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Ray prides himself on being a creative-problem solver with a focus on low-level systems and developer quality of life. Since 2010, Ray has dedicated his efforts as the sole or lead programmer to many projects including Towerfall Ascension (PS4), Dust: An Elysian Tail (PS4), Octodad: Dadliest Catch (PSVita), The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (PSVR & HTC Vive), and many more.
His passion for software optimization extends to his new role as a lead programmer of the award-winning Bethesda Game Studios. In his spare time, he functions as the president of his local chapter of the International Game Developer’s Association & hosts events to help college graduates transition into the industry.
Ask Ray about: client-side optimization, rendering, and professional networking.
David Santiago joined Insomniac Games to implement Procedural Systems for Sunset Overdrive (Xbox One), then Ratchet and Clank (PS4) and Edge of Nowhere (Oculus Rift). Previously, David was a VFX and animation Supervisor and Consultant for over ten years on feature films, music videos and commercials, and continues to concentrate on pipeline design, and process integration and optimization. He authored “Creating 3D Effects for Film, TV and Games” in 2004. Film credits include The Fifth Element, Titanic, Armageddon, The Ant Bully, Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow, Master and Commander: Far Side of the World, and Black Hawk Down.
I’m a Character TD and Technical Artist from both Ohio and Saudi Arabia, now living in Los Angeles, CA. I have a Bachelors degree in Animation with a Character Technical Direction Minor from Savannah College of Art and Design, and a Masters in Entertainment Technology from Carnegie Mellon’s Entertainment Technology Center. I have worked at 2K Marin in Novato, CA, at Schell Games in Pittsburgh, PA. and I currently work at Insomniac Games on the Character TD team.
I can mentor on Rigging, Maya tool development/tech art and general 3D art.
Shaun McCabe is the Chief Technology Officer at Insomniac Games, the award-winning independent game developer behind Spyro, Ratchet & Clank and most recently, Marvel’s Spider-Man. As CTO, Shaun leverages over 15 years experience in engineering, creative and production leadership to drive the creation of world-class player experiences.
Shaun joined Insomniac Games in 2003 as an engine programmer, developed audio technology for the Playstation 3 launch title Resistance: Fall of Man (2006). In 2009, Shaun joined Chad Dezern in opening a new Insomniac studio in Durham, North Carolina. With the Durham studio, he co-directed Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One (2011), Ratchet & Clank: Full Frontal Assault (2012), Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus (2013) and Ratchet & Clank PS4 (2016); and served as executive producer for the Oculus Rift VR titles Edge of Nowhere, Feral Rights and The Unspoken (2016).
Shaun holds degrees from Full Sail University and Rollins College, both in Winter Park, FL.
Come talk with him about Leadership, Communication, and Career Guidance.
Dean has worked at Digital Extremes for 8 years, occupying roles ranging from Production to Multimedia & Marketing. Having contributed to multiple titles within the studio, he is now responsible for the technical development of all of the studio’s live-streaming efforts in addition to his regular creative duties.
With a background in advertising and multimedia design (video production, graphic design, and motion graphic animation), Dean brings nearly 15 years of creative industry experience to his role on the marketing team at Digital Extremes.
Chris is a Game Design alumni from University of Suffolk in the UK, who worked as a Game Designer at Ubisoft before establishing Game Anglia and Game Heroes, twin initiatives to help grow the game development industry in the East of England and Eastern Europe. Since 2017, Game Anglia has put together game development conferences and events which brought together over 1000 game students and Game Heroes is the biggest organiser of educational game jams in Romania.
At the moment, Chris is helping students understand more about getting a career in games, both in and out of development and inspiring young people to make the best of their path in games.
Talk to me about: entrepreneurship and indie game development, game design, career skills and paths into games.
I have been working in the game industry for 13 years now, first in a basement company with four others to make that epic MMORPG (that obviously never happened). But what did happen where us forming Fatshark who for the past 11 years been carving their way into market leader for online coop games.
