Meet The Team – Jero Juujärvi

Jery Juujarvi

Name: Jero Juujärvi

Role: Marketing Consultant

About: I’ve been a passionate game developer since childhood but I’ve also been into Consumer Behavior, Marketing, and Interactive Media!

What’s your favorite thing about GalaCollider?: Crushing Opponents, Fully.

What inspires you?: I’m inspired by the fact that whenever you practice something your always developing yourself into something more.

What is your current gaming obsession?: Heroes of the Storm, Hearthstone, and Dirty Bomb.

Meet The Team – Roberto Casas

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Name: Roberto Casas

Role: Marketing

About: I’m a mix of two very different cultures (Swedish and Colombian). I have a diverse background (trained as a Veterinarian) and dedicated to Marketing the last 18 years of my life. I am an avid reader (when there is time) and always trying to stay up to date with the latest consumer trends.

What’s your favorite thing about GalaCollider?: The unique idea of combining card games and 4X, the incredible graphics, and most of all, the creative force of the whole team.

What inspires you?: The thought that our mind has an endless capacity of creating ideas.

What is your current gaming obsession?: My 15 months-old daughter. Just now she is a fast growing tornado that keeps e (and the rest of the family really busy)

Meet the Team – Sam Watson

Sam Watson

Name: Sam Watson

Role: Composer / Sound Designer

About: I have been a freelance composer, sound designer, and audio engineer for television and film for the last 16 years. I’ve been lucky enough to circle the globe via work and have met some amazing people as a result. My love for sound was obvious from the start when I won the 3rd grade science fair for a project on the property of sound. Some of my favorite experiences were documenting BB King’s life story, working on a film for Habitat for Humanity on five continents, and a kids’ music education TV show called Lomax the Hound of music for which our audio team was Emmy nominated. My last big project was writing the score for the teen adventure creature-feature Big Bad.

What’s your favorite thing about GalaCollider?: I love that it blends the old familiar card game with the 4x space conquest approach. The randomness in the cards helps keep the game fresh and ensure that no two games are ever the same. Plus it features true head-to-head playability which is always the most fun. (I’ve always enjoyed games like chess, poker, & Risk). Galacollider is very much a thinking & strategy game at the highest level!

What inspires you?: I find inspiration in everything from the piano works of Maurice Ravel, to books on the the mathematical jokes hidden in the Simpsons, to a walk down a city street. The human mind is an amazing filter for creating order and inspiration out of seeming chaos.

What is your current gaming obsession?: Galacollider of course! By the time I am done working, practicing (guitar, piano or cello) and wrangling our three kids it doesn’t leave too much other time! Although I really look forward to Sea of Thieves when it lands.

Learn more about Sam: samwatson.com and soundcloud.com/samwatsonmusic

Meet The Team – Lorcan O’Shanahan

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About: I’m an Irish born, half Spanish hybrid graphic designer and motion graphics artist with thirst for understanding the world around me and the people in it. When Im not listening to audiobooks on physiology or the creative process, You may find me at home rewatching some of Robert Sapolsky’s lectures on Neuroscience & Behavioral Evolution. My background in Interface design comes from having worked on couple of features like Enders Game, Extraterrestrials, and most recently on the TV series Continuum. These afforded me the opportunity to experience two very different pipelines for mass production of screen design and fast paced animation output which ultimately brought about enough confidence to go freelance as of last year.

What’s your favorite thing about GalaCollider?: Sebastian and the entire crew have really amazed me with the level of focus and energy they bring to the project. At first I was excited to be working on my first real Kickstarted and sci-fi video Game, but after a couple of weeks onboard I really saw fire and passion I hadn’t seen before. Love it.

What inspires you?: I can’t say im not influenced, we all are, by literally everything we come in contact through any of our senses. My eyes are definitely a source, be it scifi movies, tumblr blogs, or other peoples work I like, If I see it and I like it chances are that it will somehow end up appearing in my work that day… Music is also hugely important for my process, Im constantly scouring Soundcloud feeds for the next tune to add to my collection of music.

