Retro Arcade Postmortems from GDC

arcadehero April 4, 2013 4
Retro Arcade Postmortems from GDC

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The Game Developers Conference is a great place for “postmortems”, or where a developer looks back at the development process for a title that they worked on. Insight is given as to what went right as well as what went wrong. So if you love the history of video games, postmortems are an excellent way of learning about it.

Simon Carless, who among other things works behind the scenes of GDC to make it happen, sent me links to various postmortems that have been held at different GDC events. I cannot embed these videos here as they are not setup like Youtube videos but more like interactive slides. I highly recommend checking them out either way, they provide unique insight into how these games came to be. You’ll need to set aside a few hours to watch them all however. The links take you to the GDC Vault.

Ed Logg’s Gauntlet Postmortem(GDC2012)

Mark Cerny’s Marble Madness Postmortem (GDC2011)

Toru Iwatani Pac-Man Postmortem (GDC2011)




  1. Jarett April 4, 2013 at 9:44 pm - Reply

    Thank you for the links. I really enjoyed watching these postmortems. It’s always fascinating to hear the back stories to games.

    • arcadehero April 12, 2013 at 4:36 pm - Reply

      Not a problem, I would love to share more if more postmortems are done

  2. editor April 7, 2013 at 10:12 am - Reply

    For those that watch Ed Logg’s presentation, though enjoyable there are a couple of memory lapses – to be expected over the 25 years!

    Just for the record, the reason the games were shipped to Ireland was because Atari’s European operation was run from that location – the games going on to be shipped into the rest of the UK and Europe.

    NAMCO would go on to take over the Ireland facility – but fundamentally this was a very profitable location / operation for Atari – a little secret on how many machines could be ‘off-shored’ to Ireland, and the “special” sales revenue this could generate.

    • editor April 7, 2013 at 11:34 am - Reply

      Shame Iwatani-san did not mention ‘Pac-Man Battle Royale’ or the new Redemption version! Wonder if he even knows they exist?

      I have to say after watching all three presentations – the arcade executives of the age do not come across in a good light. It seems ludicrous how inept they were in evaluating and developing for the sector… I only hope those attitudes have changed!?

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