I did have a short stint as a level artist before moving on to producer, a role that I have had since then. One of the benefits of being part of a start up and see its many turns (and wrong turns) is that you have the chance to do a great variety of things. Work for hire, 1st party, nightmare projects with tight deadlines, passion projects and more. I feel pretty confident in all those.
Ask me about building IPs, how to plan and un-plan a project, get 1st parties to like you, increase your meta critic with 12% (yes I have pitched that for a publisher once) and see a team grow.
Lead and Gold – Gangs of the Wild West
Bionic Commando ReArmed 2
Hamilton’s Great Adventure
Escape Dead Island
Warhammer End Times – Vermintide
Warhammer – Vermintide 2
Clayton Vaught is a Principal Software Engineer in the Xbox’s Gaming Cloud. As a veteran online programmer, he’s contributed to a variety of titles from studios like Blizzard, Bioware Montréal, The Coalition, and EA. His most recent work includes Black Desert Online, Crackdown 3, and Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds. As an avid gamer, you can constantly find him online playing on Xbox Live (GT: Ashyre).
When not coding things, he can be found in Seattle home brewing beer and slow cooking bbq with his family.
Talk to me about: Online Services, Networking, Cloud, Anti-cheat, Security, and Technical Leadership.
Tanya has been at the forefront of emerging creative technology spanning games, film, TV, comics, music, immersive theatre, Transmedia VR, AR and AI. She sits as the Vice Chair of BAME in Games, co-Chair of the Immerse U.K. Sub group for content; is the creator of the the VR Writers Room and the co-organiser for the VR & AR focused meetup group “Augmenting Reality”. She has been inducted into the Women in Games Hall of Fame and is the first Immersive Technology Ambassador for ESL UK.
Mattias Wiking is a senior executive in the games industry releasing his first game in 2000.
He currently hold the role as Chief Operating Officer at Turborilla.
Turborilla has 16 employees with offices in Sweden and USA. On a mission to redefine the competitive racing experience, Turborilla develops the Mad Skills series of action sports games.
Mattias started Paradox Arctic, a Paradox Interactive game studio, in 2014. He held the role Studio Manager and built up the studio to be 25 people.
The studio has been working on a range of PC and console titles, both released (Magica 2, Pillars of Eternity for consoles) and yet not announced projects.
Before Paradox, Mattias has been working as a Producer and Technical Director at Starbreeze. Prior Starbreeze he was a programmer at Grin and Resolution Interactive.
Key areas of expertise/topics:
– Building and manage teams (culture, hire, staff management, career path, personal development, salary talks)
– Game production (Project planning, milestones, budget etc )
– Game Vision and stay on target (High level game design, pitching, inspiring the team, setting goals)
Galen Ryder is a Software Engineer with 12 years of professional experience working indie and mobile development in Vancouver BC.
He is currently working on the recently announced Darkest Dungeon 2 at Red Hook Studios.
Favorite topics include: Programming, Indie Development, and Mobile Development.
Martine Paris is a Silicon Valley tech reporter covering AI, consumer tech, entertainment, crypto and blockchain. Her work has appeared in The FinTech TImes, Modern Consensus, Pocket Gamer, Blockchain Gamer, Hacker Noon, Geekazine, AOL Music, Huffington Post and Rock and Roll Globe. In October she was named Top Writer in Venture Capital, Technology and Bitcoin on Medium. Follow her on Twitter: @contentnow.
Vicki is the lead programmer on Eagle Flight, the first virtual reality game released by Ubisoft Montreal. Before joining Ubisoft in 2012, she led the Rendering Special Interest Group at EA Canada where she specialized in advanced character rendering on the Fight Night Series. After 12 years in the industry as a graphics and engine programmer and 8 shipped AAA titles, she had a near-religious experience looking out at the stars from inside a VR headset. She’s now dedicated to developing the kind of transformative experiences that VR gaming deserves.
