On Tuesdays, we watch talks or interviews with artists and designers and discuss how to present our work clearly and with confidence. This week we’ll look at an interview with EVE Online game designer Linzi Campbell.

As you watch this interview, consider these questions: Does the artist/designer speak clearly and with confidence? Does she use gestures and intonation to emphasize her points? Does she smile and look at the camera? Does she use professional vocabulary?

What does Campbell do well? She speaks clearly and her speed and volume are good. She looks at the camera or the interviewer when she’s speaking. She’s easy to understand, although the interview is a little difficult to follow since we don’t get to hear the questions and get the context for her answers. She avoids using filler words, and she uses vocal variety to add emphasis to what she’s saying.

What could she improve? My overall impression of this designer is that she lacks confidence, and I think that’s mostly because she uses uptalk. (Remember, uptalk means your voice goes up at the end of a sentence like a question, even when you are making a statement.) This makes it sound like she is unsure about what she’s saying and suggests a lack of confidence to the listener. She seems very knowledgeable about her subject, but this style of speaking can make listeners question what you know. She could also have added more gestures or facial expression to be more engaging, but I think the uptalk was the only serious problem. 

What professional vocabulary does she use? She starts by introducing herself and describing what she does at EVE Online. Next, she talks about where ideas for the games come from and how the different design teams work together. She says that often a hypothesis or general direction will come from the producers, or the direction layer, and then is discussed by the individual teams of game designers. She also describes how the lore team works with each of the feature teams about how the lore behind the game can influence new features as they are designed.

Next, she talks about what she’s currently working on, which is a New Player Experience (NPE) called Inception. The purpose of it is to bring new players into EVE Online with a more storyline-driven experience to guide them and teach them about the way the game is played. (Adding -driven to a word means that is what moves something forward or makes it successful, so a storyline-driven experience is all about the story.) It’s a 3-hour experience, and she says it allows players “to really become one with their spaceship,” which means they learn to use it very well. She also mentions that they are prototyping more iterations to create more player agency, which means they are working on new versions to give the players more choices. Finally, she talks about how some of the designers work remotely and some work on-site.

Game design is a medium that is always developing new technology, and that means learning new vocabulary to describe it. Some design industries use a lot of jargon, or industry words, to talk about their work. A good language coach can help you to understand and use this jargon correctly, so you are describing your work effectively.

At Artglish, we help artists and designers to speak confidently about their work. We coach you to speak professionally using the best vocabulary and correct pronunciation. If you want to learn more, click here to join The Studio and try some free ways to improve your English, or check out our Lessons page to learn how Artglish can help you succeed.

I’ve chosen 5 words or phrases for you to focus on today. They are in bold. If you don’t know them, look up the meaning, synonyms, antonyms, and other forms of these words. You can find links to Merriam-Webster dictionary sites at the bottom of this page.

To see the original video, posted by Shacknews on April 14, 2018, click the link below: