My @qgcon schedule!

I’m excited to give a talk at this year’s Queer Games Conference in LA!

small-with-date

Gaming as POC: Where the Industry Has Failed Us, Where It Hasn’t and What to Hope For

Abstract:

The games industry has not done POC players, or characters well since the first square smacked a paddle in Pong. As the industry has grown, non white characters have been left behind, or left out entirely. From being absent in genres outside of sports and first person shooters; the gaming landscape has been very pale outside of 2016, where we finally get three black leading men.

However, the reception to the three whole black leads we’ve gotten in games has shown that while the industry has slowly begun to join the rest of us in realizing they are not just leaving money on the table, they are ignoring a large part of their player base that is clamoring for representation from smaller indie studios all the way to AAA blockbusters.

I’ll examine who’s playing games, and dissect responses to the very slow creep towards more diversity by looking at Hangar 13’s Mafia III, UbiSoft’s Watchdogs 2 and EA’s Battlefield 1; how they represent POC and attempt to find out why we’re just getting black men as leads in some franchises, but not women of color, LGBTQIA or other marginalized identities in the lead role.

11:15 AM 1 April, 2017

Micro-talk: Out of Sheer Spite

Abstract:

The title “Out of Sheer Spite” is meant to evoke a line from Maria Bamford’s stand-up routine: “If you stay alive for no other reason at all please do it for spite.” It’s intended to capture not only the feelings of hopelessness that often accompany being a queer person in games (or anywhere) but also the frustration and anger that many of us transmute into motivation to keep going.

In this session of micro-talks, speakers are invited to interpret the theme in any way they like. Coping strategies, abstract musings on the long arc of human history, personal narratives, etc. Speakers include: Kris Ligman, Aevee Bee, Innes McKendrick, Zoe Quinn, Dietrich “Squinky” Squinkifer, and Carli Velocci

5:30 PM 1 April, 2017

Fire and Flow at #ORDCamp 2017

One thing I was really looking forward to at my first #ORDCamp was learning to firespin, taught by Michi Trota!  She gave us basics and let those who felt comfortable doing so try it out. Photos by Anne Petersen, Under Creative Commons License (some rights reserved) pictured;me solo and me with Mikki Kendall.

Quick video taken on my phone by Caitlin Rosberg:

Announcing our 2017 @Official_GDC Scholarship recipients!

Congrats to all our @INeedDivGms Scholarship awardees!

I Need Diverse Games

We had a lot of applications this year and it was a lot of hard decisions but please congratulate our 2017 Scholarship Awardees. Thank you to Meggan Scavio and GDC for continuing the Scholarship program which gives 25 All Access Passes to the Game Developers Conference to organizations so they can assist with getting more people to GDC for a week of professional development.

gdc17_logo_year_bug_bw

  • Nuha Alkadi
  • Rachel Bazelais
  • Richard Bottoms
  • Wren Brier
  • Diana Chaudron
  • Kate Dollarhyde
  • Charlotte Ellett
  • Colin Grant
  • Ariana Green
  • Jennifer Johnson
  • Crysta Frost
  • Masha Lepire
  • Joseph Lu
  • Trushitha Narla
  • Linda Nguyen
  • Lorien Smyer
  • Rejon Taylor-Foster
  • Jessica Tompkins
  • J. Tuason
  • Andrada Tudor
  • Jenny Xu
  • JC Lau
  • Taylor Ambrosio Wood
  • Dante Douglas
  • Rachel Hwang

Thank you to our review committee:

  • Tanya DePass
  • Bianca J. Anderson
  • Rami Ismail
  • Jane Ng
  • Glenn White

View original post

ICYMI – I hung out with the @_MediaMavens podcast to talk up Dragon Age!

mm_20logo

Listen to “Alistair and Cullen Fanfic” – Ep #21 on the Media Mavens site // Download the MP3

 

Today’s Topics:

We invited Tanya DePass of I Need Diverse Games and the Fresh Out of Tokens Podcast to chat with us about Dragon Age and answer a whole lot of listener questions.

Guest and Topic Intro (00:01:19)

A brief intro to our guest, Tanya DePass along with the non-profit she created, I Need Diverse Games . If you’re interested in supporting I Need Diverse Games or Tanya you can do so on Patreon.

