HARVEY SMITH
, Game Designer
mailto:witchboy@ionstorm.com


SUMMARY OF EXPERIENCE

Drawn into the entertainment software industry by a long-term interest in video games, I have played a role in the development of a number of computer games. Positions Iíve held range from game tester to project director. I have been responsible for generating creative/technical materials, leading others involved in diverse aspects of the development process and acting as qualitative judge for the overall project. I enjoy working with teams of dedicated people, pursuing creative and technical excellence in a field for which I have great passion.
 

GAME PROJECTS

Project Director , Deus Ex 2, Ionstorm Austin
The sequel to the award-winning Deus Ex.
Published by Eidos.

Lead Designer, Deus Ex, Ionstorm Austin
A first-person-perspective RPG. Published by Eidos. DX was a hybrid game, allowing the player to customize his experience through strategic and play-style choices. As one of the key people guiding the project, I worked closely with Chris Norden (Lead Programmer) and Warren Spector (Director) for over 2 years to complete DX. During this time, I managed the design team, worked on over-arching game systems and mechanics, created plot/mission concepts and worked on many of the games 3D maps.

Lead Designer, FireTeam, Multitude, Inc.
An Internet -only tactical squad game featuring real-time voice communications between players. The game/project was very focused, relying on fundamental video game elements to make it fun and addictive. Our goal in developing FireTeam was to create an exciting game environment in which team play was rewarded. We wanted players to feel like part of an online community. One of the greatest challenges regarding this project was the Internet itself: latency was constantly an issue. The human interaction aspects of the game and the community were also challenging. My responsibilities included high level game design, scoring systems, character/weapon differentiation, game mechanics engineering, map/level creation and lobby/interface design. I also assisted the art staff with concepts and ideas, worked with the audio engineer to generate concepts for sound effects and music and implemented various low level game changes (game data, art, sound, maps, etc). Overall, working on FireTeam and being at Multitude (a start-up company) was a great learning experience.
 

Project Director/Designer, Technosaur, EA (Origin)
Technosaur was one of the most positive educational experiences of my life. It grew out of a relationship with several other developers who wanted to create a great strategy game. We put together the game's design doc, schedules and technical development plan, then underwent a series of Origin/EA project reviews. We were approved for development and worked on the game for 12 months, but eventually, due to company-wide financial upheavals, the project was canceled. Still, the education I received from this project was phenomenal and I have carried its lessons with me into subsequent game-making efforts.
 

Associate Producer, Cybermage, EA (Origin)/David W. Bradley
Brought onto this project midway through its development, I was given the responsibility for handling the day-to-day relations with David W. Bradley, creator of the award winning fantasy role-playing game Wizardry VII. I worked directly for (Executive Producer) Warren Spector during this project.
 

QA Lead Tester, Ultima VIII: Pagan (patch to v2.12), EA (Origin)
This re-release project was not planned (or budgeted for) by OSI. But, deciding that the released version of Ultima VIII: Pagan did not meet the standards of Origin or the expectations of Ultima fans, I personally crusaded for a patch until the idea picked up enough support and momentum to get underway. Once this was accomplished, I worked with designers and programmers from the original U8 project team to create fixes for over a hundred flaws within the game. This resulted in a major improvement in the overall estimation of U8's quality, a positive re-review by game critic Scorpia and a second release of the game as a 'Publisher's Choice' package.
 

QA Lead Tester, System Shock CD, EA (Origin)/Looking Glass
During this project, I coordinated the efforts of the Origin QA team, acted as liaison to the out-of-house developer and wrote most of the fiction in the SS play-guide. Incredibly immersive, System Shock won the following awards (from various industry publications): 1994 Single Character RPG of the Year, Best Action Category for CGW's Premier Award, Best Adventure Game for 1994, Best Adventure Game--Readers' Choice Awards and Top 50 Games of All Times (#29).
 

QA Assistant Lead Tester, System Shock, EA (Origin)/Looking Glass
As System Shock APL, I redefined Origin's notions of QA's involvement in the development process. Acting on my own initiative, I restructured the SS QA team, creating liaison roles to the Translations and Creative Services departments. Originís QA department subsequently adopted these roles as standard procedure. I also took it upon myself to aggressively pursue the advertisement and support of the game via on-line mediums. My actions were later adopted as part of the Marketing On-line Checklist process at Origin.
 

QA Play-tester, Super Wing Commander 3DO, EA (Origin)
This was my first role in the industry. During this time, four other team members and I worked extraordinary hours to test the first 3DO game that Origin ever published, a conversion and upgrade of Wing Commander I and II to the 3DO format.


TOOLS
Various 3d game editing packages (UnrealEd, Worldcraft)
Various 2d game editing packages
CoolEdit Audio File Editor
Adobe PhotoShop and various art programs
Various high-level proprietary scripting languages
MS Office Apps (Excel, Word, Power Point)
Various HTML Editors


FREELANCE PUBLICATIONS
My game design articles have appeared on industry publications (including Gamasutra.com and Chris Crawford's Interactive Entertainment Design). My novella, "Aces and Eights," appeared in issue #6 of Amberzine. I was an English major with the University of Maryland's European Division, and I contributed short stories to their literary magazine (The Gathering) that were subsequently used as material for student analysis.
 

AWARDS
IGDA 2001 -- Excellence in Design (Deus Ex)
IGDA 2001 -- Spotlight Award (Deus Ex)
AIAS 2001 -- PC Action/Adventure GotY (Deus Ex)
AIAS 2001 -- PC Innovation in Gaming (Deus Ex)
IEA (BAFTA) 2000 -- PC Game of the Year (Deus Ex)
Origin Manager of the Year Nominee, 1996
Origin QA Employee of the Month, October 1994
Origin Unsung Hero of the Year, 1994
 

REFERENCES
Steve Powers, Senior Designer, ION Storm Austin
Mike Grajeda, CEO, ClearCommerce Corporation
Warren Spector, Exec Producer, Ionstorm Austin
 

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