SFGE is pleased to bring the gaming community together and host a bevy of industry leaders, celebrity guests, content creators, musicians, performers, and more! Our list of special guests attending our 2023 list is still growing, so please be patient as we add new and exciting guests to the website. If you’d like an idea of the types of guests you can expect, check out our special guests from our 2022 event. Here’s a list of current confirmed guests:
She’s been falling into boiling lava and dodging shells for the last decade. Samantha Kelly is a voice actor and radio personality who has played Princess Peach and Toad since 2007. She’s been playing
characters in video games since 2003, including “Sunny Day” the sports announcer in the Backyard Sports series for kids.
Born in Kenya, she’s lived all over the world, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam and Germany. She loves doing games that cross borders and taking down bad guys without messing up her hair.
Kenny is best known as the voice of Bowser in the Nintendo Super Mario Bros franchise with over 35 title credits. He has been providing the voice and personality of Bowser since Super Mario Strikers in 2005. Other voice work includes Zingo, a story telling dragon for a children’s program, narration and audiobooks. While he currently lives in Dallas working in voice-over, Kenny was also a prolific theater actor performing in musicals, dramas and comedies, in the Puget Sound area.
Laura Faye Smith
Laura Faye Smith is an LA-based voice actor, best known for voicing Princess Rosalina for Nintendo’s Super Mario Brothers games (starting with Super Mario 3D World in 2013) and Noelle in Genshin Impact. She has also voiced Kana (male) for Nintendo’s English cast of Fire Emblem Fates, Tamara “Meds” Melari in the ongoing sci-fi audio drama The Sojourn, as well as numerous characters for Mad Head Games. She has done an extensive amount of commercials, dubbing, theatre, and audiobooks. She appeared as DeEtta Calvert on NBC’s Grimm, and has also appeared in TNT’s Leverage, Brat TV’s Chicken Girls, and Investigation Discovery’s Betrayed and Stranger Among Us. You can find her on Twitter or Instagram at @laurafayesmith.
Emmy Award winner Phil Moore has hosted several shows, but is most known as the energetic host of Nickelodeon’s Nick Arcade and You’re On. He’s also made guest appearances on Nickelodeon’s Figure It Out and All That and has produced games shows for producer for Twitch, E! Entertainment, and NBC.
Creator of such videogame classics as RAMPAGE, XENOPHOBE and GENERAL CHAOS, Brian F Colin is a vastly experienced Game Designer, Artist, Animator and Development Group Leader with over 90 video game titles to his credit…. including the creation of some of the most-popular, highest-earning & best-selling titles in video game history!
Recently inducted into the International Video Game Hall of Fame, Brian is well-known for sharing first-hand; anecdotal insights into the early days of arcade game development… and more recently, sharing stories straight from the Sets, Locations and Premier of the RAMPAGE Movie, starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.
Some of his better-known games include:
RAMPAGE Dedicated Arcade Game
XENOPHOBE Dedicated Arcade Game
ARCH RIVALS Dedicated Arcade Game
PIGSKIN 621 AD Dedicated Arcade Game
RAMPAGE WORLD TOUR Dedicated Arcade Game
STAR TREK VOYAGER Dedicated Arcade Game
GENERAL CHAOS Home Console Game
KOMATSU CHALLENGE Multiplayer Tradeshow Event
ARCTIC STUD POKER RUN Multiplayer Casino eSports Game
Brian’s passion for Game Design is evident in his enthusiastic and engaging approach to audiences of all ages and sizes; giving him a recurring role as a Keynote Speaker at dozens of Industry Events, Fan Conventions, Universities and Community Organizations throughout the country.
COMPANY FACEBOOK PAGE: http://www.facebook.com/GameRefuge/
PERSONAL GAME HISTORY http://www.gamerefuge.com/alongtheway.html
GAME REFUGE ARCADE HISTORY STORE https://game-refuge-inc.square.site/
Bob Carter is an internationally recognized Voice Actor, Audio Director, and Voice Coach known for voicing characters in the Street Fighter series, Mortal Kombat 9, Dragonball Z, Smite, Lifeless Planet, and many other popular characters in a wide range of video games! Carter also has voiced many anime projects such as Fairy Tail, My Hero Academia, Dragonball Z, Full Metal Alchemist, Samurai 7, Blassreiter, and many other cartoons, anime series, audio books, and audio dramas. He also owns the Neighborhood Studio, a Teaching & Production Studio in Atlanta where he helps Aspiring Creatives become Working Creatives.
Bob is mostly known for his Video Games and Animation projects but is also a successful Voice Talent, Director, & Coach who teaches people how to actually become working Voice Talents.
He is also a Celebrity D&D Gamer with decades of experience playing in & Running various D&D, Pathfinder, Heroes Unlimited, and Star Wars Campaigns if people or other Creatives want to get together for fun Celebrity Panels as well.
