Train2Game News: Mid-week round up – 31.10.11

Possibly the biggest news this week is that Disney has purchased LucasArts for $4.05 billion. In doing so Disney now has the rights to everything in the Star Wars vaults. The plan is to release Star Wars episode VII in a couple of years time. LucasArts also makes some of the games in the Star Wars universe so this could mean changes in future games from the company. We will have to wait and see.

Grand Theft Auto V has finally had a release date confirmed. The highly anticipated fifth part of the saga will be coming to PS3 and Xbox360 in Spring 2013. There has been no mention of a PC release as of yet but it is common for Rockstar to release their PC versions several months later.

Another release date has been announced this time for Peter Molyneux’s Curiosity: What’s inside the cube. The release date has been given as November 7 for iOS and Android. The app will be free to download and play.

One of my most favourite games of this year is Borderlands 2 and it has just surpassed five million sales. The sales include retail and digital sales. Take-Two said it has become “one of the most successful releases in [subsidiary] 2K’s history”. In addition Borderlands Legends has been released for iOS today.

The Call Of Duty: Black Ops 2 trailer hit the world on Monday. The trailer was directed by Guy Ritchie and has a cameo from Robert Downey Jr. You can watch the trailer here.

Kickstarter, the most popular vehicle for crowdfunding games development projects, is now available in the UK. Previously UK-based developers could only pledge, but not create projects, now they can seek funding on the platform.

A sequel to the terrifying Amnesia: Dark Descent has been announced with a creepy trailer to get you in the Halloween spirit. Frictional games have always asked for fans to record screams, whimpers and blood curdling shrieks to be put in to the game. You can email your screams to The trailer can be seen here.

Lastly in more worrying news the terrible storm, Hurricane Sandy, that has hit the US has knocked out Activisions data centers and shut down online play for a number of games including Call Of Duty and Guitar Hero. My best wishes go out to all those affected by the storm.

Train2Game News: Games Industry Jobs – 31.10.12


2D Marketing Illustrator

Jagex Ltd, in Cambridge, a world leading independent Online Games Studio, is looking for a highly motivated illustrator to produce art work to help market our games, including Transformers Universe and RuneScape.

Working within a team of illustrators, you will be responsible for producing highly polished & large scale pieces of creative fantasy art. Working on a large variety of projects including wallpapers, posters, adverts and websites you would have the creative freedom & time to produce outstanding images you can be proud of.

This highly rewarding & creative role will suit an exceptional illustrator with at least 2-3 years experience looking for a new challenge. The successful candidate should have an exceptional online portfolio demonstrating a large variety of art styles.

Key Duties Include:

  • Producing very high quality illustrations
  • Working on the company’s products and painting art assets for websites, advertising & print.
  • Working from a brief, from concept to final launch.
  • Working closely with the Lead designer and product brand managers.

Essential Requirements:

  • Expert use of Photoshop and other advanced painting tools.
  • Excellent understanding of anatomy.
  • A good understanding of colour, light & composition.
  • A strong sense of vision.
  • Experience of preparing artwork for print & web
  • Ability to show good initiative, judgement and excellent attention to detail
  • Excellent communication skills

Desirable Requirements:

  • An interest in computer games
  • An interest in fantasy art
  • Experience of working within the computer games industry

You can apply HERE.


Game Designer (RuneScape)

Jagex Ltd, in Cambridge, the UK’s largest developer and publisher of online games, is looking for an exceptional individual to play a major role in shaping its world renowned, Guinness World Record holding MMO, RuneScape.

Reporting to the Lead Designer & Design Manager, the successful candidate will be responsible for the design of key game features; guiding the production of their systems and content from original concept, to creation & prototyping, through final polish and community feedback.

This amazing opportunity to be a key contributor to a world class MMO from a successful and stable developer/publisher demands the highest levels of expertise, experience, passion and commitment.

