Comments by the Chairman

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Comments by the Chairman of the CEDEC Organizing Committee

What is CEDEC?
Message from one gaming frontline to another

Naoto Yoshioka,
Chairman of the CEDEC Organizing Committee


To begin from the conclusion, CEDEC is a place for individual developers to get together to engage in discussion with the aim of mutual enhancement.

I imagine that most people reading this belong to a company. Therefore, you may also have a role as a company employee. I can relate to this because I am one too. Some others of you may also run your own business. In this case, you have to respect the position of your clients. I can relate to this situation too.

However, if we look at things just a little differently, we can get a totally different perspective.

What are a company's needs? You'd expect that an integral part of a company is the employment of workers who will provide a return greater than their cost. So then, what exactly is it that we do? Our job is to develop magnificent games and to provide them to customers to make them happy. What then is needed to do this job? Is it solutions provided by installing expensive equipment or tools? Is it machine-like workers who quietly do as they're told without complaining about their over-demanding work? I'd disagree, wouldn't you? What is needed are individuals who can do an outstanding job with sound technology and with warm enthusiasm. If you replace "company" with "client" and "employment of workers" with "contracts with individuals," then the same should also apply to independent businesses.

At present, various things are being said about Japan's gaming industry. There are a variety of analyses, including on the impact of the recession, the declining birthrate, and the diversification of amusement. Many have elements that are much to the point, and there are many well-informed opinions that are worth considering. But what is it that we—at the frontline of the industry—can do? Naturally, we can do our best in our daily work; but in addition to this, what about efforts to further improve ourselves?

The "frontline of the industry" is not limited to just those involved in game production projects. It also includes the frontline of technical development, the frontline of personnel affairs, the frontline of general corporate affairs, the frontline of accounting, the frontline of judicial affairs, the frontline of business development, the frontline of sales and marketing, the frontline of education, the frontline of research, and the frontline of management. People in each of these areas are using their respective expertise to do their best so that magnificent games can be developed and provided to customers for their enjoyment, and what's more, so that this industry can continue to grow. I'd like the subject of talks at CEDEC to be about people's daily struggles at these frontlines of the industry. What kinds of people are confronted by what kinds of difficulties? And how have these been overcome, and what do you want to do about it in the future? CEDEC is about providing an opportunity for sharing and discussing these matters with lots of different people, fusing together various ideas and experiences, and discovering and tackling new methods.

But don't think that what you hear at CEDEC can be taken away with you and that's it. 60-minute sessions and, indeed, a three-day conference is too short for that. What I hope you can come away with is an experience of seeing the diversity of thought with your own eyes. Some approaches you'll agree with and some will be different. By discussing with others, sometimes you'll find that what you thought was wrong is actually just a misunderstanding, and sometimes vice versa. Relish the differences.

To further broaden diversity, the following measures will be implemented at CEDEC 2010.

1. Introduction of a 20-minute short session format

The aim of this format is for the audience to listen to three sessions in a row on subjects that are as close as possible to each other. This is designed so that participants can experience in a short period of time the fact that there are various approaches even for a single topic.

2. Introduction of a poster presentation format

Imagine a "bazaar" of various technologies and ideas. Open spaces within the venue will be organized with boards for putting up posters. The aim is for the presenters at the conference to engage in in-depth discussions with visitors. There may also be some demonstrations. Students are also welcome to participate, and so you should experience an even broader range of ideas.

3. Introduction of simultaneous Japanese to English interpreting (some sessions only)

The aim of this measure is for overseas speakers and participants to involve themselves more fully at CEDEC, and to deepen their discussions with Japanese developers.

The usual 60-minute sessions, panel discussions, roundtables, CEDEC AWARDS and party will be on again this year, bigger and better than ever.

To sum up, CEDEC has been designed as opportunity for everyone to reflect on and make further improvements to their own careers as developers. Different people have different opinions, and so CEDEC is a chance for you to exchange ideas with others, broaden your own views and to enrich your own insight. Let us join together in the pursuit of the ideal of enjoyably creating the best games for customers to enjoy.