Jason has built a handful of successful internet business over the past 15 years. The best known one being Super Rewards, a virtual currency monetization platform for online games. As the founder of KITN Media he bootstrapped Super Rewards from zero revenue to a 100mm run rate in just over 12 months. He successfully sold the company to Adknowledge, one of largest online advertising marketplaces, in July of 2009.
Jason has investing in and/or is mentoring many local companies in the gaming space including DES Games, Compass Engine, and OverInteractive Media.
Blitzoo is a 22-person social games studio in Vancouver dedicated to creating original IP on Facebook and other social networks. Our first title, Party ON, entered a limited beta test May 1. A reformed lawyer, Dave has spent the past seventeen years building Web-centric companies and products that fuel his passion for finding innovative ways to inspire action, share information, or just provide fun. Prior to joining Blitzoo, Dave was Co-Founder and Chief Innovation Officer of Ayogo Games, Inc., where he helped create some of first Facebook and iPhone games for Electronic Arts and Monster Games, among others. Prior to that, Dave was VP, Client Innovation for Blast Radius, where he was responsible for architecting and delivering digital experiences for Electronic Arts and Nintendo, as well as other leading brands. Dave is originally from Brooklyn, New York.
Steve Bocska is currently the founding President of Pug Pharm Productions Inc., a startup in Vancouver focusing purely on social networking online games. He has over 9 years of direct experience in the video game industry, having worked for Disney Interactive, Black Box (E.A.), and Radical Entertainment in roles as lead designer, producer, and executive producer. In 2006, he became the founding President and CEO of Hothead Games, winner of the Canadian New Media Association's award for "Most Promising New Company of 2007."
Steve has 10 years of post-secondary education, including a B.A. (Honours), M.A. (Planning), and an M.B.A. (Entrepreneurship). He currently serves on the founding Board of Directors for GDC Canada, Advisory Board for GameOn Finance, and has spoken at a variety of video game industry events, including Game Developer's Conference (San Jose, California), South by Southwest (Austin, Texas), Vancouver International Game Summit (Vancouver, BC), VIDFEST (Vancouver, BC), Banff New Media Festival (Banff, Alberta), GameON Finance (Toronto, Ontario) and several others.
Pascal Brulotte, Technical Art Director and founding member of Beenox Studio, has over 12 years of experience in video games, including the last 10 years at Beenox. Over these years, he has developed and tested artistic techniques and has greatly improved production methods. He has developed, with the help of the IT team, several internal tools and contributed to the learning of the artistic development team that regroups more than 50 artists.
After completing a Computing Systems Degree, Nick spent 4 years researching 3D Volume Visualization and Surface Reconstruction at NTU. In 1998 Nick left research behind and moved into the Computer Games Industry where he now works as an Incubation Director at Microsoft's Rare Game Studio. During the past 13 years in the industry Nick has worked on products such as 'Starfox Adventures' for the Nintendo GameCube and 'Kameo: Elements of Power' for the launch of the Xbox 360 and most recently on elements of the core software for Kinect as well as the Kinect launch title: Kinect Sports.
Nick is an active speaker as has spoken at many industry and academic events including GDC, Develop, GamesEDU, Edinburgh Interactive Festival, GameCity and at BAFTA.
As Vice President, Systems Development, Mr. Chilek is charged with the design and implementation of the SoftLayer Infrastructure Management System. Mr. Chilek joined SoftLayer from The Planet, where he was Director of Product Development from January 2003 through May 2005. Prior to The Planet, Mr. Chilek served as Senior Programmer at Catalog.com, where he managed internal development projects and dedicated customer project managers. Mr. Chilek is proficient in a wide variety of software languages and has worked with an assortment of technology system integrations. Most recently Matt has focused on network systems integration and automated compute environment deployment. Mr. Chilek holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science from Texas A&M University.
Rob Caouette is a Sector Advisor for the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Sector Team, part of the Business Development Group at Export Development Canada.
With over 15 years of EDC experience, Rob has an in-depth knowledge of the ICT Sector, and is the go-to person both internally and externally for all matters related to this vibrant growth sector for Canada. Rob provides meaningful advice and support to both the team of dedicated ICT underwriters within EDC as well as to Canadian Exporters operating within the industry in order to help them grow their business abroad while mitigating their financial risks.
