November Meeting – Panel on “Breaking Into Game Development: From Concept to Completion”

by Dan Salsberg on November 11, 2015

in Event announcements,Post Mortem


(Recording of this presentation can also be found on our YouTube channel)

This month’s Boston Post Mortem is Tuesday, November 17th at Naga in Cambridge and will begin at 7:00pm; talk begins at 8:00pm.

Our presentation this month is, “Breaking Into Game Development: From Concept to Completion”.

Game development is not only a beloved pastime, but a global, multi-billion dollar industry that heavily relies on the collaboration of experts from wide variety of fields on everything from preproduction and planning to final production. Come explore the many unique opportunities available to budding game developers from an array of industry professionals. Leave with an understanding of the skills needed to grow your career and become the future faces of game development!

This panel will focus on some of the many exciting paths into game development and interactive media, and features special guests:

Damon Iannuzzelli, Art Director & Cofounder of Proletariat Inc.
Michael Sweet, Audio & Music Professor at Berklee College of Music
Avida Michaud, Engineer at Jibo Robotics
Chris Foster, Designer at Harmonix Music Systems
Dawn Rivers, Cinematographer at Harmonix Music Systems (Moderator)

About the panel:

Damon Iannuzzelli, Art Director & Cofounder of Proletariat Inc.

Damon has been making game visuals for 15 years at Turbine, Insomniac Games, Conduit labs, and Zynga Inc. Currently, Damon is co-founder and Art Director of Boston-based Proletariat Inc, creators of the App Store Editor’s Choice iOS/Android game, World Zombination. When not working on his art, Damon can be found biking around the Charles River, making bawdy remarks, and dancing to Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.”

Michael Sweet, Audio & Music Professor at Berklee College of Music

Over the past two decades in music, Michael is an accomplished video game audio composer and has been the audio director for more than 100 award winning video games. His work can be heard on the X-Box 360 logo and on award winning games from Cartoon Network, Sesame Workshop, PlayFirst, iWin, Gamelab, Shockwave, RealArcade, Pogo, Microsoft, Lego, AOL, and MTV, among others. Since 2008, Michael Sweet has led the development of video game scoring curriculum at Berklee College of Music. He has developed curriculum for nine classes that teach the art of video game composition, and helped establish the Minor in Video Game Scoring at the college.

Avida Michaud, Engineer at Jibo Robotics

Avida has been a software engineer for over 20 years and 16 of those years have been in the game industry. She was the lead engineer for RockBand2, RockBand3, and RockBand Network and more recently was the lead engineer of Harmonix’s engine team. Avida has since moved on from Harmonix to be part of an exciting industry (and product)- social robots! Jibo, Inc. has been her new home for the last 6 months and she has been loving every minute of it. Twitter: @avidamic

Chris Foster, Designer at Harmonix Music Systems

Chris Foster is a 23-year veteran of the Boston-area game development scene, with long stints at Impressions Games, Turbine, and Harmonix, where he is currently a Senior Designer. He was lead designer onThe Beatles: Rock Band, project lead on Green Day: Rock Band, systems/UX lead on Disney Fantasia: Music Evolved, and lead gameplay designer (and programmer of last resort) on Rock Band 4. He also teaches game design at Northeastern University, and in his dwindling spare time works on a game for tablet called Loose Nozzles, in collaboration with his 7-year-old son.

Dawn Rivers, Cinematographer at Harmonix Music Systems (Moderator)

Dawn Rivers is Cinematographer at Harmonix Music Systems. She combines her passion for lighting and her extensive film background from Pixar and the Ringling College of Art and Design on games such as Rock Band 4, Dance Central: Spotlight, and Fantasia Music Evolved and is a pioneer in Virtual Reality, working on experiences like Harmonix Music VR for PlayStation VR. Dawn is deeply involved in the Boston game community as a member of the board of directors for the Boston Chapter of the International Game Developers Association and as a local Indie Developer with her company Mechamagizmo, which in part worked on the award winning Virtual Reality hit the Alien Makeout Simulator. Her exciting path into game development and her involvement for her local community has earned her a spot on this year’s Forbes 30 Under 30 Game List.


Tuesday, November 17th
7:00pm @ Naga

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