Train2Game News Testing opportunity at Roll 7

roll7Roll7 have an opportunity for some Train2Game student’s to play test one of their up and coming projects. If you are chosen you would be one of the first in the world to lay eyes on it.

On March 19 Roll7 are inviting a few select Train2Game students to there studio to test their next game. The game is a side scrolling 2D shoot-em-up with a cover system that needs fine balancing before the game is shown at Rezzed this year.

This is a voluntary, unpaid position but it would be fantastic to put on to your CV, you would get to visit Roll7 studios to talk with the developers and you may also be considered for future, paid, testing rolls at the studio.

Roll7 studio is based in London on Arklow Road. You would need to be able to get to the studio under your own intiative on March 19.

If you are interested in testing the game for Roll7 you can email Tom at Tom@roll7.co.uk

To find out more about the studio visit www.roll7.co.uk

Train2Game News: Xbox One update beta testers

Xbox OneSome lucky Xbox One users may have the chance to beta test future updates. This would be incredibly helpful for Train2Game students on the QA Course.

The Xbox NewsWire states “Beginning today, Xbox is inviting select Xbox Live members to preview new features coming to Xbox One in a March system update and future system updates as they become available, asking them to provide valuable feedback before the updates are implemented worldwide. Selected participants will receive an Xbox Live message with a token to register. The next system update will begin rolling out next week to those who will preview the new features.

Once registered, participants will be able to test the early features included in the update and provide feedback on a private forum and can opt out of future waves.””

The next Xbox one update will improve multiplayer and party features ready for the release of the highly anticipated Titanfall.

So if you own an Xbox One keep an eye on your Xbox Live messages as you might just be lucky enough to be a part of the Xbox One’s future!

Train2Game News: New Android testing software

Intel SoftwareAppthwack is the new software to make testing Android games easier!

You’ve spent hours designing and coding your application and things are looking pretty good. But now you have another hurdle: ensuring your app is bug-free and operational. After all, a good user experience is central to having happy, content and engaged users.

Proper testing can be a challenge, however. There are testing services out there that can take care of this for you, but they usually charge by the minute incurring further development costs (and those costs are further dependent on how many devices you want to test on).

This is where the service AppThwack can be a lifesaver. Thanks to a partnership with Intel Developer Zone, the AppThwack service is provided completely free of charge for testing on Intel-based Android smartphones and tablets.

These tests are run on real, non-emulated devices and mean you can test your app on a wide range of devices you don’t have to own yourself. AppThwack will run a number different test processes including launch, stress tests and uninstalls and then outputs low-level logs, screenshots and performance data to show how well your app has performed on the corresponding devices.

As part of the partnership, the Intel Atom-based Android devices you can test for free on include:

Asus MeMO Pad FHD 10
Dell Venue 7
Dell Venue 8
Lenovo IdeaPhone K900
Motorola Droid RAZR i
Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 10

On the Intel Developer Zone there is a handy How-To Guide for AppThwack to get you started, which runs you through how to upload your application’s APK to the cloud service and schedule in your tests, as well as giving you a look at what sort of performance results you can expect.

Now there’s no excuse not to thoroughly test your APKs and ensure they run optimally on Intel hardware!

Source: Softalkblog sponsored by the Intel Developer Zone

Train2Game News: Train2Game Winners

Train2GameThe Train2Game team are creating a new web page highlighting the positive achievements of the students.

We think it’s important that we show what can be achieved by taking a Train2Game course and also heap some praise on the deserving students that have made those brave steps to become professionals.

The site will be used as inspiration for all students to see what they are working towards and what they can achieve with a lot of hard work. This is a great chance to put something back into the Train2Game community, show off your work, gain interest in products you’re working on for your employer show your achievements to potential future employers.

It would be great to hear from all the students who have made that step to become professionals; be it in a company, in an independent studio or another area of employment in or outside the games industry that your Train2Game course has helped you to obtain.

This is a great opportunity for students to start shouting about the courses and their success stories. Please do get in touch by emailing Harry Cole at harry@swanpr.co.uk

Train2Game News: Another Roll7 position available

roll7I get to share some wonderful news with you all this morning! A Train2Game Student named Sam has been employed at Roll7.

Sam obtained his job at the company after reading about the position on the Train2Game blog and we recently received an email from Roll7 detailing how very happy with Sam they are! They reported that he is now basically head of QA.

