My name is Michel Sabbagh and I'm a game writer/designer from Montreal, Quebec who's formerly worked for Bethesda Softworks as a Quality Assurance Tester.
I regularly pen articles that have been featured on various reputed websites such as Gamasutra, Kotaku, Destructoid and Kill Screen that cover 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 video games. Additionally, I interned at Bethesda Softworks as a QA Tester during my college years and was credited for my work on Skyrim: Special Edition.
My academic works 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, and I was named a Gold Winner for my paper on Thief: The Dark Project as part of the 2017 GDC Game Narrative Review Competition. Other achievements include having won the 2015 Worcester Game Pile’s Lightning Pitch Contest with a panel of jurors that include professional game developers such as Trevor Stricker and Ichiro Lambe, and penning two visual novels, “Make Love Not Politics” and “Streams of Nurture”.
Feel free to visit my personal and Gamasutra blogs if you’re interested in reading my game design articles:
Was quoted on Kotaku:
Currently curating the "Ludobazaar" Steam page: http://store.steampowered.com/curator/31643394-Ludobazaar/
- Creative Writing
- Narrative Design
- Script Doctoring
- Character Design
- Quality Assurance Testing
"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
July 5, 2017 – Present • Rockville, MD
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.
Also assisted in the development of Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus, Prey, The Elder Scrolls: Legends, and Dishonored: Death of the Outsider.
May 16, 2016 – July 8, 2016 • Rockville, MD
Ran assigned test requests, tested and verified bug fixes, and identified game issues for Skyrim Special Edition.
Booz & Company
January 2010 – February 2010 • Dubai
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)
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
BS in Interactive Media & Game Development
2013 – 2017 • Worcester, MA
GPA: 3.83/4.00, May 2017
Lycee Francais International Georges Pompidou
Economics & Social Sciences Stream
1999 – 2013 • Dubai, United Arab Emirates
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.
Creation Kit Twine Ren'Py Storytelling Writing Quality Assurance Organization skills Narrative Design Teamwork Game Development Ludology Photoshop Python 3DS Max After Effects Premiere Pro Game Design ZBrush Final Draft Hansoft SourceTree Microsoft Office Suite Helix ALM Maya Level Design
Creative Writing Narrative Design Screenwriting Worldbuilding Character Design Script Doctoring Level Design
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]
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]
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]
Kranich Prize – Honorable Mention, Worcester Polytechnic Institute (Received an honorable mention as part of the Worcester Polytechnic Institute Kranich Prize.) [link]
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]
Lightning Pitch Contest 1st Place, Worcester Game Pile [link]