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Global Game Jam at Santa Cruz

It’s the beginning of another year, which means it’s time for another Global Game Jam. Santa Cruz is proud to host a site for the third year in a row, and we continue to grow. In fact, we’re currently tied for the 2nd largest site in the US and the 10th largest site in the world! But even if you’re not ready to dedicate a full 48 hours to the festivities, you should still come check out our keynote speakers this year, who will be talking from 4:30 on Friday, January 28th. We continue our tradition of world class talks to kick off our game jam, and this year we have three veterans of the industry that offer unique and fascinating perspectives on game design.

Brenda Brathwaite

Brenda Brathwaite, a 30 year veteran of the game industry, is currently Creative Director at lolapps. She began her career in 1981 at Sir-Tech Software, Inc., where she was a tester and later a designer on the legendary Wizardry series of role-playing games. She has gone on to work for and consult with some of the top game developers, including Atari, Electronic Arts, and Firaxis. Brenda was formerly the Chair of the Savannah College of Art and Design’s Interactive Design and Game Development program, has written the book Challenges for Game Designers, and served on the board of the International Game Developers Association. In 2008, she began a series of experimental board games titled “The Mechanic is the Message” to experiment with the traditional notions of games.

Graeme Devine

Graeme Devine has been working in game development for more than 30 years. He started making games in 1978 on his TRS-80 before joining Atari at age 16 to port their classic game Pole Position to home computers. He also worked for Lucasfilm’s Games Division, Activision UK, and Virgin Interactive. Graeme helped found Trilobyte in 1990 and  design the game The 7th Guest. He was the lead programmer on the game and on its sequel The 11th Hour, pioneering the data compression techniques that made the CD-ROM game revolution possible. Graeme went on to work for id Software as a designer on Quake III Arena and Quake III Team Arena.  He later worked for Apple before leaving to work on independent games.

Tom Lehmann

Tom Lehmann, designer of the award winning Race for the Galaxy has been a giant in the board and card game industry for 20 years. A lifelong gamer, Tom formed Prism Games in the early 90s to publish his own designs. Early hits include Fast Food Franchise, Time Agent, and 2038. In the 00s, Tom has been a freelance designer working with some of the top international publishers, including Rio Grande Games, Hans im Glück, Amigo Spiele, and JKLM Games.  Some of his biggest hits came during this period, most notably Pizarro & Co., To Court the King, Phoenicia, and Race for the Galaxy.

<a href=”http://bbrathwaite.wordpress.com/”>Brenda Brathwaite</a>, a 30 year veteran

of the game industry, is currently Creative Director at <a

href=”http://www.lolapps.com/”>lolapps</a>. She began her career in 1981 at Sir-Tech

Software, Inc., where she was a tester and later a designer on the legendary Wizardry

series of role-playing games. She has gone on to work for and consult with some of the

top game developers, including Atari, Electronic Arts, and Firaxis. Brenda was

formerly the Chair of the Savannah College of Art and Design’s Interactive Design and

Game Development program, has written the book Challenges for Game Designers, and

served on the board of the International Game Developers Association. In 2008, she

began a series of experimental board games titled “The Mechanic is the Message” to

experiment with the traditional notions of games.


About the author:  Teale is a PhD student hailing from Fairbanks, Alaska. His interests include content generation, artificial life, and educational games. Read more from this author


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