What is your current gaming obsession?: The last game that I really lost myself in was ‘Journey‘. There was something magical about it, maybe the fact it didn’t have any text, instructions, or voice over to explain the narrative. Just a beautifully crafted journey of self discovery.

Learn more about Lorcan: www.lorcanoshanahan.com

Meet The Team – Drew Hoffman

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Role: UI design and initial Art Direction

About: I am an Art Director & Designer from Orange County, CA that specializes in creating visuals for web and screen. My main focus has always been the usability of a product first and the visuals second. I love to snowboard and all things Japanese. In my free time I am usually watching movies, playing games or spend time with my 5 year old daughter, Lucy.

What’s your favorite thing about GalaCollider?: Two things….first is that it’s sci-fi overload for me. I have been taking in so much sci-fi content over the past few months and I still can’t get enough. It was bad before but now it’s just atrocious. The second is that with a project like this you really get to explore and try a lot of different things. Different inspiration. Different user flows. Different processes. It is really unlike anything I have worked on. Just being able to surround myself and work on the things I love is the best part of GalaCollider.

What inspires you?: Movies. Architecture. People. Japan. Music. It’s hard to say really because inspiration does not come from a list of sources, you really can draw inspiration from just about anything and anywhere. I would have to say that two common threads throughout my life has been music and taking trips to the mountains.

What is your current gaming obsession?: It’s difficult to make time for games these days so lately I have been playing short games that don’t suck that much time out of my week. I love playing hearthstone and lately I have been addicted to Tsum Tusm. It’s completely different than my usual style of game and I think that’s why I can’t get enough. I also just started playing Shadows of Mordor and Alien: Isolation but it will be a while before I play those out.

Learn more about Drew: www.Drew-Hoffman.com

Meet The Team – Joseph Rintoul

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Role: Designer

About: Game Artist with over 8 years of experience producing art and assets for indie developers, including concept art, visual development, user interfaces and animations. I also have a strong interest in the art of game design and user experience. A recent title I’ve worked on is Puubas “The Weaponographist”, in which I was in charge of menus, characters, FX animation, and UI.

What’s your favorite thing about GalaCollider?: I love the combination of two of my favorite genres. I grew up on the Microprose 4x games of old (Master of Orion 1-2, Master of Magic, etc) and I’m very excited to have deck-building thrown into that mix. I think the near limitless amount of strategy you can have with card and deck builders will keep the gameplay fresh and engaging for a long time.

What inspires you?: For me, it’s the idea that with the right tools and a lot of work, a dedicated group of individuals can make the game that they want to make, and have millions of people experience it with the click of a button. I draw a lot of inspiration from the work done by the fledgeling studios of the 80’s and 90’s, who with a small group of people, created the foundation of gaming as we know it.

What is your current gaming obsession?: Right now, it’s city builders (Banished, Skylines) and the Souls series. I also love any kind of game with co-op, and I can’t help but fall back into Master of Orion II once every 5-6 months.

Learn more about Joseph here: www.rintouldesign.com/

Meet The Team – Omari Straker

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Role: QA Test Manager & Programmer

About: Software tester by trade but game developer by passion. I’ve gained testing experience in the healthcare software field, but now I look to apply my bug finding mastery to GalaCollider. I’ve mostly done small pet projects in GameMaker and Unity, through SJSU’s game dev club and the global game jam. My ultimate goal is to keep on designing and developing games until I can’t think of another game to bring to life!

What’s your favorite thing about GalaCollider?: My favorite thing about GalaCollider is the overall flavor of the game. It really captures the sci-fi element of a space battle, with the utilization of resources to build, sending ships out to colonize planets and battle enemy ships, and achieving victory by overpowering your opponent. To me it combines the deck management present in deck building and trading card games, the resource management of popular RTS games like Starcraft, and the strategic placement of units I’ve seen in games like Advance Wars, which is one of my favorite video game series.

