About me

HELLO!

I’m a senior-level Game Designer with over 10 years’ success creating educational and entertainment digital products for almost every major platform, from PC and console to the web and mobile/tablet apps.

Passionate about: improving education through innovative, effective games-based learning solutions; user-centred, modern design; stress-testing concepts with digital/physical prototypes; applying research and analytics to decision making; crafting accessible, meticulously-detailed documentation; collaborating with stakeholders and coding/art teams at all stages of development to guarantee quality.

Produced apps for many top brands including LEGO, Hornby/Scalextric, Star Wars and DC Comics.

 

CAREER HISTORY

Game Designer & Producer  |  Freelance  |  April 2015 – Present
Currently working on three major projects, all of which are under NDA…

  • Project 1 – Virtual Reality game based on one of the world’s most popular science fiction movie franchises.
  • Project 2 – Narrative-based edutainment product for one of the biggest educational toy manufacturers.
  • Project 3 – iOS/Android apps to tie-in with a key new range from a major toy manufacturer.

Senior Product Designer (Contract)  |  tagsmArt  |  August 2014 – March 2015
tagsmArt’s smart labelling and beacon technology allows gallery visitors to engage with artworks like never before.

  • Created UI/UX specification for the iOS and Android apps, tailoring each for the host platform’s idioms.
  • Defined the interaction behaviour rules between the apps and the BLE beacons and NFC tags.
  • Architected and created UI/UX specification of the bespoke CMS powering content delivery to the apps.

Game Designer & Producer  |  Freelance  |  July 2012 – July 2014
Delivered digital design and production services to a range of companies. Notable projects include…

  • JAKKS Pacific – Designed Hero Portal, a Skylanders-style ‘toy-to-life’ game based on popular children/teen brands (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Power Ramgers, DC Comics superheroes).
  • Mindshapes – Redesigned UX of award-winning iPad app, My Story World, to improve conversion rates.
  • Macmillan Cancer – Concepted an iOS/Android game app to help teenage children understand cancer.
  • Mangahigh – Created design for Jetstream Riders, a multiplayer game for tablets coded entirely in HTML5.
  • Scalextric – Concepted/designed an iOS/Android app to tie-in with the new Racing Control System product line.
  • Mangahigh – Managed porting of games onto tablet, redesigning them for the platform’s unique capabilities.
  • HotGen – Created concept and design of iOS game Doodle Ducks.
  • EGN – Advised on learning game strategy for the proposed relaunch of kids’ literacy site, Wordia.com.
  • ALD Life – Collaborated with charity ALD Life to create an app to help children understand the disease ALD.

Games Director  |  Mangahigh.com  |  February 2009 – June 2012    
Mangahigh is one of the world’s top games-based learning sites, teaching maths via bespoke casual games.

  • Defined the company’s game design philosophies and app development strategies.
  • Collaborated with educators to generate 17 curriculum-compliant learning game concepts.
  • Managed internal/external development teams to ensure games hit deadline and budget.
  • Analysed pre- and post-launch user data to refine user experience and pedagogy.
  • Conducted pre-launch user testing and analysed post-launch live data to refine user experience and pedagogy.

Game Design & Content Consultant  |  Freelance  |  June 2008 – January 2009
Delivered digital product design and editorial content services to a range of companies.

  • UbiSoft– Created concept and design specification of Petz: Pony Beauty Pageant on Nintendo DS.
  • GamersUniverse.com – Relaunched this gaming website, defining its editorial proposition and ‘look & feel’.

Creative Director  |  HiScore TV Ltd  |  December 2003 – May 2008
This small dev produced games across varied platforms, from Sony PSP to ‘plug & play’ TV games to mobile.

  • Managed creative aspects of all projects, from concept/design specification to asset production.
  • Drove new business development, pitching internally-developed concepts to potential publishers.
  • Created design for Domino FX, an original puzzle game for Sony Computer Entertainment Europe.
  • Designed and produced three original ‘plug & play’ TV games for Radica.
  • Designed and produced Mastertronic’s first mobile gaming app and CMS back-end.

Senior Editor  |  Computec Media UK  |  September 1999 – November 2003
This company was a division of Computec Media AG, Germany’s most successful games magazine publisher.

  • Launched PlayStation World with sales of 204k, making it one of the UK’s most successful ever launches.
  • Launched PC Gameplay and its affiliated website, pcgameplay.co.uk.

Producer  |  LEGO Interactive  |  November 1997 – August 1999
LEGO Media was set up by LEGO Group to develop LEGO-themed games, films, TV shows, books and more.

  • Designed and produced the award-winning LEGO Chess (PC) and LEGO Rock Raiders (PlayStation).
  • Created concept outline for LEGO Mindstorms: Star Wars (PC), a tie-in with The Phantom Menace film.
  • Created concept outline for LEGO Island 2 (all major formats), sequel to LEGO’s best-selling first game.

AWARDS & ENDORSEMENTS

  • “tagsmArt gives visitors the ultimate personalised art journey. This technology isn’t just a win for viewers, but for galleries, museums and artists as well.” – Annika Erikson, Articheck.co.uk
  • “Mangahigh [is] successfully delivering fun, competitive, game-based lessons that drive greater engagement and understanding.” – Bill Gates, co-founder of Microsoft and co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
  • “[Mangahigh is] enabling children to engage with complex mathematical problems that would hitherto have been thought too advanced.” – Michael Gove, former Education Secretary for the British Government
  • A Tangled Web becomes the first maths game in the world to be endorsed and co-branded by an official awarding body, Edexcel, the UK’s largest such organisation.
  • Readers’ Choice Award: Mangahigh.com – eSchool News
  • Resoundingly positive press coverage in The Guardian, The Sunday Times, Schoolzone.co.uk and more.
  • Software Of The Year Nomination: LEGO Rock Raiders – Family Fun Magazine US
  • Editor’s Choice Award: LEGO Chess – Children’s Software Revue US
  • Outstanding Award: LEGO Chess – Educate Online UK
  • Best Reviews & Tests: Nintendo Official Magazine – EMAP Editorial Awards
  • Most Improved Magazine: The One For Amiga Games – EMAP Editorial Awards

EDUCATION

  • First Class B.Sc. (Hons) Physics with Astrophysics  |  Leicester University

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

  • Proficient in: general – MS Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint); flowcharting – Visio, Lucidchart, Gliffy, Wizflow; UI/UX design – Adobe Photoshop, Balsamiq; app prototyping – Proto.io, Flinto.
  • Active STEMNET Ambassador, promoting careers in game development in schools and colleges.
  • Code iOS/Android games for fun in GameMaker, plus have experience of programming at assembler level.
  • Wrote a regular monthly column about mobile app development for DEVELOP magazine.
  • Enjoy all types of board games, and regularly attend the London On Board game nights.
  • Keen film fan, with an interest in animated shorts from the 20s and 30s.
  • Write comedy sketches and sitcoms, several of which have been performed live.
  • Black belt in Kissaki-Kai karate, which I help teach to children and adults.

ONE LAST THING…

I am married to Allison and live near Romford, Essex, in the United Kingdom. We have two beautiful twin daughters, Isabelle and Alexandra – living proof that chaotic systems are both exhausting and wonderful. 🙂