Key Duties:

  • Channel the lead designer’s creative vision and management’s product strategy into everyday project development.
  • Design systems, features and game content. Create and maintain high quality documentation.
  • Set project aims, use collaborative design and feedback to ensure all projects achieve the best quality, stay within scope and are coherent with the wider game.
  • Coordinate across development disciplines to design and refine game features.
  • Be a champion of design practice, have a solid knowledge of RuneScape and maintain awareness of the games industry, the online games market and monetisation strategies.
  • Collaborate with the Lead Designer and Monetisation Manager in the creation and maintenance of RuneScape’s commercial strategy.


  • Proven and demonstrable expertise in game systems design, including creativity, technical aptitude, commercial awareness and MMO genre knowledge.
  • Must have sound creative judgment and a solid understanding of broad design principles including social design, commercial design, economics, interface design, usability, balancing, monetisation and analytics.
  • An understanding of monetization principles and commercial dynamics.
  • Strong communication & people skills. Able to work effectively with a diverse team, to give insightful feedback, to be able to write design specifications to high standard and able to verbally articulate ideas with passion, clarity and confidence.
  • A good general technical proficiency with game construction. Experience in game scripting, coding or development tools is also very beneficial.
  • Driven, organized and reliable. A positive attitude, steady under pressure, adapts to constructive feedback. Works in a thorough, timely and considerate manner.
  • A love of games & design, a broad knowledge of gameplay styles and an expansive yet insightful understanding of game mechanics.

You can apply HERE.


Games Programmer

Dubit make Virtual Worlds, Casual MMOs and Games for kids.
We’ve created many successful titles built on our own Platform for Cartoon Network, BBC, Dorothy of Oz, Diesel, Monty Python and many more.
We are currently working on a number of exciting projects for 2012 and 2013 and we’re looking for team members with the drive, passion and ambition that will help us make those projects the best they can be.
The Role:
We have opportunities currently for talented Programmers with a passion for games. You will be proficient in object oriented programming and have an eye for detail with experience of working from game design and wireframe documentation and user interface designs. You will also be expected to work on associated gaming websites.
Essential Job Functions: (You should have experience in one of more of the following)

  • Action Script 3 and Flex.
  • Unity
  • Java and Java Script.
  • Node.js
  • RoR (HTML, CSS, PHP)
  • HTML5
  • C# / C++

Knowledge Requirements:

  • Experience in games or a strong desire to move into games after strong experience gained in another field.
  • Familiarity with concurrent programming standards.
  • Awareness of Open Source tools and developments around them.
  • Any familiarity with the Spring Framework would be exceedingly useful.
  • Understanding of MVC architecture.
  • Knowledge of OO design patterns and best practice techniques.
  • Working with game-ready assets for use in user interfaces, such as textures, icons, and fonts.
  • Working closely with Design direction to ensure clear communication of essential information to the player.
  • Working closely with UI designers to ensure correct functionality and visual fidelity.

Demonstrated Ability To:

  • Deliver highly creative Games and be able to demonstrate work from a variety of media and platforms.
  • Communicate ideas through unique and inspired ideas.
  • Harness a broad range of influences and think laterally to bring different perspectives to tackle a brief.
  • Show a ‘can do’ attitude and relish new technical and creative challenges.
  • Work to individual and team deadlines.
  • Effectively communicate within a large group/multiple project environment.
  • Be passionate about good programming techniques and have a love of computer games.

About Us:

We offer competitive salaries, excellent benefits and a generous holiday entitlement. The environment itself is relaxed, friendly and built upon the basis of every team member having ownership and a realisable input into the games we create.

We are located in Leeds, just off the M621.

If you have a passion for making and playing games, have excellent skills and experience, dedication and, most importantly, the talent we need – then we really want to hear from you.

You can apply HERE.

Train2Game News: Eurogamer reports on Game Jam

With the release of Windows 8 and the student games being published on the Store, Eurogamer has done a story on the World Record Game Jam.
You can read the article below

The Microsoft-sponsored game jam

Train2Game News: Train2Game Radio talks to Jonny Robinson

You can listen to the interview at

or read the transcript below:


Hello, I am here with Jonny Robinson from Milton Keynes, how you doing Jonny?

I’m doing very well thanks how is yourself?