Roll7 now have another small time position available and have sent this message:

Hi there!

If you haven’t already done testing with us -

Any chance you can make a Testing Session on Friday this week?

We can pay expenses of £15, we only need you in for an hour

Cheers

Simon

This would be a great opportunity for a London based student to meet a well organised team and get to work with them, gaining valuable experience.

If you are interested in the position and you haven’t tested for Roll7 before email Simon at simon@roll7.co.uk with your CV.

Train2Game News: Train2Game radio talks to Mark Silvester

Mark SilvesterI had the pleasure of talking to Train2Game student, Mark Silvester recently who is currently doing some QA work for Icey Monty. Mark talked to me about his gaming history, how he got involved with Icey Monty and where he hopes to go.

You can listen to the interview here: https://audioboo.fm/boos/1609660-train2game-student-mark-silvester-talks-to-t2g-radio

OR read the transcript below:

I’m Mark Silvester, a Train2Game Student doing the QA and Level Design course which I started in October of last year.

How you doing Mark?

I’m fine thank you, yes.

Excellent. So tell me a bit about what you’ve been up too?

Recently I’ve been doing some QA testing for Icey Monty for a little game they’ve been developing at the moment. I passed the first section of the course at the beginning of August, noticed a post from John Esslemont of Icey Monty that they were looking for QA testers, contacted him and it went on from there.

How have you been finding working with the guys?

It’s been very enjoyable. I’ve been enjoying doing the testing work, I try to put in a couple of hours each day, send off a report, we’ve got a control spread sheet going and we sort of bounce bugs and solutions back and forth with each other on that.

Very nice. How did you come to be a tester then or want to be a tester?

I’ve been playing computer games for many many years. I recall playing things like Star Trek and a Flight Path simulator back on the old green screen IBM machines, back at school. Moved on to consoles, Spectrums and even had a NASCOM II computer at one stage and programmed a space invaders game on that in old Z80 hex code. I’ve been playing games and role playing games for a long, long time and unfortunately I was made redundant from my place of work last year, saw the Train2Game advert, had a chat with the representative and opted for the QA and level design course as part of my previous job had been application development, testing system support for an application. So my experience from my previous job gave me some good skills to go in to the QA course.

Very nice. So are you happy about the course you chose and the way you’ve taken?

Yes it’s going along quite nicely. The bug hunting assignment at the end of section one was quite interesting to do so yeah I’m very happy with the course at the moment.

Perfect. So with Icey Monty, is it a paid position you’ve got?

It’s voluntary, part time work. Hopefully in the future there may be some free lance work, put out my way which they will give me some payment for. I’ll then have to investigate setting up my own company or finding out how to declare it properly or the Tax Man will get upset with me, so I’ve got to investigate that when that bridge comes along but John seems quite happy with what I’m doing so I’m hoping something firm will come along from that.

Yeah you never want to upset the Tax Man!

No, definitely not a good thing to do.

So what are your plans for the future?

Plans for the future is to carry on progressing through the course and get myself involved in other bits of QA testing.

So, it sounds like you’re having a good time then?

Yes moving along quite nicely. Trying to get the next TMA in but there’s some exercises to be done and the online link isn’t there today so I’ve mailed the tutor team and hoping to get a reply soon.

So with you being made redundant, what’s your main source of income at the minute?

I’m on job seekers at the moment. Occasionally I’ll get some odd part time work doing some IT support work. Yesterday I was actually putting some servers in and out for a retail company but it’s been very hap hazard, the IT support work, that was the first days work since the start of April. So basically I’ve got plenty of time to do the studying and move on with things.

Perfect. It looks like the Train2Game course came at just about the right time for you then?

Well I noticed it whilst I was looking around for jobs and I’ve always said my ideal job would be testing games, playing games, and it’s almost a bit of a dream come true!

Perfect! Well I think that’s all we’ve got time for today Mark so thank you very much!

Thank you very much for that Mark, cheerio for now!

Train2Game News: roll7 hiring Train2Game QA Testers

roll7roll7 are hiring Train2Game students to be QA Testers at their London based studio. This could be the start of your career!