Over the past 2 years, Rob has been focused on the New Media sub-sector, striving to better understand the unique financial challenges and gaps in the industry. He has been an innovative force in developing and supporting EDC's New Media Sector Strategy aimed at supporting both Canadian Exporters as well as foreign buyers and investors in the industry.
Bryna has been working in the video game industry for the past 12 years, beginning at Electronic Arts working on NHL, FIFA, Need for Speed and Def Jam Vendetta. Bryna was then a Producer at High Moon Studios on Activision's The Bourne Conspiracy. Bryna also worked as a project manager for United Front Games, Senior Producer for iPhone developer Genius Factor Games, and most recently as a Producer at Smoking Gun Interactive working on Microsoft's Kinect Adventures. She currently sits on the board of Women in Games Vancouver, and is working with two other founders to start a new studio, to be announced soon. She plans to sleep a full 8 hours in 2014.
Rick Davidson is a CEO, Game Designer, Life Coach, amateur Stand-Up Comedian, below-average hockey player and staunch believer that games can make the world a better place. Rick's 6 year adventure in the video game industry has seen him hold leadership roles in Production and in Design at Backbone Entertainment and Next Level Games before going Indie and founding Inspirado Games late in 2009. The 7 to 10 person company has two philosophies - to make games which are Meaningful, and to work remotely from anywhere in the world... preferably under an umbrella on the beach... on a tropical island... where it never rains. He holds a Masters Degree in Organisational Psychology, a Diploma in Game Design and a Certificate of Goodsportsmanship from "The Emergency" - his Division 7 North Vancouver Duffer's beer league hockey team. He is Australian. He likes BBQs.
Lance Davis has been a Chartered Accountant for 25 years and he has worked extensively with a variety of emerging technology firms over the past 20 years to provide them with the tools and resources required to execute their business plans including financial projections, negotiation and provision of banking facilities, equipment and leasing facilities and scientific research and experimental development tax filings. Lance has previously served as CFO for Radical Entertainment, Relic Entertainment, and Barking Dog Studios/Rockstar Vancouver. His area of expertise is in the realm of garnering financing and providing business structure to the companies he has been involved with. His experience in the technology industry provides Slant Six Games with the strong business foundation it requires to achieve its goals. In addition to his expertise in the financial realm, Lance contributes to Slant Six Games by working closely with senior management to provide direction for the Company, and to assist with all aspects of the administrative functions.
Bryan is a member of NVIDIA's Developer Technology group based in Seattle, WA. He spends his time assisting game developers both in the United States and Japan to get the most out of their graphics. He is fluent in English and Japanese.
Denis Dyack is the founder and president of Silicon Knights. He oversees the creation and development of games, and continues to further the growth of the company. Dyack is a noted authority on interactive software development and offers valuable insight into the process of designing next-generation games that appeal to the masses. Under Dyack's direction, Silicon Knights has evolved into one of the world's largest independent interactive software developers.
Dyack (B. Phed, H. B.Sc, M. Sc.) founded Silicon Knights in 1992 after publishing "Cyber Empires" in 1991. Since that time, Silicon Knights has moved from creating PC games to premiere AAA console titles, such as Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain? for the original Playstation.
Working with Nintendo as a second party, Silicon Knights created the critically acclaimed "Eternal Darkness". Together with Nintendo, Silicon Knights worked with Konami to create another critically acclaimed game, Metal Gear Solid: Twin Snakes. In 2008, Dyack and his team released "Too Human" for the Microsoft Xbox 360.
Dyack is one of the creators of Eight: The Hamilton Institute for Interactive Digital Media. Dyack is also a member of the Peter Drucker Society and advises several universities and colleges, including MIT and Brock University.
Magy Seif El-Nasr
Magy Seif El-Nasr is an Assistant Professor in the School of Interactive Arts and Technology, Simon Fraser University, where she directs the Engage Me In Interactive Experiences (EMIIE) Lab. Her research work includes designing and developing tools that enhance the engagement of interactive environments used for training, education, and entertainment. She has collaborated and has on-going relationships with several game companies, including Electronic Arts, Bardel Entertainment, RedHill Studios, and Radical Entertainment.
David is currently the Director of Design for Silicon Knights, overseeing the design of multiple titles.
David is a 17 year veteran of the video games industry. His career has spanned 4 generations of console development as well as a PC market that has changed radically since the days of the 386. David has spent the majority of his career with Electronic Arts, where he has worked on the Need For Speed franchise, the SSX franchise and numerous other titles. He has also worked with ReadySoft Inc. on the home versions of Dragon's Lair and Space Ace, with Acclaim Entertainment when they were one of the giants of the industry, and with Microsoft Game Studios as a Business Development Manager, finding the next big hits for Xbox 360 and the PC.