I’m very good thank you, Could you tell me what course you’re on?

I’m on the Games designer course.

What is the most dramatic or exciting thing you have done in your life?

Winning the Gadget Show, that was quite cool, the Make Something Unreal Live 2012. Pretty exciting times with Epic!

What is your reason for getting in to the gaming industry and how will the gaming industry, change your life?

I wanted to get in the gaming industry when I was very young, it’s one of those things that I explain a lot to my friends that when I was young I used to put the gaming industry on a pedestal. You know you kind of worship it, you want it so bad but then you realise, I don’t know if I can do that so you kind of dismiss it for years. I then saw this course advertised in the news paper and I thought, you know what – I’ll give it a shot, it’s an online course I can do it in my own spare time and when I actually did the course I felt a lot more confident in myself. I felt I should share my experience with people so I did a lot of Train2Game promoting for the design course because it helped me a lot with my confidence and so really I would say it is one of the best decisions I have ever made so far.

After you earn your Train2Game diploma, what would be your greatest ambition in the industry?

Obviously get a full time job. I am also working with my team, the Commando Kiwi team, on a new project. I’ll chuck that out there as well, it’s the first time I’ve mentioned it. We are going to put something up on our Facebook very soon. We made a game for the Gadget Show which was “The Warlock Of Firetop Mountain” on the iOS and now we are taking a further step into the industry with the Unreal Engine, as that’s what we won at the Gadget Show. I can’t really say to much but we are on the fronts of making this new game.

What platform is the game going to be on?

At the moment we are going to stick to our current market and go with iOS but there has been hints with the team for Steam as well.

What genre is it going to be?

That’s stuff I am keeping reserved, I will let you know the scoop when I am ready to release the information.

What is your story, what are the past experiences that have shaped your life to who you are today?

Being where I am at the right time I suppose and just keep on striving for success, keep your head up and just keep going. I wouldn’t say anything has altered me, I would just say it’s the path I have been led on, you know, by destiny or whatever you want to call it but so far, if it is so called destiny, it has led me down a fine route, I have met some really interesting people.

I also know you have a blog to help fledgling designers get in to the industry, what inspired you to start that?

I have been doing video diaries for a long time and I know there are a lot of blogs out there like Gamasutra, they make some really incredible articles. I realised that there are not many from a student point of view that’s actually been in the industry and tasted that addiction as I like to call it. You know once your in the industry you kind of feel like an over whelming sense of adrenaline and I just feel like if I need to keep blurting my mind out there to people saying you need to get in this industry, it’s amazing! I’m doing whatever I can as it’s not programming or art its more design and it is a very niche market. I can guarantee you, you ask any designer and you say, what does it mean to be a game designer? What skill sets do you have? Every designer will tell you something completely different and that’s what I am trying to get across in my blogs. You have to be really open minded to be a designer and really blend your key skills to the actual studio themselves.

That leads me quite nicely on to my last point, what advice would you give to someone looking to get in to the games industry?

First of all, attend Game Jams, that’s the first one. I know Train2Game just did one with Microsoft and I attended one last year that was with Epic. The second I would recommend is trying to talk to people in the community, go on the Train2Game Forums and just generally create games. No one ever says in the industry who have you worked for, they say what experience have you got?

If people want to read more about it, where can people find your blog?

My website is www.ironcore1.wordpress,com

Thank you very much Jonny and keep us updated on all things Commando Kiwi

No problem, thank you very much for your time Mark, Ta-ra!

Train2Game News: 2012 Golden Joystick Awards

The 30th annual Golden Joystick Awards were held on Friday at Westminster Park Plaza

Winners of the 2012 Golden Joystick Awards have been announced, and Skyrim walked away with three: Ultimate Game of the Year, Best Gaming Moment, and Best RPG.

