SOE G.I.R.L. Scholarship Program

Q & A WITH 2010 G.I.R.L. GAME DESIGN COMPETITION WINNER: SYLVIA LIU

Sylvia Liu

Q: Explain what it feels like to be the G.I.R.L. Scholarship winner?
A: I feel so happy and honored to be chosen as the winner this year. I worked hard on my submission and am very proud of what I accomplished for this competition. This scholarship and internship will help me a long way in my career so I can't wait to get started!

Q: How did you come up with your G.I.R.L Game Design Competition submission (artwork & essays)?
A: I usually start out my design process by sketching abstract thumbnails and looking for interesting shapes that are appealing at first glance. From there, I pull things that I like and build on it. I knew that I wanted to make some sort of creature because Everquest® II has many interesting creatures as bosses. Since Everquest® II is a fantasy game, I made sure that my environment and creature were more organic and unique. I went with a forest for my environment because it's familiar yet there are so many possibilities to making it something people haven't seen before. My Mosster, which is my creature, inhabits the forest so I made sure that you could instantly tell it belonged in its environment. I also created my designs so they were fun and had a story to them so the player would be more interested. My essay was based on my past experience as a female gamer and my opinion on how to get more females into the industry.

Q: What do you hope to do after you graduate and why?
A: I hope to go into the entertainment industry and work as a concept artist to create visual development for movies, animations, video games, etc. It has always been my passion to design new visual ideas and tell stories through my artwork for others to enjoy.

Q: During your internship with SOE, what do you hope to learn?
A: I hope to participate and learn more about the process that SOE goes through when designing video games. Gaining the real life experience of what the entertainment industry is looking for is valuable to me. I also hope to excel as a concept artist and learn how to communicate my ideas so they are visually compelling and easily understood by others.

Q: What kinds of skills have you learned from playing video games?
A: I've learned to look for certain design qualities such as unique characters or environments. I have also learned some of the key elements of what makes a good game and that there are many different types that cater to all different types of players.