PRGE Speakers and Special Guests

Speakers & Special Guests

Atari 2600 Programmer Panel
Howard Scott Warshaw, Rob Zydbel, Bob Smith, Tod Frye conduct the Atari 2600 programmmer panel at PRGE.

We are bringing in speakers from all over the country including notable figures from the early days of the gaming industry as well as current celebrities.

Check back often as our guest list is still growing!


Caddicarus

Caddicarus

Jim Caddick (better known as Caddicarus) has been a YouTube regular since 2011. Since then, he has curated one of the most unique, fun, and impressive content libraries in the videogame space. His satirical long-form videos that focus on every corner of the videogame industry have resonated with millions of people around the world. From revisiting retro games, to reviewing the strangest peripherals that gaming has to offer, Caddy does it all!


Frank Cifaldi

Frank Cifaldi

Frank Cifaldi is the co-director of the Video Game History Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to preserving, celebrating, and teaching video game history. He is also a historian and producer with over twenty years of experience preserving the medium’s history.


Pat the NES Punk

Pat "The NES Punk" Contri

Pat Contri is a video game player, collector, and historian known for his web shows Pat the NES Punk, Flea Market Madness, and The Completely Unnecessary Podcast. He is the author of Ultimate Nintendo: Guide to the NES Library, the follow up for the SNES and currently working on the N64 followup. Pat also conducts the live annual NES Charity Marathon benefiting children's hospitals. In his spare time he enjoys eating numerous nachos, and hanging out with an old Jersey hippie named Frank.


Extra Lives

Extra Lives

Extra Lives is the world’s first Audience RPG: a fully narrated choose-your-own-adventure game where YOU are the main character. Plunge into an exciting story with visuals, music, sound effects and footage drawn from the legendary console games of the ‘80s, ‘90s and 2000s... and a live score provided by the lovable nerds of Extra Lives. At several key junctures you'll get to vote on how the character proceeds, leading to special story branches. With multiple endings and over 30 possible variations depending on the audience's in-game choices, this immersive feast for the imagination will transport you back to your childhood. To the next level!


Ian Ferguson

Ian Ferguson

By day, Ian Ferguson is a mild-mannered former game store clerk, but by night he is one-half of the popular Completely Unnecessary Podcast along with Pat "The NES Punk" Contri.


The Gaming Historian

The Gaming Historian

Norman Caruso is the creator of the Gaming Historian — a YouTube documentary series that explores the history of video games. Want to learn about the landmark lawsuits that changed the industry? Or why the Power Glove wasn’t “so bad” after all? Then be sure to check out the Gaming Historian!

The show started in 2008, when Norman was working on his bachelor’s degree in history at Elizabeth City State University. He loved studying history, and loved video games too, so why not combine them?
The rest, as they say, is history! In 2015, Norman quit his day job to work on Gaming Historian full time.


George “G” Gracin

George “G” Gracin

George “G” Gracin has been an enthusiast of video gaming for over 25 years and shares his dedication through his YouTube Channel, G to the Next Level.


“Retro Gaming in the Modern Age” is his channel’s motto, as he makes retrospective reviews, “Level 10” & “From Gutter to Throne” countdown lists, “Mascot Mania,” his mascot adventure game review series, console reviews, various Sonic the Hedgehog videos (he’s a huge fan!), and much more. Though a Sega fan for life, G has a passion for all things retro and hopes to inspire, educate, and entertain: Level by Level.


In addition to YouTube, G streams retro and retro-inspired games weekly on Twitch, is currently writing a compendium book about the Sega Genesis, has been featured in Sega’s YouTube & Twitch channels, and in Retro Gamer magazine. He has guest appeared on other gaming YouTube channels such as Slope’s Game Room, My Life in Gaming, and John Riggs’ Rigg’d Games, as well as guesting on various podcasts/radio shows.


Jennasis

Jennasis

Jennasis' mom bought her a NES and it was then that her love of gaming was born. It grew with her as her own style and passions developed.


Jennasis has now combined her love of story rich RPGs with a desire to further study sexual psychology to become one half of the two girls one ship podcast, where they analyze, rate, and review all that the world of video game romances has to offer.


Josh Hamblin

Josh Hamblin

Josh doesn't shy away from the controversy around the "reselling" of classic video games and will cover topics including game values, engaging positively with collectors and understanding the marketplace. Forget everything you though you knew about "filthy resellers". He has a ton of useful information for collectors to help them build their collections as quickly and economically as possible.


