm, Google, Blizzard and Jirbo.
Students are introduced to parallel programming, a crucial skill needed in the game industry, in the course EE-452 Game Hardware Architectures. Jose Villeta is an instructor in the USC GamePipe Laboratory and Director of Technology for Disney Interactive. He is also an Intel Academic Community Black Belt who has used Intel tools and resources from the Intel Academic Community to parallelize his Game Hardware Architecture course and give students the foundation to build professional and high-quality games.
At the beginning of each semester, students are introduced to the concepts of parallelism through the use of Intel game demos like TickerTape, Smoke, and Destroy the Castle. Students are asked to program their games using Intel® Threading Building Blocks. The students use Intel® Parallel Studio to improve the performance of their games.
Students form interdisciplinary teams of 300 students from the School of Cinematic Arts Interactive Media Division (BA Interactive Entertainment, MFA Interactive Media) and students from the Viterbi School of Engineering Computer Science Department (BS in Computer Science with a concentration in Games), MS in Computer Science (Game Development), PhD in Computer Science (Games). These students spend a year creating new, imaginative, and professional games. Students from the Laguna College of Art & Design and Atlantic College in Puerto Rico provide the concept art, 3D models, animation and rigging for their games.
Dance Pad is where the player performs, creates, and shares iconic dance moves using fingers on an iPad. Web site is here.
The Bridge, reminiscent of Star Trek, allows the player to command a Starship entirely with voice control. Web site is here.
Paradox Shift is Portal with time shifting as the play mechanic. Web site is here.
Quicksilver: Infinite Story is an arcade-style brawler that explores storytelling through gameplay like no game has done before. Its original story engine, based on the conventions of adventure television shows, can generate an endless number of episodes to play through, complete with new cutscenes and enemies. Web site is here.
In Unchained, the player plays as a roguish trader piloting an airship in a exotic steampunk world. Web site is here.
Mother Nature is a game of artistic expression whose motto is "use your body to give birth to beauty". Mother Nature uses a Microsoft Kinect 3D camera to track the movements of a player's body, turning those movements into in-game events and action. Web site is here.
About the USC GamePipe Laboratory (Full version at the bottom of this page)
"The USC GamePipe Laboratory's mission is research, development and education on technologies and design for the future of interactive games and their application - from developing the supporting technologies for increasing the complexity and innovation in produced games, to developing serious and entertainment games for government and corporate sponsors.
GamePipe has developed two degree programs to support this research and development agenda - a BS in Computer Science specializing in Games, and an MS in Computer Science specializing in Game Development. The goal of the BS degree is to educate students capable of engineering next generation games immediately upon graduation. Students in this program receive a solid grounding in Computer Science in addition to the art and design required for functioning in the game industry."