Honoring the Important Women in Gaming History

Mega Cat Studios
4 min readMar 29, 2024

As we’re moving to wrap up Women’s History Month, let’s take one last time to appreciate everything they’ve done for gaming. These brave, talented young women have had an important hand in shaping the very hobby we all enjoy, and without them, the games we love would never be the same.

Mabel Addis

Working with IBM and the Board of Education, Mabel Addis had a lifetime opportunity. Using her skills as a teacher, she created The Sumerian Game, a resource management game where players played as a Sumerian ruler out to manage their kingdom.

Playing The Sumerian Game | Courtesy of acriticalhit.com

While the game was rough, Mabel Addis’ expertise brought its concept to life. It was an interesting little game that both discussed ancient history and celebrated its charm in a way that could be understood by adults and children alike. The Sumerian Game is credited as the first narrative game to be made, and while its concept survives through genres like Visual Novels and RPGs, it’s always nice to look back and celebrate the past as it once was.

Amy Hennig

Amy Hennig’s first experience in the video game industry came in the 1980s. Primarily employed as an artist, she had her hand at making art and developing animations for games on the NES. However, it was really in the 90s when she started something special. Assisting in the development of a game called Blood Omen, Amy Hennig was able to make something special. Blood Omen, in particular, was gritty, dark, and depressing, and its story of a vampire out for revenge was both captivating and unnerving in how it unfolded. It was a different kind of game, but its popularity spawned the Legacy of Kain series and a cult following who adored its dark atmosphere.

Hennig herself would later work on its sequels. Soul Reaver and Soul Reaver 2 were both heavily narrative-driven, which proves her talent for creating narrative-driven games. Her later work only proves that, as her later contributions would involve the Jak and Daxter series and, later on, work in Naughty Dog’s own Uncharted as head writer and director.

Roberta Williams

Who could have guessed that adventure games owe so much to a woman developer? Robert Williams started her gaming career by creating small, black, and white narrative adventures for the Apple II computer. She and her husband had found inspiration in games like the board game Clue, and they’d wanted others to feel that same thrill they felt when they played it. Their initial games saw great success, and together, they started the company that all adventure game lovers know — Sierra Entertainment.

For the unfamiliar, Sierra Entertainment is known mainly for pioneering adventure gaming. Featuring narrative-driven games emphasizing environmental interactions and problem-solving, Sierra’s adventure games are infamous for their enjoyable atmosphere and arbitrary difficulty. That’s part of what made them so fun — solutions could be obvious and grounded in reality or over the top and crazy, and none embody this more than King’s Quest.

King’s Quest | Courtesy of Imgur

King’s Quest followed the adventure of Sir Graham, a knight out to save the kingdom from hardship and woe. To do so, he must find its stolen magical items and rid the land of the evil plaguing it. While King’s Quest was primarily a 2D game, it was remarkably interactive for its time, allowing Graham to move around the screen, interact with objects, and search around the environment for clues and items. The interactivity on display had never been seen before, and its unique visuals and humor helped make King’s Quest an adventure game classic. Its influence can still be seen today, with plenty of modern games following the conventions it started many years ago.

Yoko Shimomura

Unlike the others, Yoko Shimomura is not a developer but a composer. While her hands have written no code, her legacy in video gaming is undeniable. With credits to games like Street Fighter II, Kingdom Hearts, and Final Fantasy, her work for gaming is undeniable. Her music has allowed her to reach the hearts of millions worldwide.

Yoko Shimomura | Courtesy of Reddit

These women have all done their part to make gaming a better hobby. They’ve created games that people will remember for life, and gaming would not be the same without them.

If you aspire to contribute to gaming history like these trailblazing women, explore our career opportunities and visit us on LinkedIn. Join us in celebrating these extraordinary women’s legacy and shaping gaming’s future together.

This article was written by Alexander Cuaycong.

Originally published at https://megacatstudios.com on March 29, 2024.



Mega Cat Studios

Mega Cat Studios is a creative first company based out of Pittsburgh, PA. We love creating games. From retro cartridges to PC & VR, come play with us.