Stephanie Bendixsen is an Australian video game critic and television presenter – writing and presenting for ABCTV’s Good Game and its companion show for younger gamers, Good Game: Spawn Point. She is known by her gamer tag ‘Hex’.
Bendixsen began her career in 2009 when she joined Good Game as its first full-time female presenter, after submitting her own written game reviews and screen testing for the role. It was, truly, a dream come true – as she’d been a long-time fan of the show and had longed to take her place in the reviewer’s chair.
Stephanie has since become a well-known presence in the gaming industry, championing the positive representation of women in video games, as well as their place within the industry itself. Good Game has grown larger and more influential every year – expanding its presence within the gaming community to public events and live stage shows. She also regularly attends the Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles, providing Australian broadcast coverage of the event.
A public profile has provided Bendixsen with a platform through which she can act as a strong and confident voice for women in the gaming community. She has spoken on a number of panels at various gaming events, discussing everything from opportunities for women in the industry – to the necessity of having strong, compelling female characters in games. She has also participated in writers’ festivals across the country with video game story writers and developers to discuss the process of building narrative in games.
This year, Stephanie is also presenting the program How To Be A Fan With Hex for ABC iView and ABCTV. This seven-episode series explores different cultures of fandom from sport to ‘cosplay’, placing her in some unusual situations. The aim of this program is to gain insight and understanding into what makes someone a fanatic of their chosen sub-culture or hobby, and how it enriches their life – meeting a whole host of colourful characters along the way.
2016 also marks the release of Stephanie’s first book for readers aged 8+ with Scholastic Australia, which she wrote with her on-screen co-host, Steven O’Donnell. It follows the story of two young gamers, Ripley and Mei Lin – who are avid gamers that find themselves inside a video game, and must work together to battle their way out. This was another really exciting venture for Stephanie as it helps shed a positive light on the world of gaming, while promoting themes of co-operation and teamwork to young people.
Bendixsen is an ambassador for ACMI’s Screen It competition – designed to ‘educate, encourage and foster the next generation of moving image makers’. Stephanie will be on the judging panel and hosting the Screen It awards again this year, alongside her co-host, Steven ‘Bajo’ O’Donnell. This is an event which she is extremely proud to be involved in.
In addition to her passionate love of gaming, Stephanie has always been heavily immersed in all aspects of geek culture. She enjoys science fiction, fantasy, collecting swords and figurines and occasionally slinging arrows at her local archery club. She is also a dedicated servant to her two female overlords, Gandalf and Merlin.
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