Rebekah Little

Rebekah

Game Designer,
Game Design

Watch Rebekah’s video

What are the coolest things about working in your industry?

The day-to-day reality. The games industry is highly competitive, and we work very hard. However, I regularly catch myself completing tasks that I would have once just done for fun. While balancing data, carefully planning levels, and writing scripts are all part of my job, I’ve also watched Star Trek, browsed Pinterest and played games for market research.

What are some things that helped in your career?

In a way, I was very lucky to have previous qualifications before getting into game design. However, while studying games specifically I also accepted several internships. The internships showcased, not only my abilities in a work environment but, my values and passion. In addition, my student projects all had a community theme or focus – further demonstrating my focus on creating games with meaning.

What is your advice to girls and women about working in non-traditional roles / industries?

Don’t let anyone, even yourself, limit you. If you have an interest, please pursue it. Working in a field that interests and inspires you is far more important than any preconceived notions of what you can or should do.

Did you know about the industry you now work in before you started?

I did a lot of research before going into the games industry. When I first realised making games was an option, I was completing a Master’s in Teaching. After learning about the power of Game-Based Learning I became increasingly interested in the development of serious games. This interest spread to include games for entertainment and eventually I found that I was more passionate about the potential of games and felt more comfortable in my theoretical role than in teaching.

Were there hobbies or interests that influenced your career?

Yes.

What or who has influenced your career journey?

In starting my journey, I wasn’t particularly influenced by any one role model or person in the industry. Frankly, I knew almost nothing about the people who make games. Instead, I was inspired by journal articles analysing the impact of games on society and supported by my loving partner to make a difficult career transition. Since joining the industry, my biggest influence and motivator has been Emma Losin, my graduate-year mentor. She is an incredibly kind and talented woman who has encouraged me to see my own worth.

What subjects did you love or were you good at in school?

At school, I was obsessed with Math and later Physics – going on to study for an Astrophysics degree at uni. As I got older, I found that I needed to also engage my brain in creative and people-centric activities to feel whole and complete. Looking back, it’s clear to me that I also enjoyed creative writing, art and drama but felt that it was a waste of time or I wasn’t good enough. In hindsight, I now know I was overly harsh on myself and missed an opportunity to combine all my interests at a younger age.

What did you want to be or do when you left school?

When I left school, I wanted to be an astrophysicist. I still love physics but as I approached the end of my honours year I found, through my community volunteering, that I wasn’t having the impact I wanted on others’ lives. A knee-jerk reaction to a Teaching degree but found my analytical side wanting more. After reading about Game-Based Learning, I took my time considering my interests and skills to form a new plan.

What did you study?

First Class Honours in Physics (Theoretical and Experimental)
Master of Teaching (Secondary Math and Science)
Advanced Diploma of Professional Game Development (Design

What are the types of roles you’ve had?

  • Game Designer
  • Graduate Game Designer
  • Boarding House Supervisor for a girls boarding college

Lastly, how are you making your own mark?

I try to be the best advocate I can for others. Because of my Teaching and volunteer experience I’ve had a lot of opportunities to visit schools and give industry presentations and interviews. Most recently, I was facilitating the SA Teen Writer’s Club, a truly wonderful experience helping young talented writers realise their potential. Beyond this I’m looking forward to presenting a talk at GCAP, the biggest conference for games in the Asia Pacific, on data-driven narrative – a combination of all my interests and skills.

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