Train2Game News Interview with Fee Stewart on Women in Games

Fiona StewartFormerdroid Managing Director and former Train2Game student Fee Stewart has made a list of the top 100 women in gaming. We interviewed her about what the nomination meant to her and what it’s like being female in the UK Games Industry.

What does it mean to be included in the list of Top 100 Women In Games?

Personally I am chuffed to be amongst such great women in the industry. It feels great that there is so many women in the industry to be able to narrow it down to 100. I would now like to see the top 100 males too though now! It’s all about inclusion and diversity at the end of the day.

When going about your work, do you see yourself as one of the UK’s high flying women in Gaming?

Definitely not lol. I think I will always feel humble when looking at what others do. I love this industry with an extreme passion so have never felt that I am “Working” when doing what I love. I still feel I haven’t actually achieved anything worthy yet.

How important do you think this kind of event is to females in the Games Industry?

It’s nice to be included. It is nice to see that there are other girls in the industry and if it encourages more girls to join it then it is worth doing but at the end of the day it is equally important that everyone, male and female are made to feel inclusive into the industry.

What are some of your experiences being a Woman in Games?

I am a team player. I don’t look at me and think female, Mother of three. I look at me and see Game Dev. Most of the industry looks and me and sees Game Dev, that is the way it should be. I have had a few occasions where I have been ignored by a few of the male Game Devs who presume I am someone’s wife or girlfriend rather than a Developer myself, which has been a bit annoying.

How can women in Video Games help each other?

I don’t believe it is a case of helping each other. It is nice to meet up with other girls in the industry, sometimes as I miss girly things being with the boys all the time but if you want to be the best then be it. It doesn’t matter if you are male or female. I think it is important that everyone male or female is recognised for good work! I don’t want to be special just because of my sex.

How can people continue to support and drive females working in games?

Be inclusive, don’t assume things. That girl in the group may also be a game developer and might even be a better one than you. Before women get to the workplace teach girls at Primary level to code. Make it acceptable socially to be a girl geek and let toys be toys, not boy’s toys and girl’s toys.

What are you working on now, what do you have planned for the future?

We are getting Splemy ready for iOS and Android. I am also helping organise the next big Gamayo ( Game Makers Yorkshire ) event in April as we have over 500 members. As for the future who knows?

Train2Game News: Train2Game in 2012 – January to March

Train2Game2012 has been a good year for Train2Game and the students and I am going to take you through some of the best bits.

At the end of January some Train2Game students entered a game jam in Scotland.

The Scottish Game Jam is part of Global Game Jam 2012 and at the event Train2Game Art & Animation students Fiona Stewart and Corinna Bruce were winners of the Best Art Award at the Scottish Game Jam.

It was at this jam where the game Shplem was created and nominated for a BAFTA award.

The first quarter of the year was also the run up to the Make Something Unreal Live competition.

Four student studios: Commando Kiwi, Derp Studios, Digital Mage and Indigo Jam were working hard trying to get together their games which were based on the Fighting Fantasy books which would be displayed at The Gadget Show live in April.

It is a time I remember well as I was a proud member of Digital Mage and it was one of the greatest times of my life.

Possibly the most important part of early 2012 was the government announcing that they would implement the Games Tax Relief. Just the mere announcement of this has seen the games industry grow to new heights.

Train2Game student studios including FormerDroid and Global Empire Soft sign up to Microsoft BizSpark

As part of Train2Game’s on-going support for students, indie studios which include Train2Game students are taking advantage of Train2Game’s connection to Microsoft BizSpark to receive free software and support from Microsoft’s small business support network.

With Train2Game is an official partner on the BizSpark network, the Train2Game PR team are available to support and advise on signing up with to the program. It’s free to join, though studios are required to register as a company and have their own website. The scheme gives students access to an array of software which can affectively let them publish games as professional studios.

Fiona Stewart, Train2Game student and Managing Director, FormerDroid said: “Working with BizSpark is a great chance to receive the latest Microsoft software and support from a network of skilled technical experts. FormerDroid are already developing with the platform and we’d encourage Train2Game student studios to do the same.”

Richard Hoffmann, Train2Game student and CEO,Global Empire Soft, said: “It’s tremendous to have the support of Microsoft behind us as we look to release titles onto Windows 8 Mobile, its support will be invaluable. Thanks Train2Game for making it happen for GlobalEmpire Soft!”

Jan Telensky, Train2Game, said: “At Train2Game our main aim is to get our students into the games industry. With our friends at Microsoft, our students can now start their own professional studios with help from the fast track system in place to gain acceptance to BizSpark. This relationship enables the new generation of entrepreneurial studios to kick start their way into the gaming industry – which is a testament to the efforts of the entire Train2Game team!”

For more information about signing up with BizSpark contact the Train2Game PR team via:

Train2Game News: Fee Stewart talks to BBC Radio Leeds

Train2Game Student Fiona Stewart, or Fee The Giraffe on the Train2Game forums, was interviewd by BBC Radio Leeds yesterday.

She discusses her move from traditional art to 3D Modelling and how her dislike of the smell of paint came about. She also explains how she got funding from Microsoft for FormerDroid LTD where she is the Managing Director.

You can listen to the interview by clicking on the picture below