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Speaker Session Videos

The first in our series of GDC 2023 Dolby Speaker Session Videos is here!  We kick it off with Dolby Atmos 101 from our very own Alistair Hirst, Senior Game Developer Relations Manager.  This presentation is an overview of what, where, why and how of Dolby Atmos in games. 


Checkback weekly for new videos. 

MSFT | W,Th,F 10:30 - 11:30am

Synopsis: This session will explore the expansion of the Microsoft Spatial Sound platform. The Microsoft Spatial Sound platform is taking an evolutionary step. The new feature of the platform will bring a greatly expanded number of audio objects to headphone renderers. We will explore the new capability, and what it means for audio design, performance, and user experience. We will present demonstrations, look at middleware, and talk about new and updated best practices for bringing even more immersive and accessible audio experiences to games.AddToCalendar_Wednesday.pngAddToCalendar_Thursday.pngAddToCalendar_Friday.png

Bio: A 31 year veteran of the game industry, Robert is an audio programmer, sound designer, composer, and voice recording specialist. His work has shipped in hundreds of titles on multiple platforms from the Super Nintendo in the early 90’s to today’s latest consoles. Robert has been with Microsoft since 2012 and is currently Principal Audio Specialist for Microsoft's Advanced Technology Group.

Dolby | W,Th,F 11:30 - 12:30pm

Synopsis: An overview of the what, where, why and how of Dolby Atmos in games. AddToCalendar_Wednesday.pngAddToCalendar_Thursday.pngAddToCalendar_Friday.pngBio: Alistair Hirst has shipped over 44 games across 11 platforms, mostly as an Audio Director. He launched the Need for Speed franchise as Audio Director during his 10 years at Electronic Arts. He co-founded OMNI Audio, a game audio company which worked on four campaigns of Guild Wars, Halo 2 among many other. He was Audio Director at Amazon Game Studios for 6 years before joining Dolby Laboratories.
Connect: LinkedIn | | Wed. 12:30 - 1:30pm

Synopsis: The gaming industry is constantly evolving, and one of the most significant changes in recent years has been the rise of spatial chat allowing players to communicate in a three-dimensional virtual space. But spatial chat is more than just a tool for enhancing immersion. In this talk, we will explore how spatial chat is changing the way gamers communicate and collaborate. We will discuss the benefits of spatial chat, including its ability to facilitate teamwork, improve strategy, foster social connections, and the potential for future innovation in this area.AddToCalendar_Wednesday.png

Bio: Angelik Laboy Torres has been programming since she had knowledge of what it was. Whether it was creating wearable technologies or building humanitarian design, Laboy found intrigue in discovering how to think outside the box. Simultaneously, a side of her was compelled in partaking in the creation of stories and their influence in shaping culture. Through directing creative projects in both live-action and XR, Laboy has showcased her talents across distinct film festivals. She is currently a Developer Advocate at
Connect: Linkedin | Twitter | YouTube | Thurs. 12:30 - 1:30pm

Synopsis: Braden Riggs ( and Oliver Carson (PubNub) dive into what makes games social and immersive. Come learn about how and why the future of social gaming and the metaverse isn't limited by player's hardware.


Braden's Bio: Born and Raised in Australia and now Living in San Francisco, Braden joined the Developer Relations team in 2021 after graduating from UC San Diego with a degree in data science. Braden loves to create apps and content for the Blog, YouTube channel, and the samples GitHub. When not working you can find Braden surfing, gaming, or exploring San Francisco.
Connect with Braden: Twitter

Oliver's Bio: Oliver is a Developer Advocate part of the Developer Relations team at PubNub. For over one year, he's helped lay the foundation of creating content for others to interact, understand, and learn how to use PubNub’s platform. Previously, he was a software engineer in the fleet and asset management sector. He enjoys helping people understand and seeing the “Aha!” moment when they’ve solved hard problems.
Connect with Oliver: LinkedIn | Fri. 12:30 - 1:30pm

Synopsis:’s vision is to power a new generation of online experiences that rival the real-world in immersion, interactivity, and social engagement.

In this presentation we will discuss how technology is rapidly blurring the lines between physical and virtual, making it easier for creators to bring immersive virtual experiences to life, as well as enhance the in-stadium and in-venue experience for fans around the world.

Innovations in volumetric video, extended reality, broadcast workflows, game engines and 5G re-imagine the experience of watching and performing sports, dance, music and theatre through virtual, augmented and mixed reality applications.

Using everyday devices such as smartphones, tablets and TVs, as well as the latest augmented reality (AR) headsets, these highly immersive, personalized experiences enable users to take control of their content in real-time and usher in the next evolution of real-time streaming.


Bio: Ryan Jespersen has extensive experience in the digital video, broadcast and streaming industries, specializing in live streaming workflows, protocols, transcoding, cloud computing, and complex video delivery systems at companies including Millicast, Wowza, HP, Siemens and now Dolby.

Dolby | W,Th,F 1:30 - 2:30pm

Synopsis: In this presentation you will learn how you can leverage Advanced HDR techniques to raise the quality bar of your existing assets. You'll also learn how to manage the HDR to SDR down mapping using the free Dolby Vision tools. This presentation is intended for Intermediate to advanced level artists, and rendering programmers.