What inspires you?: I’m inspired mostly by characters. Whether real or fictional, characters have a way of breathing life into any story and really making it feel unique. They are the backbone to any universe, as no great story has ever been told without great characters. The best thing about them is how they affect the real people that invest in these characters. A character can become immortalized just by being interesting and popular, even years after their creator is long gone. Characters inspire me both as a designer and a consumer. I want to create characters that people will get excited to talk about, all while being introduced to new characters that I can fall in love with forever.

What is your current gaming obsession?: My current gaming obsession is Dungeon Fighter Online. It’s a Korean MMO that combines the classic arcade beat-em-up style with skill tree builds containing as much depth as your average RPG! I love this game because it took a genre that really lost its popularity after the 90s and modernized it with a style more fitting to this generation of games.

But to be honest I love almost every game I’ve ever played! My motto has always been: If it’s a game, I’ll play it.

You can play some of Omari’s games here.

Meet The Team – Nina Park

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Name: Nina Park

Role: Marketing Manager

About: Nina Park is a project manager who specializes in Kickstarters. She’s successfully Kickstarted 2 games so far: Grow: The Organic Building Game and Fujian Trader. While she graduated with a degree in the development and art side of games, she eventually found herself working with small, indie startups in a marketing and production role.

What’s your favorite thing about GalaCollider?: I’m really excited that player actions can influence the storyline of the game. In that sense, it reminds me a bit of Eve Online. I never had the spare time to properly get into Eve, but with GalaCollider, there’s less of a time commitment and less of a learning curve which makes it perfect for my lifestyle and gaming tastes.

What inspires you?: Pretty cheesy, but my life experiences. I’m very much a fan of Neil Gaiman’s “Make good art” motto where whatever happens to you, take that and make it into art. I find it interesting and challenging to gather up what I’ve experienced and translate that into a game.

What is your current gaming obsession?: I tend to follow and play a lot of indie games, and right now I’m really into rogue-likes. My Steam account has so many hours logged into Eldritch, Risk of Rain, and Nuclear Throne

Learn more about Nina:
www.ninacpark.com

Meet The Team – Danielle Merrithew

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Name: Danielle (Dani) Merrithew

Role: Quality Assurance Tester

About: I am a Game Designer, 2D artist and a Quality Assurance Tester. I live, breathe and sleep video games! I have loved games ever since I was a child. For me, games filled a void in my life and helped me get through a lot of tough times in my life. I have always been interested in art, and while I was in school, I would always sketch random things I thought would be cool as games!

I currently work for a small company as a 2D artist/ User Interface designer and work on mobile games and apps. I also work as a volunteer Game Designer for a non-profit organization to create educational games for children.
In my spare time I like to draw, design and sew Cosplay, watch anime and play games with friends.

For GalaCollider, I am focusing on Quality Assurance and ensuring the overall gameplay experience is awesome! ☺

What’s your favorite thing about GalaCollider?: My favorite thing about GalaCollider would probably be how interactive the world is. It doesn’t just feel like a card game- you actually interact with the environment and move your units like an RTS. I love how well the two genres blended together!

What inspires you?: Meeting people such as the people on this team. People who have a vision and can properly execute it and those who are confident and believe in themselves!

Creative people, whether it be an artist, Cosplayer, designer- their creativity inspires me and drives me to continuously keep working on projects.

Games are also a huge impact and inspiration on my life. They have saved me in many different ways. Japanese Culture is another huge inspiration and most of my games and art have been heavily influenced by different Japanese art styles.

What is your current gaming obsession?: Heroes of the storm, I have been really into MOBAS in the past few years, but ever since I played the Alpha of Heroes I was hooked! I also play a lot of RPG’s – Ori and the blind forest is one of the more recent ones I absolutely loved. Hearthstone, especially now that it’s on android phones.

The game that started my passion for gaming was Devil May Cry 3. I played it with my dad when I was 12 and my father and I bonded over it. To this day it’s my absolute favorite game and I’ve replayed it about 5 times since then.

