GDC 2021: Dates, News, Announcements, Rumors, and More

Learn what's happening at the Game Developer's Conference (GDC)

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The Game Developer's Conference aka GDC is exactly what it sounds like: A gathering of game developers where problems are solved, ideas are exchanged, and the future of gaming is inspired by the conversations of programmers, artists, and others who actually build and market the games the rest of us play.

What Are the Dates of the Next Game Developers Conference?

This year, GDC will be held July 19-23, 2021. It's being billed as a hybrid event: Some activities will occur on-site in San Francisco while others will be held online. COVID-19 restrictions could change, of course, so it's likely the on-site activities will undergo some adjustments prior to the event.

What Will Be Announced at GDC?

Products and major industry announcements aren't typically announced at GDC. The goal of the conference is to exchange ideas and help all those involved in game creation connect through workshops and industry talks.

However, it's not completely out of the question a product is announced. Microsoft, for example, announced the original Xbox console at GDC in 2000. It's a long shot, but some rumors are floating Nintendo could announce an expected new iteration of the Switch at GDC.

Instead, watch for new developer opportunities to be announced. For example, a company might announce a new partnership which could impact how developers go about creating games. Google for Games announced its partnership with Activision Blizzard in 2020; Microsoft is rumored to be creating a gaming partnership as well which could be announced at GDC this year.

The following video is a good example of a GDC workshop. In this 2018 GDC talk, Ubisoft's David Monroe shows developers how to make great art to greet players before they begin their journey with a game.

The Independent Games Festival

Part of the fun at GDC is a festival that specifically showcases independent games and their creators. Entries for all of the IGF categories are being accepted through February 1, 2021, with finalists expected to be announced in early May 2021.

The finalists are chosen by industry peers, which makes the festival particularly meaningful for developers. Categories include Excellence in Visual Art, Excellence in Audio, Excellence in Design, Excellence in Narrative, and Best Student Game. Other awards are also included.

How to Stream and Watch GDC

This event requires registration to obtain the streaming links and access codes. Stay tuned to this spot: As soon as we have registration information, we'll post it here.

The Latest GDC News

While you can always read the latest gaming news on Lifewire, here are some pieces of interest about GDC in particular.

We'll have more GDC news as it becomes available. Stay tuned and check back here for the latest details!

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