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Seattle - MVP Summit 2009 - Day 4 - At the Microsoft Campus

Day 4 (Monday) was actually just the second day of the MVP Summit and the first day all MVPs went to the Microsoft Campus. I was looking forward to see all the XNA MVPs from last years again.

The bus was packed as usual and I thought I was prepared very well, which turned out to be a wrong assumtion in a few minutes. Sorry, my main camera batteries are still dead, so not many pictures today, but at least I try to mention the people on the pictures and link to them.

As you can see the weather was not very good in the morning. Typical Seattle weather, but it got much better later this day.

At the MSCC (Microsoft Convention Center) at the Campus I pulled out my schedule for the day and tried to find out where do I have to go next. But there were no freaking building or room numbers on the schedule. Apparently if you have printed it out earlier than 3 days before the summit, there was no building/room information. Wtf? I tried to go online with the iPod Touch and it took me 5 minutes just to type in the stupid password and wait for timeouts. Then I tried to find out the schedule, but no, you have to logon to the MVP Summit site first, which again required a password I had not with me. I gave up and asked someone and was told Building 85 is probably the right one for me. I took the Tour 5 bus to get over there (the Microsoft Campus is quite huge).

At the building no one seemed to know what I was talking about when I asked where the XNA/DirectX session is. So I just pulled out my laptop and had to login again to the MVP Summit site just to find out the freaking room number. At least it just took a minute to get to that information from my laptop. I just should not use a freaking mobile device to find that kind of hidden information in the future. The meeting had already started, but I did not miss much because it was still a general talk about XNA and game development in general by the XNA game platform general manager Boyd Multerer. BTW on the right in the white T-Shirt you can see Catalin Zima, which I met last year for the first time. He seems to be on the XNA Community Forums quite a lot with the other crazy Forum MVPs like Andy "ZMan" Dunn and Nick "MrTwitter" Gravelyn.

The next talk was about upcoming XNA features and you can see all of that on the screen in the middle. You probably only get that joke as an MVP with an NDA that has to keep quiet about upcoming XNA stuff ^^

After some more talks and lunch we went to some test laps to test some games and play around (probably can't tell you more about this). On the right we see Nick smiling and probably twittering as usual. Apparently he was a little annoyed about some pictures I took of him last years, where he was in the middle of telling something ^^

At the Xbox 360 Building there have a lot of cool stuff staying around and many posters on the walls. Some guy had even some cool Left4Dead posters on his door, which I now want too since I'm a huge Left4Dead fan (on the PC however). No idea where to get such things. That Halo guy is not bad either.

Later that day we had some time to kill and went to the mall and checked out this book store for some XNA books, where some MVP was involved. Andy is grinning into the camera as usual and is continuing to tell us that we should not write books ^^

We also found a board and card game shop, where people could actually and play and try out games, cool stuff. But I have not played anything like that since I'm out of school. BTW on the right you can see Vicente Cartas Espinel, which is now my most favorite XNA MVP since he asked me to give him an autograph for one of his friends ^^

And yes, there was even a StarCraft board game. Also a lot of World of Warcraft, Star Wars, Settlers, etc. But since I do not know any people that would play such things with me, it is not really interesting. Probably fun stuff.

And finally we went to the XNA Party at some stylish bar, which included billard, rock band, pizzas, beer and cocktails. Very fun evening and it was very nice to learn more about the new MVPs and speak to them.

We also got some cool extra stuff from the Xbox/XNA team including the new Halo Wars Xbox 360 game, that will come out tomorrow. I'm a huge RTS fan, but I'm still not sure this will be as great as everyone says because both C&C and Lord of the Rings pretty much sucked on the Xbox 360 for me (I think it is even worse than controlling 3d shooters, which is pretty crappy too). Anyway, probably still a very good game and I'm very excited to try it out once I'm back in Germany. Hopefully it will even run on my German Xbox because it says NTSC on the box (we got Pal in Europe), but as far as I heard most games do not check for the region code anymore and PAL/NTSC does not matter anymore with HDTVs.
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