Mentorship is a critical component of the Indie Games Accelerator curriculum. Participants of the program had an access to leading game experts from Google as well as from leading game studios and institutions around the world.

Mentorship sessions covered a broad variety of game topics including technical development, design, gameplay, user retention, user acquisition, monetization, and team leadership.

Meet the 2019 Industry and Google mentors below:

INDUSTRY EXPERTS

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Alexander Swords

Writer and Narrative Designer, Dead Static Drive

Alexander is a narrative designer with a background in audience development and arts management. He’s worked for indies in Berlin, AAA in Sweden, and is now based in Australia helping studios forge strong relationships with their audiences through narrative systems and player care. This includes developing a narrative design framework that allows developers to discover the power of their own stories away from Western conventions and understanding player motivation beyond demographics and traditional models.

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Alok Kejriwal

CEO and Co-founder, Games2win

Alok is a serial digital entrepreneur and the CEO and Co-founder of Games2win. Games2win is a global mobile games business that has 240 million game downloads and entertains over 10 million players monthly. In 1998, Alok created contests2win.com – India’s first online contesting site that spearheaded the creation of digital promotions in the world. In 2006, Alok sold his Mobile Startup, Mobile2win, to The Walt Disney Company and Norwest Venture Partners in China and India respectively.

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Amir Yagil

General Manager, Playtika Boost

Amir has over twenty years’ experience in business, marketing and management roles. During the last eight years, Amir is at Playtika, one of the largest global game companies, in various business management and cross-company management positions. These included: COO, General Manager of Playtika Montreal and of Jelly Button, a Playtika company. Amir is currently the General Manager of Playtika Boost, Playtika’s vehicle to boost acquired games, bringing them to the next level.

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Angelo Lobo

Veteran Game Designer. Ex Designer, Zynga

Angelo is a veteran game designer, with 18 years of experience. He spent 5 years at Zynga as the Design Director for games like FarmVille 2, FarmVille Country Escape and Empires & Allies. Angelo's main focus is casual and mid-core games for the mobile platform. For the last year, he has been mentoring indie studios across India.

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Augusto Petrone

Co-founder & CPO, The Other Guys

Augusto is one of the founders for Three Melons, a Buenos Aires based studio which was acquired by Playdom in March 2010. During his days with Playdom, Augusto worked as a Product Manager developing original social game properties, leading a mixed team of artists, developers, game designers and PMs. In 2012, he co-founded The Other Guys, a gaming start-up that aims to create deep and immersive but accessible narrative games. In 2016, they focused solely on mobile, releasing our first Interactive Story, Linda Brown which has been very successful across different geos.

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Christian Calderon

Co-founder & CEOGamejam

Christian Calderon started his career as an investment banker, where he completed over 30 transactions totaling over $3 billion in value. After Investment Banking, Chris decided to make video games, and joined KIXEYE (acquired by Stillfront Group), a San Francisco-based games developer, to oversee their portfolio of games generating $180M in annual revenue. Chris then served as VP of Marketing & Revenue at Dots, a New York City based mobile games studio where he developed and launched Two Dots, a 1# hit game in over 100 countries. Chris then joined Ketchapp as their Chief Revenue Officer, a Paris-based games studio, where he further released over 100 mobile games with over 1 billion downloads worldwide. In 2016, the 6-person company, was acquired by Ubisoft. Chris is now an advisor at Ketchapp and Founder at Gamejam, a Vietnam-based game studio focused on building fun and beautiful mobile games.

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Clara Reeves

CEO, Hipster Whale

Clara Reeves has 13 years experience in the games industry in Production, Design and Business roles. She is currently the CEO of Hipster Whale, the Melbourne studio which has more than 250 million downloads across their games Crossy Road, PAC-MAN 256, Disney Crossy Road and Piffle.

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Doron Kagan

Co-founder & CEO, Game of Whales

Doron is the founder of 3 top mobile games companies. Two were acquired and Deemedya with over 220,000,000 downloads, an international mobile game publisher operating from 3 different locations in the world. Doron is also the founder & CEO of Game of Whales, a cutting edge AI platform that allows game publishers to autonomously increase their users IAP LTV, retention and Ads optimization strategy.

