We will discuss the development of Arrival: Village Kasike focusing on how Raindrop Games collaborated with the Taino community (indigenous to the Caribbean) whom the game is about. Creating a culturally sensitive game is challenging, especially when the development team are not members of the indigenous community. Discussion includes various successes and mistakes during development and lessons learned for collaboration on our next game together. Time will also be allotted for discussion with the audience about indigenous game development. Audience member should leave with a better understanding of how to effectively develop games about an indigenous group.

About the presenters

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Josh Samuels has been an independent video game developer for over 12 years and a software engineer for over 14 years. He is the Studio Lead for Raindrop Games (raindropgames.com), creators of Arrival: Village Kasike. Josh also works as a senior software engineer for BloomBoard, an educational startup company in Silicon Valley. Josh co-founded the Allies Initiative sub-group of the IGDA’s Women In Games SIG with Celia Pearce.

An artist, historian, musician, writer, and advocate, Roberto “Mukaro” Borrero (Taino) offers a broad range of experience with particular expertise in Caribbean and other Indigenous Peoples issues. His unique perspective draws from his ancestral heritage, mentorship from indigenous elders from around the world, and real world experience in the arts, human rights advocacy, and environmental advocacy.

A cultural consultant and advisor, Roberto has shared his expertise in various capacities within the United Nations, along with non-profit and for-profit entities such as PBS, BBC, the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of the American Indian, the Institute for American Indian Studies among others.

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