Klanger Anniversary Profile: Evans
December 20th, 2021
It was a cold and dark December day, and the office was mostly empty when Evans came in for his first day at Klang as a Game Engineer. All of his team mates were working remotely or were on vacation for his entire first week, his manager was sick, the laptop he was supposed to get didn’t arrive in time. What a year to start a new job, and what a day... How did he end up here, in this empty office, in the middle of a pandemic?
When Evans was eight, his cousin left her old computer in his room, and as a result he quickly got into two things: Age of Empires and Visual Basic.Ever since then, programming and gaming have been intertwined for him, as he tried to make his own games early on - usually it didn’t work out, but he kept at it and eventually ended up studying computer science.
After his studies he landed a job at a big IT company, which led to him working as a contractor for Toshiba in Japan and for Google in Korea. A tiny bit of his code even made it into the Android system. How cool is that?He still made games on his own, and contributed to the open source game 0 A.D. in his free time - and this started to take a lot of his free time and energy! Working on his projects all alone was kind of lonely, too. So he decided to make the jump and get into the game industry for real.
He started out at Jumpstart Games, making educational games for children. After that he moved to Berlin and worked for GameDuell for a while.
This is also when he first heard about SEED and got curious about the project. But, he took his sweet time applying! In a moment of consideration, he reached out to our Game Engineer Alessia on Twitter to find out more about the company. Unfortunately she never ended up seeing the message and never got back to him. Meanwhile he lurked in our Discord, read everything we put out, listened to our podcast and was trying to make up his mind: should he just go for it? He needed one more little push.
This push came in the form of a chance encounter at a Halloween party, where at three in the morning, he ran into Matic from our QA team, who he already knew from his time at GameDuell. Turns out the game Matic was talking about working on was the same game Evans had been curious about for over a year! Not much later he finally applied, and of course we scooped him up right away.
Evans was looking forward to joining the company Matic had described, but instead he got Klang: Lockdown Edition.Still, he was welcomed warmly, if over Slack, and instead of smiles and hugs, there was an avalanche of emojis and messages celebrating his arrival. His second week most of his new team returned to the office, but shortly after that harsher lockdown rules were introduced and everybody went back to working from home again. And this is how it stayed for most of his first year at Klang. Evans recalls that people made an effort to befriend and include him even when it wasn’t possible to meet in person.
And since his team couldn’t meet IRL, they met like game devs do - on Discord and by playing games.They crashed into each other in Wreckfest, played 8bit Army, and truly bonded as a team over collectively not understanding Barotrauma at all, and failing spectacularly at it.
And while Evans was navigating this new way of joining a team, he helped Seedlings achieve the means of interacting with each other as well. While working on multi-agent activities, he was an integral part of the efforts of getting them from just doing their own thing, to actually playing chess with each other or having a dance.
When asked what advice he would give himself on day one, Evans said that he felt he was too reserved in the beginning, and mostly observed what was going on without daring to get right into the thick of things. It took him a while to express his own ideas with confidence, but once he did he found that people were receptive and open to them. He also learned that even if your idea isn’t perfect, your point of view is still a valuable contribution towards solving the problems your team is tackling.
And Klang has definitely learned that Evan’s ideas are worth listening to. We hope for many more years to get to know you even better (and face to face), and we’re so grateful that you stuck it out even when we couldn’t be as welcoming as we wanted to be. Thank you for being a Klanger!
The Klang Gang