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Elena Sukhar

VP, Strategic Partnerships, Game Insight

With 10 years of experience in games business development, partner management and operations, Elena currently oversees Strategic Partnerships at Game Insight, acting as a liaison between developers, internal teams and key partners. Prior to Game Insight, Elena worked in advertising and education in PR & marketing roles.

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Ezequiel Mottillo

Creative Director, 
Etermax

Ezequiel is designer, journalist and photographer. He is born in Buenos Aires, Argentina and for the last 8 years he has been leading the creative team and product partnerships at Etermax as well as coordinating the development of educational content. During his first steps in communication, he produced Radio & TV shows. After collaborating with numerous startups, he joined Etermax in 2010 to collaborate in the creation of the most downloaded social game in history: Trivia Crack (Preguntados), declared as Cultural Interest by the ministry of Culture of Argentina.

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Fawzi Mesmar

Studio Director, Production and Design, King

Fawzi is a passionate Creative Director, Game designer, Manager, author, public speaker and retired e-sports player who has been in the gaming industry for over 16 years working for companies such as King (Activision Blizzard), Gameloft and Atlus Ltd to name a few. He has worked on over 20 titles that have been enjoyed by millions of players world wide most notably Candy Crush Saga, Candy Crush Jelly Saga, Kim Kardashian Hollywood (JP) and many more.

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Flavio Miyamaru

PartnerTapps Games

Flavio is the Founder of Tapps Games which develops more than 400 causal mobile games, reaching more than 700 million downloads. He is currently overseeing Tapps Ventures.

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Gerson Da Silva

Lead Game Designer
Ironhide Game Studio

Gerson Da Silva is Lead Game Designer at Ironhide Game Studio, where for more than 6 years he has developed games such as the award-winning Kingdom Rush saga. He has specialized in the design of strategy games for mobile devices. His latest release, the Iron Marines is an RTS with 4.8 of 5 stars and Editor's Choice on Google Play, chosen as Best Game Latam in the BIG 2018. He conducts game design and prototyping workshops at the Faculty of Fine Arts of the University of the Republic and at private institutes in Uruguay. As a speaker, he has given talks and workshops in Montevideo, San Pablo, Buenos Aires, Cordoba, Tierra del Fuego, Bucaramanga, and Bogotá, highlighting the participation as a speaker in the Google Indie Games Bootcamp of Argentina.

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James Russell

Head of Game Design
Miniclip

James has led the design and production of many successful games across different genres and platforms over his 15 years in the games industry. He was overall product lead for the Total War PC strategy franchise at Creative Assembly for 10 years, after which he moved to work on mobile free to play titles. For the last 5 years, James has been Head of Game Design for Miniclip - a major developer & publisher of mobile games, which was acquired by Tencent in 2015. James currently leads design and helps guide the production priorities for Miniclip’s portfolio of mobile games, serving 200 million active players.

Profile

Junde Yu

VP of Sales and Customer Success, APAC, App Annie

Junde Yu oversees App Annie’s customer success in Asia-Pacific, helping App Annie customers get value out of big data to drive their business. He started his career in web startups while he was in university, and has since accumulated experience at web and mobile startups, Adtech, and blockchain. He graduated with a Computer Science degree from the National University of Singapore and currently counts Clash Royale, Clash of Clans and Mobile Legends amongst his "WAU" mobile games.

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Kamina Vincent

Producer, Mountains Games Studio

Kamina is Producer at Mountains, a craft games company based in Melbourne. In early 2018, Mountains released Florence, an interactive story on love and life. Kamina previously worked at Tin Man Games, starting as QA and gathered several hats that included: Kickstarter Campaign Manager, Community Support, Editor, and Producer. Kamina is also proactive in the game development community, with a strong focus on the future ecosystem of the sector.

