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Speakers

2013 Speaker Schedule

If you are interested in becoming a speaker please click the "Contribute" navigation button.

David Sears
4:00pm Auditorium
KEYNOTE - THE TRUTH ABOUT POWER
AND POLITICS IN THE GAME INDUSTRY

David Sears - SOF Studios

Niccolo Machiavelli and the Marquis de Sade exchange a series of fictional letters in which they argue management techniques as applied to game development. As is often the case, game designers are caught in the middle. They had better pay attention if they want to survive, let alone see their vision realized as a shipped game. It’s a treacherous, lecherous world out there. Designers are often innocent and optimistic. This talk offers approaches to protecting and reclaiming creative drive while learning to love people that think they’re insane, irrelevant, or just cogs in a machine. 3 learning objectives : Understand how producers see creatives. Understand how creatives see producers. Develop techniques for surviving the games industry long term and shipping games with people that probably would rather you didn't exist.

Speaker Bio

About David Sears

David has had the good fortune to work for and learn from some of the world’s most talented game developers. For Zipper Interactive, David was a designer and the creative director for the critically acclaimed and best selling series of SOCOM: US NAVY SEALs games for Playstation 2 and PSP. His first work, an adaptation of Harlan Ellison’s “I Have No Mouth, And I Must Scream” was an award winning PC adventure game. In between, David has designed and directed racing games, platform games, military shooters, and action adventures on a variety of consoles for developers including Virgin Games, Looking Glass Studios, Sony Computer Entertainment of America, Pseudo Interactive, and Ubisoft Montreal where he was a creative director on two AAA titles. Currently he is creative director for SOF Studios where he is building a tactical military shooter.

About SOF Studios

SOF Studios (www.SOFstudios.com) is an independent video game studio led by elite Special Operations veterans and premier gaming experts. Currently, SOF Studios is developing an innovative military, team-based tactical shooter titled “H-Hour: World's Elite”. H-Hour is the first shooter game to feature real world Special Operations veterans as playable game characters. Shaped by the expertise and personal experiences of our decorated Heroes, H-Hour: World's Elite™ is truly the first game of its kind.

 
Patrick Scott Patterson
12:00noon Auditorium
"VIOLENT VIDEO GAME CONTROVERSY"
PAST, PRESENT, AND FUTURE

Patrick Scott Patterson & Rachel Lara

A media personality and 31-year veteran of the video gaming world chats about the decades-old debate about violent video games and where he thinks the debate should go from today.

Speaker Bio

About Patrick Scott Patterson

Patrick Scott Patterson is a new media and video gaming personality, gaming since 1981. He goes by Scott to his friends and the nickname of OriginalPSP in the gaming world. The first game he ever played was Pac-Man, hooking him on games for life.

After experiencing the boom, crash and rebirth of video gaming in the 1980s, Patterson began to compete in contests and tournaments as the decade came to an end. He took part in the first-ever Nintendo World Championships 1990 event in Dallas, reaching the semi-finals and later won a Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out!! challenge at a Dallas area shopping mall by completing the game without taking a single punch. He went on to take part in several other contests, including Primal Rage, a Soul Edge by the Aladdin’s Castle arcade chain and several Blockbuster Video gaming championships.

Today Patterson aims to continue his mission to expose gaming culture to the mainstream while aiming to educate fans of the importance of preserving items and locations of importance to the development of the video game industry. He is currently in talks with a number of entertainment and gaming companies to provide his services and unique personality to their brands and is continually looking for further opportunities to do so.

About Rachel Lara

Description Coming Soon

 
Breaking Into the Industry
2:00pm Auditorium
BREAKING INTO THE INDUSTRY
Panel Moderated By: Rachel Lara

Industry veterans from EA's Atomic Fox studio join together to answer your questions about breaking into the videogame industry moderated by actress, model, and avid gamer Rachel Lara.

Speaker Bio

About Stephane Imbert

Stephane Imbert is a senior software engineer at Electronic Arts. He started at EA Tiburon some 13 years ago on Madden 2001 for PlayStation 2. Lead engineer on all NASCAR titles from 2002 to 2009, his credits also include Superman Returns and EA Sports MMA. After moving to EA North Carolina, he wore multiple hats, designing and working on NASCAR Kart Racing for the Wii and Madden for Nintendo 3DS. He is currently working on EA’s top grossing title for iPhone and iPad: MONOPOLY Hotels and a super top-secret unannounced title.

About Alison Carrier

Alison Carrier is the UI/UX Designer at EA North Carolina with specialties in mobile and web development. Alison graduated summa cum laude with a B.F.A. in Graphic Design and Web Development in 2009. After graduation, she joined an advertising firm as the Lead Web Developer/Designer, creating a vast variety of products for local and national clients. In 2012, she decided to relocate to Raleigh to fulfill her dream of authoring video game user interfaces. In addition to playing games, Alison also enjoys cosplay, practicing martial arts, and tea.

About Tim Mcquaig

Tim McQuaig is a Software Engineer III who joined the EA team in 2010. With credits in console titles Nascar Kart Racing and Madden 3DS under his belt, Tim is currently working on games as a service for the mobile/social platform. Tim has a strong background in scalable service technologies, and serves as Lead Engineer for server-side development at EA’s North Carolina studio. Having worked in programming jobs outside of the video game industry prior to joining EA, Tim cites the fast-paced and unpredictable nature of video game development as the biggest appeal for him; “Half the time I honestly have no idea exactly what I’ll be doing tomorrow. That’s what makes it so much fun.”

About Anthony Marinello

Anthony Marinello has been a game developer with Electronic Arts since 2002, where he got his start as a software engineer on EA Sports’ NASCAR series. Since then he has shipped 11 titles, including Superman Returns, Madden NFL Football, and NASCAR Kart Racing. He has developed products for all home consoles, handheld, and mobile devices. He is now Producer at EA North Carolina, the team which developed and operates MONOPOLY Hotels, #1 free iPhone app in over 70 countries.

About Brett Brow

Brett Brown is a modeler at Electronic Arts with 5 years of professional experience. A native of North Carolina, Brett graduated from the Living Arts College in 2007 and began his video game career the following year at EA, where he continues to work today. His credits include Nascar 09, Nascar Kart Racing, Madden 10, EA Sports MMA, Madden NFL 3DS, and most recently Monopoly Hotels for iOS.

About Tim Jester

Tim Jester is a Development Director and Studio Lead at Electronic Arts. He runs the EA-North Carolina studio in Durham, NC. He has worked at EA for 2 and a half years as a manager of production, personnel, engineering, and operations. His credits include Madden NFL Football for the 3DS and the iOS freemium hit MONOPOLY Hotels, which his team in NC continues to operate as an ongoing business. He also contributed to FIFA Soccer 12 for the 3DS. He is responsible for the delivery of the studio's next mobile freemium title and running and monitoring the business of multiple live-service freemium games. Prior to joining EA, Tim led the Tools team at Emergent Game Technologies in Chapel Hill, NC for 3 years developing art and design tools for the the Gamebryo game engine, leveraging his software engineering expertise in CAD systems from his prior career developing commercial software products for the civil engineering and architecture industries. Tim has a degree in Civil Engineering and Architecture from Princeton University.

 
Educators Panel
11:00am Seminar Room
EDUCATORS PANEL
WayneCC, NCSU, Living Arts College

Ever wish you could get real graphics and game design professors and instructors from the top local colleges and schools into one room at one time? Well we have done the hard part for you, now simply bring your questions to our educators panel for a lively discussion of the educational pathways into the industry YOU want to learn about.

Participating Colleges

About Wayne Community College

Wayne Community College is a public, two-year college located in Goldsboro, NC with an open-door admission policy. As it works to develop a highly skilled and competitive workforce, it serves 14,000 individuals annually as well as businesses, industry and community organizations with high quality, affordable, accessible learning opportunities, including more than 100 college credit programs. Additional information can be found on the official web site: www.waynecc.edu

About North Carolina State University

With an enrollment of more than 34,000 students, NC State is known for its leadership in education and research, and globally recognized for its science, technology, engineering and mathematics leadership. The university’s 2,100 faculty members include 16 members of the National Academies, and the university offers bachelor’s degrees in 102 fields, masters in 106 fields, and doctorates in 61 fields. As a major research university, NC State has the people —from undergraduate and graduate students to faculty — and the responsibility to advance knowledge, transfer technology, and discover and develop innovations that solve some of the world’s most pressing problems. NC State’s Centennial Campus, home of the Computer Science Department, is a unique community of collaboration where industry and government partners work alongside faculty, staff, post-docs and students conducting cutting-edge research in state-of-the art facilities. NC State’s Computer Science game development concentration helps students develop an understanding of the scientific and technological principles associated with the design and development of computer and console games for both entertainment and serious applications.

About Living Arts College

Find how you may qualify for the High Definition school that has pioneered digital art education. Look for training in animation, digital filmmaking, audio recording, digital media and interior design ... in advanced studios teaching Maya, Pro Tools, Final Cut Pro, After Effects, Photoshop, Vegas Video and more in short courses, certificate programs, diploma programs and degree programs. Plan to visit the School at Digital Circus ... the campus that one senior art education leader has called "... the art school of the 25th century!"

 
Lucas Gillispie
12:00 Noon Seminar Room
LEVERAGING THE POWER OF
VIDEO GAMES FOR LEARNING

Lucas Gillispie - Pender County Schools

The old stereotypes are crumbling! Where once viewed as brain-rotting time-wasters, innovative educators around the world are beginning to shed a new light on video games as meaningful, engaging, and powerful tools for learning, commercially using successful games as powerful tools for learning? Yes! Join Lucas Gillispie as he shares how games like World of Warcraft, Minecraft, Portal, and others are not only valuable for entertainment, but have tremendous potential for classroom learning. We’ll look at what the academic experts are saying, explore real-world examples of video game integration into instruction, and challenge the very foundations of traditional education as we chart a course for the future of video game-based learning.

Speaker Bio

About Lucas Gillispie

Lucas Gillispie is an Instructional Technology Coordinator for Pender County Schools in southeastern North Carolina. An avid gamer, he is passionate about the integration of video games into the learning environment. In 2009, he founded the WoWinSchool Project (http://wowinschool.pbworks.com), a program designed to explore the educational potential of games like World of Warcraft with at-risk middle grades learners. Lucas oversees a district-wide Minecraft implementation (http://minecraftinschool.pbworks.com) of over 300 student accounts, while providing professional development on game-based learning to teachers in his district, state, and beyond. His most recent project, SAGA (Story and Game Academy) aims to encourage middle grades students to build reading and writing skills through video games on platforms ranging from the XBox to the PlayStation (http://storyandgameacademy.pbworks.com). When he’s not supporting his guild in the Battlegrounds of Guild Wars 2, he blogs about games in education at http://www.edurealms.com.

 
Stephane Imbert
1:00pm Seminar Room
INCREMENTS OF SHIPPABLE
QUALITY FOR GAMES

Stephane Imbert - EA Atomic Fox

Picture your dream game. Easy, right? Imagine how many years and how many people you want to get it done. 2, maybe 3 years? 50 to 150 people? Got it. Ok… Now, scratch that and do it with 10 people in 7 months. Welcome to professional videogame development!

In this talk we’ll go over the mysterious art of prioritizing and making sure that, no matter what happens, you always get your game done on time and to the best quality level possible.

We will go over some of the principles of Agile and why this methodology is becoming the norm in the videogame industry. We’ll talk about grades, castles, stairs and buses. Lots and lots of buses. Using a real life example, we’ll see how what makes sense to you may not be the best way to deliver the best quality for your users. We’ll see what it means to truly develop your games in increments of shippable quality and get your players in the game from the very beginning.

Speaker Bio

About Stephane Imbert

Stephane Imbert is a senior software engineer at Electronic Arts. He started at EA Tiburon some 13 years ago on Madden 2001 for PlayStation 2. Lead engineer on all NASCAR titles from 2002 to 2009, his credits also include Superman Returns and EA Sports MMA. After moving to EA North Carolina, he wore multiple hats, designing and working on NASCAR Kart Racing for the Wii and Madden for Nintendo 3DS. He is currently working on EA’s top grossing title for iPhone and iPad: MONOPOLY Hotels and a super top-secret unannounced title.

About EA Atomic Fox

As EA’s first label dedicated to purely digital games, EA All Play creates games for mobile devices, social networks and online environments that deliver seamless play anytime, anywhere, on any device. Connecting a market of more than one billion core and mass-casual gamers worldwide, EA All Play delivers engaging, accessible, high quality games to people of all skill levels and interests. The EA All Play portfolio encompasses some of the most recognizable entertainment brands in the world, including original EA and partner franchises like The Simpsons, Tetris, SCRABBLE, MONOPOLY, World Series of Poker, Real Racing, Ultima, as well as online games destination Pogo.com. All Play has several studios around the globe
 
aceyboyce
2:00pm Seminar Room
SERIOUS GAMES: MAKING
REAL LIFE MORE FUN

Acey Boyce - NCSU PhD Candidate

Serious Games: Making Real Life More Fun reports on over seven years of real world work experience making games for education at both UNC Charlotte and NC State University.Game technologies help people practice new skills, from flying planes to learning math, and can also encourage better behavior, choices, and attitudes - from quitting smoking to making new professional connections. In this talk, Acey Boyce, a PhD student studying serious games at NC State, will talk about recent developments in serious games research, revealing the elements that encourage better learning and user generated content creation in his BeadLoom Game. Bead Loom Game, playable at community.game2learn.com, is a game developed to teach middle school mathematics within the context of creating bead loom art. Students design and share bead art with one another while learning how to graph points and shapes, and solve challenging puzzles of how to minimize the number of shapes they create to make their designs. We have used Bead Loom Game to research how the addition of game elements including in-game tutorials, leaderboards, and user design showcases, have encouraged greatly increased play and learning.

Speaker Bio

About Acey Boyce

Bio Pending

About North Carolina State University

With an enrollment of more than 34,000 students, NC State is known for its leadership in education and research, and globally recognized for its science, technology, engineering and mathematics leadership. The university’s 2,100 faculty members include 16 members of the National Academies, and the university offers bachelor’s degrees in 102 fields, masters in 106 fields, and doctorates in 61 fields. As a major research university, NC State has the people —from undergraduate and graduate students to faculty — and the responsibility to advance knowledge, transfer technology, and discover and develop innovations that solve some of the world’s most pressing problems. NC State’s Centennial Campus, home of the Computer Science Department, is a unique community of collaboration where industry and government partners work alongside faculty, staff, post-docs and students conducting cutting-edge research in state-of-the art facilities. NC State’s Computer Science game development concentration helps students develop an understanding of the scientific and technological principles associated with the design and development of computer and console games for both entertainment and serious applications.

 
Josh Fairhurst
3:00pm Seminar Room
HOW TO SURVIVE AS AN
INDIE DEVELOPER

Josh Fairhurst - Mighty Rabbit Studios
Being an independent game developer isn't easy - especially if your games fail to set the sales charts on fire. Learn how to survive and (kind of) thrive in the harsh world of indie game development.
Speaker Bio
Josh Fairhurst started his company, Mighty Rabbit Studios, in August of 2010. He has been through every facet of the game industry in North Carolina. While in high school, Josh dual-enrolled at Wake Tech to learn game development. In 2008, while attending NC State University, Josh was hired at Epic Games as a tester on Gears of War 2. While in his final semester of college, Josh successfully gained funding to start his own game development company. He is a walking testament to the area being an amazing place for aspiring game developers!
 
Shana Norris
4:00pm Seminar Room
HIGHS AND LOWS OF PLOTTING
Shana Norris - Author

A plot that is engaging, exciting, and yet makes sense as a whole is important in any story, from books to movies to games. What does it take to create a plot line that can carry your story from beginning to end? Author Shana Norris will draw from her own experience to give tips for building your plot one point at a time, and how to incorporate the high and low points that keep the characters moving and the audience interested.

Speaker Bio

About Shana Norris

Shana Norris is an award-winning graphic designer as well as the author of several young adult novels, including Troy High, the Swans Landing series, The Boyfriend Thief, and Something to Blog About, which was named a Book Sense Summer 2008 Children's Pick. She has been writing most of her life, and has been actively publishing work since 2002. Shana currently lives in Kinston, North Carolina, where she works as a web designer for regional newspapers, as well as continuing to write and publish.

 
Nic Colley
5:00pm Seminar Room
TIPS ON HOW TO GET
INTO THE INDUSTRY

Nic Colley - GREE International

The video game industry is always looking for new and talented people. However, getting one's resume and cover letter ready can be a challenge. In this talk, Nic Colley will help prep attendees by providing guidance in this area by covering the following topics:

Resume:
      What should the resume look like?
      What should and should not be in it?

Cover Letter:
      What should the cover letter cover?
      What should it look like?

How to make industry contacts?
How to prep for an interview?
How to act during an interview?

Speaker Bio

About Nic Colley

Nic Colley is a national award winning game developer in Microsoft's Imagine Cup 2010, led multiple teams on League of Legends, taught at an award winning college that was recognized by President Obama, Central Piedmont Community College, and established a formal production layer for GREE International. Currently he manages and assists many art teams as an Art Producer for GREE.

About GREE International

Founded on the belief that a connected world is a better world, GREE set out to bring people together through the power of play. Today, GREE is the world's leading mobile social gaming platform with millions of players from Beijing to Boston—and we've only just begun. We believe that fun is a universal language, so we're inviting the world to come play.

 
Jon Dean
6:00pm Seminar Room
YOU ARE NOT THE AUDIENCE
Jon Dean - EA Atomic Fox

“You Are Not The Audience” is an insight into the development of “StarFox” for the Super Nintendo, working with perhaps the most successful game designer in the World, Shigeru Miyamoto. Jon looks at how the 3D game, developed by a small but ambitious studio in London, England, became one of the most successful console games ever. The lessons learned are still applied by Jon in his work today, and he puts these into context of designing for today’s mass market, free-to-play audiences. This presentation is fun, fact-filled and a rare chance to ask questions of a highly experienced game industry executive.

Speaker Bio

About Jon Dean

Jon is a VP at Electronic Arts’ All Play label, which specializes in mobile and social games. Day to day he is General Manager for EA’s North Carolina and Salt Lake development studios. Executive Producer of a number of titles including “MONOPOLY Hotels”, an innovative mobile game that was one of EA’s first freemium hits last year, created at EA’s Atomic Fox studio in NC. Jon has 8 years at EA and more than 25 years making games, some great hits, some disasters; worked on just about every major gaming platform including one that never made it to market!

As EA’s first label dedicated to purely digital games, EA All Play creates games for mobile devices, social networks and online environments that deliver seamless play anytime, anywhere, on any device. Connecting a market of more than one billion core and mass-casual gamers worldwide, EA All Play delivers engaging, accessible, high quality games to people of all skill levels and interests. The EA All Play portfolio encompasses some of the most recognizable entertainment brands in the world, including original EA and partner franchises like The Simpsons, Tetris, SCRABBLE, MONOPOLY, World Series of Poker, Real Racing, Ultima, as well as online games destination Pogo.com. All Play has several studios around the globe

About EA Atomic Fox

 
2012 Speaker Schedule
Britt Griffith
 
KEYNOTE - HOW TO MAKE IT IN FILM/TV!
Britt Griffith - Ghost Hunters / Penny Dreadful Productions -
The Walking Dead, Book of Eli, Zombieland

Witness as three industry professionals answer questions like, "Is it luck, or is it skill? How DO you make it on screen?"; "How do you turn disappointment into opportunity?"; and of course, what's the craziest thing that ever happened to you while filming?" Panelists have been in major films, cable television shows, independent pictures, and much more. If you want to learn how to make it big, stop here and learn from the best.

Panel Members List: Britt Griffith of Ghost Hunters; Matt Silva, cast, crew, and more for film and television, including Super Psycho Sweet Sixteen installments and Book of Eli; Erin Bushko, costumer, crew, and cast for film and television, including Jawless Zombie on AMC's The Walking Dead.

Speaker Bio

About Britt Griffith

Britt was born and raised in Southern California where he grew up in and around the Hollywood business behind the cameras. He had his hands in anything from paging, security, props and set building to production assisting. In his late twenties, Britt ventured off the Hollywood path, and for 13 years worked a very dangerous blue collar job running heavy equipment at an asphalt manufacturing plant.

One of Britt's lifelong hobbies is investigating claims of the paranormal. This led him to a friendship with Jason Hawes and Grant Wilson, the stars of the hit SyFy show Ghost Hunters. In 2008 Jason reached out to Britt and asked if he would like to come out and help on a very large case they had coming up. Britt said yes, and now finds himself working all over the world in front of the camera investigating the paranormal.

When Britt is not filming on Ghost Hunters, he keeps busy working on other projects and working on his acting with his coach. He also makes appearances at multiple guest events all over the country, where he lectures and leads paranormal investigations or promoting his latest project. Recently he has been seen on several other TV shows and movies. He has worked on the Food Network Challenge, Run This Town, RWG, and can be seen in Two De Force, Chillerama, and Azinda.