Topics include: VR, graphics programming, technical leadership
Kellen is a video game lawyer who advises studios and publishers on the legal aspects to game development and publishing. His firm, Voyer Law, assists with all aspects of game development, from studio formation to hiring, revenue sharing, financing and publishing agreement drafting and negotiation. Kellen is called to the bar in the US and Canada and represents studios and publishers worldwide. Favorite topics include: Video Game Law, Publishing Agreements, Helping with Indie Legal Mistakes.
Andreia Gaita is an indie game developer currently working on her first title. She’s a C#/C++/[insert language here] developer, a longtime open source contributor, a former engineering manager and tech lead at companies like GitHub, Unity, and Xamarin, and creator of such tools as GitHub for Unity. For the past 16 years, Andreia has been involved in the development of cross-platform engines, applications, services, and libraries, making tools that help developers be successful. She hails from the sunny city of Lisbon, Portugal, and currently lives in Copenhagen, Denmark, where she bikes a lot (when it’s warm). Favorite topics include: Unity, Source Control, C#.
Noah Decter-Jackson has been the CEO & Creative Director of independent game development studio Complex Games inc. for the past 18 years. In that time he has grown the business from 2 employees up to 50, building a work-for-hire business that built top-selling award-winning videogames for some of the world’s largest brands and publishers, including Sony, Disney, Nickelodeon, Square Enix and many others. In the past 3 years Noah has refocused his studio towards independent development of PC & Console titles.
Henrik has worked in the games industry since 1994. In that time, he has worked at AAA companies such as Ion Storm and EA/Ghost Games, on TV Game Shows, on Casino Games and Industrial Robotics Simulators. In 2016, he restarted the Swedish IGDA chapter with a merry band of developers. Henrik gives talks on prototyping, creative culture and games programming to anyone willing to listen.
Dan Thronström is an Executive Producer at Goodbye Kansas Game Invest, a company with a lot of heart always looking to partner up with talented and passionate game startups. During his 14 years in the gaming industry Dan has worked at multiple AAA-studios like Grin, Avalanche Studios and Crytek UK where he has lead teams and projects ranging from 5 to 100 people. At his current position he works a lot with coaching and mentoring as well as being involved the company’s due diligence process.
If you are want know how to attract investors, expand your team, grow your industry network, reach out to publishers and build a successful game studio Dan is more that happy to meet you at the event.
Aleissia is a Technology and Design Director with 20 years experience in product design, AI, systems and game development. A leader in the Augmented Reality / Mixed Reality space, where she leads as Director of Developer Experience at Magic Leap. Her team works closely with the Developer community to drives the product design for tools, platforms and engine development at Magic Leap. As well as providing creators with design and technical best practices to working in the mixed reality space.
Previous to Magic Leap, she worked in game development, working at Ubisoft for 11 years, where she was AI Lead on the Assassin’s Creed franchise. She is also co-founder of Mixed Flour, an Immersive Design Company focused on creating location-based experiences that bring together Food, Technology and Interaction Design.
Joy Yang is a Senior Relationship Manager on the media, entertainment and digital media team at RBC where she leads the team’s focus in the digital media and video gaming industry. In her role at RBC, Joy specializes in providing strategic financing solutions to support client’s current and future business needs. This includes providing business and financial advice to clients, connecting key stakeholders in the industry and building expert industry knowledge to help add value to clients. Joy is currently a Board Observer on Interactive Ontario, an active Board Member of the Canadian Film Institute, Co-chair of NextGen 100 Women in Finance and is a mentor for Girls E-Mentorship, a charitable organization that offers an innovative mentorship program for female youth facing multiple barriers. Prior to her role at RBC, Joy was a Senior Accountant at EY, where she obtained her CPA, CA designation. Favorite topics include: Financing and sources of funding, Specialized Financing Models for the Interactive Digital Media Industry, and Interactive Digital Media Ecosystem networks.
