Renee Gittins is the CEO and Creative Director of Stumbling Cat, a Seattle based indie game studio that she founded two years ago. She currently leads the team in the development of a game called Potions: A Curious Tale, featuring a clever young witch on her path to master potion brewing. She also sits on the Seattle chapter board of the IGDA, where she plans events to support local developers. In her spare time, she mentors students in programming and game development at Foundry10 and is a freelance journalist for the gaming website Broken Joysticks.

Name: Renee Gittins
Vocation: CEO, Creative Director
Years of experience: 2 years
Location: Seattle, Washington
Twitter: @RikuKat

1. What are you currently reading and/or playing?
I am currently reading Creativity, Inc. by Amy Wallace and Ed Catmull, the President of Pixar Animation and Disney Animation, and Brain Rules by John Medina. When I have the time, I raid with my guild in World of Warcraft, and play Heroes of the Storm, Audio Shield and Clash Royale. I was playing Overwatch until the closed beta was shut down, and I’m very much looking forward to its launch!

2. First time you knew you wanted to work in games was…?
I knew I wanted to work in games when I first realized it was a viable field of work, though that wasn’t until my senior year of college. Since then, I have redirected my life towards game development.

3. What was your favorite mistake?
Every single mistake I’ve made in life has taken me to the path I am on now and t,here is nowhere else that I would rather be. I guess my favorite mistake was failing to switch my major to Computer Science, while it would have put me ahead as a programmer, I wouldn’t have found my passion for leadership and production.

4. What was your favorite success?
Exhibiting my game at Geek Girl Con and having so many girls and women react very passionately and excitedly towards my current game, and then how they reacted when I told them that I was the developer and that they, too, could make games like mine.

5. What’s the best advice you ever got?
Learn from your failures, and don’t hesitate to rip out and rebuild your mistakes.

6. Share one thing few know about you.
I was training to be an officer in the Army via ROTC when I was a freshman in college. I very nearly went down a completely different path in life!

7. What’s one thing or trend you’re most excited about in the industry?
There are so many exciting things happening all of the time in our ever growing and changing industry, but virtual reality takes the cake for me. My dream is to one day have a fully immersive experience where I can step completely into another world.

8. Anything else you want to add?
Life is full of ups and downs, especially when you are in a demanding, competitive industry like the game industry. Surround yourself with people you admire and who support you for who you are, and you will find that the lows aren’t quite so low when you have all of those amazing people to help you back up.

I’m also currently running a Kickstarter campaign for my studio’s game, Potions: A Curious Tale. It’s an adventure-crafting game in which combat is not always the answer, and it features a young witch! Please check it out:…/126801…/potions-a-curious-tale
Feel free to reblog with a link back to this page. If you are a lady dev who’d like to be profiled or would like to nominate one, please contact Anne [at] igda [dot] org.