About Erin Leigh Bushko

Erin co-founded PDP with Matt Silva in January of 2009 and is responsible for many of the business aspects of the company. As head of the costume department, she handles the design and creation of all the costumes produced in house. She has been a designer and seamstress for film, professional theaters, and private commissions for over 10 years. On top of all that Erin is also a professionally trained actor. She has a BFA in Music Theatre, a Certificate in Shakespearean Acting from RADA in London, and studied stage combat with world renowned expert Richard Ryan.

About Matt Silva

Matt is the founder and creative director of PDP. Though he is versed in many aspects of the film art department, he focuses his career as a special makeup effects artist for New York based I.A.T.S.E. Local 798 union makeup and hair. His career has led him to work professionally with Lone Wolf FX/Bill Johnson on major motion pictures, and is acting Art Director for Whitestone Motion Pictures. As creative director, Matt acts as lead conceptualist and builder for the PDP workshop.

About Penny Dreadful Productions

The Penny Dreadful Productions, based in Atlanta GA, fabricates creative props, costumes and accessories for the entertainment industry. Additionally they provide art direction, practical effects, and other creative consulting services. Lead conceptualists Mathew Silva and Erin Bushko work with a team of specialized artists to produce the highest quality products and services. Their work has been featured in live entertainment, film and television. They have furnished materials for one of America’s premeier haunted houses, Netherworld. Several projects with Whitestone Motion Pictures have benefited from Penny Dreadful’s expertise. They have worked on other movies including Zombieland, Ben 10: Alien Swarm, Book of Eli, and most recently they [designed] effects for AMC’s The Walking Dead. They also provide quality costuming and props for the consumer market.

 
Mike Resnick
 
KEYNOTE - TIME TRAVEL IN GAME PLAY
MAKING ACHRON

Mike Resnick - Hazardous Games
This talk will cover the use of time travel and time manipulation as a unique gameplay mechanism, sharing Hazardous Game's experience developing Achron, a real-time strategy game where all players and units can jump to and play at different times independently and simultaneously. Mike Resnick will present a brief history and overview of time travel and time manipulation as it is used in literature, movies, and current games. Comparing different versions of time travel from science fiction to previous implementations of time travel in video games, he will discuss ways of approaching them from a gameplay perspective, showing various nuances and how they affect game design.
Speaker Bio
Michael Resnick is the co-founder and lead developer of Hazardous Software. He spent 10 years working on the development of the world's first multiplayer time travel video game Achron, focusing on the technical aspects of game design, implementation, balance, interface and asset integration and game-play architecture. Prior to working in the gaming industry, he gained a wide range of design and technical experience by working in the securities industry on a learning management system suite and in the telecommunications industry, on simulation software for CDMA systems and CDMA and WiMAX infrustructure. Mr. Resnick obtained his Bachelors in Computer Science-Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
 
Steve Reid
 
PERSPECTIVE SKETCHING:
A HANDS ON DRAWING SESSION

Timothy Buie - North Carolina State University
A hands-on drawing session to explore sketching as a means of developing and communicating design ideas. Participants are introduced to basic concepts of sketching such as line quality, line weight, contrast, perspective, shade and shadow, etc.
Speaker Bio
Timothy Buie is an assistant professor in the Department of Industrial Design in the College of Design at North Carolina State University. His research interests include product design; 3D game design, modeling and animation; design drawing and sketching; and design education. Professor Buie is currently Co-Director of the NCSU Digital Games Research Center (DGRC) along with Dr. Michael Young of the Department of Computer Science. The DGRC is a multi-disciplinary center whose focus investigates the scientific, engineering, social, and educational challenges of digital entertainment. The DGRC includes faculty from the colleges of Education, Engineering, Design, and Humanities and Social Sciences involved in a wide range of research and educational initiatives that focus on new modes of entertainment and interaction in digital media. Professor Buie is also part of the North Carolina Serious Games Initiative (NCSGI) which is a collaboration between academia, industry, and government to develop education related games for the state. Professor Buie has a wide range of academic and industry experience in computer game development, product design, accessible design, comic books, magazine illustration, and computer animation. He teaches a variety of graduate and undergraduate courses in the College of Design, and has developed several new courses related to his research interests. His students often work directly with faculty and students in other disciplines, and have found successful careers in design, entertainment, and education.
 
Jason Miles
 
AUTODESK MAYA IN THE
PRODUCTION PIPELINE

Jason Miles - Applied Software
This session will expose attendees to alternate methods of using software and knowledge from developing games and multi-media in a variety of different industries including the furniture.
Speaker Bio
Jason Miles graduated from Appalachian State University with a bachelor's degree in Industrial Drafting and Design and a minor in Computer Information Systems. While at Appalachian, he was a member of Epsilon Pi Tao, an academic fraternity for students in fields devoted to the study of technology. As a part of his graduation requirement, Jason completed an internship at Thomasville Furniture where he assisted the plant-engineering department. This internship led to a full-time position at Thomasville Furniture as a Product Engineer where he produced detailed construction drawings of case goods, accessories, and upholstery pieces using AutoCAD. As more furniture was being manufactured overseas, Jason was promoted to Import Product Engineer to assist in regulating Thomasville's engineering and design standards. After several years with Thomasville, Jason transitioned to a position with Thomasville's corporate office, Furniture Brands International, as a Digital Design Specialist. During his time at Thomasville and Furniture Brands International, Jason learned and utilized Inventor and Maya to produce engineered drawings and photo realistic renderings used for design and marketing. Additionally, Jason trained Furniture Brand employees in Autodesk Inventor and provided IT support for Autodesk products. Currently, Jason works for Applied Software as a Senior Applications Specialist with responsibility for Autodesk Manufacturing Solutions.
 
Marc Tucker
 
THE ART OF OBSERVATION
FOR CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT

Marc Tucker - Central Piedmont Community College
For years, videos games, books, music, and theatre have been this speakers favorite forms of entertainment. What they all have in common is the illusion of life that the writer or performer have breathed into the characters. This is what telling a story is all about. After close to 20 years of theatre experience and researching character development for the creation of his own characters Marc has come to the conclusion that good observation of real life is the key to creating believable characters in games, movies, books, animation, and others. In this lecture, Marc will be demonstrating these observation techniques as well as discussing the ways in which you can apply them to your character designs. So don’t plan on sitting still because you can’t observe the world around you if you don’t get up and look around.
Speaker Bio
Marc Tucker is the Program Chair of the Simulation and Game Development Department at Central Piedmont Community College in Charlotte, NC. Prior to his current position he worked as Full-Time faculty member for SGD specializing in Character Development, Game Writing, Audio/Video, Design, Modeling, and 3D Animation. He has performed in nearly 40 theatrical productions over the past 20 years in local theatres in North Carolina. His years of theatre experience and researching character development for the creation of his own characters has been a major influence on his professional life and expertise.
 
Steve Reid
 
CREATURE CREATION LABORATORY
Steve Reid - Red Storm Entertainment
This session will allow attendees to create their own characters with the help of Red Storm Entertainment's Managing Director Steve Reid.
Speaker Bio
After earning a Master of Fine Arts degree from East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina, Reid entered the video game industry. He is a founder of Red Storm Entertainment and currently holds the title of Managing Director and Executive Vice President. Reid is an advisor on digital art curricula to local and national colleges, including Wayne Community College. He has been a vocal proponent of "formal training relationships" between game industry companies and educational institutions, indicating at a roundtable discussion at the 2006 E3 Media and Business Summit his opinion that mentoring of that nature will prepare entry level industry employees "to work with the technology and processes of the game industry."
 
Josh Fairhurst
 
TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS OF
BEING AN INDIE DEVELOPER

Josh Fairhurst - Mighty Rabbit Studios
You may have a rough idea of how big budget games and made, but do you know what an independent game developer is? Find out just what goes on behind the scenes of the fastest growing segment of the games industry. Small teams of people are creating companies all over the country and producing quality products and just as important jobs! They invest limitless amounts of time and energy into their products which in many cases reflect a large part of their own personal identity. Find out what this life is like, the good and the bad, during this session presented by President and Co-Founder of Mighty Rabbit Studios, Josh Fairhurst.
Speaker Bio
Josh Fairhurst worked in 2008 as a tester on “Gears of War 2” for Epic Games. He started making games from a young age using Qbasic on his parents DOS PC, Josh moved on to to eventually create “Terraform”, a chemistry based first person shooter/puzzle game set in an alternate history 1970’s, that went on to be a finalist at the I/ITSEC 2010 Serious Games Showcase in Orlando, FL and is now being used in some classrooms to engage chemistry students of all ages. Josh graduated from North Carolina State University in 2010 with a degree in Computer Science. Josh regularly procures all sorts of games, movies and random cool stuff from local pawn shops and sells it to collectors online. He also plays bass guitar and enjoys punk rock and ska. Favorite Game: Phantasy Star Online
 
Titus Barik and Rogelio Cardona-Rivera
 
INTRODUCTION TO GAME AI
USING PYTHON

Titus Barik and Rogelio Cardona-Rivera - DGRC - NCSU
In this live coding presentation, Titus and Rogelio will show you what goes on "under the hood" in games when playing against computer opponents. We'll be using the Pygame framework for Python to quickly prototype some of the common algorithms used to give computer opponents their artificial intelligence when moving, making decisions about where to move, and thinking tactically. For casual gamers, you'll get a feel for the underlying AI used in the games that you play today. For students and game designers, you'll see how easy it is to get started with writing AI algorithms in Python. And for educators, the material in this presentation will serve as the building block for a future pilot course in Game AI for community college students.
Speaker Bio
(Pictured Top) Titus Barik is a Professional Engineer, specializing in Computer Engineering. In industry, he worked with control systems and factory floor automation for several years before returning to graduate school at North Carolina State University. As a current PhD research assistant, his interests include believable agents in real-time strategy games, bot detection algorithms for social games, and probabilistic player cognition models. Titus is also an adjunct instructor for Wayne Community College, and teaches courses in databases, computer security, and simulation and game design.

(Pictured Bottom)Rogelio E. Cardona-Rivera is a Ph.D. student in Computer Science at North Carolina State University. Rogelio’s thesis work is at the intersection of artificial intelligence, cognitive science, narratology and game design and focuses on creating a cognitive model of the player’s understanding of an unfolding story in a game through the use of narrative affordances.

Before beginning graduate studies, Rogelio completed a B.Sc. in Computer Engineering with minors in Mathematics and Project Management at the University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez and has held internship positions at Apple, The MIT/Lincoln Laboratory and Goldman Sachs.