David has experience in a number of capacities including Creative Director, Producer, Business Development Manager and Project Manager.
Sebastian Enrique came to Vancouver almost 6 years ago to join Electronic Arts and the FIFA franchise as his first game development experience. He has walked a long path to be able to achieve his dream of becoming a game developer, and then to be able to innovate and put his own seal on the EA Sports FIFA soccer games. Initiated as a Software Engineer, his current role after 7 published titles is more on the lines of production and game design, but keeping that same passion, boldness, and accountability that he showed from day one.
Michael is the Chief Executive Officer and founder of Ayogo Games Inc., and is dedicated to the idea that playing is one of the most productive things we can do. He's been an entrepreneur and innovator on the Web for over 15 years, and the games he has developed have been played by millions on computers and Smartphones all over the world. This year, Michael has been invited to speak on game design at SXSW, Vancouver's F5 Expo, Games and Health Vid Week, Banff Television Festival and NextMedia in Toronto, and has been featured by the Vancouver Sun, Fast Company, MIT Technology Review, CBC, and the Globe and Mail. Michael lives in Vancouver with his beautiful wife and four amazing children.
Jon Festinger Q.C.
Widely experienced as both a lawyer and executive across the spectrum of media, communications, sports and entertainment. Common denominator of leadership and legal approach has been a focus on facilitating creativity in content based businesses. An underlying curiosity about the impact of constraints on expression has led to a passion for overcoming those limits resulting in the business value of creativity being appropriately maximized.
Arrived in Vancouver in 1981 as a graduate of McGill University's Faculty of Law and began legal career with the firm of Owen Bird. Left partnership in that firm becoming General Counsel of WIC Western International Communications Inc. in 1989. Thereafter in 1997 became Senior Vice President B.C. of CTV Inc. as well as the founding General Manager of Vancouver Television ("VTV"). Most recently from 2005 to 2010, Executive Vice President, Business & General Counsel of the Vancouver Canucks and GM Place.
Author of a text on "Video Game Law" published by LexisNexis in 2005. Has been an Adjunct Professor at faculties of law at both UBC and the University of Victoria. Appointed Queens Counsel ("Q.C.") by the Province of British Columbia in 2009.
Director of Ronald McDonald House British Columbia and the Simon Fraser University Foundation. Past Director of the Vancouver Board of Trade.
Broadcasting and media mergers and acquisitions; Freedom of expression issues; Intellectual property agreements; Media startups; Regulatory representation; Sports broadcasting; Sports sponsorship contracts; Television, radio and cable distribution arrangements; Video gaming agreements.
Clint Forward is a Canadian Game Designer with over 10 years experience and is currently Radical Entertainment's Senior World Designer. His main focus is creating a living, breathing world for Prototype 2. Before joining Radical he was a Designer at Backbone Entertainment and a Lead Designer at Blackbox Games, where he provided Design and AI scripting for NHL 2K. Clint is extremely passionate about video games and has been playing everything he can get his hands on since 1978.
Brenda Bailey Gershkovitch
C.E.O. Silicon Sisters Interactive Inc.
Bailey Gershkovitch has founded two studios, Deep Fried Entertainment with five partners in 2005, and Silicon Sisters Interactive with Kirsten Forbes, in 2010. Silicon Sisters focuses on quality games for women and girls, and recently published "School 26" (a game for tween girls) on Apple and Android, with the PC and Mac to follow. Silicon's Sisters is currently working on an irreverent Facebook game for women like them. It won't involve planting or baking. Games for us!
C.E.O. of Silicon Sisters Interactive, Bailey Gershkovitch is an avid believer that games are cultural artifacts, and as such, are vastly under-serving us by being limited in their reach and subject areas. Bailey Gershkovitch dreams of a day where quality, highly entertaining games are available to all segments of society, and thinks the current state of the games industry at once both helps and hinders that objective.
Never contented with normal, in 2009 Bailey felt a burning need to acquire a second last name, inducing a spelling crisis among games conference registrars and bloggers around the globe.
Bruce Gooch is an Associate Professor in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Victoria. He is also the President and Manager at Relevant Games and at Toon-FX.
