Train2Game News 12 Year Old launches successful game

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Spacepants, the hit iPhone and iPad game developed by 12-year-old Sam Smith, is now available for Android devices on the Google Play store.

Spacepants was named one of the “Best Apps of the Week” in  The Guardian on its original release, and was featured by Apple on the front page of the UK App Store. Since then, it has received acclaim from players and critics across the world for its “Easy to play, hard to master”, “just-one-more-go” gameplay.

“Spacepants are the future of trousers,” explained Sam. “In the game they give our hero, Guy, the ability to walk up walls and along ceilings. But when his Spacepants malfunction and cannot be stopped, Guy’s survival skills will be tested to the limit. And beyond. And, incredibly, beyond even that.”

The objective is to survive for as long as possible against hordes of deadly aliens, and to compete against other players for the highest score possible.

Its young creator has been delighted by the game’s success. Despite his age, Sam has been making games for some time, having been taken out of school and home educated from the age of nine.

“School just didn’t work for me,” he said. “I’ve learned much more through game development than I ever could in the classroom. I couldn’t be happier to see so many people play and enjoy Spacepants, and I’m thrilled to bring it to Android devices.”

Sam has received tremendous support from the game development community. Thomas Was Alone creator Mike Bithell helped Sam to launch his Twitter presence @boxfacegames, and gave Spacepants breakthrough coverage. Gaming radio show One Life Left and the Indie Haven podcast had Sam as a guest – and Spacepants has been used as an outstanding example of British creativity in presentations to teachers, students and even to government.

Sam is now hard at work on his next game. At this stage, he will only reveal that “it’s about a robot”.

Spacpants costs 99p from the App Store or Google Play Store.

Train2Game News Develop next week

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One week from today, Tuesday 8 July, over 1,600 developers are set to descend on Brighton as the industry comes together for the ninth annual Develop in Brighton Conference.

The three day conference will host over 90 sessions covering the whole spectrum of games development. More than 100 speakers will debate the biggest issues and trends in the industry, from the Virtual Reality boom and growth in Second Screen to cloud gaming, new types of funding, alternative publishing models and the psychology behind player interaction.

Rob Fraser, Chief Technology Officer for Cloud Services at Microsoft UK, will open the Evolve Conference on Tuesday. Wednesday starts with Andrew House, President and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment, and Mark Cerny, Lead System Architect for the PlayStation 4 computer entertainment system, giving the Develop in Brighton opening keynote entitled 20 Years of PlayStation, 40 Years of Console Games and 100 Years to Come. On Thursday, Co-founder and President of Capybara Games, Nathan Vella, will deliver the Indie keynote, while Garry Taylor, Audio Director for Sony Computer Entertainment, will give the audio keynote.

Other headline speakers include Peter Molyneux, David Braben, Chris Charla, Dave Ranyard, Roberta Lucca and Siobhan Reddy, Ian Livingstone and Richard Bartle, while the list of companies speaking includes Amazon, Google, Versu, Twitch, Nickelodeon and Lift London.

In the Expo area, delegates attending Develop in Brighton can meet some of the biggest names in the industry including Sony Computer Entertainment, Microsoft and Epic, as well as discovering some breakthrough talent in the Develop Conference Indie Showcase, sponsored by Unity.

Centrally located within the expo, the Indie Showcase highlights ten unpublished, independently-developed games selected by a judging panel of industry experts. Delegates have the chance to get hands on with the games and vote for their favourite through the People’s Choice vote.

Organisers Tandem Events has also announced new features for the 2014 conference including a new Marketing track, free Indie Boot Camp sessions in the Expo hall and the inaugural Develop Game Jam.

Full information on the conference sessions and speakers together with who is exhibiting at the expo can all be found on the new mobile event app, sponsored by Autodesk, which is available to download through the App, Google Play and Windows store by searching Develop in Brighton.

With around 500 companies booked to attend, the Develop in Brighton Conference isn’t just about the content, but the people you meet during the After Hours events. There’s a host of networking events including Tuesday’s Ice Breaker Drinks, sponsored by Unreal Engine, and the GamesAid Charity Poker Tournament sponsored by Relentless Software. On Wednesday there is the Develop in Brighton Expo Booth Crawl and the Develop Awards. Finally, on Thursday delegates can attend the Close of Conference Beers.