A full list of the nominations and winners can be found below, the winner is written in bold:

Best Action-Adventure

  • Asura’s Wrath
  • Sonic Generations – Sega
  • Prototype 2
  • Saints Row the Third
  • Dead Island
  • Assassin’s Creed: Revelations
  • The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword
  • Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception
  • Batman: Arkham City
  • Darksiders II
  • Sleeping Dogs

Best use of DLC

  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (Dawnguard)
  • Asura’s Wrath (Ryu)
  • Hitman: Absolution (Sniper Challenge)
  • Deus Ex: Human Revolution (The Missing Link)
  • Rock Band 3 (Gold Star My Heart)
  • The Gunstringer (Wavy Tube Man Chronicles)
  • Gears of War 3 (RAAM’s Shadow)
  • SSX ((Mount Eddie & Classic Characters))
  • FIFA 12 (Euro 2012)
  • The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings (Enhanced Edition)
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (Creation Kit)
  • Portal 2 (Perpetual Testing Initiative)
  • Sniper Elite V2 (Kill Hitler)
  • Batman: Arkham City (Harley Quinn’s Revenge)

Best Download Game

  • Pullblox
  • Sine Mora
  • Renegade Ops
  • Trine 2
  • Skullgirls
  • NFL Blitz
  • I Am Alive
  • Lone Survivor
  • Closure
  • Legend of Grimrock
  • Botanicula
  • Dear Esther
  • The Walking Dead: Episode 1 – A New Day
  • Minecraft (360)
  • Alan Wake’s American Nightmare
  • Trials Evolution
  • Fez
  • Journey
  • Deadlight
  • Superbros

Best Fighter

  • Mortal Kombat Komplete
  • BlazBlue: Continuum Shift Extend
  • Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm – Generations
  • Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3
  • Soul Calibur V
  • Street Fighter X Tekken
  • UFC Undisputed 3

Best Handheld Game

  • Gravity Rush
  • Super Mario Land 3DS
  • Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance
  • Mario Kart 7
  • Wipeout 2048
  • Kid Icarus: Uprising
  • Resident Evil: Revelations
  • Uncharted: Golden Abyss

Best MMO Shortlist

  • The Secret World
  • Eve Online
  • Lord of the Rings Online: Rise of Isengard
  • TERA
  • Star Wars: The Old Republic
  • Rift
  • Runescape
  • League of Legends
  • World of Tanks

Best Mobile or Tablet Game

  • Waking Mars
  • SpellTower
  • LostWinds2: Winter of the Melodias
  • Fireball SE
  • Whale Trail
  • CodeRunner
  • Assassin’s Creed: Recollection
  • Temple Run
  • Shadowgun
  • Chaos Rings II
  • Beat Sneak Bandit
  • Hero Academy
  • Modern Combat 3: Fallen Nation
  • Gridrunner
  • Mass Effect: Infiltrator
  • Shark Dash
  • Angry Birds Space
  • Fibble – Flick ‘n’ Roll
  • Infinity Blade II
  • Pocket Planes

Best Racing Game

  • Twisted Metal
  • Need for Speed: The Run
  • F1 2011
  • Forza 4
  • Driver: San Francisco
  • TrackMania 2 Canyon
  • Dirt Showdown
  • Ridge Racer Unbounded

Best RPG

  • Xenoblade Chronicles
  • Dragon’s Dogma
  • Final Fantasy XIII-2
  • Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning
  • Diablo III
  • Dark Souls
  • Mass Effect 3
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
  • The Witcher 2: AoK Enhanced Edition (360)

Best Shooter

  • Binary Domain
  • Halo: Anniversary
  • Syndicate
  • Starhawk
  • Spec Ops: The Line
  • Ghost Recon: Future Soldier
  • The Darkness 2
  • Rage
  • Resistance 3
  • Max Payne 3
  • Gears of War 3
  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3
  • Battlefield 3
  • Tribes Ascend

Best Browser Game

  • Ghost Recon Commander
  • Sim City Social
  • Marvel Avengers Alliance
  • Hello Adventure
  • Raze 2
  • Kingdom Rush
  • New Star Soccer 5
  • Triple Town
  • Reprisal
  • Galaxy Life
  • Castleville
  • Car Town
  • Draw Something
  • Slender