Andrew has been instrumental in helping many of the largest Facebook mafia, farming, and restaurant type apps tweak their game mechanics to maximize monetization through the creation of the correct sources and sinks that promote high volume virtual currency spend by users. Andrew was previously Senior Game Analyst at Super Rewards, a Virtual currency payment provider and was part of the company from the early days of social network monetization growing the company from 4 to over 70 employees. As Chief Strategist at dimeRocker who focus on helping game developers with their web services, to deploy and monetize their games on Facebook providing advice and expertise to developers looking to bring their games to the social web and mobile. Prior to working in social games Andrew formed his own Film Production Company in the UK, producing multiple commercial projects and docs.
Cyrus Greenall is a career game developer. While studying computer science at the University of Victoria, Cyrus founded and led a 20-person Xbox 360 and PS3 development studio, Infinite Games, which was supported by Microsoft in early 2005. Following this, Cyrus worked for several years at Electronic Arts as a producer and subsequently, at Ubisoft Vancouver as a game designer on an unannounced new-IP. At Ubisoft, Cyrus has worked on nearly every facet of game development, including gameplay, online, user interface and game modes. At the studio level, Cyrus is responsible for instructing and guiding designers and developers in Ubisoft's worldwide game design methodology. Outside of his job, Cyrus guest lectures at BCIT's school of computing.
Wolfgang Hamann: Executive Producer, Koolhaus game credits as a Producer or Executive Producer include: Madden NFL 2011 iPad, Contra 4, Big League Sports Summer Wii & DS, Big League Sports Wii, iMP: Surf the Music iPhone/iPad, Geometry Wars, NCAA Football and others. While at Radical - Simpsons Hit and Run (Project Manager and Sound Producer), Simpsons Road Rage, The Hulk, CSI 1 & 2 and Monsters Inc . While at Electronic Arts - NHL2000 and NHL2001. While at Radical, Wolfgang also managed the Tools and Library team and the Sound Department. He created the CSA - Critical Stage Analysis process (www.gamasutra.com) and was asked to present his process at GDC in 2003 and 2004. He has also been asked to speak at the Korean Game Developer's Conference, Leipzig, Germany Game Conference, the University of Windsor and others. In a previous life, he was a record producer and personal manager for a number of internationally released recording artists.
David Helgason, an entrepreneur, visionary and ex-programmer, has served as the CEO of Unity Technologies since co-founding it in 2003. The vision is to democratize game development and develop technology for the next generation of the industry. David founded and participated in startups in fields such as news and community integration, music distribution and consulting. David serves on the boards of several games and technology startups.
Paul Hossack is the Group Producer for the FIFA Ultimate Team franchise (FUT), a microtransaction-based game delivered digitally within FIFA. In this role, Paul is responsible for the creative and strategic direction of development and live management of FUT, helping lead the transformation of EA towards a more digitally-focused business.
Paul has been leading development teams in EA SPORTS' FIFA business since joining EA over 7 years, with a heavy focus in online experiences for the last 5 years. Prior to that, Paul worked for The Boston Consulting Group in Canada and Mexico, where he provided business strategy advice to senior exec at Global 1000 companies. He also worked in business development at a software company. A soccer fan (Liverpool supporter), volleyball player, and Ottawa native, Paul and his wife make their home in Vancouver.
Co-founder and Chief Creative Officer, PopCap Games
Jason founded PopCap with John Vechey and Brian Fiete in 2000. Their first game was Bejeweled, which has gone on to sell over 500 million copies on many platforms, and in the decade following PopCap has created such hit casual titles as Bookworm, Zuma, Peggle, and Plants vs Zombies.
Presentation: Best of GDC: Classic Games Postmortem: Bejeweled
Jason J. Kee
Jason J. Kee is the Director of Policy and Legal Affairs for the Entertainment Software Association of Canada (ESAC), the industry association that represents companies in Canada that develop, publish and distribute video and computer games for video game consoles, handheld devices, personal computers and the Internet. Among other things, he monitors and analyzes issues and legislation affecting the video game industry in Canada (both domestically and internationally), and regularly works with both government and partner organizations on matters such as intellectual property policy, privacy, e-commerce, international trade, tariffs, ratings, funding and tax incentives, labour and immigration and any government policies and/or legislation affecting the development, sale and marketing of entertainment software in Canada.