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Marek Marchlewicz

Evangelist, Unity

Marek is an Evangelist at Unity Technologies Singapore. He has experience in developing mobile, console and VR games. As an evangelist he is helping to bridge the gap between developers and latest real-time technologies.

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Mario Wynands

Managing Director, PikPok

Mario Wynands is the Managing Director and co-founder of PikPok, a leading publisher across mobile, desktop, and console. In his 22 years at PikPok, he has led the studio, built a successful game portfolio and overseen the creation of many engaging console titles as well as multiple hits in the mobile space. Wynands is a graduate of Victoria University in Wellington with degrees in business management and computer science.

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Mark Skaggs

Gaming Expert. Ex- Zynga, EA

Mark is an award-winning game developer known for his track record of creating the worldwide phenomena “FarmVille” and “CityVille” on Facebook(300+ million players), mobile hits with 30 million downloads as well as successful console and PC games selling over 16 million copies at retail. With a career spanning more than 25 years, three AIAS awards, four console transitions, Mark is also known for creating multi-million selling RTS games.

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Michael Thompson

UX/UI and Game Designer, Digipen Institute of Technology

Michael started his game industry career at EA/Blackbox in Vancouver, Canada, in 2002, working mostly on sports titles. This eventually brought him to Singapore, where he helped develop the first Fifa Online. Michael later moved to Ubisoft, working on Ghost Recon Phantoms and Skull and Bones. He currently teaches UX/UI and game design at Digipen Institute of Technology, Singapore.

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Ngo Van Luyen

CEO & Founder, Divmob

Luyen is CEO and Founder of DIVMOB. He founded DIVMOB after spending some years working in France. DIVMOB has grown its staff strength by 10 times since its founding. Under Luyen's leadership, DIVMOB developed Ninja Revenge which got more than 20 million downloads on Google Play store.

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Noah Falstein

Owner, The Inspiracy & Ex-Chief Game Designer of Google

With 39 years' experience as a professional game developer, Noah has a wide variety of experiences. He is primarily a game designer/producer and have also worked as a programmer, writer, creative director and more. Noah is known for designing some iconic LucasArts adventure games, being a pioneer in Serious Games and for having worked as Google's Chief Game Designer. He is recently known to have designed games for health/Neurogaming.

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Rami Ismail

Co-founder, Vlambeer

Rami is an independent video game developer and spokesperson within the video game industry on the topics of diversity and reaching out to game developers from developing countries. He also co-founded the studio Vlambeer in 2010, where among games they have developed include Ridiculous Fishing, Luftrausers, and Nuclear Throne.

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Shainiel Deo

Founder and CEO, Halfbrick Studios

Shainiel is one of the original founders of Halfbrick. He has lead the company for over 16 years as CEO as well as being a Product Manager and Stakeholder on many of Halfbrick's games. Shainiel has a strong understanding of leadership, company culture and building great games.

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Soo Jeong Bae

CBO & Co-founder, LoadComplete

Soo is Director and Co-Founder at LoadComplete, an independent mobile game studio in South Korea known best for Crusaders Quest, FisherCat, Disco Panda and many others. Soo has been wearing various hats along the course of LoadComplete's growth from being the only artist among 3 founders, a sound designer, a producer, HR for 100+ ppl, to now focusing on branding of LoadComplete in various contexts and layers.

Profile

Steven Meretzky

Creative leader, free-to-play expert, industry icon

It's hard to have a serious conversation about gaming without mention of Steve. It's also hard to have a humorous conversation about gaming without mention of him. Steve's contributions to the industry began in 1981 at the legendary adventure game company Infocom, where his titles included ‘Planetfall’, ‘The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy’ (in collaboration with Douglas Adams), ‘Leather Goddesses of Phobos’, and ‘Zork Zero’. Steve was VP of Creative for GSN, and VP of Game Design for Playdom (a division of Disney Interactive). Previously, Steve co-founded Boffo Games and held senior creative posts at Blue Fang, Floodgate, and WorldWinner. Over his prolific career, Steve has consulted with teams at Activision, Blizzard, EA, Harmonix and Hasbro, to name a few. A former board member of the IGDA, Steve organizes the Mobile Game Summit at the GDC as well as the annual Game Designers Workshop.

