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Women In Games: Zoe Hobson

Women In Games: Zoe Hobson

A vocal and active Women In Games ambassador, Zoe started out her screen career in television.

After graduating the University of Otago with First Class Honours of her Bachelor of Arts in Maori Studies and Theatre Studies, Zoe spent three years as a Subtitler and Director’s Assistant at Maori Television. She then moved onto Northwest Digital (producer), was an Assistant Director on Shortland Street with South Pacific Pictures before getting her first taste of games as a Producer at Areo, with their Casebook product.

Zoe would then spend the next three and a half year’s with the Upstart Business Incubator as Communications Manager, then with Mythm a full service digital partner as a Producer and Marketing Strategist before returning to Areo’s sister company, 38 Pictures as an Executive Producer.

In July 2015 Zoe transitioned into games full-time, joining independent developer Runaway Play, the games division of world renowned factual television production company Natural History New Zealand as a Senior Producer. Just over three year’s later, Zoe was promoted to her current position – Managing Director.

The last twelve months have been huge for both Zoe and Runaway Play. In September Zoe spoke on multiple panels at NZGDC and in December the company was profiled in various media internationally as a studio nearing gender parity, led by two women executives.

 

In February this year, the studio launched its viral #GirlsBehindTheGames campaign gaining international media and social media attention with Runaway visited by and presenting to New Zealand Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern.

In the months that followed Zoe was: featured in an International Profile story on Today tab of Apple App Store, named as a Play by Play Industry Pillar finalist “Te Maunga Kai Kapua – Tuakana”, profiled in a national magazine (Zoe Hobson: From film to video games, Dunedin let’s her do what she loves) and was an International Keynote Speaker at the Catalyst Girls In Tech Conference. These acolades and efforts sit alongside her long time dedication to work outside of her day-to-day responsibilites, continuing speaking engagements at various girls high schools, providing work experience for girls in tech and participating in Shadowtech.

Zoe has previously sat on the Film Otago Southland, Short Film Otago, Dunedin Roller Derby (Chairperson) boards, and currently on the boards of the New Zealand Game Developers Association and Startup Dunedin.

Speaking to Develop Pacific, Zoe said, “What an awesome list – the mix of women from all different jobs and backgrounds – it’s an honour to be part of it.”

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