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[Diversity in Games] Introduction to Board Game Design Workshop with Robin O’Keeffe

April 14, 2018 @ 11:00 am - 5:00 pm

We will be running three diversity in games workshops in Galway.

A huge thanks to Portershed and Galway Technology Centre for hosting us.

And a shout out to our mentors, Charlene Putney, Robin O’Keeffe and Tracey McCabe.

Any money left over from these workshops will be donated to a COPE Galway.

Following workshops, dates and venues:


  • To be eligible for this workshop, you would have read and agreed to our Code of Conduct and our diversity statement before registering.
  • You will be asked to pick your workshop(s) after you purchase your tickets.
  • Funds from tickets will be covering lunch, and any money left over will be donated to a COPE Galway.
  • Unemployed/students get a reduction, and people who attend more than one workshop will get a reduction.

Interested? These workshops are for persons aged 18 and over, and aimed at beginners.

To be eligible

You must not be studying in a games-related course, have prior experience in making games, or work in the games industry. We are open to creatives (artists, storytellers, creative writers, musicians) and other non-programmers. Participants will be asked to fill out a short questionnaire on their experience and a researcher will be present at the workshop.

Please read our Code of Conduct and our diversity statement before applying.

Any questions, please email:

Schedule for Charlene’s Workshop

  • 10:30 Registration
  • 11:00 Workshop Starts
  • 12:30 – 13:30 Lunch
  • 13:30 – 15:30 Workshop Ends

Schedule for Robin & Tracey’s Workshops

  • 10:30 Registration
  • 11:00 Workshop Starts
  • 12:00: Short Break
  • 13:00 Lunch
  • 14:30 Short Break
  • 17:00 Workshop Ends


Workshop 1 – Writing for Interactivity with Charlene Putney

Places are limited to 15 people.

Learn how to write interactive narrative in a step-by-step, hands-on session. First, I’ll talk about the history of interactive narrative and the practice of writing for video games, including the theory of structuring narratives for choice and interactivity,. Then, we’ll work through a series of writing exercises and paper prototypes for understanding branching narrative. Finally, I’ll show you how to use a free and easy tool called Twine to craft and publish your interactive narratives!

About Charlene

Charlene Putney is a writer based in Dublin, Ireland. She writes for Larian Studios, most recently on Divinity: Original Sin 2. When she’s not writing, you’ll likely find her teaching interactive narrative at Trinity College Dublin, Dublin Institute of Technology or the Irish Writers’ Centre. Say hi to @alphachar!

Workshop 2 – An Introduction to Board Game Design with Robin O’Keeffe

Boardgame design is collaborative, expressive, and fun! In this workshop, boardgame designer, Robin David O’Keeffe, will introduce participants to some new and exciting boardgames, giving a chance to play and leading a discussion on what makes modern boardgaming both exciting and unique. In small groups, participants will then produce their own games, taking advantage of their own skill sets – be that art, storytelling, music, or just about anything.

No need to bring anything. Materials are provided on the day.

About Robin

Robin O’Keeffe is a teacher and game designer. He is one of the organisers behind the Boardgame Designers Ireland group and leads the monthly boardgame design workshop, Playtest Dublin.

Workshop 3 – Introduction to games development with Unity 3D with Tracey McCabe

In the workshop we will explore the basic building blocks needed to begin developing your own game in Unity. Using the engine’s built in tools, you’ll learn to create movement controls, set up platforms using colliders, wire up sprites for your character and enemies, set win/lose conditions and more.

Computers will be provided on the day, and spaces are limited to 14 persons.

About Tracey

Tracey McCabe has been developing software in a variety of industries for over 10 years, from finance to games with studios like StoryBeasts, IglooSoft, GoodGame Studio and Spooky Doorway. She is also involved in various youth outreach projects and speaks at events internationally.


What is ReFig?

The ReFig project is ‘committed to promoting diversity and equity in the game industry and culture and effecting real change in a space that has been exclusionary to so many’. More info:

What is Network in Play?

The goal of the Network In Play project is to create informal sites of social learning about games and technology that put equity, inclusion and diversity at the centre. If you support this goal we would be happy to work with you.

This is both a research project and a community based action project established by Dr. Aphra Kerr (Maynooth university and and Vicky Twomey-Lee (Coding Grace). Our project is funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council in Canada via the ReFiG project. More info:

What happens to the left over money from tickets for these workshops?

Any money left over from these workshops will be donated to COPE Galway.

Refund Policy

Full refunds until 48 hours before the event.

Where is Portershed located?

It’s just off Eyre Square, see

How do I get to Galway Technology Centre?

403 bus departs from Eyre Square and serves Mervue Business Park where GTC is located, see


April 14, 2018
11:00 am - 5:00 pm
Event Category:
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Vicky Twomey Lee & Aphra Kerr


The PorterShed
Galway, Ireland + Google Map
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