Rogelio is a Department of Energy Computational Science Graduate Fellow and a GEM Fellow.

 
Eric Wile
 
UNCONVENTIONAL JOBS IN GAMING
Eric Wile - Senior Aerospace
Ever wonder how you can get into the game industry? Sit in and listen to an industry professional tell you their experiences getting into the game industry. If you think making games is all about building physics engines or playing games all day this session will open your eyes to the many “Unconventional” jobs in this ever expanding industry!
Speaker Bio

Eric is a former employee of both Verant Interactive and Sony Online Entertainment (SOE) in San Diego, CA. He handled some development related projects with Big Idea Interactive (Veggie Tales), Cox Media, Sigil Games (Vanguard Saga of Hero's) and SCEA.

Eric started out in tech support like many before and after him though it didn't stop him for accomplishing his dreams and ambitions. In his short but lucrative career he accomplished Team Member of the Month back to back and was awarded the Sony Achievement award for his work on EverQuest Macintosh Edition.

Roles included: Tech Support, Public Relations, Information Technology, Development, Quality Assurance, Level Design, Storyboarding, Game Master and EverQuest expert.

While at SOE, Eric worked on the development of several EverQuest games, which were released between 2002 and 2004. In addition, he served on the quality assurance teams.

Additional Games include: PlanetSide, Star Wars Galaxies, Lords of EverQuest, EverQuest II and EverQuest Online Adventures and Vanguard Saga of Hero's (Sigil Games)

Currently Eric resides in Wichita, KS working in Information Technology at Senior Aerospace. For more than 50 years, Senior Aerospace has provided engineered solutions for the rigorous challenges of bleed air duct systems, precision sheet metal fabrications, bellows, metal hose assemblies, and other pressure carrying components that are flying in virtually all military and commercial aircraft, numerous piston and jet engines, and are specified for missile and NASA programs.

 
2011 Speaker Schedule
Red Storm Entertainment
 
HANDS ON SESSION
DESIGN A CHARACTER

Red Storm Entertainment Staff
Artists from Red Storm Entertainment's studio will work with groups of attendees to create their own characters in this hands on session.
Company Info
Red Storm Entertainment is a wholly owned subsidiary of Ubi Soft Entertainment, specializing in CD-ROM games, console games, and related merchandise. Their objective is to become the market leader for entertainment products that satisfy the appetites of "hardcore" game players, while also appealing to the broader community of "casual" game fans attracted to realistic and intelligent games. With games like Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six, the company quickly became recognized as an innovative creator of titles that break the mold by combining popular genres to provide a totally immersive gaming experience. Many of Red Storm's games feature stunning 3-D graphics, seamless combinations of action and strategic gameplay, as well as thrilling new types of play for on-line gamers. Armed with a proven formula for success, Red Storm Entertainment is excited about the future of gaming. Their goal is to produce top-quality, innovative games for PC and the next-gen systems while continuing the collaboration with Ubisoft to bring our franchise titles to all viable platforms.
 
Jerry Heneghan
 
GAME DEVELOPMENT
CAREER PATHWAYS

Speaker: Jerry Heneghan - Virtual Heroes
Managing Director of Virtual Heroes a division of Applied Research Associates, Jerry Heneghan will discuss the various career pathways one could take to break into the simulation and game development field.
Speaker Bio
Jerry Heneghan is the Managing Director of the Virtual Heroes Division of Applied Research Associates. Virtual Heroes creates simulations for learning, serious games and virtual worlds for the healthcare, federal systems and commercial markets. Heneghan served as an Executive Producer for the America's Army Game Project focusing on the creation of training applications based on the game. Prior to founding Virtual Heroes in 2004, Heneghan was a program manager in the Technology Assisted Learning Division of the Research Triangle Institute (RTI) where he focused on the application of game technologies for healthcare training and education. Before his work at RTI, Heneghan was a game producer at Tom Clancy's Red Storm Entertainment. Heneghan started his career in the military and served as a U.S. Army Aviator (AH-64 pilot) in assignments all over the world. Heneghan holds an M.B.A. from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University and a B.S. in engineering from the U.S. Military Academy. Heneghan is the president and co-founder of the North Carolina Advanced Learning Technology Association and Advanced Learning Technology Summit. He is a published author, most recently appearing in The Design and Use of Simulation Computer Games in Education.
 
Steve Reid
 
DIGITAL SPEED PAINTING
Speaker: Steve Reid - Red Storm Entertainment
This session will focus on actual game production techniques and will encourage the audience to ask an industry veteran artist questions during the live demonstration of digital speed painting.
Speaker Bio
After earning a Master of Fine Arts degree from East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina, Reid entered the video game industry. He is a founder of Red Storm Entertainment and currently holds the title of Managing Director and Executive Vice President. Reid is an advisor on digital art curricula to local and national colleges, including Wayne Community College. He has been a vocal proponent of "formal training relationships" between game industry companies and educational institutions, indicating at a roundtable discussion at the 2006 E3 Media and Business Summit his opinion that mentoring of that nature will prepare entry level industry employees "to work with the technology and processes of the game industry."
 
Penny Dreadful Productions
 
HOW TO CREATE A COSTUME BASED
ON A PREEXISTING CHARACTER.

Panelists: Penny Dreadful Productions Staff
If you ever wanted to be Batman, Megaman, or any other character from a video game, movie, TV show, or comic, you should check out this panel discussion. Penny Dreadful Productions will explain the processes of how to create a costume based on a preexisting character.
Company Info
Penny Dreadful Productions is an Atlanta based conceptual design and physical production company bringing the world's creative needs to life. PD Productions encompasses many disciplines of art all under one roof- including Conceptual Design, Special Makeup and Prosthetics, Specialty Props, Costumes and Specialty Costuming, Public Art and Display, and much more. Our work has been seen in major motion pictures, professional theaters, and purchased in private commissions. PD Productions uses the "Steampunk" aesthetic to show off their talents as artists, but has worked in almost all genres and styles.

Turning your dreams into reality is our passion.

 
Dustin Gurley
 
FILM AND EARLY ANIMATION:
THEN AND NOW

Speaker: Dustin Gurley - SCAD
The history of moving film and animation is very much one involving the evolution of experiments, inventions and radical aesthetics of avant-garde art to the conventions and approaches used in commercial media. These transformations speak to a large audience whose interests lie in entertainment rather than the disruption of controversy by avant-garde art. History once again comes together in commercial art through the blending of aesthetics of film, animation and motion graphics with live action, typography and synaesthetics. This mixture of the old with the new creates something entirely unique and creative in its own right.
Speaker Bio
Dustin Gurley is a Goldsboro, North Carolina native and is currently pursuing his Master of Fine Art Degree in Motion Media Design, a terminal degree from the famed Savannah College of Art and Design. Dustin is currently in the early stages of thesis completion with a concentration in Early Experiments and Illusions of Color and Visual Music. Dustin has developed a career focus primarily centered on screen design, typography, 2.5D and 3D animation and multi-platform network branding and design. Dustin’s ultimate career goal is to return to higher education as an instructor. Starting this spring he will begin student teaching undergraduate level courses at SCAD and WCC in the Arts Department. Prior to beginning his graduate degree at SCAD, Dustin obtained his Bachelor of Art degree in Communication with a minor in Leadership from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington in 2009. Dustin is also a graduate of Wayne Community College with his Associate Degree in Art in 2007.
 
Ashton Williams
 
SOCIAL NETWORKING
WITHIN THE GAMES INDUSTRY

Speaker: Ashton Williams - PMS CLAN
Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of media have changed the way developers and gamers share information, promote new titles, and get consumer feedback, but how have these forms affected the industry in general and what can you do to get actively involved? In this session, Ashton Williams, who used all forms of technology to get her start in the industry, explains how changes in telecommunications are rapidly changing the gaming industry.
Speaker Bio
Ashton Williams, also known as VULCAN PMS, is a member of the PMS Clan, where she is responsible for leading over 50 females in her division, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. She assists with Xbox Live Community events, personal training for Call of Duty, and oversees the progression of her division. As a 3rd year member of the clan, her work has also lead her to other endeavors outside of PMS. She works with Ubisoft as a Frag Doll Cadette, helping with marketing and promotions for new titles, traveling to events, and speaking to the public. Aside from gaming, Ashton is currently enrolled in the PR and Marketing department at Augusta Technical College in Augusta, Georgia.
 
Wes Platt
 
THE XX DEVELOPER
Speaker: Marie Croall - Icarus Studios/Fallen Earth, LLC
Leading the way for the development team at Fallen Earth, LLC, Senior Game Designer Marie Croall delve into life as a female developer in this session. In this once primarily male-dominated industry, female gamers and developers are becoming more prominent than ever.

Pulling from real world experiences, Croall will offer tips and tools for aspiring female developers on breaking into the industry and ensuring their ideas are realized.
Speaker Bio
Marie started her comic career running the Sales Department for CHAOS! Comics, the #1 horror and bad‐girl publisher in the country. After leaving CHAOS! to pursue a career as a freelance writer, Marie wrote comics for DC, Marvel, Humanoids, Harris Comics, Devil's Due, Across the Pond and Boom. Marie has also self‐published a 210‐page digital comic and directed two short films. Recently, Marie has been working on Lerner Publishing's Graphic Myths series, adapting classic tales into comics aimed at children.

Marie joined the Fallen Earth team in 2006 as a Writer and now serves as Senior Game Designer.
 
Brandon Robbins
 
GAMES IN THE STACKS
Speaker: Brandon Robbins - Wayne County Public Library
This session will examine how libraries have integrated games and gaming into their services and programming, why games are a logical and natural fit for libraries, and why librarians supporting gaming is a good thing for the gaming industry and for gaming culture, specifically in regards to issues of educational value, gaming as an art form, and free speech/First Amendment issues.
Speaker Bio
M. Brandon Robbins is the Young Adult Services Coordinator for Wayne County Public Library, one of the winners of the 2009 American Library Association/Verizon Libraries, Literacy, and Gaming grants. A 2011 ALA Emerging Leader, Robbins is also a contributor to 8bit Library and a graphic novel reviewer for Library Journal. An avid gamer for nearly his whole life, he enjoys a wide variety of games, especially first-person shooters, puzzle games, tabletop role-playing games, and card games of all types. He's always willing to give new games a try, and you can often find him at his local comic shop. Robbins blogs at http://realistlibrarian.wordpress.com.
 
