Bonfire is a new studio founded by an experienced team of dreamers, architects, storytellers, and dungeon masters. We are united in the belief that games are best when shared with friends, and we are dedicated to creating games and immersive worlds that bring players closer together. Skill and experience are only part of our puzzle – an adventurous spirit, a commitment to excellence and a passion for iteration unite and drive us all at Bonfire.
Born in the Ukraine, Artem spent his childhood in upstate New York playing games and making mods. Years of late nights went into creating content and retexturing models on Half-Life, Half-Life 2, and Battlefield 1942. He got his professional start at Terminal Reality on Spyhunter and Ghostbusters for console. Artem then spent time at Bungie working on Halo: Reach and Destiny, and continued his career at Blizzard and Riot. At Bonfire, he’s excited to join a small but adventurous studio to help forge new worlds and experiences.
Cliff figured out that creating something is basically magic, and has been excavating the mysterious spaces of imagination since. Doing this in any form is thrilling, but doing it together is among the best things humans do. Cliff launched a lifelong adventure in what he considers to be the pinnacle of creative effort and expression - the gaming industry. To craft whole other worlds, settings, and experiences is really, truly, something tremendous. Most recently Cliff worked to bring the new God of War to life, and now, having found Bonfire - a place that seems custom made around his interests - he is more excited than ever before.
Dave got his start by doing QA, set building, and movie editing for the claymation games The Neverhood and Skullmonkeys. He built levels for Metal Arms: Glitch in the System before he started at Blizzard on WoW - working on zones like Howling Fjord and Grizzly Hills. He moved to Diablo III, where he designed exterior zones, dungeons, boss fights, and events. On Overwatch, he created Hollywood, based on inspiration from a visit to the Warner Bros. backlot, Watchpoint: Gibraltar, Horizon Lunar Colony, and Illios among others. At Bonfire, Dave is excited to create levels for our new IP, and to make us listen to his playlist - Davesneylandworld.
Desiree would watch her parents play video games till she was old enough to take a kick at the can herself, immersing herself in Zelda, Gauntlet Legends, Golden Eye and more. When she discovered animation could be a bonafide job, she left home to attend Vancouver Film School for classical and 3D character animation. Des has worked on Bob's Burgers, Mortal Kombat X, Dead Rising 4 and FIFA 16 through 20. When she isn't working, you can find her hiking with her dog, drinking delicious beer, and obsessively playing Dota 2. Desiree is thrilled to be part of the Bonfire family, and is looking forward to bringing art to life!
Dominic’s passion for art began at a young age, when he started an extensive visual exploration of his favorite subject - monsters. With a lot of practice and hard work, he got his big break as a 3D artist on Killzone 2. From there he went to Blizzard, where worked on a number of franchises, including StarCraft, Hearthstone, WoW, and Overwatch. He also contributed to the Overwatch collectible series, working on the teams that created Reaper and Genji, among others. Dom has a passion for creating haunting and evocative sculptural art, and looks forward to creating art that breathes life into the stories we tell at Bonfire.
Jaime’s obsession with science fiction and visual effects began with Star Wars, where the inspiring designs, colors, and cinematics drove him to explore the arts via traditional illustration. He then went digital and worked in animation and VFX in Mexico for more than a decade. Jaime moved to the U.S. to work as a Lead Matte Painter at Blur Studio in early 2007, where he helped bring the world of Avatar to life. He then joined ILM San Francisco as a Lead Digital Matte painter, where he worked on a number of blockbusters, including Rogue One, Star Trek: Into Darkness, Cloud Atlas, The Avengers, The Force Awakens, and more. Learn why he left ILM to join Bonfire Studios.
Jeremy started his career on the web, focused on graphic design and user experience. He fulfilled his lifelong dream of working in the games industry when he got a job on Battle.net working on front end social systems for StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty. He moved to the nascent Overwatch team as a game designer focused on UX, and then became a systems designer. He also loved working on branding, merchandise, and graphic design - even creating the Overwatch logo. At Bonfire, he’s excited to go back to the small team environment of early Overwatch, and have a big impact on our game (and our merch).
Joe grew up in San Francisco, surrounded by the vivid street art of the Bay Area, so maybe it’s no surprise he got his degree in illustration. But he didn’t want to create book covers or editorial pieces - he wanted to share the visions in his head with others, in the most detail possible. Joe’s first industry job was in Blizzard Cinematics, where he got to do just that, but in the service of powerful IPs like Starcraft, Warcraft and Diablo. Joe then went to work at Red5 Studios, where he relished the challenge of working at a start-up. As a freelance concept artist, Joe’s done work for id Software, Insomniac, and Lightstorm Entertainment, but now he has happily joined Bonfire, where he can forge new visions for players.
John is a Texas born Canadian who lived on a boat and came to California to attend art school. After dropping out a year later to join Blizzard's newly formed Cinematics group, he gradually took on a technical bent and eventually led tool development within the department. Incapable of choosing between art, tech, movies, and video games, he's come to terms with just being bad at everything but intensely curious about it all.
He always loved GMing for tabletop RPGs, and seeing his players' reactions in real time had a huge impact on his player-first design philosophy. He got his start writing for White Wolf’s Vampire: The Masquerade, but then moved to designing games across multiple genres, from strategy games like Company of Heroes and Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War 2, to open-world shooters like Far Cry 3. He returned to RPGs on his last gig as Game Director on Diablo III: Reaper of Souls. Josh GMs our weekly D&D games. Read more about his tabletop design philosophy.
A win in a Tetris programming contest landed him his first industry job handling multi-player and networking for Dark Reign: The Future of War. He never suspected that would bring him to the US for a 16 year career leading the engineering team for Battle.net, connecting players on every Blizzard game from Diablo II to Overwatch. At Bonfire, he’s looking forward to finding new ways to connect players and create communities. Learn why Matthew's favorite food is beets.
