The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) has today announced the two winners of the 2012 BAFTA Young Game Designers competition at the star-studded British Academy Children’s Awards.
Charlie Hutton-Pattemore from Taunton in Somerset and Christopher Purdy from Horsham in West Sussex are this year’s winners.
The BAFTA Young Game Designers initiative, which is in its third year, aims to inspire the game designers and game-makers of the future, by giving young people aged 11-16 the chance to design and create their own video game and develop it with industry professionals.
For the first time this year the competition had two strands: the original Game Concept Award is for an idea for a new game, including a description of the characters, the world of the game, and how it will be played. The inaugural Game-making Award presented by Sony Computer Entertainment Europe was aimed at games made using game-making software or programming languages. Young people could enter both categories as individuals or as a team.
Charlie and Christopher will now work on their games with experts from the University of Abertay Dundee, and will visit SCE London Studio, makers of the BAFTA Award-winning EyeToy® and SingStar® franchises.
The winners’ entries were chosen from hundreds from across the UK by a jury of games industry professionals, educationalists and celebrity gamers. Actress Anna Shaffer (Harry Potter, Hollyoaks) took part in the Game Concept Award jury and presented the award in that category. Actor/presenter Tyger Drew-Honey (Outnumbered, Friday Download) was on the Game-making Award jury and presented the award alongside Maria Stukoff, Head of Academic Development at Sony Computer Entertainment Europe.
Charlie Hutton-Pattemore’s game Vacuum Panic (aka Suck It Up) requires players to vacuum a series of rooms before their mum gets home, whilst avoiding various hazards that trigger time-wasting mini games. The jury, chaired by Harvey Elliott, Managing Director & COO at Marmalade, and Chair of BAFTA’s Children’s and Games Committees, described the game as “a stylish design to make the mundane into a fun, rewarding experience”.
Christopher Purdy’s game Smiley Dodgems requires players to keep a “smiley” character alive as long as possible against an onslaught of enemy shapes. The jury, which was chaired by Jonathan Smith, Head of Production at TT Games, described the game as having “clean visuals and compelling gameplay with impressive finesse”.
Charlie Hutton-Pattemore said on receiving the BAFTA Young Game Designers Game Concept Award:
“It was really good fun for me to work on this game idea and it’s a dream come true to win. I’m really pleased that I entered!”
Christopher Purdy said on receiving the BAFTA Young Game Designers Game-making Award:
“I’m very excited to be given the opportunity to develop my game further and I can’t wait to visit a real games studio. I’d recommend this competition to anyone as it has been great fun putting my entry together. Winning is a bonus!”
Celebrity ambassador Anna Shaffer said about the Game Concept Award:
“I was amazed by the quality of entries this year, but Vacuum Panic really stood out and I think Charlie will go far. I wish I’d had the opportunity to enter something like this when I was younger!”
Celebrity ambassador Tyger Drew-Honey said about the Game-making Award:
“I was really impressed by the level of detail that went into Christopher’s game Smiley Dodgems, and I had to tear myself away to try out the other entries! It was great to be able to finally meet him and the other nominees at the Children’s Awards.”
The BAFTA Young Game Designers initiative seeks to equip young people with the knowledge, skills and confidence to become the next generation of successful game designers. It aims to demystify the creative process of games development and highlight how key qualifications in areas such as maths, physics and computer science are essential for those wishing to enter the industry. BAFTA has partnered with Abertay University and Sony Computer Entertainment Europe (SCEE) on the initiative.
Further details about the competition, as well as teaching resources and details of workshops that took place around the country, can be found at www.bafta.org/ygd .
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The British Academy of Film and Television Arts is an independent charity that supports, develops and promotes the art forms of the moving image by identifying and rewarding excellence, inspiring practitioners and benefiting the public. In addition to its Awards ceremonies, BAFTA has a year-round Learning & Events programme that offers unique access to some of the world’s most inspiring talent through workshops, masterclasses, lectures and mentoring schemes, connecting with audiences of all ages and backgrounds across the UK, Los Angeles and New York. BAFTA relies on income from membership subscriptions, individual donations, trusts, foundations and corporate partnerships to support its ongoing outreach work. For further information, visit www.bafta.org .
Abertay University launched the world’s first computer games technology degree in 1997, and runs both the UK Centre of Excellence for Computer Games Education and the international game design contest Dare to be Digital. Our unique partnership with BAFTA makes Dare the exclusive pathway to the BAFTA Ones to Watch Award, a major recognition of up-and-coming games talent.
Through the Abertay University Prototype Fund start-up and small developers across the UK have access to funding to create new prototypes and attract additional investment, another practical way Abertay supports the growth of a sustainable, successful games industry.
Abertay has the highest number of Skillset accreditations for computer games courses (five out of 12 across the UK) as well as holding full Skillset Media Academy status, recognition of the important industry skills that are developed on our courses. For more information please visit www.abertay.ac.uk/studying/schools/amg/
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