2010 Speaker Schedule
Zachariah Inks
 
INDIE STUDIOS ON TIGHT BUDGETS
Speaker: Zachariah Inks, John Lyons - Digital Roar Studios Inc.
Ever consider going Indie? This presentation will focus on the selection of partners, the acquisition of team members , legal organization and the management of geographical diverse contributors. We will cover how to manage your assets whether they be people , art or code in such a way as to optimize your chances of finishing your title and getting it to market.
Speaker Bio
Zachariah Inks is the Art Director at Digital Roar Studios. He is responsible for all facets of the art pipeline including scheduling, design and implementation. He has 8 years of training in the artistic, technical and design disciplines of game development, and he brings a renaissance view to the creation of unique and original titles. His undergraduate studies include several specific degrees: graphic design, fine art, computer animation as well as game design and programming. His Master's degree is in Digital Production Arts, which focuses on the production of computer generated graphic art while specifically highlighting the team development and organization skills needed to complete such projects. He has operated as a contractor and consultant for several industrial and military simulation and visualization firms in the serious games sector.

John Lyons is the Chief Executive Officer of Digital Roar Studios and a Science in Computer and Information Systems major at the University of North Florida. He has loved gaming since he was a child. His first lessons in game theory came from his father with checkers and then later in chess, and from these early games he developed a passion for solving complex problems in new and innovative ways. His first computer introduced him to the world of PC games and spearheaded his interest in programming. He has been a professional programmer for over ten years. His primary programming languages are C# , Coldfusion , T‐SQL , PL‐SQL and Java.
 
Russ Pitts
 
WEB VIDEO KILLED THE TV STAR
Speaker: Russ Pitts - Escapist
Russ Pitts is the Editor-in-Chief of The Escapist, and Director of Video content for Themis Media. Russ is a 20-year veteran of the entertainment industry, with experience in television, theater, film and the internet. He was a Producer of the groundbreaking TechTV television series “The Screen Savers” and is Executive Producer of The Escapist’s “Zero Punctuation” videogame review web series.
 
Jason Connell
 
INSIDER LOOK AT GAMES
Speaker: Jason Connell, Shaun Peoples - Red Storm
"Wow, That Was Cool! Wait, What Was That?” – An Insider Look at Games and the People That Make Them

What is it like working on games that millions of people play? What are the daily roles of a programmer and an artist in the gaming industry? In this presentation Shaun Peoples (Programmer) and Jason Connell (Artist) of Red Storm Entertainment will discuss what goes into making games from a front-line perspective.
Speaker Bio
Jason Connell is a Technical Artist at Ubisoft's Red Storm Entertainment and is responsible for lighting and environment effects. Jason’s primary focus is creating compelling environments with visually stunning atmosphere and lighting.

Prior to work at Red Storm, Jason was an Art Lead for environments and FX on the America’s Army 3 PC game. Prior to working in video games, Jason worked on commercial and government projects involving hi-res modeling and programming MEL scripts for simulation and training purposes.

Jason is a graduate of Athens State University with a BA in Fine Art and a Minor in Computer Science.

Shaun Peoples is a Software Engineer at Ubisoft's Red Storm Entertainment. As a member of the Worlds Group, Shaun develops and improves internal technologies for creating game assets and environments. In his past role as a Graphics Engineer, he developed core rendering technology for an unannounced title.

Previously, Shaun worked at Icarus Studios on optimization and tools development for the recently released Fallen Earth massively multiplayer online game. He also completed a programming internship with Emergent Game Technologies.

Shaun is an Advisory Board Member of the School of Communication Arts' Living Arts College, an Executive Member of Triangle Game Initiative, and a graduate of The Guildhall at Southern Methodist University.
 
Ashton Williams
 
HISTORY OF THE PMS CLAN
Speaker: Ashton Williams - PMS Clan
"The History of the PMS Clan"

PMS Clan- The history of the clan, how we work, how others can join, and what the clan has done for me
Speaker Bio
Ashton Williams, also known as VULCAN PMS, is a member of the PMS Clan, where she is responsible for leading over 40 females in her division, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. She assists with Xbox Live Community events, personal training for Call of Duty, and oversees the progression of her division. As a 3rd year member of the clan, her work has also lead her to other endeavors outside of PMS. She works with Ubisoft as a Frag Doll Cadette, helping with marketing and promotions for new titles, traveling to events, and speaking to the public. Aside from gaming, Ashton is currently enrolled in the Criminal Justice department at Augusta Technical College in Augusta, Georgia.
 
Zach Bishop
 
TOP LEGAL PITFALLS
Speaker: Zach Bishop - Wyrick Robbins Yates & Ponton
"Avoiding Tar Pits, Quicksand, and Crocodiles: Top [Ten] Legal 'Pitfalls' Facing Gaming Companies"

The presentation will focus on common legal issues that all video game companies need to be aware of. The presentation will be tailored primarily to new and early-stage video game developers, but will be beneficial to established developers as well.
Speaker Bio
Zach Bishop is an attorney at Wyrick Robbins Yates & Ponton LLP and has spoken on legal issues facing gaming companies at a number of video game conferences, most recently on panels at the Triangle Game Conference in Raleigh and SIEGE in Atlanta. He has represented video game companies on a myriad of matters for several years.

Zach’s practice is concentrated on technology and corporate transactions, including the licensing and distribution of intellectual property, business process and information technology outsourcing, technology acquisition and development, mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures and general corporate matters. Zach's practice includes the representation of prominent video game and middleware developers on a full range of matters. He has significant experience in sourcing and complex technology transactions. Prior to joining the firm in 2009, Zach practiced in the Raleigh office of Hunton & Williams LLP and the Atlanta office of Alston & Bird LLP.

Zach received his B.A. in Economics from Duke University and received his J.D., magna cum laude, from Tulane University Law School. Zach served as an Assistant Managing Editor for the Tulane Law Review and is a member of the Order of the Coif.
 
Ryan Stradling
 
THE HIRING PROCESS
Speaker: Ryan Stradling - EA Games
Over the years Ryan Stradling has hired numerous people. Ryan will take you through what he looks for in an employee with a focus on engineers.
Speaker Bio
Ryan Stradling is a Sr. Development Director at Electronic Arts. He founded and runs the EA-North Carolina studio in Morrisville, NC. He has worked for Electronic Arts for 10 years as a programmer and manager. His credits include Madden NFL 2001 PS2, NCAA Football 2002, NASCAR 09 PS2, Madden NFL 07 PS3, Madden NFL 06 XBox 360, and NASCAR: Kart Racing Wii. He graduated from Clemson University with a B.S. in Computer Science. He loves anything dealing with technology or management. He helped introduce Agile practices at Tiburon and has helped deliver various console launch titles.
 
John Eder
 
SERIOUS GAMING FOR AUTISM
Speaker: John Eder - AutismSphere
Phaedra Boinodiris - IBM
The rate of autism in the United States increased 10 fold over the last 12 years. While the reasons for this remain under investigation, the need for solutions grows. To address this, an opportunity exists to bring the community of game developers closer to the autism community.

Through our presentation we offer a window into the launch of a socially driven video game design. To enliven the topic we use a current design that helps people living with autism. The process will start with understanding the issue and progress into developing an approach in the market that creates value.

Attendees to the talk will see how traditional game development integrates with social movements while also exploring a detailed framework for approaching these ventures.
Speaker Bio
John Eder worked with Ernst & Young as a information security analyst before going on to work at Experian, the world´s largest credit bureau. While at Experian he helped protect an internet accessible database containing over 200 million credit profiles. After graduating with his MBA from Kenan-Flagler he continues work on a social venture focused on creating a serious health game for people with autism.

Phaedra Boinodiris is a Serious Games Program Manager at IBM where she is helping craft IBM’s serious games strategy in technical training, marketing, and leadership skill building. She is the founder of the award-winning INNOV8 program, a series of games that teaches and evangelizes Business Process Management. INNOV8 is being used in over 1000 schools worldwide and is now available for public consumption. Prior to working at IBM, Boinodiris has been an entrepreneur for 10 years, starting two companies in custom application/social network development and videogame consulting. She co-founded WomenGamers.Com, a popular women’s gaming portal on the Internet and started the first scholarship for women to attain degrees in game design and development in the US. She was honored by Women in Games International as one of the top 100 women in the games industry. Boinodiris received her MBA and her Bachelors in Math and Comp Sci from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
 
2009 Speaker Schedule

 

Insomniac
 
Keynote - Insomniac Games
We'll give an in-depth look at the production philosophy at Insomniac Games with examples from our 2008 releases Resistance 2 and Ratchet and Clank Future: Quest for Booty. We'll also give an overview of hiring standards geared toward students interested in joining the game industry.
Speaker Bio
Chad Dezern is the Studio Director at Insomniac Games’ new office in Durham, North Carolina. He oversees all aspects of development and content creation. Chad started in the games industry in 1995 as a production artist. His credits include15 shipped titles from Insomniac, DreamWorks Interactive, and Disney Interactive. A 10-year Insomniac veteran, Chad was the Art Director at for Resistance 2, Ratchet and Clank Future: Quest for Booty, and Ratchet and Clank Future. He was the Environment Art Director for Resistance: Fall of Man and Ratchet Deadlocked. Before that he contributed production art to the Ratchet and Clank and Spryo the Dragon series. Chad serves on the Advisory Board at Gnomon School of Visual Effects. He graduated from the Savannah College of Art and Design in 1994 with a B.F.A. in illustration.

Shaun McCabe is the production director at Insomniac Games' North Carolina studio, where he is responsible for project management, programming, design and audio. A five-year Insomniac veteran at the Burbank studio prior to moving to the NC studio, Shaun worked on Ratchet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal, Ratchet: Deadlocked and Resistance: Fall of Man as a sound programmer before becoming lead gameplay programmer for Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction in 2007 and then again on Resistance 2. Prior to joining Insomniac, Shaun was a junior engine programmer at Interplay Entertainment Corp. He contributed to titles on both PlayStation 2 and Xbox such as Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance (and the sequel), Giants: Citizen Kabuto and Run Like Hell. Shaun earned a bachelor's degree in music from Rollins College and an associate's degree in game design and development from Full Sail University, both in Winter Park, Fla.
Company Info
Insomniac Games is a wholly independent console videogames developer that has released award-winning hits for the PlayStation(R) game console, the PlayStation(R)2 computer entertainment system and PLAYSTATION(R)3 for 14 years. The company created the first three Spyro the Dragon(TM) games, the Ratchet & Clank(TM) franchise and Resistance: Fall of Man(TM), which combined to sell more than 25 million units worldwide. Insomniac Games recently released Resistance 2, its fourth PS3 exclusive title. In addition to making blockbuster videogames, Insomniac is known for ranking among the top four "Best Small Companies to Work for in America" in 2005 and 2006 and among the Top 10 for 2007, according to the Great Places to Work Institute and Society for Human Resources Management. Insomniac Games announced the opening of a North Carolina-based development studio in January 2009. The new studio, which will be located in the Raleigh-Durham area, will focus on developing both current and new intellectual properties.
 
