Last year, I wrote a piece about our team as Marvel Super Heroes. We have an amazing team together, some of which are almost legendary industry veterans. Others in turn are brilliant newcomers who have in a very short timespan shown they have what it takes to make superb learning games.
The reason why I think the analog of a superhero team works better for Lightneer than some of the more typically used comparisons such as the rock band or the sports team is two-fold. First of all, we are facing a huge challenge – pushing the learning game into mainstream – that has never been done before. I believe this will take some superheroing to solve.
Second, like in any great superhero team such as the Avengers or the Justice Leage, to solve world class problems you need a team that consists of very strong and diversely talented individuals but who can also pull together and work as a team when needed. This is what I often feel while working with our team at Lightneer.
So here goes, team introduction part two. Part three coming soon, with the newest additions to the team, Juan Luis, Tatu, Hanna and Jaakko.
Alisa is probably the most indispensable person in our office, as we again recently learned after she was on vacation for a week. She is involved in pretty much every process in the company, and goes constantly way beyond the extra mile. Like Magik, she can conjure things out of thing air, make the impossible seem like everyday, and transport our team around the world in a sleight of her hand, just like Magik waving her inter-dimensional sword.
Napua is invaluable to both the product and the marketing team. In a word, like her Marvel counterpart, she kicks ass. Her superpower is to put chaos in order faster than you can blink. Like Spider-Woman, as a double agent, Napua has a double role in being in charge of both managing our product roadmap and working as the marketing director. I often wonder at her never-ending capacity to get things done. Sometimes it feels as if somebody’s indeed gone and cloned her, as she seems to be putting crazy mileage into what is essentially two jobs.
Like the kung fu guru powered by the gem connecting her to an ancient tiger god, Liisa is able to do constantly amazing stunts that feel unreal. She has been responsible for creating the majority of our Atom Hero characters, and has grown to be one of the most important world-builders in our team along with “Star-Lord” Lauri and “Hawkeye” Ilari. I keep on being amazed about how she can conjure a steady stream of new ideas to make dozens of characters look original, unique and fresh. Every week I await those jaw-dropping moments when Liisa pushes her new character sketches in Slack for the whole team to see.
Peter has the capacity to convert the impossible into reality. Like his Marvel counterpart, he travels a lot into places that not many people dare to visit, and in his travels, he weaves new connections unlike anybody I’ve ever met. I’ve often said it strikes me as if Peter was equipped with the version 2.0 of the reality distortion field people used to ascribe to Steve Jobs. Peter is a huge inspiration to everyone around him and a never-ending source of new, sometimes very quirky, ideas, that often turn out to be ground-breaking.
The red-skinned Avenger android has the power to walk through any obstacles. Like Vision, Mauri has a mind equipped to solve any conundrum people dare to throw his way. Vision is also one of the most calmest and down to earth of the Avengers, bringing the much needed voice of reason to every discussion he participates in. In his work, Mauri is one of the key programmers in our team in bringing to life the various aspects of our game, ranging from animations to sounds to effects.
Felix is like the Asgardian Avenger worthy of wielding the Mjolnir. He’s got a brilliant mind set out to crack any trouble thrown his way, and sometimes his capacity to hack at nasty bugs has outright mythical properties. With his blonde beard he only lacks the helmet and the hammer (and maybe some hair growth) to be mistaken for the Norse God walking down the street.
Janne is without a doubt Lightneer’s very on web- and quip-slinging “photojournalist.” Whenever you bump into him around the office, you can be sure he’ll put even Peter Parker himself to second place in cheering up the mood. A true animator, in both the sense of making both our characters and our office come to life. He has also pulled some pretty mind-blowing stunts, such as bringing our brand new Learn to Play videos to life in a matter of hours.