Undercover IndieCade 2011 - Part 1 of 3

Risking life and limb, one man poses as a finalist at IndieCade 2011 to bring you the inside scoop. First in a three part series. Gamasutra expert blog exclusive.
Undercover IndieCade 2011
Part 1     Part 2
Organizers fell for elaborate "Become a Finalist" ruse, covering IndieCade from inside.
Wednesday - Arriving Alive

this says it best
credit: Adam Robezzoli

Em stopped her just before the unspeakable act.
(loud) "PUMPKIN!"
I gave chase.
For first time in 15 years, she darts inside walk-in closet.
Dreams of sleep before IndieCade washed away by steady stream of kitty urine.

Air Canada might be pricey and unfairly subsidized, but it's still the best plane trip thingy. Delta, United, Southwest, American are so consumed with profit, they forget the difference an empty seat can make. Sat in row with 3 chairs - me, empty and her. She raised the dividing arm, and fell asleep across both seats... dreaming of me.

Taxi had small piece of paper taped to front dashboard. Hand scrawled, in fancy large letters that amateurly decreased to fit remaining room, were the words "F O R G I V E THEM FATHER, THEY know not whattheydo." Believe that releases me from tipping.

Are you a car? Come to Culver City! 4 wheels rule this land. The quicker you accept this, the better you won't die. Strangely, drivers are extremely courteous. Waved us across several open season intersections, and waited during poorly estimated jaywalks.

The Culver Hotel is nice, and we can actually open the windows. The alarm clock is also easy to set. Keep pretending you don't care. For lunch, we eat at Ford's Filling Station. I order the Whitefish Melt ...


Thursday Morn - IndieXChange

the aliens were unprepared for our greatest defense
credit: Jeriaska

Where am I?

Em & I head to IndieXchange, a bonus day for indie game devs to learn bidniss, and meet gaming infrastructure. NextSpace is intimate, and LA Coffee Club tastes great. Jane Pinckard greets us, and our badges are waiting. I feel important.

Sue Bohle shares hard earned PR wisdom. Quickly realize I can't write a press release, and that we're competing with The Bohle Company for hearts & minds.
Takeaway: Hire them.

Geoffrey Zatkin and former IGN editor Erik Brudvig lead a clinic on pitching. Geoffrey turns the tables: Rather than just pitch, the audience decides which game to invest in. After 9 pitches, I'm unable to recall any of the ideas except for the one where that guy made me laugh. Wish I could remember who that was. Honest, brutal, and enlightening.
Takeaway: Avoid pitching at all costs.

Since lunch is 2 hours, and we're not yet incorporated, we skip the legal clinic. We opt to tour Santa Monica with visiting friends, before shit gets real. Freshly met Jay naively accepts our invitation.

Thursday Afternoon - Santa Monica Pier

awesome photo featuring jay, angelo and yekta
credit: me

how that awesome photo was taken
credit: Mare

Rockenwagner Bakery's pretzel bun burger worth the $9.00. It includes the world's tastiest potato salad, let no-one (Angelo, Jay, Raigan) tell you different.

Good god your beach is beautiful... and so BIG! If this was a CSI episode, I'd fully expect a corpse to wash ashore. If this was in Toronto, we'd build an airport on it. If this was 30 years ago, I'd swim and secretly pee.

It's windy and slightly chilly. The waves are large and somewhat alarming. I ask Jay if they have better beaches in Tasmania, he replies "No". I tell him to shut the hell up. Only one person actually in the water, the Sarnia boy inside me weeps. According to cabbie, citzens are waiting for yesterday's massive rainfall runoff to dissipate. When I was a kid, you only swam in runoff.

We watch people fishing off the pier. A large metal sign titled "Protect Yourself" details exactly which fish are considered too dangerous to eat. Jay: "What are the healthy fish doing... exercise?"

The man drumming pots is good, but can't touch Yonge & Dundas. Fond sausage memories cause Angelo to momentarily consider the pier hot dog. Me: "You fool! Toronto has the most competitive street meat market in the world - while this guy's a monopoly!" Angelo walks on, hopefully embarrassed.

We "pushed the button to cross", and it pleaded with us to wait... wait... wait. Second only to the McDonald's garbage can Thank You. Removing dignity from our electronics is what causes the robot uprising.

Angelo offers to drive everyone home. While his heart is large, his car is regular size. We can't fit - or can we? Jammed between Mare & Jay's knees is my ass, which crushes Yekta into the corner. If this was Tetris, we'd break the well. Yekta inexplicably directs Angelo to take the scenic route back. Venice is truly a beautiful place - the trees are absolutely amazing. You plant these things in dirt? Yeah right... how does that work. Hurry Curry, Dogromat and no backyards compound the wonder. My legs need to be amputated.

Red Carpets, Dirty Carpets, Inspiral Carpets


Explore the
Advertise with
Follow us

Game Developer Job Board

Game Developer


Explore the

Game Developer Job Board

Browse open positions across the game industry or recruit new talent for your studio

Advertise with

Game Developer

Engage game professionals and drive sales using an array of Game Developer media solutions to meet your objectives.

Learn More
Follow us


Follow us @gamedevdotcom to stay up-to-date with the latest news & insider information about events & more