Prior to joining the ESAC, Jason practiced intellectual property, information technology and entertainment law (with an emphasis on Internet, e-commerce, gaming and interactive media-related matters ) at Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP. He also acted as legal and policy counsel to the Canadian Interactive Alliance / Alliance Interactive Canadienne (CIAIC), an alliance of provincial new media associations that represents the interactive digital media industry at a national level. He is the founder and former chair of the interactive media committee of the Canadian IT Law Association (IT.Can), sits on the executive of the Entertainment, Media & Communications Section of the Ontario Bar Association, and is an active member of several other legal and industry associations. He is also on the Board of the GRAND-NCE, the Graphics, Animation and New Media Network of Centres of Excellence, and several industry advisory committees.
Blaine Kyllo writes on video games and technology for a variety of print and online publications including CBC.ca, the Globe & Mail, Vancouver Magazine, and the Escapist Magazine. He's also the video game critic and columnist for Vancouver's Georgia Straight. The father of two young children, he lives in North Vancouver.
Mitchell Lagran is a passionate game developer whose career has taken him through everything from casual to indie to AAA development. Prior to working at Relic, Mitchell has held numerous positions, including Environment and Effects Artist, Level Designer, Game Designer and Scripter.
Mitchell is particularly interested in the future of Interactive Design. He feels that video games are just beginning to show their true potential, and hopes to be part of their continued expansion.
He is currently working as a Designer at Relic Entertainment on Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine.
Jamie Leece has been involved with the business aspects of the video game industry for more than 20 years. Before joining Behaviour (formerly A2M), he was President and Founder of Rainmaker Games, where he provided strategic advisory services to prestigious clients, including MTV Games, Major League Baseball Advanced Media and Croteam. Jamie has held positions at LucasArts, Interplay Productions and was President of Take2 Interactive's label Gotham Games. He has published and/or licensed such products as Max Payne, Duke Nukem, Halo, Conflict: Desert Storm, Celebrity Death Match and Piglet's Big Game.
Creator, executive producer and co-host of "The Electric Playground" Victor Lucas is an Emmy-winning videogame television pioneer and a highly respected television personality. His first original TV series, "The Electric Playground," hit the airwaves in 1997 and is now a daily TV series seen in Canada and Australia, soon to be weekly in the US, and airs 24-7 online around the globe. Victor is also the creator, executive producer and co-host of the daily videogame/tech/entertainment review series, "Reviews on the Run." Additionally, Victor created and executive produced one of the world's first High Definition videogame TV series, "The Art of Play" for Gameplay HD and was the creator, executive producer and host of the Emmy-winning, "GameTap News," for Turner's GameTap network. Victor, through his Vancouver-based company, Greedy Productions Ltd., was also the executive producer of two technology-based programs produced for G4TechTV Canada: "The Lab with Leo Laporte" and "Torrent." Victor also executive produces, directs and narrates documentaries through his company's Greedy Docs division and has worked with numerous partners over the years including Activision, Sega, Kojima Productions, Bethesda Softworks, Disney Interactive and Warner Brothers Interactive Entertainment. Highlight projects include, "The Making of Metal Gear Solid 4," "Awakening The Giants: The Making of Turok," "The Vault-Tec Files: The Making of Fallout 3," "The Making of Batman: Arkham Asylum" and "The Making of ModNation Racers."
Simon Ludgate has worked at numerous game companies, including Strategy First, Electronic Arts, and Gameloft, as well as a journalist and radio personality with GameSHOUT Radio. He is currently pioneering the field of aesthetic quality assurance: an early intervention strategy to ensure the production of high quality games and positive community reception. His areas of expertise are broad, though he has a particular interest in massively multiplayer online games, both subscription- and micropayment-based. Simon is also a contributing expert blogger at Gamasutra and recently published a feature article on MMORPG economic theory. Simon currently maintains a blog at soulrift.com and can be contacted through that site.
Sang Mah is the Director of R&D, Farmboy Fine Arts Inc. and was formerly the Director of Interactive Media at Bardel Entertainment.
Chris Metcalfe is an associate in Gowlings' Vancouver office, practising in the areas of intellectual property, technology, new media and video game law. Chris' practice is broadly directed at the protection, commercialization and enforcement of technology and intellectual property rights. Chris is also a registered patent agent in both Canada and the U.S.
Chris has acted as the lead intellectual property counsel in a variety of acquisitions and financings and has significant experience in drafting and negotiating a wide variety of IP/IT related agreements, including, technology transfer agreements, licenses agreements, development and service agreements, and website-related agreements. Chris also has significant experience in drafting and prosecuting patent and design applications, providing intellectual property-related opinions, performing technology audits, and enforcing intellectual property rights.
