I had been studying Japanese as a hobby at home in the UK, and in order to achieve my goal of real fluency, I knew I had to go to Japan and immerse myself in the language and culture. Additionally I wanted to take a break from my career making video games and have the precious experience of living abroad.
Of course the Japanese skills I acquired at KICL have ultimately equipped me to live in Japan and given me the confidence to handle any situation I might find myself in. Secondly, although very cosmopolitan and progressive, KICL is a Japanese institution run by Japanese people in a Japanese way. Studying there gave me insights into the Japanese way of thinking and working, which helped prepare me for the challenges of working in a Japanese company.
I had already been making games for 8 years in the UK when I joined KICL. At KICL I met an Indonesian classmate and together we created a game in our free time that became the catalyst for the creation of an indie game micro-studio. In 2018 I returned to Japan on a short development contract (this time to Tokyo), and after it was finished decided to join the Japanese game industry in order to realise a childhood goal and remake my favourite game, Final Fantasy VII.
I intend to continue working in the Japanese games industry and see where it takes me.
Make the most of every opportunity. Volunteer for every event. Put up your hand to answer every question, even if you're not confident in your answer. Make friends who you can only communicate with in Japanese. And enjoy this precious experience which will change your life if you let it.