About XDS

External Development Summit (XDS) is the only annual, international games industry event held in Canada, with a primary focus on external development for art, animation, audio, software engineering, QA and localization.

Who Attends

Attendees include a concentrated group of game developers, vendors, trade organizations and middleware providers working within external development, representing over 38 countries.

XDS 2017 Speakers

  • Peter Cardwell

    Head of XBOX Certification
    Microsoft
  • Peter Cardwell

    Head of XBOX Certification

    Microsoft

    http://www.xbox.com/en-ca/

    Peter Cardwell is the Head of Xbox Certification ensuring the Interactive Entertainment experiences across the Xbox brand and LIVE service are second to none. Peter runs the global certification business responsible for ensuring final product quality and technical policy adherence across the Live service and Xbox family of devices. Most recently Peter developed the certification strategy for Xbox One X, incorporating the use of data to make meaningful decisions on product quality to improve the quality loop spanning all first and third party published content. He has strong experience in Software Quality Assurance built upon a formal background in Quality Management tools and techniques. Experience in implementing test and quality solutions in industries ranging from Software and Online Interactive Entertainment through Engineering and Manufacturing. Prior to Microsoft, Peter held the position of QA and Customer Services Manager at Codemasters, where he was responsible for test strategy and execution across all game titles released on the PC, Console, and handheld devices.

  • Rod Fergusson

    Studio Head
    The Coalition
  • Rod Fergusson

    Studio Head

    The Coalition

    http://thecoalitionstudio.com/#Home

    Rod is the Studio Head & Creative Director of The Coalition (a first party Microsoft studio) where he is once again in charge of development of the Gears of War franchise.

    Rod previously oversaw the development of the highly rated BioShock Infinite as Irrational’s EVP of Development.  He joined Irrational after seven years with Epic Games, where he led the development of the billion dollar Gears of War franchise.  Prior to Epic, Rod had a 10-year career with Microsoft, which included seven years as a Producer with Microsoft Game Studios.

  • Andrew Day

    CEO
    Keywords Studios
  • Andrew Day

    Andrew has a background in technology, manufacturing and business services through corporate development and general management roles within both publicly quoted and private companies.  Andrew started his career in 1983 at Rothmans International PLC in production management.  From 1986 to 1993 he had responsibility for corporate development activities at Britannia Security Group PLC, TIP Europe PLC and Brent International PLC before holding the position of Divisional Managing Director at Brent International PLC for six years.  Andrew was Chief Executive Officer of interactive retail software developer, Unipower Solutions and Head of Retail and CPG for EMEA at NYSE listed advanced analytics business, FICO before joining Keywords as its Chief Executive Officer in April 2009.

  • Leah Hoyer

    Vice President of Creative
    Telltale Games
  • Leah Hoyer

    Vice President of Creative

    Telltale Games

    https://telltale.com/company/

    Leah Hoyer is passionate about creating story experiences. Last year, she became the Vice President of Creative at Telltale Games, where she oversees the writing, design, voice over and creative director teams. Previously, she served as Head of Narrative at both ArenaNet (Guild Wars 2) and Xbox Studios. Before moving to games, Ms. Hoyer was Director of Creative at Disney TV Animation, where she developed and produced animated shows, including Recess, Kim Possible and Phineas & Ferb.
  • Jason Harris

    Sr. Director of WW External Development
    Electronic Arts
  • Jason Harris

    Sr. Director of WW External Development

    Electronic Arts

    https://www.ea.com/en-ca

    Jason Harris is Senior Director of Worldwide External Development at Electronic Arts overseeing a central team which supports EA game teams with art, animation, audio, cinematics, game development, and engineering external development as well as manages EA’s pool of external partners. Jason’s team supports titles such as FIFA, Battlefield, Star Wars, Plants vs. Zombies, Need for Speed, Mass Effect, Dragon Age, UFC, NHL, The Sims, Star Wars, The Simpsons, and many more.

  • Gilles Langourieux

    CEO
    Virtuos
  • Gilles Langourieux

    Gilles founded Virtuos in October 2004. He was previously Worldwide Managing Director of ubi.com, Ubisoft’s online division, responsible for the group’s online strategy and businesses.