Yannis Minadakis is a senior graphics engineer at Intel and has focused on performance optimization for graphics and computer vision since 1999. He developed the Windows Experience Index for graphics and gaming in Windows Vista while at Microsoft. Working as a 3rd Party engineer since 2006, he has contributed to many games including Assassins Creed and Civilization V.
Craig Morrison has worked in online games for over a decade, and now serves as the Creative Director and Executive producer for Funcom, one of the few remaining independent developers and publishers of online games for the western MMO market. Having served as Game Director on both Anarchy Online, one of the games that pioneered the genre and was the first to use what are now established 'Free to Play' mechanics, and the award winning Age of Conan. Craig has helped establish Funcom's new Montreal studio, and has a passion for all things MMO.
Paul Newton is Development Director at Electronic Arts Canada and manages its Advanced Usability Lab. With over 13 years experience in the software industry, he joined Electronic Arts Canada in 2007 and has successfully contributed on over 10 different titles across multiple platforms including their popular FIFA, NHL and NBA franchises.
Ross O'Dwyer has over 10 years of experience working in the games industry and is responsible for overseeing Havok's worldwide Developer Support and Professional Services function. Joining Havok in 2000, Ross held a broad range of engineering roles before assuming responsibility for the overall management of the Developer Relations teams across each of Havok's global locations. This time spent working closely with the cream of the industry has developed a profound understanding of the many challenges games developers face today. Ross is a graduate of University College Dublin with a bachelor's degree in Mathematics and Statistics and a Higher Diploma in Computer Science.
Erin Olorenshaw is a Senior Animator in Video Games for both in-game and cinematic animation. She has studied 3D Animation at Vancouver Film School and Advanced Character Studies at Animation Mentor. Having worked at numerous studios including Relic Entertainment and Electronic Arts she has worked on a variety of critically acclaimed games such as 'Homeworld' and 'Company of Heroes'. She likes to focus on evolving character through movement and to create compelling story that seamlessly blends through to gameplay. She enjoys the interactive medium of games and the challenges it brings on a technical and creative front.
David has been involved in the computer game industry since the mid-90's. He attended the California College of Arts and Crafts in the San Francisco Bay Area, then landed his first job as an entry-level animator. David has served as Art Director on the Tron games, The Sims, SimCity, and LEGO Island. He is currently at Ubisoft Vancouver working on undisclosed titles.
Kris Piotrowski is the co-founder and creative director of Capy, an award-winning independent developer from Toronto, Canada, best known for Critter Crunch on PSN and Might and Magic: Clash of Heroes for Nintendo DS/XBLA/PSN. Kris is currently busy working on Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP, a collaboration between Capy, Craig D. Adams of Superbrothers and Jim Guthrie of Jim Guthrie, as well as Clash of Heroes HD (which has online multiplayer, btw). Kris also moonlights as a judge for the Independent Games Festival, contributing to both the Excellence in Design and Seumas McNally Grand Prize judging. He collects all articles written about Capy and shows them to his Mom.
Dee Jay Randall
After completing a Masters Degree in Computer Science at the University of Regina, Dee Jay worked at Electronic Arts Canada for four years before joining Blue Castle Games in 2006. Dee Jay has a competitive spirit and enjoys playing with and against others. A passion for online games came as no surprise and he specialized in online for multiple iterations of Electronic Arts' successful MVP Baseball series and again on BIGS 1 and MLB Front Office Manager at Blue Castle. Dee Jay is one of the Technical Directors responsible for Dead Rising 2. He initiated the online architecture for Dead Rising 2 with a goal of delivering the quality and responsiveness of a single player experience in online play. He is motivated by enabling his team to achieve peak performance and making Capcom Vancouver (formerly Blue Castle Games) an industry leading studio. Dead Rising 2 is Dee Jay's eighth shipped title.
Roch Ripley is an associate in Gowlings' Vancouver office, practising in the areas of intellectual property law, technology law, new media, and video game law. Roch is also a registered Canadian patent agent, and is registered to represent Canadian residents before the United States Patent and Trademark Office. His practice focuses onhelping people create and profit from intellectual property.
