New non-profit Girls’ Game Lab wants to help ‘young girls take their first steps’ in game development

A new game design and coding initiative designed to teach the next generation of girls will kick off next month in Leamington Spa, UK. The all-new non-profit organisation – entitled Girls’ Game Lab – was set up by MCV’s Women in Games Mentor of the Year 2019, Caoimhe Roddy, with the hope of breaking “gender stereotypes and help hundreds of young girls take their first steps into the video game industry”.

As well as freelance producer Roddy, the “award-winning team of passionate women” also includes Rachael Gregg-Smythe, a PlayStation producer and a regional coordinator for Women in Games, plus Women Making Games North East co-founder Lucy Smith, a designer who will shortly start a placement at Sumo Digital.

Roddy, Gregg-Smythe and Smith “already have years of experience running coding workshops for girls across the UK, and have now come together to establish a permanent solution for helping young girls find their own passion for making games”.

“When we were kids, we didn’t even know it was possible that making games could be our actual jobs,” Roddy said in a press release. “There were no workshops, or any guidance whatsoever at school for this sort of career, especially for young girls.

“With Girls’ Game Lab, we want to show this next generation of girls that they can be the next prominent game designer, and build a career out of something they’re truly passionate about.” 

Girls aged between 8-12 years of age can now sign up to be part of the inaugural workshop, which is being run in association with Forza Horizon studio, Playground Games, in Leamington Spa on August 3rd, 2019. Attendees will be shown the ropes of using the Stencyl development tools to design and create their own video games, with guidance from industry professionals, and volunteers from companies like Rebellion, Sumo Digital and Microsoft.

About Vikki Blake

It took 15 years of civil service monotony for Vikki to crack and switch to writing about games. She has since become an experienced reporter and critic working with a number of specialist and mainstream outlets in both the UK and beyond, including Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, IGN, MTV, and Variety.

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