John Hancock

John Hancock

"The Immortal" John Hancock is a mega-collector known for his comprehensive game collection and his comprehensive knowledge of all things video game. He is also the founder of the Cowlitz Gamers for Kids charity game expo in Kelso, Washington which has raised tens of thousands of dollars for local children's charities. John has his own YouTube channel where he releases several videos per week and he is a regular contributor on the Metal Jesus Rocks channel.


Hood's Hellions

Hoods Hellions 405th Infantry Halo Cosplayers

Hood's Hellions are the Portland's own group of Halo cosplayers. They will be helping to keep the peace at PRGE and making sure the Covenant doesn't spoil the fun. Watch for spontaneous Spartan dance parties.

Matt Householder

Matt Householder

In videogames since 1981, Matt's 1st published game was Gottlieb's coin-op Krull in 1983. At Atari he converted Moon Patrol to the Colecovision in 1984. But Atari's collapse canceled its release, so he crafted a keepsake comedy version, "Matt Patrol", which CollectorVision found, modded, and released as Moon Patrol in 2014.

Highlights of his career include stints at Epyx and Blizzard North. For Epyx he produced some of their biggest hits: Winter Games, World Games, and California Games. At Blizzard North he produced Diablo II while writing much of the in-game dialog, hiring most of the staff, managing the audio department, and inventing the iconic use of the "!" to mark quest NPCs for interaction.

In the social/mobile game business for Disney Interactive, he created monetization content for browser-based RPGs and designed the 2014 Facebook Game of the Year: Kitchen Scramble.

A fan of Space Invaders, Defender, and Robotron: 2084, Matt is back to his electrical engineering roots, restoring audio equipment and coin-op videogames from the 20th century.


Chris Kohler

Chris Kohler

Chris Kohler is currently Editorial Director at Digital Eclipse, spearheading the historical research and writing that goes into the company's games like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Cowabunga Collection and Atari 50: The Anniversary Celebration. Before this, he spent nearly 25 years as a journalist at WIRED magazine and elsewhere. His books include Power-Up: How Japanese Video Games Gave The World An Extra Life (Dover) and Final Fantasy V (Boss Fight Books).


Tim Lapetino

Tim Lapetino

Tim Lapetino is an award-winning creative director, writer, and geek culture historian. For nearly 25 years he has helped brands tell compelling stories through design and creativity, while connecting deeply to their passionate fans.

He is the author of the best-selling book, Art of Atari, and co-author of Pac-Man: Birth of an Icon. He is also editor of Sky Captain and the Art of Tomorrow and Undisputed Street Fighter, and co-authored the design inspiration book Damn Good: Top Designers Discuss Their All-Time Favorite Projects. His work has been featured in more than a dozen books and magazines, has drawn worldwide press coverage, including The Chicago Tribune, USA Today, Wired, Forbes, IGN, Polygon, SyFy Wire, MAXIM, Kotaku, and more. His books have been published in five languages.

He has worked for and with brands with passionate fanbases, including Atari, Marvel, DC Comics, Capcom, Star Wars, Transformers, Hello Kitty, Pac-Man, Major League Baseball, Tower Records, NASA, TRON, and more. Tim He also regularly speaks about design, art, and creativity — and how they impact geek culture.

He currently works as Chief Creative Officer of geek wearables company, MobyFox, and resides in Chicago with his wife and two kids.


Kelsey Lewin

Kelsey Lewin

Kelsey Lewin is a historian and co-director of The Video Game History Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to preserving, celebrating, and teaching video game history. She also co-owns the Seattle-based retro game store chain, Pink Gorilla Games.


Modern Vintage Gamer

Modern Vintage Gamer

From Developer to YouTuber : Modern Vintage Gamer is a emulation and homebrew developer thats worked on the original Xbox, Xbox 360, Amiga, Sony PSP, Playstation 3 and the Nintendo Switch with over 30 different released across these systems including the Nintendo 64 emulation on the Original Xbox – which many said couldn’t be done. .After launching his youtube channel in 2007 as an outlet for showing off his coding efforts and projects, in 2014 began the exploration of retro consoles and computers recounting the stories of hacking, trade secrets of the modding underground scene.


Paul E. Niemeyer

Paul E. Niemeyer

Paul has illustrated for a multitude of products, including Jim Beam, Malibu Rum, Stolichnaya Vodka, M&M/Mars, Quaker, McDonald’s, Burger King, Kellogg’s, Kraft Foods, Beatrice, Nestle’s, Con-Agra Foods, Disney/MGM, Paramount Pictures, American Airlines, Pegasus Games, PopCap Games, Eagle Games, and FunAgain Games, to name a few. Oh a little known game called Mortal Kombat.