“With only a week to go, we’re thrilled with the quantity and quality of speakers and exhibitors we have to offer our delegates,” commented Andy Lane, managing director of Tandem Events. “From our headline keynote speakers to sessions dedicated to the hottest topics currently in the industry, we have something to offer every type of developer – from one man indies to the biggest studios. Develop in Brighton really is the go-to event for everyone who develops games and I can’t wait to see everyone down in Brighton.”

Train2Game News Develop next week

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One week from today, Tuesday 8 July, over 1,600 developers are set to descend on Brighton as the industry comes together for the ninth annual Develop in Brighton Conference.

The three day conference will host over 90 sessions covering the whole spectrum of games development. More than 100 speakers will debate the biggest issues and trends in the industry, from the Virtual Reality boom and growth in Second Screen to cloud gaming, new types of funding, alternative publishing models and the psychology behind player interaction.

Rob Fraser, Chief Technology Officer for Cloud Services at Microsoft UK, will open the Evolve Conference on Tuesday. Wednesday starts with Andrew House, President and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment, and Mark Cerny, Lead System Architect for the PlayStation 4 computer entertainment system, giving the Develop in Brighton opening keynote entitled 20 Years of PlayStation, 40 Years of Console Games and 100 Years to Come. On Thursday, Co-founder and President of Capybara Games, Nathan Vella, will deliver the Indie keynote, while Garry Taylor, Audio Director for Sony Computer Entertainment, will give the audio keynote.

Other headline speakers include Peter Molyneux, David Braben, Chris Charla, Dave Ranyard, Roberta Lucca and Siobhan Reddy, Ian Livingstone and Richard Bartle, while the list of companies speaking includes Amazon, Google, Versu, Twitch, Nickelodeon and Lift London.

In the Expo area, delegates attending Develop in Brighton can meet some of the biggest names in the industry including Sony Computer Entertainment, Microsoft and Epic, as well as discovering some breakthrough talent in the Develop Conference Indie Showcase, sponsored by Unity.

Centrally located within the expo, the Indie Showcase highlights ten unpublished, independently-developed games selected by a judging panel of industry experts. Delegates have the chance to get hands on with the games and vote for their favourite through the People’s Choice vote.

Organisers Tandem Events has also announced new features for the 2014 conference including a new Marketing track, free Indie Boot Camp sessions in the Expo hall and the inaugural Develop Game Jam.

Full information on the conference sessions and speakers together with who is exhibiting at the expo can all be found on the new mobile event app, sponsored by Autodesk, which is available to download through the App, Google Play and Windows store by searching Develop in Brighton.

With around 500 companies booked to attend, the Develop in Brighton Conference isn’t just about the content, but the people you meet during the After Hours events. There’s a host of networking events including Tuesday’s Ice Breaker Drinks, sponsored by Unreal Engine, and the GamesAid Charity Poker Tournament sponsored by Relentless Software. On Wednesday there is the Develop in Brighton Expo Booth Crawl and the Develop Awards. Finally, on Thursday delegates can attend the Close of Conference Beers.

“With only a week to go, we’re thrilled with the quantity and quality of speakers and exhibitors we have to offer our delegates,” commented Andy Lane, managing director of Tandem Events. “From our headline keynote speakers to sessions dedicated to the hottest topics currently in the industry, we have something to offer every type of developer – from one man indies to the biggest studios. Develop in Brighton really is the go-to event for everyone who develops games and I can’t wait to see everyone down in Brighton

Train2Game News Develop Game Jam

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Tandem Events – organisers of the Develop in Brighton conference – today announced the launch of the first Develop Game Jam at this year’s Develop in Brighton conference.

Sponsored by Square Enix Collective and with tech provided by Unreal Engine 4, the Game Jam will take place on the 9 & 10 July and teams will be tasked with developing a game based on a theme revealed only 24 hours beforehand.

The competition will run from 2pm until midnight on Wednesday 9 July and then from 8am until 2pm on Thursday 10 July. Teams will consist of up to four people and all ranges of experience are welcome.

Industry mentors will visit the Game Jam throughout the conference to offer their advice and wisdom. Mentors already confirmed include Ella Romanos, Mike Bithell, Barry Meade and Georg Backer.

Entry is free, but there are only 30 places available. For more information and to register visit http://www.developconference.com/content/develop-game-jam

Train2Game News Endemol Job Opening

EndemolTrain2Game spoke to Endemol UK on behalf of the students and they are looking to hire Digital Creative’s to help conceptualise and build amazing apps and games.

Endemol UK is one of Britain’s largest independent production companies and is behind some of TV’s biggest hits including Big Brother, Pointless, 8 out of 10 Cats and Ripper Street to name just a few.  Endemol Games have a proven track-record in creating TV show branded games and are building an exciting and original portfolio of products for worldwide distribution.