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Waleed Tuffaha

MD & Head of Product and Technology, Jawaker

Waleed is currently Head of Product and Technology at Jawaker, a leading game developer focusing on social card and board games for the MENA region. He has been in the gaming industry since 2009, and has worked in multiples roles. At Jawaker, Waleed has been heavily involved in scaling the team and the product through different stages of revenue and player growth, and managing an active community of millions of players. He is passionate about the business of games, game design, technology, complex distributed systems, team leadership, and building great products.

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Wan Hazmer Bin Wan Ab Halim

Founder, CEO and Game Director, Metronomik

Out of his love for amplifying the role of audio in gameplay, Wan Hazmer co-founded Metronomik, a game studio based in Malaysia. Together with his team, he works on a PS4 and PC music-centric action game titled No Straight Roads.Prior to this, Wan Hazmer has worked in Square Enix Tokyo for 8 years as the lead game designer for Final Fantasy XV. His other notable works include Final Fantasy Type-0 and Monster of the Deep: FFXV.

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Ziv Kitaro

Director of Product Management, 
WhaleApp

Ziv is currently the Director of Product Management at Whaleapp LTD. He has more than 15 years of experience in the games industry. Ziv's main focal points are product management, creative direction, and Game design. He has held both executive and creative titles. He led studios at Plarium Global, and Playtika, and worked with companies like 888 Holdings and Men of Action.

GOOGLE

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Alexey Kokin

Android Apps Business Development Manager, Central and Eastern Europe, Google

Alexey works with Google Play application partners in CEE and helps EMEA apps and games increase their product quality. Before joining Google Play team, Alexey worked in corporate and consumer mobility roles in SAP, Nokia and Microsoft.

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Ashnil Dixit

Business Development Manager, Google Play Apps and Games, Google

Ashnil leads Google Play's Business Development for Malaysia and Philippines. He was a long time corporate strategist with Google and McKinsey. Ashnil had built banking apps at Standard Chartered Bank and has written codes for Appian.

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Boris Masis

Product Manager, Google

Boris is an experienced product manager leading teams to teams to discover and build products that are valuable, usable, and feasible. Boris is currently the product manager for the Google Play Games app which is the #9 most downloaded Android app in the world, and the largest devoted to gaming.

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Chisa Sawada

APAC BD Operations Lead, Play Apps & Games 

Chisa is a long-time Googler (almost 12 years!) who had focused on helping smaller business create success (from Ads Small business sales, Online marketing for Google Cloud). She is currently Google Play's Business Development Operations lead for APAC. Chisa provides scaled support for developers to drive their business in Play.

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Daniel Trocoli

Strategic Partner Development, Google Play Apps and Games, LatAm - Sao Paulo, Google

Daniel is a Business Development Manager at Google Play with more than 10 years of experience in the gaming industry.

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Erin Hoffman-John

Lead Prototyper- Game Designer, Google

Erin began her design career on early massively multiplayer online games in the late 1990s. Since then she has worked on a number of pre-IPO game startups (1st Playable, GoPets, Zynga), usually in the intersection of systems and experience design. From 2013-2016, she lead design at GlassLab, a nonprofit partnership between AAA games and education. She is currently lead designer on Stadia's research and development team.

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Gaby Hien

Partner Manager - New Publisher Business (OPG SEA), Google

Gaby is a game enthusiast who has 10 years of experience in mobile gaming, marketing and advertising.

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James Kavanagh

Strategic Partner Development Manager, Google Play, Google

Based out of Mountain View, California, James is focused on growing subscription and premium partners. Having spent 8 years at Electronic Arts across Production and Business roles, James is passionate about games.

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Joe McGinn

Publishing Producer, Games, Google

Joe McGinn joined Google Singapore as a Publishing Producer to support VR and AR developers in the region. Prior to joining Google, he was lead game designer at Radical Entertainment, Activision-Blizzard, the Walt Disney Corporation, and Ubisoft. He led the design of Radical's breakout hit The Simpsons: Hit & Run, listed on Metacritic as the highest-rated Simpsons game of all time.

