Created Mar 5, 2018 by Keravanjoki

Women in Gamedev and Their Games

11 games
Though the gaming industry is traditionally male, there are quite a few outstanding women there that develop, write and design video games. I think it's just unfair to know the game without celebrating the person behind it. So below you'll find the list of 10+ creative ladies who are responsible for the appearance of RPGs, shooters and adventures that players admire all over the world.
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Bonnie Ross is a video game developer, Corporate Vice President at Microsoft Studios and also the head of 343 Industries, the subsidiary studio that manages the Halo video game franchise. Although she didn't created Halo, Ross developed the fifth part of the franchise that is called the savior of Xbox One. With Ross managing, 60 millions copies of Halo games were sold worldwide.
Halo 5: Guardians in Women in Gamedev and Their Games - 1
Halo is a military science fiction first-person shooter, originally created in 2001 by Bungie. Since then the franchise grew up in the entire universe with a lot of different merchandise, including books. Halo 5: Guardians, the latest game developed, is called the best of the list. Halo 5 has an awesome combat, new weapons and maps and also a multiplayer mode. The developers did their best here for players to enjoy the game.
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Sigurlina Ingvarsdottir, responsible for the development of Star Wars Battlefront, started her career in the gaming industry in 2006. She decided to give up business development in retail and started working for the Icelandic developer CCP and later for EA DICE Studio - as a senior producer. According to Lina, you don't need to be a programmer to work in games: "You can be a lawyer and work in games. You can be an economist and work in games. There are so many roles and so many ways you can be a part of making games."
STAR WARS Battlefront in Women in Gamedev and Their Games - 1
Star Wars Battlefront, released in 2015, is a first-person multiplayer shooter. The strongest feature of the game is its brilliant audiovisual setting and atmosphere. There is also a good Survival mode that replaces the single-player campaign.
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Every Uncharted fan knows Amy Henning - the screenwriter and director of first three parts of the franchise. Henning, who started with developing of Legacy of Kain, was named one of the most influential women in the gaming industry. Unfortunately, her last project - unnamed Star Wars game - was shut down by EA last year.
UNCHARTED: Drake's Fortune in Women in Gamedev and Their Games - 1
Uncharted franchise was launched for PlayStation in 2007. It has remarkable characters, awesome locations, perfect sense of humor - and the captured acting makes every second of playing this game amazing. Nathan Drake is totally Indiana Jones of our generation created by a woman.
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Roberta Williams is a game designer and a living legend of the entire industry. She created the graphic adventure genre with her King's Quest series. Williams is also a co-founder of Sierra On-Line, one of the most influential developing companies of 80-90s. However, Roberta Williams didn't make games since early 00s.
King's Quest Collection in Women in Gamedev and Their Games - 1
King's Quest, originally released in 1984, was one of the first adventure games and influenced a lot the entire genre. The franchise was remastered in 2006 by Vivendi Universal. There are also a lot of amateur developments and games based on King's Quest.
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Siobhan Reddy is a game producer and studio director of Media Molecule, the UK developing company, mostly known for LittleBigPlanet. Reddy herself was named one of the most influential women in the gaming industry and also won Microsoft Women in Gaming award for innovations. Siobhan Reddy fights for women's rights in the gaming industry and desire to see more games for the female audience.
LittleBigPlanet in Women in Gamedev and Their Games - 1
LittleBigPlanet is a platformer for PS3, released in 2008. It's an exciting adventure both for kids and adults (the multiplayer mode makes the game much more interesting). LittleBigPlanet has the extraordinary design of the characters and the world, full of colors. The game was highly ranked by critics and users (and me personally) so I really advise to try it.
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Kim Swift is a video game designer known for her work on Portal and Left4Dead. Last year she aslo joined EA to work on Star Wars Battlefront II. Swift is really very talented - Portal was based on her and her teammates' student project, so Valve hired them all. Today Kim is a well-known person in the industry.
Portal in Women in Gamedev and Their Games - 1
Portal was one of the most original games of 2007 because of its unusual mechanics and design. The player needed to solve puzzles in different rooms opening the portals; the game required a lot of creativity to be completed. The Portal's popularity was very high, so the game got the sequel in 2011 and also won several awards. According to Game Developers Choice Awards, Portal was named the Game of the Year (2008).
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In 1980 Dona Bailey was the only female programmer in Atari - a pioneer developer of arcade games. For two years there she stayed the only women in the department. That didn't prevent her from making one of the most popular arcade game of her time - Centipede. Bailey worked in the gaming industry for more then 20 years and also taught as a faculty member in the department of Rhetoric and Writing at the University of Arkansas.
Centipede (1983) in Women in Gamedev and Their Games - 1
Centipede is a fixed shooter game for arcade machines, developed in 1983. The game got a warm response, but today it seems too out-of-date even as a retro. According to Dona Bailey, Centipede "was an action game with a story" - but nowadays it's considered, at best, "casual".
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Sheri Graner Ray, the designer of Ultima, Star Wars Galaxies and Nancy Drew, is known for her work on women's interests in the video game industry. She even wrote a book about it in 2004 - Gender Inclusive Game Design-Expanding the Market. Ray's experience in the industry includes working for Electronic Arts, Origin Systems, Sony Online Entertainment and Cartoon Network. Now she works as a game developer and the founder of Zombie Cat Studios.
Ultima 1+2+3 in Women in Gamedev and Their Games - 1
Ultima is a game series that consists of three trilogies; the first game was released in 1981. It was a groundbreaking game. Ultima had the open world, the multiplayer and even the morality system. So yes - it was almost a modern RPG, only 35 years ago. No doubt, Ultima is one of the most influential games of all time.
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Brenda Romero, another video game designer, is focused more on sex in video games. Don't think that she only worked on Playboy - among her works, for example, is Wizardry and Dungeons and Dragons: Heroes. But it is interesting how a woman studies adult and sexual content and discusses it in media.

In 2017 Romero won special BAFTA award in recognition of her creative contribution to the gaming industry.
Playboy: The Mansion in Women in Gamedev and Their Games - 1
Playboy: The Mansion was released in 2005. If you always wanted to feel like Hugh Hefner among his sexy models, this simulator is for you. The game offers the player to built his own Playboy empire. And its sounds a little like The Sims - only in an inetersting setting.
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Jane Jensen is well-known for creation of Gabriel Knight series of adventure games. She is an author and video game designer. She also writes books and novelizations of games. Though she has a varied experience, Jensen's games are often very controversial. For example, she worked on King's Quest VI, Agatha Christie game series and Dying for Daylight.
Gray Matter in Women in Gamedev and Their Games - 1
Gray Matter is one of the most interesting and creative Jensen's works. It is a point-and-click adventure game about a street magician and a professor trying to solve the mysteries of Oxford University. Highly ranked for its outstanding graphics and supernatural atmosphere the game was criticized for, surprisingly, not impressive puzzles.
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Now a part of the Facebook Social VR team, Lucy Bradshaw was a game developer that worked on SimCity, The Sims series and Spore in Maxis, subsidiary of Electronic Arts. She thinks that there should be more women in the industry, because "companies in the video game business like Electronic Arts are going to benefit from having more women in development and in roles that bring new perspective."
The Sims in Women in Gamedev and Their Games - 1
The Sims franchise is one of the first and most populat simulation games of all time. This game was revolutionary: there was no plot, only the player's will to create a character and take care of them. The Sims is still quite popular but named maybe the most girly game ever.
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