Where Master of Digital Media Alumni Work: Vancouver’s Roadhouse Interactive
Master of Digital Media alumni work all over the world and in all areas of industry. There are some companies that repeatedly hire Master of Digital Media grads—one of these companies is Wooga. Another is Roadhouse Interactive, a Vancouver-based mobile games developer.
Currently, there are 8 alumni working at Roadhouse, including Laurent Giannesini (Lead Designer), Matthew Xu (Software Engineer), Lillian Wang (UI Designer),Ivy Sang (UX Designer), Matt Wiggins (Assistant Producer), Ligia Brosch (Assistant Producer), David Acuna (Game Designer) and Patricia Nunez (Artist).
The talent at Roadhouse is some of the best in the industry. They’ve been behind top selling games such as FIFA, SSX, Medal of Honor, Company of Heroes, Dawn of War, Need for Speed and Triple Play.
MDM Alumni David Acuna working at Roadhouse Interactive.
Roadhouse is also a growing company, having recently launched a new publishing services division and taken part in Vancouver’s Hiring Happy Hour earlier this month (and if you’re looking for a job, they are hiring).
I sat down to talk with one of the alumni, Ligia Brosch, a photographer and producer from Brazil, about her experiences taking the MDM program and what it’s like working at Roadhouse.
What do you do at Roadhouse?
I am an Assistant Producer. An assistant producer is basically an entry-level producer, where all producers start. I manage project deadlines, keep track of milestones, assign tasks to people—it's a project management role.
What types of projects do you work on at Roadhouse?
I've been working on Warhammer 40,000: Carnage since my first week at Roadhouse. I've spent 8 months on the project. It's awesome, I got the project really at the beginning and we shipped last week.
Have you had any successes? Anything that you're proud of working on?
Carnage went live on Apple May 8th!!
Did the MDM program help prepare you for your role at Roadhouse?
Yes. In Projects 2, I worked with Roadhouse on the Chinchilla project. That was my first game ever and was where I learned how games are built.
The project gave me a lot of knowledge to start working here at Roadhouse—it was a great start. Not only did I learn how to build games but I had also already worked with Roadhouse, so I knew how they liked to build things.
Did you know that you wanted to intern with Roadhouse after working with them?
My background is movies and photography and I had pretty much no experience with games, but I really liked working on that game.
As a producer I could pretty much work anywhere. I could build apps, games, movies…it's pretty much the whole idea of MDM that we get the soft skills and then transfer these skills to whatever production world that we want.
Roadhouse was the only place for games that I'd tried. I knew that could work in post-production anywhere but I liked Roadhouse for the environment.
What's it like working at Roadhouse?
It's awesome. The people are so friendly. They know that I'm not from games so they help me out with everything. There's no such thing as a stupid question.
I've only been working there for 8 months and it feels like I have friends for life already. Since I've been there they've almost doubled the number of employees and the number of projects have skyrocketed. When I first started, the studio space was not crowded at all. Now the whole warehouse is filled with people and projects.
What made you decide to take the MDM program?
I just wanted to do something different. I had worked in movies where I destroyed my back so I went into photography and teaching and then I started thinking 'What else can I do?'
I came to Vancouver as a tourist the year before and since I was looking to study I thought, 'Why not live in a gorgeous city for a couple of years?'
After I found the Master of Digital Media program I talked to Marcel [a previous student from Brazil] and then applied. It was insane. Classes start in September, and I applied mid-July. I got accepted in a couple of weeks and then I had to send all my documentation as fast as I could to the consulate. I got here two days before classes started.
It was a huge change in my life—very impulsive.
What was the job hunting process after MDM like?
I did one interview at Roadhouse and I got the job.
When I worked with them on Projects 2, I liked them but thought 'I have no background in games, they're not going to hire me'.
Then I was at the Industry Showcase and James Hursthouse [Roadhouse’s CEO] came up and talked to me. He told me that I should apply so I sent my resume to Roadhouse. I got an interview and then I got the job.
What's it like working with a bunch of MDM grads? Why do you thinking so many alumni choose to work there?
Oh, It's cool. Even though in my project it's just me, I have lunch with some of the alumni sometimes.
I think we got really lucky. We needed internships at the same time that Roadhouse needed people. They were expanding and actually went to CDM looking for people to hire. CDM and Roadhouse are a great fit.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I hope I'll still be at Roadhouse as an Associate Producer. Sure, why not?
Do you miss Brazil?
I'm graduating from the Master of Digital Media program in June. I'm never bored, I have so many friends at CDM and Roadhouse, it feels like home. The transition was so smooth.
Sometimes I think I'm going to wake up and find out that it’s all a dream. Often when you don't fight life and let things go, things work out. It's exactly the opposite of what every one says. Every one says that you need a 5-year plan, a 10-year plan. I have a 3-month plan at most.
Watch the Carnage Launch Trailer (co-edited by Ligia Brosch)
* All photos used with permission from http://www.roadhouseinteractive.com/