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Mariusz Gasiewski

Head of Mobile Gaming and Apps, Poland, Google

Mariusz Gasiewski has been with Google since 2007. He is now responsible for growth of mobile gaming ecosystem in Poland. He is leading mobile gaming initiatives at Google for Startups Campus in Warsaw. During most of his career was helping some of Google’s biggest clients in Central and Eastern Europe in preparation and implementation of mobile measurement strategies. He is a frequent speaker at gaming and mobile conferences and a founder of GameCamp, one of the biggest mobile gaming communities in Europe.

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Rachel Cheung

Business Development, Google Play Apps & Games, Google

Rachel partner game developers to ensure they are launched successfully on Google Play and helps optimize their mobile business strategy. Prior to joining the Google Play team, Rachel has worked on Google's AdMob for more than 2 years. Originally from Hong Kong, she has been working in Taipei for the last 3 years. Rachel is currently part of the Business Development, Games and Apps' team in Google Play Taiwan.

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Shala Seo

Business Development Manager, Google Play Games, Google

Shala is Business Development Manager for Google Play Games, Korea. She helps empower Android game developers build successful businesses.

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Shalini Poddar

Head of Business Development, Google Play Apps & Games, India, Google

Shalini is Head of Business Development, Google Play Apps and Games in India. She is an impact-focused leader with 14 years of experience in consulting, strategy, business development, sales, partnerships and marketing. Shalini has a wide range of experience in launching and scaling digital marketing products, and accelerating growth of online advertising across industry verticals

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Sharan Tulsiani

Business Development Manager, Google Play 

Sharan works closely with indies as well as market leaders to help them bring fantastic games and apps to users and find success on the Play platform. A veteran of the gaming industry he has worked with game developers across India, South East Asia, Europe and other regions before joining Google and the Play BD team in India.

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Thuy Nguyen

Account Manager, Mobile App Sales, Google

Thuy is a dedicated gamer and a marketer with over 7 years of experience in branding and performance marketing. She has worked with various game studios and mobile publishers across APAC to develop their game launch and user acquisition’s strategy. At her current role as Growth Manager, Mobile App Sales, she focuses on helping game developers to expand their footprints to the most potential markets.

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Tom Greenaway

Developer Advocate, Google

Tom Greenaway is the gaming lead for Chrome and Web Developer Relations at Google. He's also a multi-award winning game designer having created Duet for Android and iOS which was downloaded nearly 20 million times worldwide.

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Truong Do

Account Manager, Mobile Ad Sales 

Truong Do is Account Manager, Mobile Ad Sales in Google. His role in Google includes helping both indie developers and mobile game publishers to grow their businesses with Google Ads globally. Prior to his role in Google, Truong Do has worked as a UA Manager for 3 years in Southeast Asia.

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Vineet Tanwar

Business Development Manager, Google Play 

Vineet manages business development for Google Play in Southeast Asia. He has over 12 years of experience working in the gaming industry in product, analytics and business development roles. Vineet is passionate about startups and has been leading the indie game developer program for the region. Prior to Google, Vineet worked with a San Francisco based games startup, where he managed all operations, including game launch, analytics, monetization, partnerships and fundraising.

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Wolff Dobson

Developer Programs Engineer, Google

Wolff is a Developer Programs Engineer at Google specializing in machine learning and games. Before Google, he worked as a game developer for 12 years, including writing AI for the NBA2K series and helping design the Wii MotionPlus. He has a PhD in artificial intelligence from the Northwestern University.

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Yuting Liu

Account Manager, Mobile App Sales, Google

Yuting is currently a Growth Manager for Mobile Apps in Southeast Asia. He works with app developers and marketers in the region to understand and acquire valuable users at scale. Prior to Google, he has worked in startups in Taipei and Bangkok, leading user acquisition and go to market efforts, as well as advocating for mobile analytics solutions across the region.