Leader Spotlight: IGDA Muslims in Games Co-Lead Osama Dorias6 Sep 2019
Osama Dorias has worked in the Canadian game industry for over a decade, but his cheerful demeanor and talented design skills are known worldwide. He has contributed to the design of over a dozen titles, including the wildly popular For Honor.
Dorias, though a longtime resident of Montreal, has not always lived in Canada. He was born in Baghdad, Iraq, and his family fled their home from the terrible Iraq-Iran war in 1980. They traveled all over the world, searching for a new home, before settling in Montreal when Dorias was just 5 years old.
Once in Canada, Dorias began nurturing his love for video games and other nerdy mediums. “I grew up between worlds as I was completely enamored with geek culture,” he commented. “Movies, comics, video games, I couldn’t get enough of them. It’s this love of video games that lead me to the path of becoming a game designer.”
Over his career, Dorias found success at many game studios, including Ubisoft, Gameloft, Minority Media, and GEE Media, and he is very proud of the game industry in Canada. “Canada is huge when it comes to game development,” he noted. “We are known around the world as a game development hub, and we have a reputation of making great games.”
Now as a Lead Game Designer at Warner Brothers Games Montreal and a professor of Game Design at Dawson College, Dorias is passionate about giving back to the industry that enabled him to follow his dreams; He founded the Montreal Independant Game Awards with his partner, Salim Larochelle, and is a proud participant of IGDA Foundation’s Next Gen Leader program, a multi-year program that supports under-represented minors in game development with development opportunities, coaching, and mentorship.
Dorias also co-leads the IGDA’s Muslims in Games Special Interest Group. He states this group has two main goals: “providing safe spaces, both real and online, for Muslim game devs to come together” and “to become a resource and contact point for any game dev who wants to know more about Muslim representation.”
“I love to empower people in expressing themselves through game making,” commented Dorias on his motivations behind these valiant efforts. “I especially love to give a voice to marginalized people and causes.”
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