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You are a Game Designer – So what do you do?

Published on 2013-08-20, by in Game Design, Personal.

Is being a Game Designer the most mysterious job in the universe?

I have the wonderful pleasure of introducing myself as a Game Designer. But then comes the follow up question. “What does a game designer do”? Surprisingly that’s a very hard questions to answer. And if I can’t answer it, if it confuses me sometimes, how can I expect anyone else to get it?

Well, at least that is not as bad as these responses:

  • Oh so you are an artist? (Not really…)
  • So you are a programmer? (Not really…)
  • What programs do you use to do game design? (Because they look positively shocked when I answer “Mostly excel”)
  • Can you fix my computer? (Sadly yes… I probably can. But I don’t want to.)


So what do I do?

In a short sentence “I create systems”. That doesn’t really tell the listener (Or HR Manager) anything he can use or wrap his head around though. So I usually have to go deeper and give some examples. You have played (Insert game) right?


My first experience using a 3D Printer

Published on 2013-08-13, by in Uncategorized.

Lots of articles relating to style/art guides for video games.

Published on 2013-08-09, by in Game Assets & Tools.

I just found this site, it seems like a collector of other articles/websites that discuss art styles for video games. I will have to look it over later because there seems like so much there I can’t just take a quick peek and decide how good it is without delving deeper.


I recently attended a IGDA Lecture with 3 of the people who made Tomb Raider: Reborn

The most interesting was Remi’s camera talk. Camera angle, follow, zoom, focus and movement play a huge role in setting the tone of a scene. This article “Storyboarding the Simpsons Way ” does a great job of covering these Hollywood tricks, but specifically for the story boarder. Great read.


Casual Connect 2013

Published on 2013-08-06, by in Uncategorized.

A picture Gallery from Casual Connect 2013 San Francisco!

Be forewarned: I never take enough pictures. This post is very boring. ENJOY!



Beautiful Circus Like Precision

Published on 2013-08-05, by in Uncategorized.

It’s so beautiful to watch!


How to fail @ Hiring Designers

Published on 2013-08-05, by in Game Design.

Hiring a great Game Designer must be hard. In fact hiring for any “creative” role such as writing or art is a unique challenge, because theoretically the more “creative” a person is the less technical they should be.  It’s a classic left brain vs right brain conundrum. <I don’t actually believe this anymore. Technical knowledge comes from experience.> How do you test and certify fairly for left brained people and activities?

For example let’s compare a Game Developer vs an Artist. For the developer there is a clear path to his career.

  • You want him to have a science degree.
  • You want his resume to list an alphabet soup of languages, even better if that soup includes your preferred language .
  • You can look for things like awards, contests, high marks, best in class all of these things are good indicators of how talented he *should be* at programming.


  • The artist?
  • Printing the resume is a waste of trees.
  • Jump straight to the portfolio and start calling references.

Because it just doesn’t matter, he could have awards, a fine art degree and yet none of that matters if the portfolio doesn’t match what you are trying to do.

So what do you about hiring a game designer? His portfolio is the sum of all parts. If you judge him solely on his portfolio, like the artist above, you might have well just asked how much money his last studio spent and how many people did he work with. Cause that’s what you are looking at. His contribution is buried deep deep behind the visuals, sound and programming that plays across your screen.




On the way home

Published on 2013-08-05, by in Personal, Travel.

Flying over Japan is like flying over Florida. I see lots and lots of lakes, rivers, farms and trees. I guess most 1st world nations infrastructure looks the same from the sky. I don’t see anything uniquely “Asian” or “Japanese” at least not from landing and takeoff. All the roads and fences cut the land into neat little squares and rectangles. It all looks the same.

JAL airport surprised me. At the waiting lounge flight crew members politely search all of your carryons. I guess they are nothing if not precautious and thorough; since I have been through not 1 but 2 security scanners already. These Japanese don’t play!



To think in 5 hours I will land in Japan but stay for even a single day. What a disappointment. Of all the countries I’ve wanted to visit and live in Japan has always been at the top. I’m so close…. but I have to get back to the US and handle “affairs”. Trying to operate remotely from a 12 hour time difference doesn’t work. Even in an age of emails and text messages. (more…)

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Someone Call Ice Cube, Let Him Know It Was A Good Day! ♥

Before I leave this Island of politeness, I had to make a road trip just to get my friend a gift. It started off with piling into a van designed to seat 14+driver. I think I counted 25. I was lucky to have some leg room sitting next to the door, I was unlucky to only get half of my butt no the seat. 40 Minutes later I’m strolling through the mall.

So what made this such a good day?

  • I found the gift I wanted to bring back
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  • I expected all the banks to be closed, not only was one open but they had the 1c and 5c coins in stock! SCORE! (Thanks Banco de Oro)
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  • I am a Thai Iced Tea connoisseur! Today’s Ice Tea was the best I’ve ever had. It was as thick and sweet as ice cream. Wonderful. I had to let the manager know and he was so pleased to hear it. (Plus I think he enjoys flirting with foreigners)
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What else can I say, today was a good day.

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Each of these bags is supposed to have 100 pieces of each coin. Whoever is filling these up is not doing a very good job though; When I couldn’t fit all of these coins into one slot I decided to count them. Each bag had 150 instead of 100!  I especially feel kind of bad since all these coins only cost me 12 piso (approx 30 cents!) I know it costs more than that to produce these coins. However both times I’ve tried to pay the banks extra, suggesting they charge me a service fee or buy themselves an ice cream, both times they smile and refuse saying they can’t. I think that officially means hell is freezing, a bank is refusing to charge me fees. It must be cold somewhere below.


The Joys of America

Published on 2013-05-31, by in Uncategorized.

To rent a car you must have liability insurance.
A car rental agency will sell you their liability insurance for $10 a day, only if you are not a resident in their state. So if you are visiting FL and only have a FL drivers license they will not let you sign up for their liability insurance.
An insurance agent will only sell you non-owner insurance (no vehicle owned) if no one in your house owns a car. So if your staying with a friend temporarily, you must be on their policy.

So if you only have a FL drivers license, and your going to stay with a friend in Florida, you cannot get liability insurance therefore you cannot rent a car.

Why are things so complicated in America!? We have the best, hard working, smart and ethical people in the world. Yet the worst rules and regulations.


I love me some Daft Punk

Published on 2013-05-31, by in Personal.


When people say they don’t like Techno I doubt they have explored the Genre enough to know that they don’t really like it. Techno can mimic any other style, from rock and blues to symphonic and orchestra. However being born in the club scene it’s usually most associated with high energy remixes. In the 90’s however a new style of Techno dominated MTV, the sub genre was called “Big Beat” and featured musical artists such as Prodigy, The Crystal Method and Chemical Brothers. Daft Punk may not fit into the “big beat” sub genre, and I’m not qualified to say otherwise, but listening to Daft Punk brings back that nostalgic feeling. Good times.

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