Check out my website to see other projects I’ve worked on: www.daniellemerrithew.com

Meet The Team – Rafael Morais

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Name: Rafael Morais

Role: 3D Artist/VFX Artist

About: Back in 2006 I joined a few Modders to do some props for a Half-Life 2 MOD, this was my very first contact with the game industry, I was so mesmerized by how a few tweaks in a box could transform that primitive shape into a creature, vehicle, character or anything else you can imagine. I got my first job in the game industry when I was 20 as a Junior Artist, little did I know how hard it is to make a game, and how much effort it is required. I have participated as a game artist in several project as a 3D artist and VFX artist, I’ve done Space MMO, platform games, third person shooters and adventure games. In the last few years I helped on the development of 2 brazilian indie titles that i’m super proud, Aritana and Harpy’s Feather and Adventurezator: When Pigs Fly. I hope to keep doing game art for as long as I can.

What’s your favorite thing about GalaCollider?:
GalaCollider will bring a very unique new genre, mixing some of card game and deck build with turn based real time strategy. I can see myself spending some nice amount of hours only planning my decks and strategies. Also, the Sci-Fi theme totally grabs my attention, no matter if it is a game, movie, book or music.

What inspires you?:
Good Art. Music, Books, paintings, games. Good art inspires me.

What is your current gaming obsession?
Have you heard about Exanima? What about Chroma Squad? Technobabylon? Well I’m totally addicted to those new games. Exanima is an unique physics based game with an amazing combat system. Chroma Squad is a turn based strategy game where you are the manager of a Sentai Studio. Technobabylon is the newest adventure game by Wadjet Eye games, I’m a huge fan of their work.

You can find out more about Rafael here: www.rahmorais.com

MEET THE TEAM – CHRISTOPHER “AUSTIN” BRYANT

Christopher Bryant

Role: Networking and QA

About: Austin is a 20-year-old aspiring game developer that enjoys entertaining. With only a year of college under his belt, he’s co-founded a handful of start-ups while in high school and began modding with games like Skyrim, Minecraft, and Warcraft III. Austin hopes to break into the world of game development with other visual-novel projects he is working on. He loves helping others get to where they want to be- whether it’s developing their YouTube channel or helping finish a model for their DOTA 2 weapon.

What’s your favorite thing about GalaCollider?: Combining 4X strategy with card game/deck building mechanics is a tricky combination. My favorite part right now is emerging strategies that appear every single game as soon as you draw your first hand. Like any card game- you never know what you will actually do until you see the hand that you are dealt.

What inspires you?: I’m inspired by people that live every day doing what they love. I’m energized by my friends that make a living and get by in creative ways that didn’t exist a few years ago. Making video games is something I’ve always wanted to try, and I’m excited to be living in an era where I can forge my own path to get there.

What is your current gaming obsession?: On any given day where I have free time, I play Guild Wars 2 and PlanetSide 2 every day. Right now I’m playing the Witcher series for the first time in anticipation for playing Wild Hunt- and I’m loving Geralt and the world he’s in.

You can find out more about Austin here: www.naustix.com

Meet The Team – David Logan

David Logan
Role: Art Producer

About: David is a video game producer with over 20 shipped titles. He released the award-winning game “Whispering Willows” with his studio Night Light Interactive. David was also a Producer at Animax Entertainment where he oversaw the production of projects including video games, animation, websites, and apps for iOS, Android, and the social web.

What’s your favorite thing about GalaCollider?: I am excited to dive deeper into the lore and all the different races. I can’t wait to try out the different species and craft decks with different strategies.

What inspires you?: Games are my biggest inspiration. I enjoy playing as many different games as I can, especially indie titles as I feel they often push the boundaries most. I enjoy video games especially, but play a lot of card and board games as well.

What is your current gaming obsession?: Currently I’m playing Bloodborne, Destiny, and Solforge. I realized recently that I enjoy incredibly difficult games, so the Souls series is my favorite. I also really enjoy competitive shooters, my favorite being Unreal Tournament 2004.

You can find out more about David here: www.davidclogan.com