Media Sunshine
 
Keynote - Media Sunshine
What are video games evolving into? Can the study of their progression tell us anything about the future of interactive entertainment? What lessons can we learn from past development? What will the next generation of games be like? In this keynote address, the husband-and-wife team of game producer Heather Chandler and game writer Rafael Chandler take a look at the history of game development, filtered through the prism of their combined 22 years in the industry.
Company Info
Media Sunshine is an independent game development studio that provides contracting and consulting services to publishers and developers, including Psyonix Studios, SouthPeak Games, 1C Company, and Artificial Studios. Heather Chandler, a producer with experience at Activision, Electronic Arts, and Ubisoft, founded the company in 2005. She was joined in 2006 by Rafael Chandler, a writer who has worked on games developed and published by Sony, Sega, and Ubisoft. Media Sunshine has contributed to the development of Monster Madness: Grave Danger, Two Worlds, Supersonic Acrobatic Rocket-Powered Battle-Cars, Spy Hunter: Nowhere to Run, and Sacred 2: Fallen Angel.
Speaker Bio
Multimedia producer, author, and entrepreneur Heather Chandler is the founder and Executive Producer of Media Sunshine, Incorporated. During her thirteen years on the front lines of the game industry, she has worked for Electronic Arts, Activision, Ubisoft, SouthPeak Games, Artificial Studios, and Psyonix Studios. Heather has contributed to the production of over 40 games, including Sacred 2: Fallen Angel, Two Worlds, Monster Madness: Grave Danger, Heavy Gear, Dark Reign, Civilization: Call to Power, and numerous games in Ghost Recon series, including Advanced Warfighter. She is the author of The Game Production Handbook and The Game Localization Handbook. Heather has lectured at GDC, Future Play, and the Montreal Game Summit. She graduated with honors from Vanderbilt University and received an M.A. from the USC School of Cinematic Arts.

During his nine years in the game industry, freelance game writer Rafael Chandler has worked for Sony, Sega, Electronic Arts, Ubisoft, Zipper Interactive, Slant Six Games, Edge of Reality, SouthPeak Games, and 1C Company. Currently, he's writing M.A.G. (Massive Action Game), Cipher Complex, and two unannounced projects in development. His shipped titles include SOCOM: Confrontation, Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter, Rainbow Six: Lockdown, and Ghost Recon 2. Chandler is the author of The Game Writing Handbook, and also authored Monster Madness: Battle For Suburbia, a comic book published by Dark Horse. Chandler has been a speaker at the 2006 Game Writers Conference, the 2007 Russian Game Developers Conference in Moscow (where he taught the six-hour master class), and the 2008 Montreal International Game Summit.
 
Media Sunshine
 
Serious Educational Games
This presentation will describe an overview of five Serious Games projects led by Dr. Annetta at N.C. State’s College of Education. Dr. Annetta’s work is grounded in distance learning in multiuser virtual environments and his interests range from K-12 science and mathematics learning to science teacher preparation through training simulations. The five projects presented at the Carolina Games Summit will illustrate how K-12 teachers and students have created games to learn science and mathematics, how a cyberinfrastructure using real-time renewable energy data is being established in a virtual world, and a training simulation being developed for prospective science teachers.
Speaker Bio
As a second term assistant professor of Science Education at North Carolina State University, my research has focused on distance learning and the effect of instructional technology on science learning of teachers and students in rural and underserved populations. Although there is considerable research on distance learning, I have focused on the untapped analyses of learning science through various distance delivery strategies. My research has cascaded from my dissertation on comparing three different distance delivery strategies on science teacher professional development to my current focus on evaluating video games as a teaching and learning tool and as a vehicle for synchronous online instruction. The results of my dissertation suggested that synchronous interaction proved most effective on learning science in a distance-learning environment. Achieving synchronous interaction in distance-learning was only possible through videoconferencing technology until recent years. As technology continues to rapidly emerge and the push to be connected through the World Wide Web becomes more and more critical, it became obvious to me that there needed to be a strategy to deliver science content, synchronously, over the Internet. Upon accepting a position at North Carolina State University, I vigorously began to parlay the results of my dissertation into a pursuit of how synchronous interaction could come to fruition over the Web. Understanding the popularity of online, multiuser video game play, I began to use my past programming knowledge to build a virtual environment that became the platform for my current research. Through two separate internally funded grants, I designed and created a synchronous, online 3D virtual environment for distance learning courses offered at North Carolina State. The success of the internally funded grants thrusted a quest for external funding to continue supporting my research on gaming technology. My most recent endeavors:
  • HI FIVES (Highly Interactive Fun Virtual Environments in Science-ESI-0525115), has been funded by the National Science Foundation to investigate the viability of video games as a supplement to science instruction in grade 5-9. This project seeks to teach both teachers and students to design and build multiplayer games that align with state and national science and mathematics standards. HI FIVES seeks to answer such questions as can students learn STEM content through playing and/or designing video games. We are also exploring the interaction dynamics of multiple students in a 3D online environment as a function of increased engagement and achievement. Further, we seek to explore how teachers use the games as a teaching tool and if the common student experiences can be used for inquiry instruction.
  • Exploring Sophisticated Data Mining Analytics as A Strategy for Diagnostic Assessment. Supported again by the National Science Foundation, the investigators believe that a multi-institutional initiative studying the application of SAS analytics to several types of educational applications generating rich datastreams would generate important insights. Two of the investigators already have NSF funding that is producing such datasets through games and immersive simulations, and we plan to also analyze intelligent tutoring system data from the Pittsburgh Science of Learning Center. Such a project would develop research findings of value across several NSF directorates, including mathematics, computer science, and education.
  • VOLT (Virtual Online Learning and Teaching) is as internally funded distance learning endeavor where researchers from Science education, Training and Development, and the College of Management have teamed to create case-based missions in a 3D virtual learning environment.
  • STIMULATE (Science Teacher Immersive Modules for University Learning Around Teacher Education) is a National Science Foundation funded CCLI project partnering with Wake Technical Community College’s Digital Interactive Entertainment and Simulation program. The thrust of this project is to design and construct science teacher training for laboratory safety through immersive 3D environments.
  • GRADUATE (Games Requiring Advanced Developmental Understanding and Achievement in Technological Endeavors) is a National Science Foundation funded ITEST project partnering with the Kenan Fellows program and Virtual Heroes, Inc. where we will develop an exemplary model for the newly formed graduation requirement in North Carolina. As part of this project students in Lee County, NC and Hillside High School in Durham, NC will author video games as a product from scientific research they will perform to satisfy the graduation requirement.
In 2008, I was honored with three awards for my extension work teaching K-12 teachers and students video game design for science and mathematics learning. The awards were progressive from the College of Education Outstanding Extension Service Award, to the induction into the NC State University Academy of Outstanding Faculty Engaged in Extension to the Distinguished Alumni Engaged in Extension and Outreach award.
 
Mathew Silva
 
Steampunk and Costuming
Penny Dreadful Productions is a group of local Atlanta artist who collaborate to "Bring your imagination to life". All of the artists who make up the Penny Dreadfuls come from many different areas of expertise: Costuming, Props, Metal Machining, and Special Effects work in both film and stage productions.
Company Info
Penny Dreadful Productions is a group of artists from the Metro-Atlanta area who collaborate to "bring your imagination to life". Lead conceptualists Mathew Silva, Brian LuAllen, Erin Bushko, and Devon Simons team up with other production artists, machinists, prop makers, costumers, painters, and special effects artists of all kinds to create props, costumes, and special effects for theatrical productions, film, special events and festivals. Their designs for the Steampunk genre have been seen from coast to coast, and they are proud to make the Carolina Games Summit their first stop for their 2009 Steampunk Panel Tour.
 
Robert Rice
 
The Future of Mobile Games
Robert is the author of MMO EVOLUTION (ISBN 978-1-84728-679-6) and an expert on persistent immersive environments, augmented and virtual reality, simulations, virtual worlds and massively multiplayer games as well as large scale communities and social networking. Robert is a visionary and entrepreneur dedicated to pushing the technological and design boundaries for online interactive and immersive environments. With more than 15 years of experience, he is a multi-talented individual with a strong combination of Business, Design, and Technical skills. Recognized as an “Internet Gaming Pioneer” by Advertising Age Magazine in 1996, Robert was also called “a Founding Father of the Digital Nation” in 1998 by The Raleigh News & Observer while he was designing immersive interfaces and next-generation concepts for a 3D internet. Robert is the CEO of Neogence Enterprises and Executive Director of the National Institute for Virtual and Augmented Reality and Simulations (NIVARS).
Company Info
Neogence is headquartered in Raleigh NC, and is developing new technologies and applications for mobile augmented reality, MMORPGs, and Virtual Worlds and Simulations.
 
Kwame Hawkins
 
Lighting in CG Enviroments
This lecture will be about lighting in CG environments. The discussion will not be software specific. He will talk about light and color theory in general and then move on talk about lighting in CG environments. The discussion should be general enough to cover both gaming and feature animation. He will start at basic lighting and end the discussion with global illumination since there are now game engines on the market that support it.
Speaker Bio
Raised in North Carolina is currently working as the Program Coordinator of the Animation Department at the School of Communication Arts. He is also working as a director of for a pilot of an animated television series. His graduate thesis is on the Animation Pipeline and Digital Asset Management. He has worked professionally in the television industry as a production assistant and graphic artist. His career focus is on, lighting in CG environments, environmental modeling, 3D character animation, and character setup. He worked as a producer, art director, served on the board of directors of a non-profit organization. He is a graduate of Savannah of College of Art and Design with M.F.A in Computer Art with a concentration in character animation (2004) Also he is a graduate of North Carolina State University with a major in Technology Education with a minor Graphic Communication (B.S. degree 1999)
 
Robert Rice
 
perspective sketching
A hands-on drawing session to explore sketching as a means of developing and communicating design ideas. Participants are introduced to basic concepts of sketching such as line quality, line weight, contrast, perspective, shade and shadow, etc.
Speaker Bio
Timothy Buie is an assistant professor in the Department of Industrial Design in the College of Design at North Carolina State University. His research interests include product design; 3D game design, modeling and animation; design drawing and sketching; and design education. Professor Buie is currently Co-Director of the NCSU Digital Games Research Center (DGRC) along with Dr. Michael Young of the Department of Computer Science. The DGRC is a multi-disciplinary center whose focus investigates the scientific, engineering, social, and educational challenges of digital entertainment. The DGRC includes faculty from the colleges of Education, Engineering, Design, and Humanities and Social Sciences involved in a wide range of research and educational initiatives that focus on new modes of entertainment and interaction in digital media. Professor Buie is also part of the North Carolina Serious Games Initiative (NCSGI) which is a collaboration between academia, industry, and government to develop education related games for the state. Professor Buie has a wide range of academic and industry experience in computer game development, product design, accessible design, comic books, magazine illustration, and computer animation. He teaches a variety of graduate and undergraduate courses in the College of Design, and has developed several new courses related to his research interests. His students often work directly with faculty and students in other disciplines, and have found successful careers in design, entertainment, and education.
 