Ryan J. Black is the Chief Technology Partner and Co-Chair, Video Games and New Media, at McMillan LLP in Canada, a full service Canadian law firm. A former Web developer with an interest in Internet law (and a passion for gaming), Ryan’s practice focuses on software developers, video game companies, technology manufacturers, and service providers, advising on IP commercialization, employment, and corporate/commercial transactions. Outside work, he is an avid gamer and basketball player who lives in Vancouver with his wife (Yolanda), his cat (Kitty), and their 40TB Steam-streaming media server (Gandalf).
Lance James is the main producer for Versus Evil, dealing with independent developers as they finish their games and navigate to Xbox, Sony and Nintendo. Lance is a ten-year veteran in the industry, working on past games from Trion Worlds, Crytek and others. Favorite topics include: Publishing, working with console (Xbox/PlayStation/Nintendo), and production.
Jack has been designing and managing game visions, mechanics and systems for 13 years. His passion is creating enjoyable gameplay experiences that keep players coming back for more – ones that players are genuinely excited to tell their friends about. This has led him to East Side Games, a proudly independent studio focused on creating the best narrative driven idle games in the business.
Game Design, Mechanics, Systems
Mobile Games & Mobile Game Business
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Programmer at Digital Extremes, overseeing all development for Xbox One. It’s my job to make sure our games (particularly Warframe) run smoothly across all Xbox devices and are fully integrated (and compliant) with Microsoft’s live services. I also assist in the hiring of new programmers at our studio, and in the organisation of community and industry events.
Areas of expertise:
1) Xbox development (devkit setup, build deployment, cloud syncing, achievements, tournaments, in-game purchases, build packaging, stat tracking, DVR, Mixer, friends lists, clubs, looking for group, etc.)
2) Input systems (gamepad best practices, virtual cursor best practices, customization, UX considerations, Steam integration)
3) Interview technique (what we look for, what we tend to ask, test criteria, graduate advice)
Atul is a co-founder of Spearhead Games. As a veteran of 14 years in the games industry he has touched all aspects of game development and publishing. He has successfully helped ship 10 AAA titles and 4 indie titles. He loves to help the indie community in Montreal in whatever capacity that is needed, be it brainstorming on funding, production, or publishing challenges. He strongly believes that if we all work together and help each other that we will be able to achieve a strong and healthy video game developer community so that we can lay the foundation of epicness that the industry has the potential to bring to everyone around us.
Liv is an open source virtual reality developer and advocate for creating inclusive social VR spaces. Most recently, Liv worked as an engineering lead at the social VR startup High Fidelity and as a technical XR evangelist at Microsoft. In 2016, she co-founded ARVR Academy, a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving representation in the immersive technology industry. Above all, Liv is focused on building technologies that improve the human experience in an ethical, sustainable way.
As a veteran producer with over 16 years of experience in the interactive entertainment industry, Dave has played a critical role in successfully shipping numerous award-winning projects for major game studios and Fortune 500 companies. In his new capacity as a founding member at Evening Star, Dave will be utilizing the invaluable experience he gained from his years as a CEO to spearhead the creation of a new category of exciting games, while forging strategic relationships with future partners.
Interested in: Business Development / Game Production / Studio Startup
I’ve been working as a programmer in the games industry since 2011. In the past few years, my focus has been on UI/UX and having recently taken on the position as Lead Developer, my time is now split between UI/UX work and helping to support the engineering team and help them succeed.
My website www.shelleylowe.com has more detailed information on the specific roles and work I’ve done in games.
Interested in: Programming / UI/UX / Career paths
Sydney Meeker is a interactive fiction writer and narrative designer with five years of professional experience ranging from award-winning indies to AAA JRPGs. He specializes in interactive fiction for mobile and PC, including for apps like Chapters: Interactive Stories and Tales: Choose your Own Story. His interactive novel Academy of Secrets is forthcoming from Choice of Games.
