Image Credit: Elizabeth Sampat
Elizabeth Sampat is an award-winning game designer who’s worked on blockbuster titles like Plants Vs Zombies 2 and Subway Surfers. She also makes small, intensely personal games about her own experiences. Her most recent one, 8 Vignettes from the Tech Industry, tackles the Google manifesto, an anti-diversity memo that went viral over the last few days. It’s a free-to-play browser game on indie platform itch.io.
Dubbed an “interactive essay,” 8 Vignettes is a text-only game that showcases quotes from the memo alongside anecdotes of Sampat’s own experiences. They counter the assertions made in the manifesto, such as the claim that women don’t want to work “long, stressful hours” with a story about how she pulled a 12-hour day then went home and worked all night — all while suffering from an intense stomach flu.
Sampat says that she hoped the game would show people why women in the industry are taking the manifesto so personally.
“It was all about modeling my personal experience for me. I wanted people to understand why hearing that women won’t work long hours got under my skin, or exactly how calm and cool under pressure women have to be,” said Sampat. “Often, the worst things women put up with are in 1-on-1 meetings: as a result, men never see the double-standard and assume women are overreacting…