2008 Speaker Schedule


James Cowgill Jim Van Verth Graham Rhodes Marx Myth Alexander Macris Timothy Buie Dana Cowley Joel Gonzalez David Sipple Tiffany Barnes David Sipple Laura Angel Diane Pozefsky Michael Young Paula Hindman Melanie Sparks Bruce Shankle

Alexander Macris, Co-Founder, President, CEO
Themis Group, Durham, NC

Alexander Macris is co-founder, president, and CEO of Themis Group. In addition to providing the company's leadership and directing its key client engagements, he has served as editor-in-chief of the Themis Report, founder and the publisher of The Escapist magazine, and designer of the award-winning Heroes Mini. Prior to Themis, he was founder and CEO of WarCry Network, a community destination for entertainment enthusiasts, which he grew to over 1 million monthly users. He is a graduate magna cum laude of Harvard Law School, where he authored a study on the effects of game design on community growth.

About Themis Group, Inc.:

Themis Group, Inc. is an interactive media publishing and services company catering to the worldwide community of technology, games and entertainment enthusiasts. Themis Group segments its operations into publishing and services divisions which work cooperatively to reach and relate with today’s NetSet, the tech-savvy young media consumers.

Themis Group, Inc.’s publishing division, including the WarCry Network and The Escapist, operates a network of websites, blogs, and digital magazines offering entertainment, news and editorial content to their respective communities.

Themis Group’s services division includes Playerbase Solutions (PBS) and TAP Interactive (TAP). PBS’ suite of services includes customer support, player interest programs, community relations, quality assurance testing and in-game event management. TAP provides traditional marketing, public relations, cutting-edge viral initiatives and other custom communication solutions for some of today’s largest game developers and publishers.

Keynote Speaker: Bruce Shankle, Senior Software Development Engineer
Microsoft, Redmond, WA

Bruce Shankle, a native of North Carolina, is a Senior Software Development Engineer on the DirectX team at Microsoft in
Redmond, Washington where he works on advanced graphics technologies for Windows gaming. In the past he worked for Epic Games on Unreal
technology as well as Ubisoft's subsidiary, Red Storm Entertainment, where he worked on the Ghost Recon franchise.

Visit www.bruceshankle.com to learn more.

About Microsoft:

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq "MSFT" ) is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software -- any time, any place and on any device.

Microsoft DirectX is an advanced suite of multimedia APIs built into Microsoft Windows operating systems. DirectX provides a standard development platform for Windows-based PCs by enabling software developers to access specialized hardware features without having to write hardware-specific code. DirectX was first introduced in 1995 and is a recognized standard for multimedia application development on the Windows platform.

Dana Cowley, Public Relations Manager
Epic Games, Cary, NC

Dana Cowley has seven years experience in the entertainment software industry. She was previously responsible for driving the interactive entertainment division at marketing, PR and business development firm ClearImage, and prior to that, she was the marketing and communications manager for Octagon Entertainment, a developer and publisher of PC and console games. Dana is also the co-founder and coordinator of the North Carolina Triangle chapter of the International Game Developers Association, the world's largest non-profit professional membership organization serving game developers.

About Epic Games:

Epic Games, Inc., based in Cary, NC and established in 1991, develops cutting-edge games and cross-platform game engine technology. The company has created multiple million-selling, award-winning titles in its Unreal series, recently shipping “Unreal Tournament 3″ for PC and PlayStation 3. Epic’s breakthrough game, “Gears of War,” sold over 4 million copies and was awarded overall Game of the Year for 2006 by the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences, Game Developers Choice Awards, GameSpot, GamePro and many others.

Epic is also responsible for the Unreal Engine, which is the underlying technology for a wide range of games including the Game Critics Awards’ Best Console Game and Spike TV’s 2007 RPG of the Year “Mass Effect” by BioWare and the 2007 BAFTA Best Game and Spike TV Game of the Year “BioShock” by 2K Games. Epic’s Unreal Engine 3 is the current holder, and three-time consecutive winner, of Game Developer magazine’s Front Line award for Best Game Engine. Epic was also recognized as 2006 Studio of the Year by Spike TV, Developer of the Year by Official Xbox Magazine and 2007 Large Company of the Year by the North Carolina Technology Association.

David Sipple, President
Music Wizard Group, Longmont, CO

David Sipple is president of the Music Wizard Group. David has 20 years experience in the software and TV industries, in sales, marketing and executive management roles. Mr. Sipple joined the Music Wizard Group in 2004, helping it grow from a development company into revenue and operations. His unique insights and approaches have consistently led to increased sales and ROI's with previous employers, the Home Shopping Network, Quarterdeck Software and SAS. A diverse and experienced business leader, he also owns his own consulting firm Poseidon Dynamics. David has a BS in Broadcast Journalism from the University of Wyoming and an MBA from the University of South Florida. His interests include reading, swimming and music.

About Music Wizard Group:

Music Wizard Group is the leader in music videogame software that teaches anyone how to play real musical instruments. Music Wizard provides a
simple and non-violent, gaming solution that "cracks the musical code" of reading notation and delivers on the promise of real musicianship for
everyone. Music Wizard Group seeks to improve the quality of life by empowering more people with the gift of playing music and by promoting music
as something to be shared and enjoyed together.

Music Wizard welcomes everyone to experience the joy, self-expression and liberation naturally gained through a relationship with playing music.
Backed by award-winning software, university produced Music Wizard Academy tutorials for parents and teachers, a proven song-based curriculum and a never-ending supply of musical content, the means is now available to unlock and ignite the creative musical genius inherent in all.

Music Wizard Group believes that the language of music is a birthright, something that anyone can learn and enjoy at any age, regardless of
experience. The company's core mission is to help bring about universal music literacy.

Diane Pozefsky, Research Professor
University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC

Diane Pozefsky is a research professor at UNC-Chapel Hill, working in software engineering and serious games. Focusing on computers as tools, she works with a broad range of collaborators from medicine and pharmacology to archeology. Prior to returning to her alma mater, she spent twenty-five years at IBM, where she was named an IBM Fellow. She has worked in technologies from networking and mobile computing to software engineering and has worked across the development cycle from architecture to deployment.

About University of North Carolina Chapel Hill:

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill was the nation's first state university to open its doors and the only public university to award degrees in the 18th century. Now in its third century, UNC belongs to the select group of American and Canadian campuses forming the Association of American Universities. UNC's academic offerings span more than 100 fields, including bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees as well as professional degrees in dentistry, medicine, pharmacy and law. Five health schools — which, with UNC Hospitals, comprise one of the nation's most complete academic medical centers — are integrated with liberal arts, basic sciences and high-tech academic programs.

Graham Rhodes, Principal Scientist
Applied Research Associates, Inc., Raleigh, NC

Graham Rhodes is a principal scientist at the Southeast Division of Applied Research Associates, Inc., in Raleigh, North Carolina. He has been creating software for interactive and real-time 3D graphics, gaming, and physical simulation for many years. Graham has been the lead software developer for a variety of simulation and training projects, including a series of sponsored educational simulations for the World Book Multimedia Encyclopedia; and more recently, first/third-person action simulations for industrial safety and humanitarian demining training using state-of-the-art game engine technology. He is currently involved in developing software that provides procedural 3D environment modeling and physics-based solutions for simulation and training. Graham has contributed articles to several books in the Game Programming Gems book series, and authored the section on real-time physics for the textbook, Introduction to Game Development. He is the moderator of and frequent contributor to the math and physics section of the gamedev.net game development Internet portal, has presented at the annual Game Developer's Conference (GDC) and other industry events, and regularly attends GDC and the annual ACM/SIGGRAPH conference. He is a member of ACM/SIGGRAPH, the International Game Developer's Association (IGDA), the North Carolina Advanced Learning Technologies Association (NC ALTA), and the Long Now Foundation.

About Applied Research Associates, Inc.:

Applied Research Associates (ARA) is an employee-owned company whose mission is to “solve the problems of national importance.” We are composed primarily of engineers and scientists who create and invent applications that protect our public servants, prevent disasters to homeowners, and provide strength to our military heroes. We do not just accept the ordinary. Our motto is to "Expand the realm of possibility.”

ARA develops software technologies that can greatly reduce the cost of developing art content for games and simulation-based learning applications (aka “serious games”), including our RUGUD and U2MG suite of tools for procedurally generating game-ready 3D models of detailed urbanscapes. Additionally, we develop high fidelity, but fast-running physics simulation technology that provides engineering quality results within games, training, and mission rehearsal software.

James Cowgill, Senior Game Designer
Destineer Studios, Raleigh, NC

James Cowgill has been in game development since 1996 and has held a variety of roles from Lead Game Designer to QA Manager to Producer. He has contributed to a number of commercial, serious game and simulation titles including "America's Army", "Asheron's Call", "Warbirds", "Adaptive Thinking & Leadership" and "SimPatient". He is currently a Senior Game Designer with Destineer Studios in Raleigh contributing to several commercial game and simulation products in development.

About Destineer Studios:

Destineer develops and publishes commercial videogames for both consoles and PC, and creates PC-based virtual training systems for military, intelligence and first-responder organizations. Destineer is a privately held corporation headquartered in Minneapolis, MN, with development studios in Minneapolis, Raleigh, NC, and Austin, TX, and publishes games under the Destineer, MacSoft, and Bold Games, brands.

