The days when creating an influential work in the medium of videogames required teams of dedicated software engineers are fading into the past. Games that chase the bleeding edge of technology suddenly feel less akin to film than to roller coasters, while a cornucopia of new tools empowers a new generation of non-technically focused game developers to push the expressive bounds of the medium. What does the changing role of technology and the engineering discipline in games mean for today’s programmer?

JOHNNEMANN NORDHAGEN began in the game industry as a tester for Sony’s third-party online division. He moved into an engineering role in the research and development department, working on an application team for a variety of PS2, PSP and PS3 projects. He was hired at the newly-founded 2K Marin studio to help bring BioShock to the PS3 platform, and worked on gameplay, UI and AI programming for BioShock 2, the Protector Trials and Minerva’s Den DLC. He is now a founding member of and the lone programmer for The Fullbright Company, an independent games studio that recently shipped the first-person story exploration game Gone Home.

Babycastles & The Game Innovation Lab at NYU present a lecture series spotlighting developers and game designers with insights on games and technology. The series is hosted by Andy Nealen.

Series produced by Ben Johnson. Sleek graphic design by Colin Snyder.