    Ubisoft built its success on a strategy of distributing development to multiple high-quality / low-cost international production studios. Gilles played a key role in this strategy by setting-up and managing the group’s studios in Shanghai and Beijing from 1997 to 2000. He and his team built these studios into the largest in China at the time, with more than 300 employees.

    Gilles entered the gaming industry in 1995 as a Producer, after working 3 years in retailing and management consulting.Educated in France and the UK, Gilles holds a Masters degree from HEC, France’s leading Business School.

  • Harley Zhao

    Founder & CEO
    Original Force
  • Harley Zhao

    Founder & CEO

    Original Force

    http://www.of3d.com/en/

    Harley Zhao is the founder and CEO of Original Force. He taught himself animation while in university. Shortly after graduation, his strong creative impulses led him to strike out on his own from his ordinary IT work. He focused the studio on producing high-quality 3D art and animation for game developers and publishers, eventually leading OF to become one of the foremost animation outsourcing companies. And now he has turned a new page. His Chinese team along with their studio in Los Angeles is now creating feature film work.

  • Mike Verdu

    Senior Vice President
    EA Mobile
  • Mike Verdu

    Senior Vice President

    EA Mobile

    https://www.ea.com/en-ca

    Mike Verdu is a 25-year veteran of the gaming industry and has served in creative and business roles and both large and small companies. He’s worked on PC, console, social, and mobile games that have generated over $2B in revenues. He’s currently SVP of EA Mobile, overseeing the “pure play” mobile games and studios at EA including Galaxy of Heroes out of Sacramento’s Capital Games, SimCity BuildIt out of Helsinki’s Track Twenty, The Sims Free Play and Real Racing 3 out of Melbourne’s FireMonkeys, Plants vs. Zombies and Bejeweled out of Seattle’s PopCap, and The Simpsons Tapped Out being run in Austin’s Red Crow studio. Before joining EA, Mike was co-President of Studios and Chief Creative Officer at Kabam where he helped implement the company’s triple-A “Fewer, Bigger, Bolder” strategy that led to a sale of the company in 2017. Kabam acquired Mike’s start-up mobile game company TapZen in 2015. Prior to Kabam, Mike served on the c-team of Zynga for three and a half years in the run-up to that company’s IPO and was at EA Los Angeles from 2002-2008 starting as a Sr. Producer and ending up as the VP/GM of EALA.

  • Marija Radulovic-Nastic

    VP of Central Development Services
    Electronic Arts
  • Marija Radulovic-Nastic

    VP of Central Development Services

    Electronic Arts

    Marija was born and raised in Belgrade, the place where she also completed her university studies in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.

    Today, she is the VP of Central Development Services at EA. She is currently responsible for EA’s shared development services portfolio, composed of five business units: Localization, Quality Assurance and Engineering, Certification, and Development Release Engineering. CDS operates in 27 locations across North America, South America, Europe, Australia and Asia, supporting all EA development studios. In all, Marija leads a team of 1500+ employees around the globe.

    Prior to her current role Marija was leading strategic initiatives at Electronic Arts, Canada, such as: Art and Engineering Outsourcing, product quality enhancements, and studio online and launch readiness. During her tenure with EA, Marija held various roles including Director, Creative Services at EAC and Senior Development Director responsible for EA WW technology development in North America.

    Before joining the exciting and challenging videogame industry, Marija spent 10 years in business software development where she held various positions, from software engineering and technical sales to director of program management. During this time, she received several awards for professional excellence.

Summit Buzz

Feb
9

XDS Sessions at Games Forum London a Success!

Last month, we partnered with Games Forum London to bring you The XDS Sessions. A big thank you to everyone who joine...

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Jan
11

We Need Your Input!

Please give your input to the XDS 2018 Industry Insights Report! The Insights Report showcases external development t...

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Dec
13

XDS is Teaming Up With Gamesforum London!

Scheduled to occur during Gamesforum London, Jan 25, 2018 from 10:30am – 1:30pm – XDS Sessions, will be a thought-pr...

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