Best Sports Game

  • Madden NFL 12
  • Tiger Woods PGA 13
  • Pro Evolution Soccer 2012
  • NBA 2K12
  • SSX
  • NHL 12
  • Football Manager 2012
  • FIFA 12

Best Strategy Game

  • Unity of Command
  • Wargame: European Escalation
  • Crusader Kings 2
  • Might and Magic: Heroes VI
  • Civilization V: Gods and Kings
  • Tropico 4: Modern Times
  • Total War: Shogun 2 – Fall of the Samurai
  • ANNO 2070
  • Age of Empires Online

The One to Watch Award

  • Star Wars 1313
  • Beyond: Two Souls
  • Splinter Cell: Blacklist
  • Pikmin 3
  • ZombiU
  • Watch Dogs
  • Gears of War: Judgment
  • Aliens: Colonial Marines
  • Tomb Raider
  • Hitman: Absolution
  • The Elder Scrolls Online
  • The Last of Us
  • Bioshock: Infinite
  • GTA V
  • Call of Duty: Black Ops 2
  • Crysis 3
  • Total War: Rome 2
  • Assassin’s Creed III
  • Halo 4
  • Dead Space 3

Top Gaming Moment

  • Mass Effect 3 – Tuchanka Choice
  • Resident Evil: Revelations – Two Ships!
  • Sonic Generations – City Escape
  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 – ‘Turbulence’
  • Gears of War 3 – ‘Score a Point for the Cougars’
  • Journey – The Ending
  • Asura’s Wrath – Asura vs. Wyzen
  • The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword – Sand Sea
  • Batman: Arkham City – The Ending
  • Uncharted 3 – ‘Sink or Swim’
  • Max Payne 3 – Hoboken Graveyard Shootout
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim – Throat of the World
  • The Darkness 2 – Alternate Ending
  • Battlefield 3 – ‘Going Hunting’
  • Dark Souls – Beating Ornstein & Smough
  • The Witcher 2: AoK – Bathhouse Bonk
  • Dragon’s Dogma – Griffon Battle
  • Sniper Elite V2 – Assassinating Hitler
  • Spec Ops: The Line – White Phosphorus

The Golden Joystick Ultimate Game Award

  • Diablo III
  • Kid Icarus: Uprising
  • Star Wars: The Old Republic
  • Resident Evil: Revelations
  • Max Payne 3
  • Gears of War 3
  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3
  • Battlefield 3
  • Trials Evolution
  • Journey
  • FIFA 12
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
  • Dark Souls
  • Mass Effect 3
  • The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword
  • Assassin’s Creed: Revelations
  • Batman: Arkham City
  • Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception
  • Forza 4

YouTube Gamer of the Year went to Yogscast, and EA won the award for Outstanding Contribution for its FIFA series.

Congratulations to all the winning games.

Train2Game News: UK Top 20 – 29.10.12

FIFA 13 has finally been knocked off of the top spot with the release of Medal Of Honor: Warfighter. Some other new additions are Forza Horizon which has come in at number 3, the new Professor Layton at 7 and Moshi Monsters at number 8.

Week ending 27 October 2012

15 F1 2012 CODEMASTERS 11


Leisure software charts compiled by Chart Track, (C)2012 UKIE Ltd


Train2Game News: SpecialEffect Case – Charlotte

SpecialEffect is still quite small but is doing incredible things. Below is a one minute video of the amazing Charlotte Nott, a 4 year old little girl that battled meningitis and who we have been able to help play with her family and friends again with a specialist Nintendo wii.

Please continue to help SpecialEffect by watching and sharing the video below. We need to get to 25,000 views by Christmas day! It has now reached over 10,000 views, keep up the good work.

Train2Game News: A new ‘World’ has arrived

Steve Ballmer at the Windows 8 launch

Windows 8 is here. After many months of building anticipation the new Microsoft operating system has arrived.

Today saw the launch of the Windows 8 operating system, the Microsoft Surface tablet running the system and the Windows store.

Unlike previous versions of Windows, this one is designed for an array of different devices, including: PCs, notebooks, tablet computers and smartphones. It is built for a new generation of touchscreen devices, rather than the traditional PC and mouse.

