ZeeGee Games, Orlando, FL (April 2011-November 2012)
Creative Director, Design games for Requests-For-Proposal, pitches, and production. Act as Creative Lead in all design and game development endeavors. Provide creative direction in communication, gameplay mechanics, User Interface, User Experience, etc. Write documentation for every level of design from statistical tables through high-level designs for pre-production.
Hammer Museum, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA (March 2011)
Exhibitor, Invitational Show at UCLA's Armand Hammer Museum featuring Interactive Game Art. The exhibit featured five different games to demonstrate different aspects of player involvement, going from Cathedral, in which the player is manipulating blocks of wood, to an Alternate Reality Game in which the players are pieces themselves.
Freelance Consultant, Chatsworth, CA (2009-2011)
Create Designs and Design documents for clients from a variety of genres and platforms.
Disney Interactive Studios (DIS), Glendale, CA (2006-2009)
Sr. Designer, Online Design console complements to the Club Penguin online experience (DS, Wii, etc.), and focused the cross-platform and multiplayer gameplay elements. Worked closely with the Club Penguin team to ensure their support and approval, culminating in the top-selling 2008 Club Penguin DS game. Acted as the sole designer, documented, built and focus tested “DGamer”, Disney Interactive’s Nintendo DS-based online kids’ community initiative. Championed and coordinated the service within DIS, the Disney Internet Group infrastructure and with external developers; researched online best-practices and lessons learned, both internal (VMK, Toontown, etc.) and external. Worked with development teams to build the DS and web-side implementation of the service; documented and designed against requirements and integration issues. Educated internal teams about DGamer and how best utilize its potential to optimize titles (both technical and gameplay). Provided creative direction for communication, User-Interface, player experience, use cases, functional specifications, visual design, and audio.
University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA (Spring, 2007; Fall 2007)
Adjunct Faculty, Multiplayer Online Game Design Part of the prestigious Film School, USC’s Interactive Media Department offers graduate and undergrad degrees in game development. This upper level course provides insight into the world of online & multiplayer games. Analyzing ARGs, MMOs, Social Networks, data-mining, social dynamics and how game designers craft human interaction experiences comprise my curriculum. Case studies, hands-on exercises and a final project round out the course.
MMO Design Consultant, Los Angeles, CA (2006)
Create and document design for an unannounced Massively Multi-user Online (MMO) children’s game. Define design goals, functional design, project plan and timeline, identify risks and opportunities from project inception.
4orty2wo Entertainment, Emeryville, CA (2005-2005)
Game Designer - Lead Designer for Last Call Poker’s online site, an 8-week multifaceted online and real world advertising campaign designed to augment the launch of Activision’s GUN, consisting of a story spanning more than one hundred years in twice-weekly episodic updates driven by player discovery and unraveling of clues. Develop and play-test Tombstone Hold ‘Em, a live event in which players use gravestones to create optimal poker hands in live events across the country. Design puzzles, assess art and web assets, coordinate story and puzzle logistics, research historical aspects, partake in live player interactions, create real-world instantiation sites for player discovery. Coordinate live events with online events. Coordinate team of designers, artists and writers to ensure consistency throughout multiple story threads. Work on every aspect of the project, including “tokens,” (period poker chips), photo sessions, player communication, selection of player content for the website, etc.
Disney Internet Group, VR Studio, N. Hollywood, CA (2004-2005)
Technical Staff/Game Designer - Game Designer for VR Studio’s online games, Toontown and Pirates of the Caribbean Online. Create overall gameplay design and specify all comprehensive game systems: puzzles; quests; NPC character development; story; user interface; dynamic treasure maps; parlor games; landscape/islands; character advancement; avatar design. Called for the creation of cooperative social game systems designed to link players together, creating a tighter social fabric. Work closely with programmers and artists. Work with Premium Subscription team on downloadable game designs.
MMO Research Consultant, Austin, TX (2004-2004)
Contract with publishers of MMO subscription services to perform practical analysis of online gameplay. Provide research & analysis, data-mining, design suggestions and decision tools primarily focusing on identifying the effects of social networks, cooperation, communities and other sociological phenomena in online subscriber populations. Assist in tracking, understanding and exploiting these phenomena, providing design resources in direct response to subscriber needs.
Ubi Soft/ubi.com, Montreal, PQ, Canada (2003-2003)
Senior Design Analyst Liaison between 3rd party developers and various Ubi.com internal departments to guide developers and help them make the “right” game through formal review, design of additional systems and teaching “best practices” (data-mining, empirical focus studies, gameplay balancing techniques). Comparative research and analysis of innovative MMO development (academic and commercial), with particular emphasis on the emerging fields of user metrics and social structural analysis to evaluate status and viability of game systems and content. Coordinate and train MMO Game Analyst Team. Projects included The Matrix Online and Uru: Ages Beyond Myst (Myst Online).
