Christopher W.  Totten Author of Evaluating Organization Development
FEATURED AUTHOR

Christopher W. Totten

Game Artist in Residence
American University

Christopher Totten is the Game Artist in Residence at American University’s Game Lab and holds a Masters Degree in Architecture from the Catholic University of America in Washington, DC. Chris is the chair of the Washington, DC chapter of the International Game Developers Association (IGDA.) He is also the founder of Pie For Breakfast Studios, a Washington, DC area indie game company and has done work as an artist, animator, level designer, and project manager.

Biography

Christopher Totten is the Game Artist in Residence at American University’s Game Lab and holds a Masters Degree in Architecture with a concentration in digital media from the Catholic University of America in Washington, DC. Chris is the co-chair of the Washington, DC chapter of the International Game Developers Association (IGDA), working with local indies to create a strong development community. He is the founder of Pie For Breakfast Studios, a Washington, DC area indie game company and has done work as an artist, animator, level designer, and project manager.

Chris has written articles featured on Gamasutra, Game Career Guide, and other publications and is a frequent speaker at game industry conferences such as GDC China, East Coast Game Conference, Games For Change, and the Digital Games Research Association (DiGRA.) He is the author of An Architectural Approach to Level Design, published with CRC Press/AK Peters in 2014 and Game Character Creation in Blender and Unity, released by Wiley Publishing in the summer of 2012.

Areas of Research / Professional Expertise

    I research persuasive game design and designing games for real-world change. I have also done extensive research on the relationships between games and other forms of design such as Architecture. I would like to find ways to make game development more accessible to the general public.

Websites

Books

Featured Title
 Featured Title - An Architectural Approach to Level Design - 1st Edition book cover

Articles

IGDA Insider

3D Art for Indies


Published: Jan 15, 2014 by IGDA Insider
Authors: Christopher Totten
Subjects: Computer Game Development

This article advocates for 3D art usage in independent game development. By offering examples of successful indie games that have used 3D, exploring their art styles, and giving inside-information on art assets from several in-development games, this article shows indies how style and efficient production practices make 3D possible in small productions.

DiGRA Conference 2013 - De-Fragging Game Studies

Teaching Serious Game App Design Through Client-based Projects


Published: Aug 25, 2013 by DiGRA Conference 2013 - De-Fragging Game Studies
Authors: Christopher Totten
Subjects: Computer Game Development

This conference paper and presentation at the Digital Games Research Association (DiGRA) 2013 Conference discusses how client-based serious game projects can form the backdrop of constructivist project-based courses in under and post-graduate game design programs. The paper assesses risks, challenges, and pedagogy to make informed recommendations on when and how to hold such courses in a college curriculum.

Gamasutra

Designing Better Levels Through Human Survival Instincts


Published: Jun 01, 2011 by Gamasutra
Authors: Christopher Totten
Subjects: Computer Game Development

Christopher Totten explores how human psychology is understood by architects, how that can apply to level design, and explores games that use these techniques effectively.

Videos

Better Level Design Through Human Survival Instincts

Published: May 07, 2012

Christopher Totten speaks about how human survival instincts are of great importance when designing levels. Part 1 of 6.