Roch has significant experience drafting and prosecuting both domestic and foreign patent applications; opining on patent infringement and patent validity; conducting technology audits to help people determine how to optimally protect their technology; and advising on how to utilize copyright, trade mark, industrial design, and trade secret protection in conjunction with, or as an alternative to, patent protection. To help people profit from their intellectual property, Roch drafts technology licenses and development agreements; performs due diligence related to financing technology companies; and enforces intellectual property rights against infringing parties.
Karl Schmidt is a programmer at Relic Entertainment. Although he graduated with a BSc from Simon Fraser University in 2009, he has 5 years of professional involvement in the game industry. His credits include Company of Heroes, Company of Heroes: Opposing Fronts, Dawn of War 2, Dawn of War 2: Chaos Rising, Dawn of War 2: Retribution, and Space Marine. Throughout his career, he has worked in the areas of: UI, gameplay, tools, optimization, and rendering.
Tyler Sigman is the Design Director for Big Sandwich Games in Vancouver. A specialist in systems design and strategy, Tyler's videogame credits include HOARD, Age of Empires: The Age of Kings (DS), Monster Lab, Sonic Rivals, and more. He is also an active boardgame designer his latest game Crows? is published by Valley Games and was released at the 2010 SPIEL game fair in Essen, Germany. Tyler is the author of numerous game design feature articles on Gamasutra.com, and also maintains an expert blog there.
Tyler holds a B.S. in Aeronautical Engineering from Cal Poly, and is currently studying for his MBA from Colorado State University. He's continually surprised at how much systems design relevance there is in both.
Tyler believes one of the most challenging parts of videogame design is figuring out how to maximize design iterations under the pressure and momentum of costly development. To this end, he always enjoys sharing tips about low-fi prototyping.
Scott Simpson is the co-CEO of Ascension CrossMedia and is the studio director of Playbrains and bitHeads inc.
Scott has been involved in the Information Technology field for over twenty years with an extensive background in computer science and business management. He is the Chair of GENERATOR: Ottawa's Digital Media Cluster, is on the board of the Ottawa Centre for Research and Innovation (OCRI) and has been a past board member of Interactive Ontario.
He is an active member in several professional associations including the International Game Developers Association (IGDA), the Information Technology Association of Canada (ITAC) and the Canadian Advanced Technology Alliance (CATA) and is a past recipient of the Ottawa Forty-under-40 award and been named one of Ottawa Life Magazine's Top 50 People in Ottawa, recognizing his business and community accomplishments.
Scott and is a strong and vocal advocate of Ottawa's tech community who actively donates his time to local startups and is a frequent speaker at industry events.
Matt is the Business Development Manager for Snowed In Studios: an emerging video game and interactive media development studio in Ottawa. Holding a Bachelor's degree in International Business, Matt specializes in social media marketing, marketing communications and business development.
By applying effective marketing strategies in the growth of Snowed In Studios and including social media, Matt has created a positive brand, more engaged relationships and increased the studio's visibility. This has increased the company's profitability, client base and portfolio. In under a year, the studio has grown from zero to half a million dollars in revenue with no signs of slowing down.
Warren has experience working with Knowledge-Based Industries (KBI) in both Toronto and Vancouver. His Bachelor of Arts (Honors in Economics) degree from Queen's University, ON, has enabled him to develop a keen understanding of business solutions. As a Digital and Interactive Media specialist, Warren can understand the unique challenges and issues you face - from raising the funding necessary to kick-start development to managing project-driven cash flows in a quick-changing market landscape. Warren is committed to creating quality relationships with his clients by combining unparalleled customer service with sound business advice. He has access to a broad network of partners within RBC and beyond that he can call on to meet his clients' unique needs.
A twenty year veteran of both the publishing and video game industries, Chris Ulm is currently CEO and co-founder of Appy Entertainment, an iPhone - centric game publisher dedicated to providing blasts of fun for busy people on the go.
Appy's games have been downloaded over 8 million times, have all achieved Top Twenty status in their category and have all been featured by Apple.
Prior to Appy, Chris co-founded console game developer High Moon Studios and was co-creator of its original video game property, Darkwatch. As Chief Development Officer, Chris was a key player in building High Moon into a AAA developer and was integral to the acquisition of High Moon by Vivendi Games in 2006 and in its later transition to Activision-Blizzard.
Chris' video game credits include Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee and Oddworld: Munch's Oddysee. His contributions included major gameplay and story elements of Abe's Exoddus and Munch's Oddysee for which he was nominated for an Excellence in Game Design Award.
