Ben Fickes

Gameplay Programmer

My Work

About Me

Professional Projects

Software I've created as part of a professional team

Personal Projects

Software I've created for fun or open-ended class projects

Darkfire Mod

For Slay the Spire
Team: Yours Truly
  • Developed a new character (The Darkfire) with a new deck and mecahnics (ex: add random "flames" to hand)
  • Progress is slow due to school and job search, but I'll be adding more cards (and relics) when I can
  • I did the card art, though you can see I'm not an artist
  • Currently: 1 new character with 13 new cards
  • Beginning something is the hardest part - I spent a lot of time getting the first card working, then things got much easier
  • How to follow wikis and documentation closely (since there aren't people to ask questions)
  • It's incredibly fun to make something I can show to people and watch them play
  • Java. I also used a Java decompiler (to reference game code) for the first time
  • ModTheSpire and BaseMod, popular modding tools
  • Git


2D stealth game
Team: 2 devs, 2 artists, 1 producer, 1 designer
  • Behavior chunks for customizable enemy patrols - designers can set movement locations, rotations, and the speeds of each action
  • Dialog and checkpoint systems
  • Reset and pause functionality
  • Lighting to visually indicate when a player is in enemy's sights
  • Animation state transitions (including directional states) and animation events
  • How to effectively utilize Unity's animator and manage animation states
  • I love coding to enable others' work (specifically, making animations work and giving designers tools)
  • Knowing other dev's code means we can help each other debug
  • Usually everyone works great together, but, if someone doesn't, it's worth a conversation to try to fix things
  • Unity (C# scripts)
  • JIRA and Trello
  • Git

Diet Clash

Android App to manage eating habits
Team: 3 Devs
  • Database backend for tracking goals and servings, as well as frontend for displaying stored & entered info
  • Locator for nearby grocery stores (using Google Places API)
  • Tracking goal progress, managing & updating multiple goals of varying durations
  • Development and testing on mobile
  • How to publish apps to Google Play
  • Creating and managing Google API Keys
  • Java
  • SQLite
  • Google Places API
  • Android Studio
  • Git

Visual Novel Library

Team: 4 Devs
  • Created "scenes" and dialog options that can load other scenes from JSON input
  • User can specify background music for each scene - will continue or restart across scenes appropriately
  • Can be imported and integrated to other projects
  • I did the art for this, but it works with other (perhaps better) art
  • Effective resource management - how to keep track of memory even when there's a lot of resources
  • C++ (with SDL2)
  • Git


Team: 3 Devs
  • A digital representation of the game Tsuro
  • Internal data representation of tiles
  • Move legality enforcement
  • Enemy AI
  • Client and server capabilities for distributed players
  • Tests
  • Code is private because this was a school project, but please reach out with any questions
  • Importance of future-proofing code; clean code makes future additions easier
  • How to deal with changing specifications
  • Python3
  • Git

About Me

I graduated from Northeastern University in 2020 with a degree in Computer Science & Game Development. I now work at Wonderstorm as a Gameplay Engineer - you can see more about my past and present work here. When I'm not programming, I enjoy Dungeons & Dragons (as a player and a DM - you can check out some of my homebrew campaigns here), running, and gaming with friends.

If you make games and are looking for a programmer, send me an email or give me a call. Want more info to help make your decision? Check out my Github, my resume, or email me with any questions.


Oakland, CA


+1 (302) 750-3364