BSc Physics and Space Research, 2008
Co-Founder and Creative Director, Triangular Pixels
I'm Co-founder and Creative Director of Triangular Pixels, a games studio based in Cornwall. As a Creative Director I am guiding our studio's developers to create an awesome game with one vision, making it feel like a complete thing.
I often get to still design aspects of gameplay myself and still integrate them in engine. I also have to manage the business side - hiring, cash flow, etc., but it's all a means to the end goal of creating our own games with our own ideas.
How has your career developed since graduating from the University of Birmingham?
I started at Frontier Developments as a Level Designer straight out of university. I then went to Lockwood Publishing as a Designer and Programmer on PlayStation Home. That experience allowed me to get a job as a designer with Sony London Studio. While there, I was introduced to VR, well before it was public. In my own time I would go away and research what possibilities there were with the platform. I eventually left Sony and had a couple of designer positions between that and starting my own studio on the beach in Bude. That move was the best thing I've done and now my studio and I have won all sorts of awards, including a BAFTA nomination for Innovation and BAFTA Breakthrough Brits.
What is the best thing about what you are doing now?
The best thing about creating games for a living is seeing the players' reaction when they finally play that game you have been working on for years. They smile, laugh, share it with friends - you know you've made hundreds or thousands happy. I still fondly remember games from my childhood and it’s great to know people who grew up playing my games may well feel the same when they are older.
What made you interested in your current role?
I love to experiment with new technology to see how it can create entirely new gameplay experiences for players. I enjoy using games design and technology for good in the likes of education and health. I'm my own boss which gives me the flexibility to work around family, from home, and to be able to contribute towards the greater community via my work with the BGI, Cornwall Games and being a Town Councillor.
What motivates you?
I love thinking outside the box - finding solutions to problems or thinking of issues people haven't thought about. I also enjoy taking part in and supporting communities - enjoying each other’s company and helping each other out. My work with BGI and Cornwall Games really shows that.
Why did you originally apply to Birmingham?
I did my Year 10 work experience at Birmingham and really enjoyed it, so naturally wanted to carry on and apply to go.
What are your fondest memories of the University?
The best thing was finding people just like me, who are still my friends to-date. It was really the first place I ever felt like part of a community that treated me with respect.
Did you get involved in any extracurricular activities as a student?
I was President of the Computer & Video Game Society (CVGSoc). This is where I really connected with lifelong friends and grew to realise I wanted to be part of that creative space and industry.
How did your time at University help you start your career?
I went from having no confidence, to being able to stand up for my arguments, present to groups, and pitch ideas. All critical to my job. I met my future employer at a careers day at Birmingham. I walked up to them to say I wanted to make games, that I was able to code, do art, was president of CVGSoc, and had done ‘rocket science’ in my degree. They invited me to their studio and hired me to be a designer.
To find out more about Katie and Triangular Pixels head to the mrsgame.dev website.
“Think outside the box with how your degree can be used for other careers, fully explore and embrace it. You have a lot of skills that can be applied not just in the degree you took. Once you leave you are looking at a career that you'll be doing for the rest of your life - so make it something you are passionate about and enjoy.”