References

Kiersten Samwell
Game Designer

Nathan Sumsion
Nathan directly managed Kiersten at KingsIsle Entertainment
Lead Game Designer
https://www.linkedin.com/in/nathan-sumsion-720531

Kiersten is a tremendously talented game designer and community manager. She was invaluable to the design team during the time we worked together on Wizard101. She is thorough in her planning and documentation, proficient and accurate in the implementation of her design, proactive in seeking out problems and finding solutions for them. I can’t recommend her highly enough. She will be a huge benefit to any design team lucky enough to have her.


Leah Ruben

Leah directly managed Kiersten at KingsIsle Entertainment
Senior Producer of MMO Content
https://www.linkedin.com/in/leah-ruben-5217911

Kiersten is everything you’d want in a designer and more. I always enjoyed working with her as our Community Manager, she was talented, hard working, creative, and was an exceptional communicator. When I got the opportunity to bring her onto my team as a designer, I learned just how talented and hard working she was. She was able to tackle a staggering amount of work and learn new things on multiple projects with ease. If you give Kiersten a little direction and a lot of freedom, she does amazing things. I’d work with her again any day in a heartbeat.


Karl Holbert

Karl managed Kiersten indirectly at KingsIsle Entertainment
Art Lead
https://www.linkedin.com/in/karl-holbert-88070168

I have worked with Kiersten for over 8 years. If you need to know only one thing about her it is that she has a passion and drive for her work that is rarely seen these days. As the Community Manager at KingsIsle she was key in the success of Wizard101 as she supported and encouraged fans, creating the kind of cult following that most MMOs can only dream of having. When she moved to the Design department I got a chance to work with Kiersten even closer. She was the kind of designer that every art lead loves to work with; great attention to detail, fantastic communication, and an expert understanding of all parts of the pipeline including art and of course player facing issues. If I were to ever start my own company Kiersten would be one of the first people I would hire, without hesitation.


Cheryl Chunco Starcher

Cheryl worked with Kiersten at KingsIsle Entertainment
Lead Software Engineer
https://www.linkedin.com/in/cheryl-chunco-starcher-83b0772

As a programmer, I regularly interacted with Kiersten in her game design role.
Kiersten is a terrific communicator. She sends clear and precise information in her emails, documents feature requests with screen shots, and writes thorough Game Design Documents that cover edge cases. One of Kiersten’s greatest strengths is her initiative. She requests tool improvements that benefit Customer Support, QA, and designers. She will ask about the code viability of some small new thing for the players. She improves everything she touches.


Rick Mohan

Rick worked with Kiersten at KingsIsle Entertainment
Localization Producer
https://www.linkedin.com/in/cyberkatana

Kiersten is a consummate professional that covers every task under her purview with great attention to detail. She would commit to learning every aspect of the product earning her the reputation of being the resident expert. Working with her was always a positive and productive experience. I hope to work with her again in the future.


Rob Chestney

Rob managed Kiersten indirectly at KingsIsle Entertainment
Lead Creative Designer (Narrative)
https://www.linkedin.com/in/rchestney

Kiersten is one of the most dedicated, hard-working game designers I’ve worked with. She furiously assaults her task list, consistently completing assignments ahead of schedule, and then she starts hunting for more work to do. She often discovers design and narrative issues early in the development cycle, and when she brings the concern to the team, she brings a list of proposed solutions along with it. She’s also honest, dependable, and considerate. She’d be a great asset to any team.


Randy Taintor

Randy worked directly with Kiersten at KingsIsle Entertainment
QA Lead
https://www.linkedin.com/in/randy-taintor-2449351

Hard work and dedication describe Kiersten well. While on she was a designer on Wizard and Pirate she helped turned a critical, labor-intensive role into a beautiful construct machine. She was extremely thoughtful in helping QA get the information they needed for her work but also the information from others for QA. She was always performing and always able to accept more responsibility like some sort of bottomless task barrel. Also always looking to help QA and being more efficient. She is sharp and was able to adapt to the ever-changing needs of the projects with ease, something a lot of people cannot claim. She brought a community understanding to the role which helped her to excel. I would expect this from any role that Kiersten would be asked to fill. She knocks the ball out of the park every time. I would Highly recommend Kiersten for a design position.


Dave Timoney

Dave managed Kiersten indirectly at KingsIsle Entertainment
Senior Game Designer
https://www.linkedin.com/in/dave-timoney-5339026

There is no role that I would hesitate to recommend Kiersten for, as she’s proven she can accomplish any task assigned her. In the game industry, her “feel” for the correct way to design systems is excellent, as is her understanding of the player’s point of view. Her enthusiasm and desire to make whatever she does “good” is something any team can benefit from. She is, in the best sense of the title, a Game Designer.


David True

David worked with Kiersten at KingsIsle Entertainment
Senior Technical Artist
https://www.linkedin.com/in/dtrue

It has been an absolute joy to work with Kiersten as she ramped up on both Wizard and Pirate. Ever fearless to tackle new information, she swiftly took that information and ran with it. She has a wonderfully keen understanding of how certain mechanics work. I would happily work with her on any future projects and I look forward to doing so again.