My three preferred topics: Writing for Mobile Games/Narrative Design/Indie Marketing
Tara has a deep and varied work history in games. Her diverse design and production portfolio is made up of over 15 successfully shipped projects ranging from AAA sports games to F2P MMOs to mixed reality games. She is the founder of Code Coven, an academy aimed at fixing the industry’s gender diversity problem, and co-founder of Glow Up Games.
Shawn started his game industry career as an indie developer at Flashbang Studios, wearing many hats as a Gameplay Programmer, UI Programmer, Graphics Programmer, and Tech Artist. Shawn worked on 10 unique titles while at Flashbang, most notable being Off-Road Velociraptor Safari.
After Flashbang, Shawn moved on to work at Unity Technologies in 2010, to help enable talented, passionate, and creative people make amazing and wonderful things. Shawn has seen the company grow from under 100 to thousands and has experienced many of the challenges that comes with growing the company that quickly. Shawn also wears (or has worn) many hats at Unity including Software Lead Developer, UX Lead, Release Manager, and Project Manager.
After almost 8 years at Unity, Shawn has a deep understanding of how the Unity engine works and why it works the way it does. He’s happy to discuss Flashbang, Indie Game Development, Unity, Management/Leadership, UX, Tech, and what it’s like getting into the game industry.
Lidi made her entrance into the games industry in 2013 when she joined East Side Games. A few years and more than a few tattoos later, she now develops and maintains the truly unique culture at ESG, a proudly independent game studio that is focused on making the best narrative idle games in the business, and creating the technology for developers to tell amazing stories, located in Vancouver, BC. She also happens to throw the best industry parties, uniting indies worldwide under the banner Indie Power.
Lidi is obsessed with creating inclusive and diverse work culture, bikes and wine.
As a producer, I bring years of experience and a deep understanding of mobile gaming trends and market understanding.
I’m a highly adaptable and people-oriented Senior Game Producer, with 6 years’ experience combining data with market trends to make products successful.
With a solid track record of handling well-known IPs, I’ve helped deliver quality games for (literally) millions of players around the world.
Sarah Belhumeur is a 3D Game Art Generalist, Art Director at House of How Seattle and House of How Sweden, and Freelance Artist. Her recent projects include Steambird’s Alliance by Spry Fox, The Stars Between Us by Invrse Reality Limited, and Minecraft. Sarah is a volunteer organizer for the Seattle Indies and tireless advocate for greater diversity and inclusive culture in games and gaming communities.
Talk to me about: Indie Game Art, Diversity/Community/Culture, Freelance Art
Osama Dorias is a Senior Game Designer at Warner Brothers Games Montreal and the co-founder of the Indie Video Game studio Magic Pants. In the past, he’s worked as a Game designer at Ubisoft Montreal, Gameloft Montreal, GEE Media, and Minority Media.
He’s taught game and level design at Dawson College where he’s now the Coordinator of the Video Game Programs. He loves to empower people in expressing themselves through game making.
He especially loves to give a voice to marginalized people and causes. He’s hosted game jams, workshops and other community activities to this end, which has culminated in co-founding the Montreal Independent Games Festival.
Michelle Chuaprasert is Director of Marketing in Intel’s Developer Relations Division, Software & Services Group. She holds an Electrical Engineering degree from Cornell University and an MBA in Marketing. Michelle’s passion is to stitch together the technical inspiration from our worldwide industry of unique individuals into stories and proof points that drive business results and make our world better.
Michelle has previous experience across rotation programs, Design Engineering, Platform Marketing, Applications Engineer, Tech Marketing manager and Engineering Manager. She is the Diversity & Inclusion Champion for her Division and cherishes the innovation we all achieve by sharing our experience and unique points of view. Key philosophies include Management by Strengths and the principle that if you’re happy at work, you’ll do your best work.