Paulina Bozek is one of the key originators of the recent casual gaming boom, in her role as Game Director of Sony’s hugely popular karaoke game SingStar (2004), which introduced gaming to new audiences around the world. It’s a fitting legacy for a woman who, by her own admission, grew up around her brother’s game console but never considered videogames to be a hobby.
Bozek joined game publisher Ubisoft straight out of university, working briefly as a PR Assistant before moving into development. After a year, she left Ubisoft and moved to London to study for a master’s degree in Media and Communications. On graduation, she secured a job at Sony Computer Entertainment Europe in their prototype department. Working alongside Lead Programmer Richard Bates, Bozek began to shape the karaoke technology into a game that was soon given the title SingStar. On release, its development team consisted of just 13 people – a number that swelled to over 50 as the series grew into a global franchise. In 2004, Paulina won the BAFTA for Best New Interactive Talent, and in 2005 SingStar was awarded a BAFTA for Originality.
After six years with Sony building the SingStar brand, Bozek left for Atari to help reinvigorate one of the industry’s oldest companies. After working alongside industry heavyweights such as Phil Harrison, David Gardner and Will Treves, Bozek left Atari in 2010 to set up her own games company, inensu, creating a range of social games and apps.