What we’ve been up to (00:07:28)

Tanya (@cypheroftyr)

  • Final Fantasy XV
  • Skyrim Special Edition
  • Watch Dogs 2
  • Hip Hop Evolution
  • NK Jemisin’s The Fifth Season

Riley (@kaleri_)

  • Overwatch
  • Heroes of the Storm
  • Descendents of the Sun
  • Rogue One
  • Princess Mononoke
  • The Weeknd Starboy album
  • It’s Our Turn Podcast

Pam (@jasyla_)

  • Dead Rising 4
  • Epistory: Typing Chronicles
  • Black Closet
  • The Ghost Girl in the Corner

Dragon Age (00:28: 05)

  • What is Dragon Age?
  • How did we get into Dragon Age?
  • How the series progresses
  • Templars vs Mages
  • Thoughts in representation of PoC in DA? The character creator is certainly getting better but the only NPCs of color seem to be human (unless I’m misremembering). Why not dwarves and elves? @The_Doc_Webb
  • Tanya’s article on representation in Dragon Age
  • Which secondary character have you been the most sad not to be able to smooch? @mk_patter
  • Varic writes books. Mordin sings in plays. What hobbies or side jobs do you envision your other DA and ME buds having? @OrkChop
  • Best party composition for entertaining banter? Love the party members snarking at each other while we’re roaming around! @thornmallow
  • DA is a series with really high stakes and where humanity (unlike in Mass Effect) is not that special. Do you appreciate that about it? @MtoAllPro
  • Is there a moment in any DA that always makes you cringe (for any reason) playing through it? @TimpoAdante
  • DA:O’s Deep Roads, “A good way to spend an afternoon” or “Is there an end to this”? What did you think? @estelliaslair
  • In your mind are the Wardens good guys, bad guys, neither, and why? I see them more as a necessary evil than anything else. Thus why my warden was super evil and a jerk. @MtoAllPro
  • Are you disappointed that we never get to experience the Warden’s adventures in DA:I (as seen in Leliana quests)? @estelliaslair
  • Is the Inquisition set to be good for later games or will it be corrupted like the Wardens, Templar, Circles and every other organization. @MtoAllPro
  • Which DA do you feel has the best story? Does it also have the best characters? @TimpoAdante
  • Most bittersweet romance? My vote is for a devout Inquisitor romancing Cassandra as she becomes Divine. @The_Doc_Webb

If you’ve got any feedback, questions, people or topics you’d like to hear on future episodes of the show, you can reach out at MediaMavensCast@gmail.com or on Twitter @_MediaMavens. If you like the show, please give us a review on iTunes or Stitcher.

Music: Vivacity by Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 Licensehttp://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

.@OrcaCon is in a few days!

Ahhh it’s finally almost here! OrcaCon is this weekend in Everett, WA! It’s my first time being a Guest of Honor and I’m super excited. 

2017orcacon_title

Here’s my schedule:

Friday, January 13th, 2017

AVOIDING RACE FAIL AT YOUR TABLE – 8:00 PM

A brief primer aimed at players in case they want to RP a character outside their experience. (I’m moderating)

Saturday January 14th, 2017

IT’S OK TO NOT UNDERSTAND: IGNORANCE CAN BE CURED 12:00 PM

A lot of designers, GMs, and players feel uncomfortable with issues about sexuality, inclusivity, and anything else that goes past their world view or experience level. Let’s talk about how to help people learn, and more importantly, feel comfortable about what they don’t know or understand.

BEYOND THE 101: A DISCUSSION OF DIVERSITY IN GAMING – 7:00 PM

We know diversity is an issue in gaming, so let’s move beyond the 101 and talk about some practical ways we as a community can move from theory into action. (I’m moderating)

GENUINE REPRESENTATION: RESPECTING CULTURAL IDENTITY – 9:00 PM

The topic of Cultural Appropriation and Minority Representation is a daunting subject to broach. But it is a worthy discussion to have. With people’s identities at stake, emotions can run high and it is easy to get disheartened. This panel discusses what it means to be a writer in these times of heightened cultural awareness.

Creators walk a thin line, they have to balance their vision to the potential offense of others. But we don’t have to sacrifice artistic freedom in the process. How do we represent culture genuinely? And how that is distinct from an “accurate” representation? We will discuss the answers to these questions, as well as talk about what approach Warding Circle took when developing Mysteries of the Yōkai as a group of non-Japanese creators.

Sunday January 15th, 2017 

TWITCH 101 AND STREAMING SAFELY – 1:00 PM

Streaming on Twitch can be fun, but it can also be perilous for some of us. This panel will bring you some tips and tricks such as using bots, human mods and other methods to make your experience as stress free as possible.