GDC Survival Guide


March 7, 2014


min read

The Game Developer Conference (GDC) is the highlight of all conferences in our industry. From March 17th to 21st, San Francisco becomes the absolute capital of game development. The opportunities for developers big and small are tremendous, but it can also get overwhelming if you are not well prepared.Here?s our survival guide to successfully move through the maelstrom. Are you ready?Define your goals and rehearse your pitch. Be specific when setting up meetings, and let them know what you want to talk about. Whether you are here to learn from peer developers or to look for a publisher/investor, you need to have a compelling story and value proposition. For additional tips about pitching, check out our CBU talk from GamesBeat Editor-in-Chief Dan Hsu, Pitching to the Press.

Set up meetings and send calendar invites. You will run into very interesting people during the conference and the parties, but it?s always better to set up meetings in advance. Send calendar invites with concrete meeting points and your contact details (phone number, WeChat id?) so that they can contact you if there?s any change of plans. The hotels and bars around the conference are always great meeting points: the Samovar Tea Lounge, the W Hotel, The Westin on 3rd st, the Marriott Marquis on 4th st? Here is a map of the surrounding area.Bring (many) business cards. You?ll use them more than you expect, so bring a ton! Also, write notes on the cards you collect and keep them in a safe place.Don?t forget to follow up. GDC attendees can have more than 10 meetings a day, so don?t forget to follow up with the points you discussed and any action items. Most of the time, you should probably offer a follow up call to go into the details. Make yourself memorable!Select the sessions that you want to attend. There are a lot of sessions, you?ll find the full list here: Browse the content and determine which sessions will be interesting for your business. If you are interested in getting to know the speaker, asking (smart) questions is always a good strategy to get their attention and the audience. Our very own Pepe Agell will be on a panel for at GDC What's Next in Mobile Game Marketing for 2014 on Wednesday, March 19 @ 2pm.Plan your nightlife. Your nights are as important as your days, because this is where the real networking happens. So get some rest the week before, as you won?t sleep much during GDC! There are many party lists out there, such as: and Review them carefully and go where your crowd is.Download Uber or Lyft. Taxis will be probably busy. Set up these apps on your phone so that you have some alternatives.Meet Chartboost! There will be many Chartboosters at the conference and networking events and we?d love to meet with you! Feel free to reach out to to set up a meeting. Also, we are hosting a Developer Party at our office on Tuesday 3/18. Get your invite! :)Find some time to enjoy the city! These are some of our favorite places to eat from our previous blog.Show the world how much you love game development! During GDC week, Chartboost will be running a special scavenger hunt. If you spot someone wearing a #WeHeartDevs t-shirt, take a photo with them and tweet it to @Chartboost using the hashtag #WeHeartDevs. You will be entered into a drawing for a shiny new iPad (oooooh)! Winners will be revealed on Chartboost social media channels Friday morning the 21st.