Tadhg Kelly

Tadhg Kelly

Tadhg is a video game designer, producer, creative director, columnist and consultant. He has held roles at various video game development, technology and publishing companies. Since the early 90s, Tadhg has worked on all sorts of game projects, from boardgames and live action roleplaying games through to multi-million dollar PC projects. He has served as lead designer, senior producer and a number of other roles at several companies including BSkyB, Lionhead and Climax.

He was a cofounder of the social gaming startup Simple Lifeforms before moving on to becoming a consultant in the game design space through founding noted industry blog What Games Are (www.whatgamesare.com). A recent immigrant to the United States, Tadhg has most recently worked at Jawfish Games, OUYA and for some other studios on a consulting basis.

Tadhg is currently consulting out of Seattle for a variety of companies under the banner of Tadhg Kelly Game Design, as well as writing a book named Raw Game Design to be published next year by Focal Press and a weekly gaming column for TechCrunch. You can reach him at tadhgk@gmail.com.

The Latest from Tadhg Kelly

What Games Are: There Is No Iron Throne Of Games Anymore

We all know that big changes are happening in games, with the profusion of formats. What less of us realize is how much those changes have affected the underlying idea that one console or platform is

What Games Are: Ok Glass, Let’s Talk Games

It's a little bit sexy and a little bit dorky, but Google Glass has finally arrived. Beyond the initial productivity uses of the device, how important are games going to be for driving its adoption, a

What Games Are: The Scientism Delusion

While it makes game makers often feel better, the idea that designing games is a science is largely a delusion. The industry often thinks of itself in those terms, and self-reinforces the notion that

What Games Are: The Shady Side Of Games

A lot of recent moves in the gaming space to ban, investigate or curtail certain aspects of its output can seem egregious. However seen in the light of how shady game makers tend to behave, and the ne

What Games Are: The Reviewers Are Wrong About OUYA

Reviews of Ouya have thus far perhaps been unfair because they tend to either rate the machine against Android devices or existing consoles, when it is neither of those. The new microconsole-style of

What Games Are: My Three GDC Themes

Women in games, the continuing rise of microconsoles and the normalizing of real money gaming. These were the three themes that I noticed most at this year's Game Developers Conference.

What Games Are: ‘Twas The Night Before GDC

The annual Game Developer's Conference rolls into San Francisco next week. The event is always worth attending if only to see what the future will bring. This year's, more than most, will be a real be

What Games Are: Where Did Wii U Go Wrong?

Remember that console that Nintendo launched with the tablet controller? No, not the Wii, the other one. No? Strangely most of us seem to have forgotten all about it too, and quickly. Sales are terrib

What Games Are: The PC’s Struggle To App-Up Continues

Sim City 5 is yet another game that exposes an inherent conflict at the heart of the PC, about how connected and app-like or independent it should be. Publishers like EA might be trying to convince PC

What Games Are: Real-Money Gaming Is Really Boring

It may be the case that real-money gambling is inching its way to reality in the U.S., much as it has in the rest of the world, but if so it's a phenomenally boring story. It's hard to get excited abo

What Games Are: Consoles Are Sinking. Get To The Lifeboats!

While the Sony press event this week has largely been received as a wasted opportunity, it speaks more to the fate of the game console than the PS4. Microsoft may win the next generation, but will win

What Games Are: The “Beyond Games” Mirage

Both Microsoft and Sony like to wow us with big numbers proclaiming how they are moving beyond games, but the numbers don't really stack up. For all its vaunted efforts in TV partnerships, for example

What Games Are: Why The Xbox’s $5 Problem Is Great For OUYA

The news that next-generation consoles may lock games to devices is not controversial by itself, but the willingness to price those games effectively is not historically a strength of Microsoft or Son

What Games Are: Should Sony Move Beyond PlayStation?

On Feb 20th, Sony is holding a press conference in New York for which we assume is the PlayStation 4. Yet, is that really the smartest move that the company could make? With the argument that the PS i

What Games Are: Games Need Their Nielsens

With Facebook deciding to hide monthly and daily active users, we have lost the one game platform that could give us reasonably objective data about game performance. We are back to the Dark Ages of v

What Games Are: Playing In Interesting Times

Increasingly, the sentiment in the games industry is that 2013 is going to be a very difficult year. With Facebook effectively over as a platform, social gambling being weaker than anticipated and for

What Games Are: The Fun Boson Does Not Exist

Perhaps the biggest roadblock facing the development of generation-two social games is the addiction to metrics. Social game makers still believe that fun is about finding the right behaviours, the ri

What Games Are: Here Come “Local” Mobile Games

While the single- and parallel-game types have streaked ahead on mobile platforms, multiplayer games has been more tentative. Particular "local" multiplayer games, of the kind that you play with frien

The Games Industry Is Driven By Marketing Stories

Discoverability, collapsing social game models, failing gamification and weak levels of excitement for new gaming platforms have all conspired to make 2012 a complicated year for games. For some this

All Games Are (In A Sense) Violent

In the wake of a mass shooting or terrorist attack the question of video game violence is raised. Games are often portrayed as little more than drug-addiction meets murder-simulator, and we game maker
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