GDC + VRDC@GDC 2018 Session Scheduler

View, browse and sort the ever-growing list of sessions by pass type, track, and format. With this Session Scheduler, you can build your schedule in advance and access it during the show via export or with the Mobile App, once live. Sessions do fill up and seating is first come, first serve, so arrive early to sessions that you would like to attend.

A Long Dark Road: Blending Player and Authored Story in a Sandbox Survival Game


Raphael van Lierop (Founder and Creative Director, Hinterland Games)

Pass Type: All Access, GDC Conference + Summits, GDC Conference - Get your pass now!

Topic: Design, Production & Team Management

Format: Session

Vault Recording: TBD

Audience Level: All

Is it possible to successfully marry a linear, authored narrative experience to an open-world sandbox? Using anecdotes and insights gained through the ongoing development of the hit survival game 'The Long Dark', van Lierop shares hard-won lessons about community-informed development, the principles that define a successful sandbox gameplay experience, and the challenges of wrapping a story mode around the core of a popular survival sandbox, with a large vocal community of players who might just prefer you left it alone!


Attendees who are currently developing sandbox, or open-world games, or are considering developing a project using community-funded models will gain valuable insights (about design, business, and production) hard-won on an independent project with 1.5m players and available on 7 different platforms.

Intended Audience

Game developers with an intermediate or advanced knowledge of game production. Studio heads or team leaders contemplating developing a game using community-funded models. Team leaders who are working on open-world sandbox or mission-based games, considering blending elements of both genres.