Will, and his wife Sara, are board gamers to the core! They’ve been hosting weekly game nights out of their home since their teenagers were rugrats—hence the name “Tantrum House”—and they’ve managed to pull in a number of good friends along the way! TantrumHouse.com is now a media powerhouse of board gaming content run by 4 couples (all with very different gaming tastes). From weekly live Playthrus and Podcasts to their very own gaming convention in NC, TantrumCon, they are a constant source of high-quality, family-friendly, hobby-focused fun.
Sara Meadows has been video/board gaming since she was knee-high to a grasshopper (popular Nebraskan slang for “the year Centipede came out”). Her love for retro video gaming is only surpassed by her love of board gaming (…and chocolate, and her kids, and…). Sara “let” Will start Tantrum House in 2014 after they had been hosting regular Game Nights in their home every Monday night since they first got married in 2005. Together, by teaming up with some good friends, they have built a popular board game channel where they produce daily Kickstarter preview videos, Playthrus, and Top10 lists. Sarah’s favorite board game is Endeavor: Age of Sail, and we are also big fans. Tantrum House is a board game media group intent on pursuing ever improving video, audio, and visual quality standards in the passionate promotion of our hobby because we believe that games have incredible power to connect people and bring them joy.
Retro Ralph is a popular YouTuber and arcade enthusiast who is on a mission to keep the culture of arcade gaming alive. Growing up in the 80s and 90s, Ralph fell in love with the bright lights, sounds, and addictive gameplay of classic arcade games. However, as he got older, he noticed that arcades were closing down and the machines were being scrapped or sold off. Determined to preserve and share his love of arcade gaming, Retro Ralph began restoring and collecting classic arcade machines. He would document his restoration projects and share them with his followers on YouTube, providing tips and advice on how to maintain and repair these iconic machines.
Through his efforts, Ralph has become a leading voice in the arcade community, advocating for the preservation and promotion of arcade culture for future generations to enjoy. Whether it’s through restoring classic machines, hosting gaming events, or simply spreading the word about the joys of arcade gaming, Ralph’s dedication to his mission has made him a true steward of this beloved aspect of gaming history.
Gerry, a computer engineer from Austin, TX, shook up the pinball industry in 2009 with the release of his P-ROC board. This circuit board helped hundreds of pinball enthusiasts and new pinball manufacturers realize their dreams of creating new games. Gerry later founded Multimorphic to manufacture the innovative P3 Pinball Platform. With its state of the art features combined with the ability to swap physical playfield layouts in just seconds, the P3 represents a large leap forward…and its story is just beginning.
Kevin Delp has been playing board games since he can remember – Parcheesi with Dad, Skip Bo with Grandmom and he even met his wife Melissa while playing a card game. Kevin Delp co-designed the fan expansion for T.I.M.E Stories, Submerged Atlantis with his wife Melissa and both are part of Tantrum House. Tantrum House is a board game media group intent on pursuing ever improving video, audio, and visual quality standards in the passionate promotion of our hobby because we believe that games have incredible power to connect people and bring them joy.
Melissa Delp grew up playing games like Clue, Mastermind, Pay Day, and Rook and her fondness for board games never ended. Her favorite games involve solving mysteries and puzzling out the best strategy. She also has a secret passion for Pinball. So watch out for her around those machines during the Expo! Melissa co-designed the fan expansion for T.I.M.E Stories, Submerged Atlantis with her husband Kevin and both are part of Tantrum House. Tantrum House is a board game media group intent on pursuing ever improving video, audio, and visual quality standards in the passionate promotion of our hobby because we believe that games have incredible power to connect people and bring them joy.
George Sumpter is a lifetime lover of all things geek. Born in 1971 (best year ever) most of George’s childhood was spent playing baseball or Atari 2600 with a smattering of school and social life in between. A huge pop culture trivia nerd, George is always ready with an insightful quip or story to entertain.
Gamer since 1985 and collector since 1991, Emceemur is a preservationist of vintage games and a YouTube content creator on the rise. Mur has acquired some of the rarest pieces in existence and has extensive knowledge on the subjects of both gaming and its history as well as the state of the market and its current trends. The Emceemur Show features showcasing of vintage to modern gaming items scavenged in the wild as well as day one reviews of new releases on all platforms.
Marty Connell is 1/2 of the amazing podcast Rolling Dice & Taking Names. He and co-host Tony McRee produce Rolling Dice & Taking Names, dedicated to exploring the board gaming hobby where they review the latest games, interview designers and discuss popular topics. Have a listen and they’ll show y’all a good time.
Jamie is a retired Lieutenant Colonel of the US Air Force, and a veteran of the Balkans, Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts. He is currently a small business owner, partner and consultant, as well as the Director of Operations with FEMA’s Disaster Recovery Blue Roof Program.
His pinball hobby spans two decades as an operator and collector. He owns and manages Pinball Mania LLC in Pensacola Florida, specializing in playfield restoration as well as general pinball maintenance and refurbishment. He is the designer and developer of the custom pinball machine – Mindcrime – his first, but not last homebrew pinball machine!