Due to the response and quality of the students that responded to the first roll7 request for student QA testers, the company are now offering two students an opportunity to get “proper hands on QA experience.”

roll7 are curently looking for candidates that:

  • Are diligent and hard working
  • Can keep attention to detail when performing similar tasks again and again
  • have good written communication skills
  • are SERIOUS about working in the Video Games Industry
  • Must be London based

The position will ideally be fully time between 19 August to 18 October. QA Testers please look out for more opportunities in August and September.

For full details of the positions, London based, please initially email recruiting@train2game.com including your contact and Train2game college details. Full details will be sent to you.

Don’t delay and apply today to start your journey deeper in to the games industry!

Train2Game News: roll7 are hiring!!

OlliOlliroll7 are hiring and Train2Game Students have first opportunity at the positions available.

roll7 are a small indie games developer in New Cross, London. They have previously worked on titles such as the upcoming skate game for PS Vita – OlliOlli, Mobile Adventure game – Get to the exit and Focus Pocus – which was developed to help change the behavior of some seven to thirteen year olds.

They are doing testing of one of their upcoming Indie titles and they need Testers ASAP!

- Testers are needed for individual slots of 4 hours

- Testers need to be gamers and ideally own a PS Vita

- Testers need to be able to get to our offices in New Cross

- Testing will be in the form of a game play though, no repetitive gaming or bug searching!

AND YES YOU GET PAID!!!

This would serve as a great addition to the CV for anyone looking to get into the games industry.

Slots are open from July 3 until Mid-August and are set at 10-2 / 2-6 / 6-10

Simon Bennett, who works in production at roll7 said that good work on these titles could lead to even more opportunities for the right person.

If you want to take part, please contact simon@roll7.co.uk

Train2Game News: Train2Game Radio talks to Tarnya Smith

Tarnya SmithI got the pleasure of talking to Train2Game student, Tarnya Smith, who already has a years experience in the games industry after leaving university and she now works at Distinctive Games who have just released the popular Rugby Nations ’13. You can find out what she has worked on and how she got to where she is now in the interview.

You can listen to the interview here: http://audioboo.fm/boos/1473120-train2game-student-radio-talks-to-tarnya-smith

Or read the transcript below

My name’s Tarnya Smith, I live in Sheffield and I’m doing the Designer course.

Hiya Tarnya, how you doing?

I’m good thank you, how are you?

I’m alright thank you very muchly. So tell me a bit about yourself then?

I started off playing games when I was a kid, with my brother, that’s how I got in to it. I did creative kind of stuff through university and things like that and when I finished university last year I was given the chance to work as a tester for Sega in London, so I kinda took that with both hands and that’s where it started really. Then I got the opportunity to come up to Sheffield, up here, to work for Sumo, which was doing the Sonic game at the time and I got a job here at Distinctive, as a tester as well, and I moved up here permanently because I was living in London at the time.

You’ve had quite a wealth of experience already then?

Yeah, I’ve been very lucky. I’ve had a years experience straight off the bat, which is quite hard to come by but I work hard so I think that shows and I’ve always wanted to do, creative stuff. I didn’t really want to go back to university because I didn’t really enjoy it the first time around and I’ve always wanted to be a games designer so I thought I would do the Train2Game thing and see how that went.

Did you finish your university course then or did you just think that’s enough once you got the job opportunities?

No I finished, I finished back in May, but the testing job came straight up. I got given that at the end of July so I went straight into that after university.

Is that one you applied for or did they come and seek you out?

No, I know quite a lot of friends who work there and I never really thought about it before but then they started taking on a big bunch of testers so I went for it and got the job.

Very nice. What Sonic game was it you worked on?

Sonic and All Stars Racing Transformed.

Oh was it? I do like that game, it is fun!

Well I’m glad because we worked hard on it! Yeah I really enjoyed working on it, it was great fun and I still play it from time to time.

Excellent. It does certainly have replayability a lot.

Oh god yeah!

So, you said you’re at Distinctive Games now. What are you working on there?

We’ve just completed the Rugby Nations ’13 that’s just come out. At the minute I’m just working on patches for old games that need updating for the new iOS and so on, but there are some projects coming out in the future that obviously, I can’t talk about but there good, I’m enjoying it.

Excellent, so are you a fan of Rugby then or is that just something you ended up working on anyway?

I was actually a big fan. I used to live near Twickenham, so I used to go to Twickenham Stadium when I got the chance but I’m not really a big fan of Sports all round but it’s fine!

