[As you may recall, GDC Europe has a new long-term home in Germany alongside the 'E3 of Europe' that is GamesCom, and here's the first info from my colleagues on the line-up for this August's first show.]

GDC Europe 2009 has announced initial speakers for its August event in Cologne, Germany, with Flower's Kellee Santiago joining Swords And Soldiers' Joost van Dongen and Zootfly's Bostjan Troha at the international event.

The event will be held in conjunction with the massive European GamesCom industry event for consumers, publishers, and trade professionals, and will take place August 17-19 at the Cologne Congress East Center in Germany.

While just a small percentage of the lectures and roundtables have been announced, a first set of speakers is now available on the GDC Europe website. These span the gamut of content from technical through design and business talks, and some of the highlights thus far include:

- 'Flower - Design Postmortem' by ThatGameCompany's Kellee Santiago, in which the company co-founder discusses the hit PlayStation Network title, and "will walk through the team's design process and playable prototypes that led to the final product."

- 'Surviving Project Cancellation in the Economic Downturn' by Zootfly's Bostjan Troha, which sees the Eastern European company, perhaps best known for its Ghostbusters game prototype, discussing "hard-learned lessons from a near-fatal cancellation of a three-platform $5-million project" by a failing publisher, with "recommendations and strategies" on recovering.

- 'Advanced Racing Game AI in PURE', by Black Rock's Eduardo Jimenez, discussing the critically acclaimed, Disney-published ATV title and "what we did to try to have the player challenged and surrounded at all times, while avoiding the unfair sensation that rubber band methods leave the player with."

- 'Compressing Loads of Content Into Only 20MB: A Case Study Of Swords & Soldiers for WiiWare' by Ronimo's Joost van Dongen, in which the Dutch developer, compromised of original De Blob co-creators, discusses "techniques and approaches for making large amounts of textures, animations, sounds, music, XML and text fit into a small file size."

Overall, GDC Europe will host more than 80 sessions addressing the needs and opportunities for developers and business professionals throughout Europe. More information on the August 17-19 show is available at its official website.