My MVP session this year was Jason Scott’s exploration of “Studio Design Groups.” For good or ill, my own history as a designer has been working for bigger studios and publishers. Each of those had a wealth of design talent, but the talent that was divided and naturally enough focused on individual projects. Internal division does exactly what is promises. At the least, opportunity was lost. More accurately, the results were fragmented culture, contests over resources, short-term thinking, etc.
Scott presented a workmanlike approach for tackling the problem. Light on theory, heavy on practical application. As with any effort such as Volition’s, half the issue is the prioritization of project-based deadlines. That’s ultimately the choice of the studio and its creative staff. Scott’s most significant contribution in that fight is simply to point out the rewards that cross-team development groups offered him. The other half of the problem is architectural. What’s the best work to organize studio design groups and to focus their efforts? I wished for even more detail (maybe focus on fewer SDG rounds?), but what I got out of the session had value.
P.S.: I have been blogging, just not publicly. Sorry! I’ll try to drop by more often.