Michel Sabbagh

Award-Winning Writer, Former QA Tester at Bethesda Softworks Montreal, QC

Started out as a budding video game developer, now making the transition to fiction writing.

Download Resume

I penned articles that have been featured over 20 times on reputed websites such as Gamasutra, Destructoid and Kill Screen that covered several topics such as the effective structure of a tense survival horror gaming experience, the craft of solid storytelling in video games and the multifaceted structure of open-world design.

I worked at Bethesda Softworks as a Quality Assurance Tester and was credited on Skyrim: Special Edition, The Evil Within 2 and Prey: Mooncrash. My colleagues and managers lauded me for my attention-to-detail and industriousness, which helped with my teamwork skills on top of my individual talents.

My academic write-ups also garnered attention from game developers such as Monolith Productions who were impressed with my thesis on the influence of Japanese culture in Western-made first-person shooters.

Additionally, I was named a Gold Winner for my paper on Thief: The Dark Project as part of the 2017 GDC Game Narrative Review Competition, and my scriptwriting and environmental storytelling projects have been featured by popular YouTubers Oxhorn and GVMERS whose combined coverage of my work totaled over 450,000 views.

Other achievements include:

  • Winning the 2015 Worcester Game Pile’s Lightning Pitch Contest with a panel of jurors that include professional developers such as Trevor Stricker and Ichiro Lambe.

  • Receiving an Honorable Mention for the 2017 WPI Kranich Prize.

  • Being directly mentioned on Kotaku, Telegram & Gazette, and the Telegraph.

http://kotaku.com/what-makes-a-good-video-game-gun-1729217476

http://www.telegram.com/article/20151102/NEWS/151109932

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/gaming/what-to-play/independent-video-game-developers-exploring-worlds-environmental/

I'm currently taking a break from game development to focus on fiction writing.

"Creativity is recombinant, and the more inspiration designers take in, the more they have to draw from and the higher the chances they'll produce something with a distinct perspective." - Craig Hubbard, game designer/writer

Experience

QA Tester

Bethesda Softworks

Responsible for running assigned test requests and verifying bug fixes.

Worked on and was credited in The Evil Within 2, the sequel to Tango Gameworks' 2014 survival horror romp, and Prey: Mooncrash, the roguelike expansion pack for Arkane Studios' 2017 immersive sim.

Also assisted in the development of Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus, Quake Champions, Prey, The Elder Scrolls: Legends, and Dishonored: Death of the Outsider.

QA Intern

Bethesda Softworks

Ran assigned test requests, tested and verified bug fixes, and identified game issues for Skyrim Special Edition.

Intern

Booz & Company

Received training on targeted data-bases and research tools covering Thomson Reuters, Informa, and the World Bank

Worked as an Analyst in the Research Department directly supporting client engagements across industries (Telecoms, Energy, Financial Services, Public Sector)

Education

Worcester Polytechnic Institute

BS in Interactive Media & Game Development

GPA: 3.83/4.00, May 2017. Graduated with High Distinction.

Lycee Francais International Georges Pompidou

Economics & Social Sciences Stream

Was part of the Economics and Social Sciences stream throughout my high school years (2011-2013) and graduated with High Honors upon receiving my Baccalaureate diploma.

Skills

Final Draft Storytelling Writing Organization skills Narrative Design Microsoft Office Suite Creation Kit Quality Assurance Teamwork Ludology Twine Ren'Py Game Development Photoshop Python 3DS Max After Effects Premiere Pro Game Design ZBrush Hansoft SourceTree Helix ALM Maya Level Design

Specialties

Creative Writing Narrative Design Screenwriting Worldbuilding Character Design Script Doctoring Level Design

Awards

2017

Featured in Telegraph Culture – Article on Eco-Friendly Games, The Telegraph (Was featured in a Telegraph article that covered eco-friendly video games and how they tackled environmental issues.) [link]

2017

Featured in Video Game Deep Cuts Newsletter, Simon Carless (Gamasutra) (My article, “Mind Games: Dissecting Get Even’s Narrative-Mechanics Synergy”, got featured on Simon Carless’s “Video Game Deep Cuts” list.) [link]

2017

Canadian Game Studies Association Conference essay speech, Canadian Game Studies Association (Had my thesis on Japanese-influenced first-person shooters accepted and presented for the 2017 Canadian Game Studies Association Conference) [link]

2017

Kranich Prize – Honorable Mention, Worcester Polytechnic Institute (Received an honorable mention as part of the Worcester Polytechnic Institute Kranich Prize.) [link]

2017

Game Narrative Review Competition – Gold Winner, GDC Narrative Summit Review Board (I’ve been placed in the Gold Category for the 2017 iteration of the GDC Narrative Review Competition as a result of my Thief analysis paper.) [link]

2015

Lightning Pitch Contest 1st Place, Worcester Game Pile [link]