Building Better Worlds through Game Culturalization
Kate Edwards is the CEO and principal consultant of Geogrify, a consultancy which pioneered content culturalization, a Board Member of Take This, and is the former Executive Director of the International Game Developers Association (IGDA) from 2012 to 2017. In addition to being an outspoken advocate who serves in several advisory/board roles, she is a geographer, writer, and corporate strategist. Following 13 years at Microsoft, she has consulted on many game and non-game projects for BioWare, Google, Amazon, Facebook, and many other companies. Fortune magazine named her as one of the “10 most powerful women” in the game industry in 2013 and in 2014 was named by GamesIndustry.biz as one of their six People of the Year. In 2018, she was honored with Reboot Develop’s annual Hero Award and also presented with IndieCade’s annual Game Changer Award. She is also profiled in the December 2018 publication Women in Gaming: 100 Professionals of Play.
With over 25 years of experience in the game industry as a geographer and culturalization strategist, Kate Edwards has been involved in the world building process for many game titles, including major franchises such as Halo, Fable, Age of Empires, Mass Effect, and many, many others. She has seen it all when it comes to geopolitical and cultural issues that are often overlooked and can negatively affect the ability of a game to be distributed overseas, and she has seen designers miss opportunities to create more robust worlds that engage players from diverse cultural backgrounds. Come learn about the little-known field of content culturalization and how it can assist game creators with building better worlds that account for a wider range of cultural and environmental aspects.