John Riggs

John Riggs

John is a master at modifying NES game ROMs to do new and interesting things. You can learn more about what he does on his YouTube channel, RIGG'd Games.


Shiro!

Shiro!

Since 2017, the SEGA SATURN, SHIRO! podcast has inspired and educated gamers on SEGA's 32-Bit dark horse, the Saturn. Covering everything from past memories and retrospectives to current and future Saturn-related projects, SHIRO! exists to spread that Saturn love to the far reaches of the internet...


SHIRO! also operates the only Saturn-centric News Site on the web, in addition to a Weekly Live News Show on YouTube and SHIRO! MAGAZINE, a Saturn fanzine by fans for fans.


Matt Uelmen

Matt Uelmen

Matt Uelmen was raised in the South Bay area of greater Los Angeles, while his formal training in music consisted of 7 years of piano lessons starting at age 6. Otherwise, self-taught as a multi-instrumentalist and orchestrator, Matt's most famous performance/composition is the "Tristram town music" from the Diablo series of computer games -- in which he plays the 12-string guitar and flute.


Virvada

Virvada

Virvada is a crazy cat lady, Navy veteran, mother, L.A. valley girl, and a lifelong gamer. Her love of video games started in front of an old beige 90's PC playing Warcraft 2 and Lands of Lore (She always liked playing as orcs instead of humans because their settlements looked way cooler). The computer and the games were her dad's, and he is the reason she love games. When they graduated to a Playstation, she would sit next to her dad (directly in front of the TV, of course) and watch him play Medal of Honor. He would go through and kill all the bad guys and let her run around the empty level, which blew her little 8-year old mind. She hasent't stopped loving games, but now it's her dad watching her play instead. Since then she has grown up, played a lot more games, done some cool stuff, and has been putting her analysis skills and hopeless romantic heart to good use on the Two Girls One Ship podcast.


Howard Scott Warshaw

Howard Scott Warshaw

Howard Scott Warshaw is a pioneer of the industry. After creating two megahits for Atari, he was the sole designer and programmer of one of the greatest flops in video gaming. Noted author, psychotherapist and speaker, he shares all the behind the scenes machinations and shenanigans which led to turning one of the most coveted licenses in video game history into a dynasty crushing disaster and ultimately the sub-flooring of the New Mexico desert. He also discusses his experience carrying the moniker "maker of the worst game ever" for three decades. Warshaw’s latest book: “Once Upon Atari: How I made history by killing an industry” is an iconic work about life in the industry and beyond. It's a tale of hubris, triumph, blind ambition and in the end... resiliency. Visit www.OnceUponAtari.com for media, merch and more.


Reggie Williams

Reggie Williams

"Radical" Reggie Williams is an avid collector of various game types. He is especially a big fan of import gaming. Reggie is also a veteran of the U.S. Army where he served his country. Reggie continues to delight everyone that follows him with his knowledge of retro and current gaming while keeping it real and down to earth. He's very proud of his great collection of games that he's acquired throughout the years and is happy to share his passion of video games with the world. You can check out his new YouTube channel here.


Jay Wilson

Jay Wilson

Jay Wilson is a twenty-five year veteran in the video game industry working primarily as a game designer. His shipped titles include multi-million selling games like Diablo III (Game Director), Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War and World of Warcraft: Legion (Lead Designer), and Company of Heroes (Design Director). In addition, he has design and writing credits on over a half dozen other games including Impossible Creatures, Blood, Blood 2, and Homeworld 2. In 2020 he self-published his first novel: Deadman Detective. He is currently the Design Director and Co-founder of Gas Giant Games, and works as a game design consultant in his spare time. Jay lives in Portland, Oregon with his wife and daughter.


Albert Yarusso

Albert Yarusso

Albert Yarusso owns and runs AtariAge.com, one of the busiest destinations for classic gaming on the web. AtariAge is a central hub for new homebrew development on a variety of classic gaming consoles and computers and has been publishing new games in physical form for the Atari 2600, 5200, 7800, and other systems for classic gaming enthusiasts since 2001.

Albert got his start in computing on an Atari 800XL at a young age, where he taught himself BASIC and 6502 Assembly, releasing his first commercial product ("Robowars II") at the age of 14. He would later go on to work as a professional game developer for Looking Glass Technologies and Ion Storm, and was a key member of the team that released the award-winning Deus Ex game for the PC and later Playstation 2.