Showcase at Abertay University featured beneficiaries of BAFTA initiatives supporting new talent in games
London, 23 October: Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have met young beneficiaries of BAFTA’s support for new talent in the games industry during a visit to Dundee today. The event, at Abertay University, included winners of a UK-wide game design competition, as well as current and former games students who are supported by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA). HRH The Duke of Cambridge is President of BAFTA.
The highlight of the visit was a meeting with Camylle Tuliao (14), Jack Reynolds (16), Louis Jackson (12) and Jack Mills (17), who spent the day at Abertay University as part of their prize for winning their respective categories in the BAFTA Young Game Designers (YGD) competition. BAFTA YGD, in association with Nominet Trust, aims to encourage young people to consider a career in games creation, and helps them access the inspirational creative minds behind their favourite games. The young designers are developing their games further with professional games studios in Dundee and Abertay students.
Their Royal Highnesses also met other talented individuals who have benefited from BAFTA initiatives:
- BAFTA-nominated game designer Dan Pearce was one of the first winners of a BAFTA YGD award in 2010, at the age of 16. Dan has since been honoured as a BAFTA Breakthrough Brit in partnership with Burberry in 2013, and was nominated for a BAFTA in 2014 with his debut commercial game Castles in the Sky.
- Game designer Sophia George, a former student at Abertay University, won the BAFTA Ones To Watch Award in association with Dare to be Digital in 2012. Sophia helped to develop the game of a BAFTA YGD winner in the same year, and was honoured as a BAFTA Breakthrough Brit in partnership with Burberry in 2013.
- BAFTA Scholarship recipients Kyle Horwood and Benjamin Luff are both studying for a postgraduate degree in games development at Abertay University.
Amanda Berry OBE, Chief Executive of BAFTA, who accompanied The Duke and Duchess at the event, said: “Today’s visit by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge has been a fantastic boost for these young people, who represent the future of the UK games industry. BAFTA has a long history of celebrating games, which stretches back over a decade. We’re proud to be supporting new talent, from across the UK, to enter this sector, and are grateful for the support of The Duke, our President, in this endeavour.”
For further information, please contact:
Hollie Rendall at Kindred Agency
Tel: 020 7010 0829
Email: [email protected]
For images, logos and more, visit www.bafta.org/press
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 programme of learning events and initiatives – featuring workshops, masterclasses, scholarships, lectures and mentoring schemes – in the UK, USA and Asia; it offers unique access to the world’s most inspiring talent and connects with a global audience of all ages and backgrounds. BAFTA relies on income from membership subscriptions, individual donations, trusts, foundations and corporate partnerships to support its ongoing outreach work. To access the best creative minds in film, television and games production, visit www.bafta.org/guru. For more, visit www.bafta.org.
About BAFTA YGD
The BAFTA Young Game Designers (YGD) competition presents awards in two main categories: The Game Concept Award, for entrants who submit a written idea for a new game; the Game Making Award, for entrants who submit a game they have made using computer software. It is part a year-round programme of activity which gives young people and educators unique insights into the games industry and access to the creative minds behind some of their favourite games. Support includes: a dedicated website (www.bafta.org/ygd); a web series, that takes a light-hearted look behind the scenes of the games industry; a range of teaching resources; an online ‘feedback hub’ where young people can submit ideas or questions to a games expert; and live workshops around the country. In 2014, Dan Pearce, a BAFTA YGD award winner in 2010, was nominated for a BAFTA at the British Academy Games Awards.
Nominet Trust – the UK’s only dedicated tech for good funder – is headline partner of the initiative, working with BAFTA to deliver the BAFTA YGD initiative and to develop additional schools-focussed activity addressing the under-representation of women in the games workforce. Other supporting partners of BAFTA YGD include: Bethesda Softworks, Criterion Games (an EA Studio), Google, Jagex, King, Pinewood Studios Group, SEGA, Sony Computer Entertainment Europe, Unity, and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. Abertay University supports the development of the games of the winners of the BAFTA YGD competition. For further details about the initiative, visit www.bafta.org/ygd.
About Abertay University
Abertay University became in 1997 the first in the world to teach degrees in computer games and related technologies, and now offers a broad portfolio of undergraduate and postgraduate courses covering games and application development, computer arts and sound production. In 2015, Abertay was ranked in the world’s 25 best universities to study game design, the only institution outside North America to feature in the annual Princeton Review list. Abertay also organises the annual Dare to be Digital contest, the world’s premier competition for student game designers.
BAFTA YGD Game Concept and Game Making Award winners in 2015:
Game Concept Award (ages 10-14) - Dreams
Camylle Tuliao (14)
Dreams is a first person role playing adventure game set in four different locations, Imaginati, Reve, Nightmare and Limbo. Playing as Christelle/Christopher the way to win is different in every world and you have the choice of three fighting styles, Imagi (magic), Logio (science) and Void (dream-manipulating).
The jury described the game as “an evocative concept that intertwined unique themes to create a psychological thriller.”
Game Concept Award (ages 15-18) - Ouroboros
Jack Reynolds (16)
Ouroboros is a puzzle-platformer in which you have to "die" and respawn to progress. Every time you die your previous actions still have an effect and every time you connect to a terminal you discover a little more about #0132's purpose, why he was created and about the world outside the factory's walls.
The jury said that this game was “cleverly designed to consistently reinforce its central theme, and simple yet addictive gameplay.”
Game Making Award (ages 10-14) - Block
Louis Jackson (12)
Hove, East Sussex (entered through Blatchington Mill School)
You are Block, and your world changes instantly. Colour fades away and land breaks apart to make platforms. In each level, you can only jump a certain amount of times, but there is no counter for it, because it's your duty to study the level and how many jumps you have.
The jury described the game as “a refreshingly original and surprisingly high quality concept; not only for this age category but for any up-and-coming game developer.”
Game Making Award (ages 15-18) - Utopia of Rhythm
Jack Mills (17)
Liverpool (entered through The Studio school)
Utopia of Rhythm is a platformer game that incorporates elements from the rhythm game genre. The obstacles within the game’s level change over time, to the beat and tempo of the background music. A colour-coded rhythm clock is used as part of the user interface to indicate the level’s transformations over time, as the obstacles are similarly colour-coded.
The jury felt that this game “meets the standards of professional prototypes. A wide variety of mechanics and puzzles were rolled out with a well-balanced difficulty curve of the levels.”