They are looking to hire two creative individuals who are passionate about games and other forms of digital media to join our digital creative team. The contract will initially be for 3 months. The work is full-time and paid at a monthly rate of £1300 gross income.

What are you looking for in an employee?

We’re looking for friendly individuals who have creative flair but also the technical ability to back it up.

What advice could you give to an applicant?

Any games you can show us that you’ve worked on in the past would be a huge advantage.

Can you tell us anymore about what the successful applicant will be working on?

We have some great IP’s at Endemol, from  Deal or No Deal to Mr.Bean, if you have an idea that fits any of our brands we’d be keen to look at developing it further. That said, we’re also offering the freedom to come up with completely original and unique IP’s. Have an idea for the next Instagram or Candy Crush? We’ll work together to make it happen.

What skills are you looking for?

We’re looking for someone with any level of programming skill, however if you can show us a game or two you’ve made in software such as Construct 2, GameMaker or Stencyl, we’ll be more than happy to consider you for the role!

Where will the job be?

Endemol UK is based in West London

To apply and get further details for this exciting opportunity to further your games career visit https://adobeformscentral.com/?f=YRHOo0wfT6koVipNUDC-8A#

Train2Game News More Roll7 Testing opportunities

roll7Our friends at Roll7 have asked for Train2Game students to visit them and test their port of their hit PSVita game OlliOlli.

The studio are currently porting OlliOlli to PC, Mac, PS3 and PS4. They are interested in finding students at Train2Game to attend and give feedback regarding how it plays on the new platforms.

The details for the testing are as follows:

Location: New Cross, London
Dates: Between June 9th and June 20th , Monday to Friday
Duration: 2-3 hours
Times: Slots of: 9:30am-12:30pm or 2pm to 5pm

We are ideally looking for students who are relatively close to New Cross, London
Any students coming in to test from London can claim their travel expenses back from us
Anybody who wishes to travel further is welcome to but travel cost will not be provided.

Anyone who has an interest in signing up with us should email: sam@roll7.co.uk with the Subject: OlliOlli testing. Leaving their name, location, current college course, preferred gaming platform and contact number so we can get back to them on available days/slots.

Train2Game News Microsoft Accelerator Programme open to applicants

Microsoft VenturesStart-ups and new studios can now apply to take part in the next round of Microsoft Ventures’ London Acclerator.

The programme lasts 14 weeks and gives start-ups a space to work in the UK capital, plus access to Microsoft expertise and mentoring. Past participants have even been able to get their hands on hardware such as Xbox One dev kits.

Starting in September, this will be the third round of the London Accelerator, which has previously aided new studios Whispering Gibbon, , 8-bit Studios, Gateway Interactive and Train2Game Student Studio, GallantCloud

Studios interested in taking part should apply for a place here. Spaces are limited as the Accelerator encompasses various tech start-ups, not just games developers.

The programme will end with a special event hosted by Microsoft where start-ups will be able to pitch to potential investors.

Source: Develop

Train2Game News NaturalMotion hiring spree

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CEO Torsten Reil says the tool maker and games studio wants to recruit a ‘sizeable’ number of staff as it aims to create ‘something truly amazing’ on mobile platforms

NaturalMotion has begun a “sizeable” recruitment drive intended to help the studio expand its offering of console-quality mobile games.

The games and tool maker is hiring for numerous positions at varying levels, ranging from game design to producers and product leads for its Oxford, London and Brighton studios, CEO Torsten Reil told Develop.

“We are attempting to create console-quality games on mobile that go way beyond what people have seen before. For that we need to have the best people in the industry,” Reil said.

“We’re looking to grow our teams with designers, programmers and project managers in order to achieve those goals. But we’re also looking to fill some of the gaps we have in our teams, some of which are already fully functional, but some of them aren’t yet.”

NaturalMotion is best known for its animation middleware Euphoria and Morpheme, which have been in used in the likes of GTA IV and BioShock Infinite respectively. Its in-house development teams have created successful mobile hits such as My Horse, Clumsy Ninja and CSR Racing.

While its middleware is built to handle the demands of console game development, Reil says its team sizes are unusually slim by comparison.

“Our team sizes are quite small compared to a console studio, usually 20 to 25 people. But the output is quality high-end, so we need to have the best people to achieve that.”

Reil said the reason devs should choose to work at NaturalMotion is because “we have ambition”.

