TechHub Meetup: Ladies in video games development (powered by MavenHut)

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This week, we dedicated our meetup to talking about game development with a couple of experienced ladies in the field, who are set on making their valuable contribution towards the creation of …

This week, we dedicated our meetup to talking about game development with a couple of experienced ladies in the field, who are set on making their valuable contribution towards the creation of immersive gaming experiences, as part of a new meetup organized in partnership with RGDA (Romanian Game Designers' Association).

We're also happy to share that the news that this meetup is powered by MavenHut (http://mavenhut.com/)!

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  • 1. Key talking points 1. Do we need more female game characters? 2. What are the benefits of a gender-balanced team from your experience? 3. Are there enough role models for young female developers looking to build a career in video game development? 4. What should game developers know about addressing the female gamer market segment? 5. What are some interesting career options for women in video game development? 6. What are some networking opportunities for women in video game development? 7. Could you estimate the impact inclusionary games are starting to have on the gaming industry? 8. What are the most rewarding aspects of your work?
  • 2. TechHub Meetup Insights Do we need more female game characters? Gabriela Tataru (Brailoiu), Business Performance Manager at KING I think we have enough. I am working on Bubble Witch Saga and Candy Crush Saga so I think casual gaming has found the winning mixture. Maria Negruta, Game Economy Designer at Gameloft When it comes to casual games I think there are too many female characters, I don’t feel there is any shortage here. I wouldn’t say there is a shortage there but of course female characters are better to look at when you consider spending hours in a row at a game. Corina Elena Tataranu, Development Manager at EA Games I think there are enough too. I was playing Mortal Kombat and I was not too excited to play with female characters.
  • 3. TechHub Meetup Insights Benefits of a gender balanced team Gabriela Tataru (Brailoiu), Business Performance Manager at KING A well-balanced team is more profitable because they bring together their experience. I wouldn’t split them; both genders are good to have. Maria Negruta, Game Economy Designer at Gameloft When it comes to teams, you can either have 1 female or a 50-50 split. You either go for one or for many when it comes to women in gaming, because they will become the alphas. Corina Elena Tataranu, Development Manager at EA Games I’ve seen a lot of good ideas coming from women, and people impressed by them. Idea generation would be a first skill for women, and then creating a team culture that’s more relaxed and more fun. One of our producers is a women and she really came up with stuff that would actually bind the team – a sign that women are tolerated and many enjoy working with them in the game development environment.
  • 4. TechHub Meetup Insights Role models for girls in game development Corina Elena Tataranu, Development Manager at EA Games I found the role models when I started working at EA, but yes, there are! I’ve met some incredible people, both men and women, that have taught me a great lot of things. Maria Negruta, Game Economy Designer at Gameloft Yeah there are, depending on the path you’d like to take. There are several women that are pretty well-known. Jane McGonnigal that also speaks on Ted and she’s really pretty so we are covered there as well. Gabriela Tataru (Brailoiu), Business Performance Manager at KING In King 25% of the top management are women, so that says a lot. Women are encouraged to seek advancement opportunities
  • 5. TechHub Meetup Insights Addressing the female gamer market Gabriela Tataru (Brailoiu), Business Performance Manager at KING When addressing women it’s very important to have highly usable platforms. It’s very important for them to have very handy things – a more platform-driven approach. Maria Negruta, Game Economy Designer at Gameloft How the immersive experience works for women: steal their heart, eat their brains. The best example is Candy Crush Saga and this guy that constantly builds your self-esteem by calling you divine, and delicious and amazing every time you do a combo. What type of relationships do women develop with an immersive games? A strong bond with the character. Basically it will build emotion, tension, character so that you relate to it on a whole new level.
  • 6. TechHub Meetup Insights Career options for women in gaming Corina Elena Tataranu, Development Manager at EA Games There’s a tons of options. For example in the team I work in we have female producers, female game designers, engineers, QAs, we’re pretty much everywhere. If we look at the quantity it’s not too much, but we’re spread everywhere. Maria Negruta, Game Economy Designer at Gameloft Any position is recommended for a woman. You need to have passion. For example, in my department – game economy design – all the others are men. If you’re a good professional, you can make it anywhere. Gabriela Tataru (Brailoiu), Business Performance Manager at KING In KING we have 250 females out of a 840 employees network. It’s creative and it’s product management and it’s business – the opportunities are there and you have to take advantage of them.
  • 7. TechHub Meetup Insights Networking opportunities Gabriela Tataru (Brailoiu), Business Performance Manager at KING Nothing on the local market yet. Maria Negruta, Game Economy Designer at Gameloft RGDA is the biggest supporter here in Romania. At an international level, there are several events dedicated to women in game development.
  • 8. TechHub Meetup Insights The impact of inclusionary games Corina Elena Tataranu, Development Manager at EA Games I think casual games work the best. Gabriela Tataru (Brailoiu), Business Performance Manager at KING The figures are already on the market: we are having more than 100mill users/day on mobile only. Game engagement is pretty high and we have milions of new downloads every day. In our opinion this is the future. Maria Negruta, Game Economy Designer at Gameloft Creating a game that’s accessible to anyone does not necessarily mean making it stupid or easy. You have to challenge the player and add layers of depth to your service.
  • 9. TechHub Meetup Insights Feedback from game players & enjoying your job Corina Elena Tataranu, Development Manager at EA Games I was walking in a restaurant and there were 3 kids playing FIFA on the iPad and one of them scored a goal and celebrated genuinely and I had that amazing feeling “oh, I did that!” There are millions of people enjoying games, filming them, putting it on YouTube and celebrating intensely. Social and the online environment has made it easy for us to interact with the users, not directly but enough as to understand what they like and what they don’t. Maria Negruta, Game Economy Designer at Gameloft Everyday makes me happy about my job. I wake up so happy that I have to go to work everyday. I am happy to see the numbers go up, to see the conversion points happen when I designed them to happen. I’d love to tell you more but pretty much it’s the end result when you see the metrics. Gabriela Tataru (Brailoiu), Business Performance Manager at KING It’s the same here. I don’t hate Mondays and I’m genuinely happy to go see my friends each week. Seeing the results is also very encouraging and it all works out great in the end.
  • 10. TechHub Meetup Insights Online privacy & censorship Resources: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Women_and_video_games http://mashable.com/2014/04/02/animal-crossing-gender-gaming/ http://www.theguardian.com/technology/commentisfree/2014/feb/19/ video-games-need-more-women-female-characters http://kotaku.com/what-its-like-to-be-a-woman-making-games- 1292389459/all
  • 11. See you at our next event! Bucharest.TechHub.com Facebook.com/TechHubBucharest Twitter.com/TechHubBuc