Robert Bevan took his first steps in comedy with The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and his first steps in fantasy with Dungeons & Dragons. Over the years, these two loves mingled, festered, and congealed into the ever expanding Caverns & Creatures series of comedy/fantasy novels and short stories.
Robert is a writer, blogger, and a player on the Authors & Dragons podcast. He lives in Atlanta, Georgia, with his wife and his two kids.
After spending 10 years creating video and board games for education and entertainment, Zane has been an instructor with Unity for over 2 years. He is passionate about the intersection of games and learning, and enjoys teaching people the psychology, economics, and process of creating games and real-time software. Zane has mentored and taught people that either worked at or went on to work at game development studios, both big and small, locally and internationally. After spending the pandemic as the only Unity Instructor in Cambodia, he has returned home to Atlanta to be Unity’s Senior Technical Trainer for the Americas.
Brandon Hurles is a content creator, YouTuber, writer, podcaster, and lover of pop culture. You can see him over on Game Junction creating various content.
Game Junction is a network and platform for the community, offering something for everyone who loves gaming and pop culture. Their mission is offer every form of content, from written to long form to even podcasts. Stay tuned as the continue to grow and expand their efforts.
Chris has been playing video games since the days of the Apple 2e. Having grown up in the height of the 8 bit era, he is an avid fighting game player, a lover of all things retro, and a GBA collector. He is an expert in the gaming industry and gaming history with over a decade of experience as a designer, producer, and product manager for companies such as Riot Games, Adult Swim, and Zynga. He loves talking about games and pop culture and has spoken on panels at Digital Hollywood, Dragon Con, and San Diego Comic Con.
Ian O’Donnell is a Voice Actor based in Atlanta, Georgia. Ian has done a variety of voiceover, from commercial to audiobook to telephony, but his heart is in VO that involves characters & accents!
Ian grew up doing lots of voices for fun & entertainment. Rolling that inclination and experience into the voiceover profession was a pivotal turning point. Recent industry recognition includes receiving the ‘Best Voice Acting’ award in the VO / Animation battle, hosted by ASIFA, the International Animated Film Association. He was also a Top 3 finalist in the 2022 SIEGE Game Design competition, providing character voice as well as casting voices and designing & creating the game itself.
Ian was honored to represent the Voiceover industry as a Guest Speaker for the International Creativity Conference in 2021 and 2022. Speaking & presentation engagements also include VOAtlanta, OneVoice USA, DragonCon, SIEGE, GGDA (Georgia Game Developers Assn), CONjuration, and more.
Mr. O’Donnell has voiced characters for video games, as well as full-length animation and audio drama, including portraying characters in the latest game in the Jurassic World franchise. He has also done voice matching for feature film. In addition to character voices, Ian is known for versatility and believability with a wide range of regional and language-based accents and dialects.
Ian has a theater background, acting & performing in stage productions like: Pirates of Penzance, Oklahoma, Hello Dolly, Cabaret, and more. He is also a Game Show host, as well as a musician & singer, with decades of live performance and studio recording experience.
Getting into pinball within the last few years, Ernie has dove head first into the homebrew pinball scene. Creating his first game, League of Legends, which has had many iterations since its conception April of 2022. He also has plans for a homebrew pinball based on the Goonies and one based on Legends of Vox Machina. He has introduced DIY Homebrew Kits to Pinside, to help usher in new people to the homebrew scene. He believes the future of pinball rests in the hands of the players at homes to push the boundaries of what is possible.
Jonathan started playing games with the NES and 80s era arcade games. A renaissance gamer, Jonathan has played many games across varied genres on consoles as well on the PC. He helped cofound TheKBLife YouTube channel which has to date raised over $2,000 for CHOC (Children’s Hospital of Orange County) via Extra Life. Recently, he’s gotten into pinball and co-founded Slamdown Pinball which has run over 50 events in Southern California. He is currently on a quest to climb the World Pinball Player Rankings.
Guardians of the Jukebox
Aptly described as a “visual and sonic highlight reel of the most influential decade in music history,” the Guardians of the Jukebox is a five-star, nostalgia, ’80s juggernaut! Their shows are packed with high energy and smash hits, accompanied by a video backdrop of everything ’80s featuring music videos, movie clips, and iconic moments
Atlanta Wrestling Entertainment
Founded in 2014, Atlanta Wrestling Entertainment has grown into the wildest night in Atlanta nightlife. Featuring monthly events, an online community, and philanthropic projects, AWE is the greatest entertainment community in the South.
Atlanta Wrestling Entertainment matches will be both Friday and Saturday (8/20 & 8/21)
Producing Atlanta’s best comedy shows at alternative venues throughout the city since 2012, 1UP Comedy is happy to bring the laughs to the Southern-Fried Gaming Expo with 2 1-hour stand-up sets featuring some of the city’s best comedians.
This year, Friday night will feature a roast of Mario with local comics portraying video game characters from the popular franchise. Saturday night will be a traditional 1-hour stand up set from some of the region’s best comedians! Comedian lineups will be announced much closer to the event. Stay tuned!
This event is intended for mature audiences. Viewer discretion is advised.