Bio: Brought Dolby Vision to XBOX Series X. 10+ years AAA video gamedev experience. Emmy Award winning video producer. Editor, cinematographer, and VR game developer. Launched Starship Commander: Arcade first VR game controlled completely by Voice.
Connect:  LinkedIn  |

Unreal Engine | W,Th 2:30 - 3:30pm

Synopsis: Spatial Audio is a longstanding hot topic in Game Audio and beyond, with many new claimed techniques to revolutionize game audio. Often described with confusing and contradictory jargon, it can be hard to discern what is fact from fiction. To demystify and bring more clarity to the field, this talk will give a broad introduction to spatial audio from first principles to more advanced techniques. AddToCalendar_Wednesday.pngAddToCalendar_Thursday.pngBio: Aaron has been audio programming at Epic Games since 2014. Leading the audio technology at Epic, he has helped bring write a new multi-platform audio engine for Unreal Engine where they have pioneered new game audio innovations such as MetaSounds and Quartz. His background is in sound design, music composition, and performance, as well as physics. 


Wwise | Wed. 3:30 - 4:30pm

Synopsis: This talk will describe how to author once for the best audio across all outputs and some of the reasons for exploring the availability of object-based formats. Discover the reasons and methods for routing with 3D Audio to present the best sounding experience with the greatest spatial precision. Authoring for the greatest spatial fidelity allows for greater compatibility across channel-based and spatial audio enabled formats. Gain a greater understanding of how to leverage the functionality in Wwise to deliver the best mix for all output types.


Bio: Damian Kastbauer is a Software Product Manager for Wwise at Audiokinetic helping to grow the future of game audio with the community.
Connect: @audiokinetic |

Wwise | Thurs. 3:30 - 4:30pm


Synopsis: An integrators perspective on runtime acoustic considerations and authoring in Wwise and Unreal. An overview of the different features of Wwise Spatial Audio and how they combine to fit into different types of games.


Nathan's Bio: With a background in computer science and a passion for audio, Nathan Harris has been putting his talent to work in the video game industry since the mid 2000's. Early on in his career, he became interested in sound propagation solutions and soon became a Wwise power user. In 2012, with multiple shipped titles under his belt, he was employed by Audiokinetic and has since made numerous core contributions to the Wwise Sound Engine. In 2016, Nathan was tasked to design a Spatial Audio library for Wwise, applying his expertise in reverb propagation and acoustic simulation techniques. He now leads the development team responsible for its maintenance and continuous improvement.

Thalie's Bio: Thalie Keklikian is an electrical engineering graduate with a masters in general-purpose GPU computation. After optimizing image processing algorithms on GPU, she is now part of the Audiokinetic Research and Development team, implementing spatial audio solutions and integrating them in Unreal and Unity game engines.

Connect: @audiokinetic |

Panel | Wed. 4:30 - 5:30pm


Martin Dufour | Chief Technical Officer, Audiokinetic
Robert Ridihalgh | Principal Tech Audio Specialist, Microsoft
Mike Mason | Director of Technology, Gaming, Dolby

Alistair Hirst Sr. Developer Relations Manager, Dolby

Synopsis: Four of the top technical minds from various facets of the game audio ecosystem will discuss the future of Spatial Audio in games.


Martin's Bio: Martin Dufour is the chief technology officer at Audiokinetic, where he has been participating in the development of Wwise for nearly 20 years. He enjoys code, sound and music, so he's likely to keep at it for a while more.

Robert's Bio: A 31 year veteran of the game industry, Robert is an audio programmer, sound designer, composer, and voice recording specialist. His work has shipped in hundreds of titles on multiple platforms from the Super Nintendo in the early 90’s to today’s latest consoles. Robert has been with Microsoft since 2012 and is currently Principal Audio Specialist for Microsoft's Advanced Technology Group.

Mike's Bio: Mike is the director of technology for gaming at Dolby and responsible for bringing spectacular audio and imaging experiences to gaming by enabling game creators and consumer devices. In the last decade Mike has contributed to ensuring Dolby Atmos was available in millions of devices including, TVs, phones and game consoles and spent a significant amount of time creating the Dolby Atmos for headphones technology. Since the first releases of Dolby Atmos enabled games Mike has focused on getting better gaming content creation tools into the hands of game developers for Dolby Atmos and Dolby Vision, so that players can get to experience wherever they play.

Dolby | W,Th 5:30 - 6pm

Synopsis: Simplify design considerations so customers know how to adapt ATMOS in their environment.AddToCalendar_Wednesday.pngAddToCalendar_Thursday.pngBio: Jose's tenure in the entertainment industry spans 3 decades across film, tv, and music. He has been involved with developing design and specification criteria for all ATMOS systems. 


Dolby | Tues. 7pm - Midnight

SF Game Development is excited to announce our annual GDC 2023 Meetup/Party hosted at DNA Lounge on Tuesday, March 21st from 7:00pm-Midnight sponsored by Dolby and

Make sure to RSVP for our event on Meetup or Eventbrite for FREE entry to our event.Register.png

IGDA | Wed. 10:30-11:30am

Host: Steve Horowitz  (Audio Director/Composer, Nickelodeon Digital)
Location: Room 211, South Hall
Date: Wednesday, March 22
Time: 10:30 am - 11:30 am

Overview: Games and sound go together like milk and cookies. Sound is a large part of what makes games fun. So, what are the most important things that game designers need to know about the process of creating game sound—and what do audio folks need to know about game design and production?

Good questions!

This roundtable brings together composers, sound designers, game designers, animators, programmers, producers, and anyone else involved with game production and design. Organizers will open up the floor and discuss the latest and greatest trends in games, as well as the most common production roadblocks. Let's come together to develop a deeper understanding of each other's process and pipeline. This is a must-attend for anyone in the field interested in trying to navigate the waters and steer a path toward more immersive and creative game design.


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