Megan had one major career aspiration as a 5 year old: to be a butler. While she never attained the title officially, it exemplified her desire to forge strong bonds with others and help them succeed. Her operational kung-fu was developed as the right hand of numerous dynamic and creative leaders, most recently during her nine year role at Blizzard Entertainment, where she designed the administrative organization and supported several executives including the CEO. This is how Megan’s journey shaped her for a spot at the Bonfire.
Min immigrated to NYC from Seoul in 1984 where he developed his love for all things 80s - including cartoons, music, long hair, and games. When it came time to grow up, Min chopped his hair and suited up for Wall Street. Fortunately, the universe intervened and Min began his colorful career at Nexon - working on MapleStory and eventually serving as Nexon America’s CEO. Now he’s bringing his experience and passion to our small, close knit teams at Bonfire. Needless to say, he has grown his hair back. Find out what Min loves most about the 80's.
Morgan grew up loving games, and was lucky enough to turn this interest into a 15 year career in the industry. She started out covering tech, but spent most of her career as a reviewer, journalist, and television producer covering the world of video games. She also hosted the long running television show X-Play, where she was able to learn about the industry from the developers themselves. She is excited to bring her production experience, her love of games, and her high-elf ranger to Bonfire Studios. Follow her path to Bonfire.
Growing up, Nick went to see Star Wars - and was immediately obsessed with the detailed worlds created by nothing but the human imagination. When he started at Blizzard at 20, he brought this love to the art, characters, and worlds of Warcraft III, StarCraft: Brood War, World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, and Diablo III. As VP of Art and Cinematics, he moved his craft to the big screen in the World of Warcraft movie. At Bonfire Studios, he will help define our vision with the detailed worlds he’s known for. Learn about Nick's origin story.
His first step into the game industry was in high school at GameZone - a small mom and pop game store with an almost mystical selection of imported Japanese games. Fate intervened when a customer invited him to a presentation about 3D animation at a local university, and he never looked back. Nick worked on Ghost Recon - Advanced Warfighter, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 2, and Ghostbusters before pushing every pixel to the highest possible quality on the God of War franchise. He was at Riot Games before coming to Bonfire, where he’s excited to work with top industry talent in a small team environment. Nick is also an instructor at Gnomon.
When it came time to choose a career path, Rachel looked to the one consistent inspiration in her life, video games! Her career started in QA at Blizzard, which focused her attention to Technical Art. Shortly after she joined the Diablo 3 team, Rachel became enamored with Real Time Visual Effects and set her sights on epic sparkles and explosions with a focus on gameplay readability. She helped get the style and processes of Overwatch’s dynamic VFX off the ground, but now she’s excited to create epic gaming experiences and build new worlds with the passionate team at Bonfire.
Rachel is fascinated with problems at the intersection of the technical and the creative, and has been obsessed with all games digital, physical, and conversational since before she can remember. She studied computer science and creative writing at the University of Chicago before snagging a masters in computer graphics at the University of Pennsylvania - where she also taught a course on procedural graphics and creative coding techniques. Rachel can most often be found daydreaming about games, asking questions, doodling on whiteboards, or obsessively folding origami. See more of her creations, and learn about her journey to Bonfire.
Rob’s love of game design started when he was introduced to D&D with his elementary school friends. Designing campaigns for his friends showed him the power of games to bring people closer together. During his professional career, he led the design of Starcraft: Brood War, World of Warcraft and Warcraft III. As Chief Creative Officer at Blizzard, he served as the Executive Producer for Diablo III and Hearthstone. Bonfire is the next phase of his journey to deepen and enrich friendships through gameplay. Learn more about Rob's path to Bonfire Studios.
He was that kid who took everything apart to see how it worked, so it was inevitable that he would try to figure out how to make the video games he loved. When he took his first computer programming course, his career path was set. He has worked as a game, tools, and engine programmer at Insomniac Games, Blizzard Entertainment, and Riot Games on titles such as Ratchet & Clank and Diablo 3. Sam was also a co-founder of Booyah, creator of several top iOS and Facebook games. Learn more about Sam's journey.
Born and raised in Iceland, Lína didn't know what she wanted to be when she grew up - but she knew she wanted a cool job where she could travel and see the world. She studied Industrial Engineering in university, and even briefly worked as a project manager at a pharmaceutical company before she found her passion at the Icelandic game company CCP, makers of EVE Online. Her career then took her around the world. She moved to Stockholm to work on Mirror’s Edge: Catalyst and Star Wars: Battlefront, before moving to Vancouver to work on one of the biggest franchises of all time - FIFA. Her journey now takes her to sunnier shores to join Bonfire Studios, and you can read her origin story to learn more.
While his first games were rendered in all the graphical glory ASCII could muster, his industry start was on Madden NFL 06 with a focus on real-time graphics. He worked on several EA titles before joining LucasArts to work on the graphics engine for Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 1 and 2. When Szymon was ready for start-up life, he and three colleagues founded a company making a high-end game engine for mobile. They got acquired by Zynga and put out a game called Battlestone using their custom engine. He then became CTO of Telltale before finding his way to Bonfire Studios. You can learn more about his journey to Bonfire in his origin story.
The first time he wrote a multiplayer game in his school computer lab, he fell in love with making games. He started his career as a gameplay engineer on a series of open-world action games including The Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction and Prototype. Zaven then worked on some of gaming's biggest multiplayer franchises - Destiny & Battlefield. As a Technical Director at EA, Zaven helped lead technology development on new IP projects. Now, his passion for games, technology, and team building have brought him from Vancouver to Bonfire to help create amazing games and build amazing teams.