He explained: “We try to do something truly amazing. And hopefully people can see than in our games – it’s not lip service.

“We really try to push the boundaries all the time. And that means that, working here, there’s a sense of purpose. This not a job just to earn money or to make a few nice games. This is a job to move millions and millions of people. And that is what drives us. And if we find people or talent who are hungry and who want to do that, I think it’s a great combination.”

In addition to display and online advertising, the UK developer also visits game events and hosts some of its own, such as one recently held for data scientists, where attendees gave talks and shared knowledge.

The studio, which currently employs more than 200 staff, is headquartered in Oxford and has studios in London, Brighton and San Francisco. It was acquired earlier this year by social game maker Zynga for £317m ($527m).

Train2Game News Kinect Sports Rival teardown

kinect-rivalsThis year, for the first time, the Develop in Brighton Conference will devote a whole day in one room to a teardown of a single game – Rare’s Kinect Sports Rivals.

This highly interactive and innovative strand will reveal how each aspect of the game was achieved – and how each aspect’s progress was interrelated and coordinated.

Rare’s Kinect Sports Rivals is one of the studio’s most ambitious titles to date. Designed with unique motion control and avatar generation systems, the game presented unparalleled technical, artistic and production challenges and made huge demands on every creative discipline.

The teardown sessions will provide an unprecedented insight into the full working practices of one of the world’s greatest developers.

“Because of the usual time pressures, and the need to cover so many topics, it can be difficult to dive too deep for any length of time on a single issue. This year that’s changed with our first teardown strand that will get right under the skin of a single game and analyse in detail the ideas and processes that brought Rare’s Kinect Sports Rivals to life,” commented Ali Fearnley, Conference Director at Tandem Events.

Session 1 – Design: A walkthrough the two-year design and incubation process that Rare undertook to devise a game to take motion gaming to the next level. How can this experience help you make better games?

Session 2 – Art: Lifting the lid on Rare’s new high-fidelity character art style, the reimagining of Xbox LIVE Avatars, and meshing player likenesses with the in-game world of Kinect Sports Rivals.

Session 3 – Production: How do you take cutting-edge technology out of the lab and into a game for a platform that is still being finalised? How do you ensure design, art, and the latest in machine vision technology comes together in a game people want to play – on-time and on-target?

Session 4 – Programming: Like all slickly coded products gamers should never know it, but Kinect Sports Rivals is doing a bunch of clever stuff under the hood. Learn how Rare’s programmers rose to meet the challenges set by the game’s designers and art department.

The teardown session will take place in Room 3 and start at 12.15 on Thursday 10th July.

Develop in Brighton includes the following:

Tuesday 8 July Evolve Conference

Wednesday 9 July Develop Conference, Develop Expo, Indie Showcase and Boot Camp

Thursday 10 July Develop Conference, Develop Expo, Indie Dev Day and Showcase, Audio track

Registration is open now at www.developconference.com and Super Early Bird rates are available until midnight on Wednesday 7 May, saving up to £170 off a three day pass.

Train2Game News Unreal Engine 4 update

Unreal Engine 4Epic Games has released the first major update to Unreal Engine 4 since its public launch as a $19 per month subscription-based service at the 2014 Game Developers Conference (GDC).

With the release of Unreal Engine 4.1, all subscribers who are registered Xbox or PlayStation developers, including members of the ID@Xbox independent developer program, can receive access to the engine’s complete source code for their respective console platforms, at no extra cost.

For the past two years, some of the world’s leading console developers have been using UE4 to build their next-generation games, so the widespread console availability of this engine is highly notable for the indie developer community.

The 4.1 update also includes SteamOS and Linux support, refined iOS and Android workflow, new game templates both for C++ programmers and designers using Blueprint visual scripting, and more than 100 improvements based on community feedback. In addition, Epic’s Elemental demo is now available for free for subscribers to download from the engine’s Marketplace so that developers can learn from its construction and use its assets in their own projects.

As a demonstration of UE4’s high-end console support, the engine includes “Shooter Game,” a sample project created by Epic and released for free on Marketplace.  The sample is now undergoing certification on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

Driven by feedback from the community and informed by Epic’s experience building games such as “Fortnite,” Unreal Engine 4 is evolving at an incredible pace.  Its first month has seen thousands of development forks created on GitHub to improve and extend the engine in an open, collaborative manner.  Starting now, developers on GitHub can see Epic’s internal development process in real-time, with live-streaming source code updates.

To learn more about UE4 or to download the tools, visit www.unrealengine.com.