Over the course of 2014, the Pixelkin staff has had the honor of meeting with a ton of awesome people in the gaming industry. We’ve spoken with game developers, voice actors, educational experts, musicians, psychologists, CEOs, and more.
We’ve pulled together a list of our favorite interviews from the year, both video and written. Leave a comment to let us know which was your favorite, and don’t forget to subscribe to our Youtube Channel just for interviews!
Joshua Weier, Project Director for Portal 2
In this conversation with Josh Weier, the game maker discusses some of the amazing (and unintentional) ways in which Portal 2 became an educational game for kids.
Constance Steinkeuhler, Professor and Co-Director of Games+Learning+Society
Professor Steinkeuhler is an amazing woman. Not only does she research cognition and learning in video games, she’s also a mom herself. In this interview, Linda Breneman talks to Constance about her research and asks what advice the professor has for parents.
Brianna Code, Lead Programmer for Child of Light
Keezy Young had the chance to speak with Brianna Code about her experiences as the lead programmer of Child of Light, a fantasy role-playing game with a female protagonist. In this interview, Keezy and Brianna discuss how to get started in programming and why it matters to have female protagonists in video games.
Aina Braxton, Program Director for Digital Future Lab
Aina Braxton of the University of Washington joined Simone de Rochefort to discuss a workshop she had conducted with young people of color. Specifically, the workshop addressed how video games treat minorities and how portrayals in video games affect the people who play the games.
Jesse Buddington, Soundtrack Copyright Expert
I got to speak with musician and copyright expert Jesse Buddington about how he got started in his unusual niche career in the world of gaming. Loudr, a company co-founded by Jesse, specializes in helping video game composers and cover artists to get legal and fair distribution of their work. If you’re interested in starting a career in game music, or if you have ever made a cover song and posted it to YouTube, this interview is a great read.
Ian Hamilton and Jonard La Rosa, Accessible Gaming Experts
In May, I had the opportunity to speak with the two founders of Accessibility Jam, a three-week game jam focused on spreading the word about how easy it is to make games playable for gamers with special needs. Ian and Jonard had a ton to say about the importance of accessible gaming. If game developers added simple options like subtitles or contrast settings, games would be playable by many more people.
Jordan Shapiro, Educational Games Expert
In this half-hour special, educational games expert Jordan Shapiro discusses the importance of contextualizing video games and outlines some of the amazing studies currently underway about gaming and education. “We’re gonna learn so much about learning!”
Kelli Dunlap, Psychologist
Psychologist Dr. Kelli Dunlap discusses with Linda Breneman the ways in which she has used video games to connect with her patients. “Taking a genuine interest in the child and their interests in incredibly therapeutic in its own right.”
DC Douglas, Voice Actor
In yet another half-hour special, Simone de Rochefort speaks with voice actor DC Douglas, AKA Legion from Mass Effect and Albert Wesker from Resident Evil. DC goes over how he got into his career as an actor, and some of the highs and lows of giving a voice to video game characters for a living. This interview is definitely of interest for any teen who is thinking about acting professionally.
Tanya Short, Creative Director of Moon Hunters
I had the chance to speak with Tanya Short, creative director of the upcoming reputation-building game Moon Hunters. Up to four players are on a mission to discover what has happened to the moon, and along the way they have the freedom to make choices which determine their characters’ reputations. Tanya spoke with me about getting started in game development and about why RPGs are so important, specifically for teenagers.