Just what ever you can get your hands on really?

Yeah pretty much, it’s all good!

Are you a tester at Distinctive now?

Yeah, I’m a tester, yeah.

So do you think they’ll be an opportunity for you to move up to a designer instead soon?

Well I hope so, at some point.

Is that the main aim? I assume

Well, I’m quite happy to be a tester for a while, it’s not that it’s a problem but obviously my aim long term is to be a designer somewhere. So if I can get in here that’ll be awesome but you know, where ever life takes you.

You seem very relaxed with it all

Yeah, I just think I’m really lucky to get into something I’m really passionate about so I am just enjoying whatever I can get out of it, I’m not going to start stressing that I’m not getting the job I want straight away because that never happens.

That is a very good attitude to have

Yeah, so I am enjoying it and I am just going to try and enjoy it for as long as possible.

Excellent. So it sounds like you’ve had quite a good life already then!

I just think, the last year or so, I’ve been quite lucky and I’ve got to know some people that know people. It’s who you are that opens paths for you. I’ve been in the community a few years now and you do get to know people.

Perfect, well I think that’s all we’ve got time for today

Awesome.

So thanks very much for talking to us!

You’re very welcome!

Train2Game News: Top 3 Game Engines

UDKAcross the past week Train2Game held a poll to see which is your favourite game engine. These are the results!

In descending order the Third most popular games engine for Train2Game Students is the CryEngine 3.  It was originally developed by German studio, Crytek, as a technology demo for Nvidia and, when the company saw its potential, it was turned into a game. That first game developed using the engine was the first Far Cry.

The CryEngine 3 Free SDK, originally called Sandbox Editor, is the current version of the level editor used to create levels for the CryEngine line of game engines by Crytek. Tools are also provided within the software to facilitate scripting, animation, and object creation. It has been included with various Crytek games and is used extensively for modding purposes. The editing style is that of the sandbox concept, with the emphasis on large terrains and a free style of mission programming. The editor can also construct indoor settings.

Recently the engine has been used to create games such as Crysis 3, Monster Hunter Online and Ryse which will be released on the Xbox One.

Second in the poll was the Unity engine. Unity (also called Unity3D) is a cross-platform game engine with a built-in IDE developed by Unity Technologies. Unity is primarily used to create mobile and web games, but can also deploy games to consoles or the PC. The game engine was developed in C/C++, and is able to support code written in C#, JavaScript or Boo. It grew from an OS X supported game development tool in 2005 to the multi-platform game engine that it is today.

The Unity Engine is simple to use and as of this month free to publish to mobiles. It is clear why it is popular among Train2Game Students.

The Unity Engine has been used to create popular mobile games such as Bad Piggies, Slender: The Arrival and it was used to port Temple Run 2 to Android devices.

Finally the number one games engine according to Train2Game students is Epic’s Unreal Engine. Although primarily developed for first-person shooters, it has been successfully used in a variety of other genres, including stealth, MMORPGs and other RPGs. With its code written in C++, the Unreal Engine features a high degree of portability and is a tool used by many game developers today. It was first developed in 1998 for Unreal.

The third and current generation of the Unreal Engine (UE3) is designed for DirectX (versions 9-11 for Windows and Xbox 360), as well as systems using OpenGL, including the PlayStation 3, OS X, iOS, Android, Stage 3D for Adobe Flash Player 11, JavaScript/WebGL, PlayStation Vita and Wii U. Its renderer supports many advanced techniques including HDRR, per-pixel lighting, and dynamic shadows. It also builds on the tools available in previous versions.

In October 2011, the engine was ported to support Adobe Flash Player 11 through the Stage 3D hardware-accelerated APIs. Epic has used this version of the engine for their in-house games. Aggressive licensing of this iteration has garnered a great deal of support from many prominent licensees. Epic has announced that Unreal Engine 3 runs on both Windows 8 and Windows RT.

The engine is free to download and has a small charge of $99 to publish from, as long as you don’t make over $50,000 after which Epic will start to take a percentage.

The Unreal engine has been used in countless games including The Batman Arkham Games, BioShock Infinite, The Borderlands games, Dishonored, The Gears of War series and countless others.

It is quite clear why the Unreal Engine is the most popular engine among Train2Game Students.