I’m Derek Dutilly, Lead Producer on Microsoft Casual Games. I oversee the day to day scheduling and operations of our team. Each of the Producers reports to me, and I work as a Producer on some titles and special projects.
I truly enjoy making games, especially Producing, and know it’s what I was meant to do, it’s just sort of ‘how my brain works’. I can easily break down games into their component parts and figure out dependencies (one of the key job responsibilities of the producer).
I have leveraged my Masters of Fine Arts in Theatre Production to a role as a Producer throughout my career. Both involve combining the creative and technical together, organizing and delivering on a common end goal, whether it be an opening-night, or a ship-date. And both have the same end-goal, of entertaining a customer and giving them the value they expect and desire, just each in a different form.
I started my life in games at a small developer in Southern California, called WayForward Technologies. WayForward was an awesome place to work, with great people and is still making some of the best action-platformer games around. Since WayForward I have worked at Disney and Activision, both in publishing, and on some really fun titles, like launching DJ Hero to the world. Now, at Microsoft I get to lead the awesome team working on the Microsoft Casual Suite. The Microsoft Casual Suite is an incredible place to work. With a whole suite of titles, we’re always working on a bunch of different things, which helps keep things interesting and new. My favorite game in the Casual Suite is definitely Microsoft Sudoku. I try to play as many of the “irregular” and “symbol” daily challenges that I can.
Nowadays, when I’m not working you can find me at home with my wife and 3 boys, either playing Legos, video games, or coaching baseball. One of my favorite accomplishments is the Star Wars AT-AT bed I built for my boys.
Early mornings you can find me running up mountain trails. Yes, my favorite is uphill mountain running, some call me a glutton for punishment, I just love the challenge (which I suppose says a lot about my personality).