Elya Topol, Product Manager at Playstudios-Israel.

Women in Gaming
“Gender equality contributes to a peaceful, equal workplace environment, helps companies succeed”

Calcalist spoke with Israeli women changing the future of gaming, with Part 4 featuring Elya Topol, Product Manager at Playstudios-Israel, who discusses how the gaming industry is helping slash widely-accepted stigmas

Over the years, the gaming industry has mainly appealed to men. Aside from a few games, like “Sims,” most games starred strong male characters who fought battles, and were mainly marketed to men. As the industry developed, it began to target the female population as well. According to research conducted by Newzoo, today nearly 46% of all gamers are women.
Calcalist spoke with some of the leading women who are paving the way in the Israeli gaming industry, and changing its future, with Part 4 featuring Elya Topol of Playstudios-Israel. You can read Parts 1-3 here.
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אליה טופול, מנהלת מוצר ב-PlayStudios
אליה טופול, מנהלת מוצר ב-PlayStudios
Elya Topol, Product Manager at Playstudios-Israel.
Elya Topol, Product Manager at Playstudios-Israel
“In college, I earned a degree in brain science from Tel Aviv University. Currently, I serve as a product manager for Playstudios, and it’s my first job since graduating college. I searched for a position that combined creativity, technology, and innovation and demanded looking outside the box, embracing the business aspect, and working with and managing a team.
“Being a product manager gives me the chance to take part in developing some of the games that provide a large portion of the population with an enjoyable experience. I’m involved in the entire creative process from start to finish - from characterization and gaming logic through the creative stages that include working closely with a diverse professional team right up until the actual launch, and then measuring and optimizing the game’s performance.”
Do you think that women in the gaming industry encounter different challenges compared to women in other high tech sectors in Israel? If so, how can society change that?
“From my own personal experience, the challenges that women face aren’t necessarily restricted to gender. I don’t have experience working for other gaming companies or high tech sectors, but at Playstudios there’s a clear majority of women in management and other key positions. The challenges I face have little to do with gender. I think that gender equality contributes to a peaceful, equal workplace environment, and helps the company succeed. I hope that over the coming years gender-related questions will disappear, and that in turn there will be a renewed focus on professionalism.”
Do you think there’s a difference between a man’s and woman’s approach when it comes to game design?
“To develop a successful game you need that combination of several different viewpoints and an abundance of ideas. Developing a game is a joint creation and includes the work of a wide variety of professionals from different areas regardless of gender such as programmers, designers, illustrators, animators, 3D artists, mathematicians, product managers, data and business people, and more. The combination of all these ingredients creates a video game.
“We design a game out of a sense of empathy with other players and their user experiences, which we hope will be enjoyable and fun. The games that we’re working on don’t attempt to appeal to only a certain gender but to a wider variety of players - women and men, the old and the young alike. Despite the stigma of the young boy gamer-stereotype, 50% of all gamers are women.”