Jim Van Verth, Software Engineer
NVIDIA, Raleigh, NC

Jim Van Verth is a OpenGL Software Engineer at NVIDIA, where he works on device drivers for NVIDIA GPUs. Prior to that, he was a founding member of Red Storm Entertainment, where he was a lead engineer for eight years. For the past nine years he also has been a regular speaker at the Game Developers Conference, teaching the all-day tutorials "Math for Game Programmers" and "Physics for Game Programmers." His background includes a B.A. in Math/Computer Science from Dartmouth College, an M.S. in Computer Science from the State University of New York at Buffalo, and a M.S. in Computer Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

About NVIDIA:

NVIDIA, (Nasdaq: NVDA), is the world leader in visual computing technologies and the inventor of the GPU, a high-performance processor which generates breathtaking, interactive graphics on workstations, personal computers, game consoles, and mobile devices. NVIDIA serves the entertainment and consumer market with its GeForce® products, the professional design and visualization market with its Quadro™ products, and the high-performance computing market with its Tesla™ products. NVIDIA is headquartered in Santa Clara, Calif. and has offices throughout Asia, Europe, and the Americas.

Joel Gonzales, Engineer
1st Playable Productions, Troy, NY

Joel Gonzales is an engineer at 1st Playable Productions. Before then, he received his Master's degree from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. During his time there, he played a major part in helping the university be the first in the state of Louisiana to offer courses in video game design & production. His credits include a serious game called "A Force More Powerful" as well as a kids game "GoPets: Vacation Island. " He enjoys long walks on the beach.

About 1st Playable Productions, LLC:

1st Playable Productions, LLC is an independent game development studio with a focus on handheld games for kids. We're here to make fun and great looking games! Games that build, not exploit, the entertainment brands that they represent. We love finding ways to get more out of limited game platforms, and are a licensed developer for Nintendo Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS, Microsoft Xbox, as well as other embedded game platforms.

Laura Angell, Instructor
Wake Technical Community College, Raleigh, NC

Laura Angell teaches Game Design and 3-D Modeling in the Simulation and Game Development Department at Wake Technical Community College. After receiving a BA in Broadcast Journalism at UNC-G, Laura began working as a freelance employee for On Location Film and Video as well as a tape operator for Associated Media Production Services. Her career in video games began when she was hired as an encoder/asset manager for SouthPeak Interactive . SouthPeak Interactive released PC games including "Dark Side of the Moon" and "Wild Wild West: The Steel Assassin" as well as Play Station games such as "Boombots" and "The Dukes of Hazzard: Racing for Home". After SouthPeak Interactive Laura worked as a video editor at SAS.

About Wake Technical Community College:

Wake Technical Community College (Wake Tech) is a two-year, public institution providing an open door to education and training for the citizens of Wake County and surrounding communities. Known as “College for the Real World,” the college provides a comprehensive array of learning opportunities and serves an annual enrollment of more than 57,000 students. Curriculum (for-credit) pro­grams in more than 168 academic, vocational, and technical specialties offer two-year associate degrees in science, applied science, the arts, and general education; university transfer programs for entry into four-year institutions; and diploma and certificate programs that prepare workers to succeed at jobs in high demand in the community. Wake Tech also offers a broad scope of continuing education courses, including training for entrepreneurs and small business owners, public safety officer training (fire, rescue, and law enforcement), high school equiva­lency classes, and non-credit courses for personal and professional development. As the second largest community college in the state, Wake Tech provides customized workforce training for new and expanding industries and a cooperative education program that interfaces with the corporate community.

Marx Myth, Art Director
Lockheed Martin 3D Learning Solutions, Cary, NC

Marx Myth is an Arts Manager/Art Director. He spends most of his time overseeing the productive creativeness of others. His profession within the gaming environment must always stay focused on milestones and quality assurance...all the while supervising and orchestrating the creative work of his fabulous art team. Networking has opened many doors for him and if he was to give any words of advice it would be this: "always be genuine and kind to everyone...stand on firm conviction, but be flexible...and always remember to stay true to the course your heart has set."

About Lockheed Martin 3D Learning Solutions.:

3Dsolve, Inc. was a privately held company that created simulation-based learning solutions for government, military and corporate applications. The company’s innovative software tools assist clients with collaborative training utilizing interactive 3D graphics (aka, “serious games”). 3Dsolve’s core competencies include multi-media, software engineering, digital artwork, instructional design and project management for use in state-of-the-art simulation learning solutions. Acquired by Lockheed Martin Corporation [NYSE: LMT] in August of 2007 the company is currently being transformed into Lockheed Martin 3D Learning Solutions but will remain in Cary, NC and continue developing simulations for the government, military, and corporate customers.

Melanie Sparks, Instructor
Pitt Community College, Greenville, NC

Melanie Sparks is an instructor in the Computer Programming curriculum at Pitt Community College. She is responsible for all undergraduate courses in C++, Java, and Perl, and teaches courses in Simulation and Game Development Programming. She holds a BS in Computer Science and MS in Instructional Technology.

Prior to teaching, her experience included design and development of HIPAA-compliant networked client/server database applications, Cold Fusion driven learning object server for a medical school, application programming for a RAVE immersive environment, NLE (editing) for a television show airing on ESPN2, and touring solo and with her band supporting Phish, Lenny Kravitz, Tori Amos, and more, and at music conferences including NEMO, SXSE, and the Philadelphia Music Conference.

She is the adviser for the IGDA-affiliated Pitt Game Developers Association, which has created on-campus workshops and produced a short film on the basics of game development and written over a dozen small 2D and 3D games (and a 2D level editor) using Flash, C, C++ (and Allegro and Irrlicht), Blender, and Maya.

About Pitt Community College:

Pitt Community College is a two-year, public institution providing an open door to education and training for the citizens of Greenville and surrounding communities. Pitt Community College is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award Associate Degrees.

Michael Young, Associate Professor
North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC

Michael Young is an associate professor in the Department of Computer Science at North Carolina State University. His interests center around the use of artificial intelligence techniques in virtual worlds like computer games. His work involves research on planning and plan recognition, natural language generation, computer games and computational models of narrative.

About North Carolina State University:

North Carolina State University is known for its leadership in education and research, and globally recognized for its science, technology, engineering and mathematics leadership. NC State is the largest four-year institution in North Carolina with more than 31,100 students from all North Carolina counties and nearly 100 foreign countries. NC State students, faculty and staff are focused. As one of the leading land-grant institutions in the nation, NC State is committed to playing an active and vital role in improving the quality of life for the citizens of North Carolina, the nation and the world.

NC State’s research expenditures are approaching more than $315 million annually, with almost 70 percent of faculty engaged in sponsored research and 2,500 graduate students supported by research grants. NC State is ranked third among all public universities (without medical schools) in industry-sponsored research expenditures.

Paula Hindman, Instructor
Piedmont Community College, Roxboro, NC

Paula Hindman is Director and also Instructor for the Digital Effects & Animation Technology Program at Piedmont Community College. She teaches animation and motion graphics using Maya, 3DS Max, Flash, After Effects, Final Cut Pro and more. She received her bachelor of science in Mass Communication from Middle Tennessee State University and minored in Fine Arts and Computer Science. Also Paula is a Alias Certified Instructor.

About Piedmont Community College:

Piedmont Community College provides educational opportunities to approximately 55,000 residents in rural Person and Caswell counties. Piedmont Community College offers an Associate of Applied Sciences in Digital Effects and Animation Technology.  Graduates from the program are currently working at Out of Our Minds Studios, Epic Games, Icarus Studios, Fox 50, and various other companies.  As one of the 58 member institutions of the North Carolina Community College System, PCC awards Associate Degrees, Diplomas and Certificates in more than 35 curriculum programs. PCC's premiere location, just 40 miles north of the booming Research Triangle Park, positions the College to provide training for the high-tech, in-demand jobs of the 21st century and makes the College an integral factor in the economic development of both counties it serves as well as the state. From the most basic skills classes to college-level courses to specialized industrial training, PCC has it all! Whatever the need, PCC is committed to serving its students in a warm and friendly, caring atmosphere.

Tiffany Barnes, Assistant Professor
University of North Carolina Charlotte, Charlotte, NC

Tiffany Barnes is an Assistant Professor of Computer Science, co-director of the Games + Learning Lab, and director of the Game2Learn Research Group. Dr. Barnes works to engage more people in computing, through the STARS Alliance and Culturally Situated Design Tools projects. Dr. Barnes conducts research in Games, Artificial Intelligence, and Learning.

About University of North Carolina Charlotte:

University of North Carolina Charlotte is the fourth largest of the 16 institutions within the University of North Carolina system and the largest institution in the Charlotte region. The university comprises seven professional colleges and currently offers 17 doctoral programs, 59 master’s degree programs and 85 leading to bachelor’s degrees. More than 900 full-time faculty comprise the university’s academic departments and the 2006 fall enrollment exceeded 21,500 students. UNC Charlotte boasts more than 75,000 living alumni and adds 4,000 to 4,500 new alumni each year.

Timothy Buie, Assistant Professor
North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC

Timothy Buie is an assistant professor in the Department of Industrial Design in the College of Design at North Carolina State University. His research interests include product design; 3D game design, modeling and animation; design drawing and sketching; and design education. Professor Buie is currently Co-Director of the NCSU Digital Games Research Center (DGRC) along with Dr. Michael Young of the Department of Computer Science. The DGRC is a multi-disciplinary center whose focus investigates the scientific, engineering, social, and educational challenges of digital entertainment. The DGRC includes faculty from the colleges of Education, Engineering, Design, and Humanities and Social Sciences involved in a wide range of research and educational initiatives that focus on new modes of entertainment and interaction in digital media. Professor Buie is also part of the North Carolina Serious Games Initiative (NCSGI) which is a collaboration between academia, industry, and government to develop education related games for the state. Professor Buie has a wide range of academic and industry experience in computer game development, product design, accessible design, comic books, magazine illustration, and computer animation. He teaches a variety of graduate and undergraduate courses in the College of Design, and has developed several new courses related to his research interests. His students often work directly with faculty and students in other disciplines, and have found successful careers in design, entertainment, and education.

About North Carolina State University:

North Carolina State University is known for its leadership in education and research, and globally recognized for its science, technology, engineering and mathematics leadership. NC State is the largest four-year institution in North Carolina with more than 31,100 students from all North Carolina counties and nearly 100 foreign countries. NC State students, faculty and staff are focused. As one of the leading land-grant institutions in the nation, NC State is committed to playing an active and vital role in improving the quality of life for the citizens of North Carolina, the nation and the world.

NC State’s research expenditures are approaching more than $315 million annually, with almost 70 percent of faculty engaged in sponsored research and 2,500 graduate students supported by research grants. NC State is ranked third among all public universities (without medical schools) in industry-sponsored research expenditures.

This page last updated on 01/31/13 @ 7:27PM.
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