Windows 8 has better battery life, faster boot time, a smaller memory footprint and has undergone 1.2bn hours of pre-release testing.

Windows have said that more than one thousand new PCs have been certified for Windows 8, with some being more affordable than several, already available, tablet computers. Many of the new PCs running the new operating system will have touchscreen ability, for users that want to control there PC with the swipe of a finger, instead of using a mouse.

Steve Ballmer, the Microsoft chief executive, says “Windows 8 PCs will be the best PCs ever, as the company faces down competition in tablets and smartphones from Apple and Google.

“Windows 8 shatters perceptions of what a PC really is and is a bold and innovative break from past Windows versions.

“Welcome to the world of Windows 8.”

Every Windows 8 device will come with the Windows store available and developers are adding hundreds of apps to it every day. The store has launched with an initial one thousand five hundred apps.

At the September world record winning Game Jam, the students who participated, worked on Windows 8 and a number of those apps are being released to the store. A list of all the student apps will be announced this coming Monday.

Train2Game News: Games help Rage Control

A video game has been developed to help young people tackle their anger management issues.

Rage Control uses a device placed on a child’s finger to monitor heart rate – if it gets too high, they lose the ability to shoot at enemy spaceships. The player must control their emotions to do well in the game.

Researchers said the game led to significant decreases in anger in the children studied.

The study compared two groups of nine to 17 year olds. Both groups received standard anger management treatments but the second group also spent 15 minutes playing Rage Control at the end of their session.

The study showed that after five sessions, the children who had played the game were better at keeping their heart rate down and they showed lower scores on a recognised rating scale for severity of anger issues.

The lead author of the study, Peter Ducharme, said he hoped that children playing the game would be able to apply the same calming techniques to other areas of life.

Mr Ducharme said “Kids reported feeling better control of their emotions when encountering day-to-day frustrations on the unit

“While this was a pilot study, and we weren’t able to follow the kids after they were discharged, we think the game will help them control their emotions in other environments.”

The next step in the study is to develop toys for younger children that have the same principle. For example racing cars that stop if a child gets too excited or a cooperative building block game that becomes more wobbly if the child’s heart rate goes up.

This is another excellent example of just how the games industry can help all people of the world. With people creating games like Rage Control and charities such as SpecialEffect, the world can not question the good the games industry can do

Train2Game News: Minecraft Builds its way to the top

More people are playing Minecraft on Xbox Live Arcade than Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 or FIFA 13.

The latest Microsoft Live activity chart shows Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition at the top for the first time, rsing ahead of acclaimed retail games Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 and FIFA 13. The Call of Duty games have been at the top of the chart for much of the past four years.

It is another impressive milestone for Minecraft. Earlier this month, developer 4J Studios revealed it had sold over four million copies becoming the best-selling XBLA game ever, beating titles such as Trials, Trials Evolution and Castle Crashers.

Other games Minecraft is more popular than are Call of Duty: Black Ops, Borderlands 2, Halo: Reach, Battlefield 3 and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.

Interestingly GTA IV is still in the top twenty and it is nice to see the free-to-play title, Happy Wars, in at eleven.

Microsoft’s Live Activity chart is based on unique users – that is, game playing while connected to Xbox Live. You can see the top twenty below:

  • 1. Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition
  • 2. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3
  • 3. FIFA 13
  • 4. Call of Duty: Black Ops
  • 5. Borderlands 2
  • 6. Halo: Reach
  • 7. Battlefield 3
  • 8. Modern Warfare 2
  • 9. Madden NFL 13
  • 10. NBA 2K13
  • 11. Happy Wars
  • 12. Skyrim
  • 13. Gears of War 3
  • 15. GTA IV
  • 16. FIFA 12
  • 17. Forza Motorsport 4
  • 18. Dishonored
  • 19. EA SPORTS NHL13
  • 20. Halo 3

As you’d expect, Minecraft is also the top Arcade title, ahead of The Walking Dead, Sonic Adventure 2 and Trials Evolution.