East Side Games
It’s my first week of Practicum at East Side Games and I couldn’t be happier to be involved with such a passionate and talented group of individuals! I started working part-time for East Side Games in May 2013 as a part of their CS Team for their flagship game, Pot Farm. During semesters, I would come in 2 times a week for a few hours and head back into school. This was a difficult transition for me as my mind would be focused on work, then I would have to leave that mindset and head to school to focus on different things. This was frustrating for a while, but I learned that I had so much more to learn about the industry, and have since been able to use these skills in the work place.
Transition to the Workplace at East Side Games
When I was working in the classroom, I would get pretty frustrated at how unfocused I became because of the distractions around me. This caused my workflow and quality to suffer. I also felt like I had an overwhelming amount of assignments due during the same weeks, and couldn’t be happy with the quality of work I was producing due to the quantity of projects I needed to hand in. It was an overwhelming feeling, but I got through it and learned more about time management. At East Side Games however, I feel much more comfortable working on my projects and hitting my deadlines. We create sprints and tickets in Assembla, which really help plan out what my tasks and priorities are for that week. Another great thing about East Side Games is the wealth of knowledge and support from the people there. While working in the classroom, I would feel like I was pestering other students or wasting my time asking them questions they couldn’t answer. East Side Games has the right person for any question. If I have questions regarding art, I know John is my man! If I’m unsure what the best way to code something is, I can ask Jason or Kelly. Instead of having to rely on myself to find the answers to my questions, I have the right people to teach me and help my work flow progress.
I’m lucky to work directly with the CEO, Josh Nilson. He’s a graduate from the Interactive Design Program back when it was called InfoTech. Josh is also a great mentor. He makes sure all his employees have what they need and learn something new and challenging from their task, while still being approachable enough to talk about hockey and joke about hipsters.
During this practicum period, I will be working alongside my classmate, Angel Kao. I will be leading us through the task of creating a microsite for Pot Farm’s mobile game “Grass Roots”. This will challenge me to take on the role of Project Manager and lead our team through our sprints to create a › Continue reading
I’m now two-thirds of the way through my internship with East Side Games, and I’m really excited with the progress I’ve been making on my projects. Over the last two weeks, I have been working primarily with the analytics team to develop their new analytics dashboard. This project has given me an awesome opportunity to combine my skills in information architecture, visual design, and front-end development to build a site that will be invaluable to the company’s 40+ employees.
The company is broken down into a number of teams, with each team typically operating on one-week sprints, where each team member has their own assigned tasks that they focus on during that time. The company expects a lot from its employees, but they’ve managed to create a fantastic culture in the workplace that is unlike anything you would expect to see in a more traditional game studio. I’ve had more flexibility in how I schedule my tasks as I am self-directing much of the work I’m doing, but I’ve › Continue reading
Over the past two weeks, I have been interning with East Side Games, one of the top social and mobile gaming studios in Vancouver. I got off to a late start due to illness, but I’ve had a chance to get settled in and get started on some interesting projects.
East Side Games was founded in July 2011, and has launched several titles, including their flagship Facebook game Pot Farm. More recently, the studio has another social team working on Zombinis, which is currently exclusive to the Google+ platform and will be moving to Facebook and standalone in the coming weeks. A few mobile games are also in the works, including Ruby Skies for iPad, and NomNom Combo for iPhone, which just launched recently. It’s an exciting time to get into the company while so many new products are in the works, and I feel fortunate to have opportunities to get involved with many of these projects during my internship.
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During my recent video shoot with East Side Games, I took a number of photos in between shoots outside the company’s Gastown office. As I went through the neighbourhood, I found several fantastic locations to film and incorporate into my final video project, but these spots also made for some really interesting photos. I filmed the video project on a Canon Rebel T3i, a digital SLR that can shoot both photos and video. This gave me a great deal of flexibility to easily shoot photos without having to switch to another camera to set up a shot when needed.
I’m really excited to finally share a preview of my video project, which is a company profile of East Side Games featuring three of their employees. I originally had a number of other concepts for my final project, and had focused on developing a 360-degree music video with local indie band The Modern States. It became clear to me a few weeks into planning the project that it was going to be very difficult coordinating schedules to allow for all those involved to film and edit at the same time, and I had to quickly change course and develop a new concept for my project. The result is a professionally filmed quick look at one of Vancouver’s hottest gaming startups from the point of view of three key members of their team, and I’m thrilled with how the final product has turned out.
I’ll be posting lots more details very soon, including the final video, but for now, take a look at this short clip!