MMO Design Consultant (2001-2003) Analyze intellectual properties and create high level designs for subscription-based massively multiplayer service implementations. Provide design diligence and oversight for MMO projects already in development (Shadowbane and Uru).
Turbine Entertainment Software, Westwood, MA (2000-2001)
Creative Director - Creative Director for this successful developer of massively multiplayer entertainment software, set the initial creative vision for Asheron’s Call 2 and provide leadership and direction for the product design team. Recruit, train and manage team of system and content designers and writers responsible for Asheron’s Call 2. Negotiate with the publisher (Microsoft) to define the product’s feature set, and assist in creating the development schedule and multi-million dollar project budget. Assume duties of Producer and Associate Producer until those positions were recruited and staffed. Work with other Turbine teams, developing game concepts and designs for other projects, as well as preparing high-concept product proposals for business development and central systems design.
System Designer Work with other designers and programmers to create specifications for new game systems for Turbine’s Asheron’s Call live product. Develop and prototype an integrated content database for the next generation of Turbine products.
GameFx Technology, Lexington, MA (1999-2000)
Producer/Designer Lead a team of nine programmers, artists and designers to develop product prototypes which included extensive 3D animation. Coordinate and schedule all design, programming, art and budgets for six-week development cycles. Conceptualize and write game proposals and design documents and research for development. Perform voice acting.
Quality Assurance Manager Build new QA department: recruit, staff, train, equip the lab, define processes and manage relationships with third-party providers. Supervisor and Lead Tester for GameFx’s two premiere titles (Sinistar: Unleashed & Brunswick First Strike Bowling; create and manage test plans and schedules, coordinate external publisher testing. Assistance customer support, edit and proof-read user documentation & manuals. Perform voice acting motion-capture for final products.
CogniToy, Acton, MA (1998-1999)
“Gamesmith” A multi-role designer for this small development shop; create GUIs, write back-story, game and sound design. Create specifications for a 3D real-time programmable robot simulator, MindRover, and program it utilizing an in-house scripting language. Coordinate CogniToy’s advertising, PR and marketing plans, and write/edit user documentation.
Harmonix Music, Acton, MA (1997-1998)
Director, Public Relations Act as Public Relations director for this small start-up while they found permanent staff. Handled all press releases, live events, PR materials and collateral.
Boffo Games, Concord, MA (1994-1997)
Design Associate Working with the Creative Director, author interactive screenplay scripts and participate in casting and directing recording sessions for Boffo’s title, The Space Bar. Through team development of game ideas, plots and puzzles, design/write game concept papers and develop GUI designs. Program portions of games using in-house scripting language. Responsible for Public Relations: coordinate, design and test the company web site; write press releases; produce public relations materials; act as primary press contact; edit all marketing materials.
QA Manager Recruit and manage the testing staff, act as lead tester and coordinate all outside testing for Boffo’s first title, Hodj ‘n Podj. Design and maintain QA database, coordinate publisher and external Beta testing, create test plans and schedules. Review artwork for accuracy, clarity and appropriateness.
Pegasystems, Cambridge, MA (1989-1992)
Sr. Systems Analyst Worked with clients (large financial institutions) to define, design, create GUIs, write documentation and perform training on relational databases for customer service. Needed through understanding of how client operated, MICR systems, MICR retrieval and work flows.
Infocom, Cambridge, MA (1988-1989)
Quality Assurance Engineer Lead Tester on several titles; contribute to design and write online hints for complex interactive fiction games. Handle customer support telephone calls, design customer support materials, coordinate external Beta tests and write end-user documentation. Worked on the entire set of initial “graphics” games put out by Infocom: Shogun, Zork Zero, Journey, Arthur, Quarterstaff & Battletech: The Crescent Hawk Inception.
• June 2009, June 2010: Selected as jurist for the University of Gotland’s final evaluations, feedback and awards for Game Design. Judged third and fourth year projects and presented graduating class award.
• May, 2010: Consultant, U.S. Department of Labor. Helped define job description for Game Designer for use in O*Net, the Dept. of Labor's database for all jobs.
• May 2008: Named one of the Top 20 Women in the video game industry. Gamasutra: “Women in Games: The Gamasutra 20”
• Founder & Advisory Committee, Boston Area Game Developers Network (now IGDA).
• Regular speaker, Game Developers Conference (GDC) & Austin Game Conference (AGDC)
• Board Member, Orlando Chapter, International Game Developers Association (IDGA)
• Board of Advisors, Project Horseshoe, a game design think tank
• Proficiency in French and Spanish
M.A., Emerson College, Boston, MA (1988)
Major: Advertising and Public Relations
Granted first generation Teaching Fellowship. Focus on writing & research applications. Teach Public Speaking, Interpersonal Communication and Voice & Articulation.
B.A., Macalester College, St. Paul, MN (1985)
Majors: English and Philosophy
Emphasis on writing, linguistics and communication theory.
Have an avian companion (Goffin’s Cockatoo); reading; gardening; cooking and too many other hobbies to list.