An eighteen year veteran of the video game industry, Emmanuel Valdez is currently the Project Director, animation director, and co-founder of Appy Entertainment, a mobile entertainment game publisher.
Appy's games have been downloaded over 8 million times, have all achieved Top Twenty status in their category and have all been featured by Apple. Titles include, Trucks and Skulls, FaceFighter, Tune Runner, Zombie Pizza, and Candy Rush.
Prior to Appy, Emmanuel co-founded independent game developer High Moon Studios and was the Game Director of The Bourne Conspiracy and co-creator of the vampire western FPS, Darkwatch.
Emmanuel was also the creator of Ready 2 Rumble Boxing and sequel Ready 2 Rumble Boxing: Round 2 for Midway Home Entertainment. His other video game credits include B.I.O. Freaks, ESPN Extreme Games, NFL Gameday, and ESPN Baseball Tonight. He also worked at Sammy Studios, Sony Computer Entertainment, and Park Place Productions.
Raphael Van Lierop
Raphael van Lierop is a Canadian game developer, currently the game director of Relic Entertainment's third-person action title Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine. He was also a producer on two other Relic franchises: the original Dawn of War and Company of Heroes, which remains the highest-rated RTS game of all time. Prior to Relic, Raphael held positions as narrative director, story designer, and writer for an unannounced open-world FPS at Ubisoft Montreal, and creative director and writer for the Radar Group, an entertainment think-tank dedicated to creating video game properties positioned for transmedia exploration. He got his start in the industry as a game writing and design freelancer, contributing to the Westernized versions of Japanese hits including Fatal Frame 1 and 2 and Steel Battalion.
Thomas Wilson graduated from the Ringling School of Art and Design with a BFA in Graphic and Interactive Communications. He started his career with Montreal based independent developer A2M. For 6 years he worked on multiple renowned licensed properties as Lead Game Designer and Art Director including Warner Brothers' Bugs & Taz:Time Busters, Universal Studios' The Grinch, Disney's Home on the Range and more. He also poured his heart on the lesser known original title called Scaler.
Vice President, Acquisitions and Franchise Development As vice president of acquisitions and franchise development, Careen Yapp is responsible for Konami Digital Entertainment, Inc.'s strategic direction and pursuit of new business development activities including the acquisition of original intellectual and licensed properties. Her long-standing relationships with top interactive development teams and major licensors assist the company in acquiring creative and innovative brands to develop into quality interactive entertainment franchises. Yapp also directs the company's growing licensing out strategies as Konami Digital Entertainment, Inc. continues to build upon the strength of its franchise brands.
Prior to joining Konami Digital Entertainment, Inc., Yapp served as vice president of licensing and business development for D3Publisher of America. Additionally, she was senior manager of licensing for THQ, Inc. and THQ Wireless, Inc., where she participated in the acquisitions of high profile brands from Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network, DreamWorks, Warner Bros., Disney, Fox, Sega, Marvel, Mattel, Microsoft, and Lego. She currently serves as a board member of LIMA (Licensing Industry Merchandisers Association), the ESA (Electronic Software Association) Foundation and the Game Connection Advisory Board.
Before entering the video games industry, Yapp held marketing and producing positions in the entertainment industry. Yapp was graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara with a degree in English.
Charles Yim manages strategic partnerships with the games industry on behalf of Google's mobile display advertising business. In this role, Charles works with both traditional and emerging game developers in building their smart-phone businesses. Charles has extensive experience in the online and mobile games eco-system as a venture capital investor and startup entrepreneur. Prior to Google, Charles was on the business development team at AdMob; he also helped launch Boomerang Networks, a virtual currency monetization startup catering to facebook game developers; and was an associate with TriplePoint Capital, where he was involved with gaming investments such as Acclaim Games (acquired by Playdom/Disney), TwoFish (acquired by LiveGamer) and QuickHit Sports. Charles graduated from Carleton College with a BA in Philosophy.
Kelly Zmak was the President of Radical Entertainment from July 2005 to March 2010. Kelly has over 25 years of game industry experience with positions spanning from Quality Assurance to President. Over the years, Kelly has worked for many companies including Hasbro, Panasonic, Acclaim and Activision.
Kelly has been running small and large scale development studios since 1994. Over his career he has shipped 300 + titles, generated billions of dollars in revenue and has managed and mentored some of the best talent in the industry.
Since leaving Radical Entertainment, Kelly has been working as an Advisor and Consultant while enjoying the time away from a regular office schedule.