Something strange happened to me on the Thursday of GDC that I feel like I need to talk about.
Hi I’m Lisa and I’m a game designer! I worked on AAA games for 6 years and now I’m independent. I love helping other people get better at making games and dev streams are my jam. These days my games are a little weird and personal and experimental, and I’m happy to share the process of making them with you!
I’m making games and doing dev streams to share my knowledge of game design with aspiring developers and curious gamers. Your support will let me continue making this content.
I suppose this was inevitable.
Yes, it’s true. After 6 incredible years as a designer at Insomniac Games, it is time for me to fly away for new adventure. I’m going indie.
I’m feeling as one would expect, which is at a moving point on the oscillating curve between total excitement and utter terror, but that seems to be par for the course. I’m sure you have questions, the biggest being, well…
What are you going to do?
Well, I’m going to be making my own games full-time, which is the biggest part of all this, but for this initial phase in the indie adventure I want to do a bit more.
For the past several years I have been a big proponent of sharing design knowledge among other developers, helping students and aspiring designers, and streaming in multiple game development capacities. I want to devote more of my time to doing these things, but to pull this off I need the support of the community.
I’ve started a Patreon to support these goals. If you have been a fan of my developer streams, my game jam feedback streams, and my “game design class” streams, please consider supporting me so that I can continue to do them. Or, if you believe in my desire to take my 6 years of design experience and try to use it to help as many people as possible become better designers, please also consider supporting me 🙂
If you’re not in a place where you can support on a monthly basis but would still like to help with the streaming initiative, or just want to help support me making my own games, I can also take paypal donations:
Will you be doing anything else?
I’ll move to contracting with Insomniac for the launch of Slow Down, Bull, and am open to other contracting work if they are intriguing projects on the design front, just drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org!
I also love to speak, especially to students, and my schedule has become more flexible! If you want to contact me about speaking opportunities, please email me – email@example.com.
I want to thank everyone at Insomniac Games for all your brilliance and camaraderie and support over the past 6 years. You were the crucible that honed me into the designer that I am today, and I will miss you all terribly. Please don’t be strangers! I especially want to thank Ted Price for believing in me and giving me an opportunity to grow that I probably could not have gotten anyplace else in the industry.
Thank you to the indie community, who has already been such a huge source of support to me before I even got here officially. You are all such kind, big-hearted, passionate people and I am excited to be so welcomed among you.
My mentors, who have always been there for me and helped me grow and learn and be better (and who didn’t even TRY to PRETEND to be surprised that this was my next course of action 😛 ).
Thank you to my family, for understanding why I have to do this thing and for always just wanting me to be happy.
To everyone who’s ever hung out in my streams or played my games or thanked me for inspiring them or sent me an encouraging word on twitter or been delighted by a piece of content I made and let me know about it. You are amazing and you are most of the reason I’m doing this.
“How was Train Jam?”
People have been asking me this all weekend, of course, and it’s been a little bit difficult to answer. I usually opt for “it was an adventure,” which seems to perplex people, especially after the stall. I answer that way thinking about my ETC fundamentals “adventure module” from back in grad school, and the perspective that an adventure doesn’t necessarily mean an entirely positive experience, and that there can be some danger involved in addition to fun and insight.
Well, I could try to answer briefly: It was wonderful and terrible.
When I told Adriel I wanted to write about my experience, she said “Yes. The good and the bad.” So, I suppose, let me explain from the beginning.