By Ann Burkett
So what’s it like to be at ground zero? I’m speaking of the leading location worldwide for games in general, the Silicon Valley/San Francisco Bay Area. From EA to Zynga to Apple iOS to Google Android, whatever you want, it’s hard not to find it here.
What’s it like? It’s crazy fun. Yes, this is boom and bust central, but if you get used to it, like to surf the economic waves and don’t take it too seriously, you can have a blast.
There are different technical events every night if you want them. In fact, I believe anyone who remotely looks like a developer could get a free dinner every night, albeit that’s a lot of pizza and beer. You won’t starve here as an indie developer. Just purchase a decent-looking notebook computer bag, go somewhere and get a free dinner — no need to even stick a computer in the bag.
Right now, it’s bootie call for funding and incubators/accelerators as we are in a money flow part of the cycle in Silicon Valley; this time, game companies, out from under the thumb of major publishers, are invited. That is explained a bit here in our next event http://buildgamecompany.eventbrite.com/.
When it’s feast time in a feast or famine world, I see my role as partly to help get as much money into the bellies of game developers as I can before venture capitalists and angels bust, famine sets in and the cycle starts anew.
My favorite times are actually during famine because that is when it isn’t mostly about what game companies can financially outgun each other. Instead we concentrate on creativity — our poetry in games. And somebody eventually finds a new platform or way of doing things, and we all run in there and have a blast and make everything from fart apps to Pocket Gods on bootstrap companies.
Right now is the joy of money flowing. After the next bust, it will be the joy of bootstrapping again. I can’t wait.
I love this city.