Train2Game News Gamers with Aspergers


Gaming offers a unique appeal for people with Aspergers Syndrome.
The Really Awesome Gaming Expo, or rAge, is Africa’s ultimate destination for those who love gaming. Brought to you by NAG, rAge caters to every gaming and tech enthusiast across the board but also takes on a more serious purpose by encouraging development, growth and opportunities within the sector. In line with this approach, rAge will host the Start Up organisation as an exhibitor at this year’s expo. This organisation assists individuals diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome (AS) in finding and maintaining high-end employment opportunities as well as educational placement.

Nanette Botha, senior job coach at Start Up, explains AS thusly, “AS is a form of autism characterised by normal to superior IQ, accompanied by social and communication difficulties. These difficulties stem from neurologically based sensory and information-processing differences. Even though individuals diagnosed with AS might look like everybody else, their mind works in a significantly different way, and sometimes their behaviour and reactions will not be typical.”

Children with AS enjoy spending time with people they know well, but avoid crowds and busy, unpredictable places. They tend to be highly intelligent and are prepared to put all their energy into something that interests them, but somehow struggle to convey their thoughts. Noticing the slightest change in detail that others don’t even pay attention to while the “bigger picture” often goes by unnoticed is another marker in diagnosing AS.

Those with AS have unique talents and are being actively sought out by companies both locally and internationally as their “out of the box” thinking styles give undeniable value to their employers. From a CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) as well as a business angle, it makes sense to hire these highly intelligent individuals,” adds Nanette.

A career in gaming is highly appealing to those with AS and many of these individuals show remarkable talent in gaming, computers and game development.

For more information on Start Up visit

Train2Game news: UK Charts – FIFA 12 top again as two Zumba titles make top ten

Train2Game students have got used to seeing FIFA 12 from EA Sports at the top of the charts, and it remains there for the fourth consecutive time in a week when two Zimba Fitness titles make the top ten.

It’s the sixth time FIFA 12, which as reported by the Train2Game blog was the UK’s third ever biggest launch when it was released,has taken top spot and it’s certainly not proving easy for any other title to dislodge it.

Just Dance 3 moves up two spots to No.2, with The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim also raises two to take No.3 Battlefield 3 and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 slip to No.4 and No.5 respectively.

Zumba Fitness remains at No.6, while Zumba Fitness 2 enters the top ten at No.7. As previously reported by The Train2Game Blog, Zumba Fitness dominated the charts last summer.

RAGE moves up one to No.8, and Train2Game students can read our interview with its Creative Director Tim Willits here on The Train2Game Blog.

Assassin’s Creed: Revelations moves up one to No.9, while Need For Speed: The Run drops three to complete the top ten.

Ubisoft’s Kinect title Your Shape: Fitness Evolved 2012’ has been out since November but makes its top 40 debut at No.12.

The UKIE Gfk Chart-Track All Formats Top 10 for the week ending 14th January 2012 is therefore as follows:

1. FIFA 12 (EA)
2. Just Dance 3 (Ubisoft)
3 The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (Bethesda)
4. Battlefield 3 (EA)
5. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (Activision)
6. Zumba Fitness (505 Games)
7. Zumba Fitness 2 (505 Games)
8. RAGE (Bethesda)
9. Assassin’s Creed: Revelations (Ubisoft)
10. Need For Speed: The Run (EA)

As Train2Game students will know, January tends to be a quiet period for the games industry, and there are no major releases this week.

So Train2Game, what are your thoughts on FIFA’s continued dominance? And what do you make of two Zumba Fitness titles inside the top ten?

Leave your comments here on The Train2Game Blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

[Source: UKIE Games Charts©, compiled by GfK Chart-Track]

Train2Game news: EA Sports – RPG elements have a place in sports games

Train2Game students may have noticed RPG elements appearing in shooters, in recent years, with id Software’s RAGE being a very recent example. (See the Train2Game blog interview with RAGE Creative Director  Tim Willits here)

And while traditional RPG’s used to be a niche market, elements of the genre are appearing all over the place. EA Sports Vice-President Andrew Wilson believes that RPG elements could even invade sport simulation titles such as FIFA.

“I think it’s a part of it, certainly.” he said when asked by The Guardian if RPG is the future of sports games.

“I think the future of the sports sim is the fact that you can choose how you want to play it. That we allow you to play on any platform, at any time, at any price, anyway you want”.

Wilson emphasised the importance of choice when playing games.

“Some players are all about the manager mode. Some players want the online head-to-head. The future for us lies in not compartmentalising any of the experiences, but to build a world where players can add value to their gaming experiences however they like.”

Of course, as reported by the Train2Game blog, even without RPG elements, the latest instalment of the FIFA franchise has been incredibly successful and currently sits at the top of the charts.

But Wilson believes that the market is still very much open, with consumers much more willing to play a variety of games than they used to.

“There was a time where gamers either played sports games or they played RPGs.” said the EA Sports Vice-President.

“Now there’s a lot more crossover in the industry; there are plenty of FiFA players who are playing games such as Dragon Age as well.”

We’ve been listening to the feedback from our audience and they say they want more compelling experiences in their sports games.” Wilson added.

So Train2Game, what are your thoughts on Wilson’s comments? Are RPG elements beginning to feature in more games? Do they need to be in sports titles?

Leave your comments here on the Train2Game blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

[Source: The Guardian]

Train2Game news: UK Charts – FIFA 12 still dominating

Train2Game blog readers saw FIFA 12 storm to the top of the charts last week, with a record breaking performance. And while it may not have sold as many copies this time around, FIFA 12 has still had the 13th highest ever weekly sales for a game in the UK and remains at No.1.

It means that RAGE from id Software debuts at No.2, with another new entry in the form of Dark Souls following at No.3. Xbox 360 exclusive and former chart topper Gears of War 3 slips down to No.4, with F1 2011 at No.5 having dropped two places.

Zumba Fitness continues to feature in the top ten, following a long spell at No.1 during the summer, and is at No.6 this week, one spot ahead of another former No.1, Dead Island.

Deus Ex: Human Revolution slips to No.8, LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean is No.9 for the third week in a row, while Resistance 3 climbs up three places to complete the top ten.

NBA 2K12 reaches No.12 in its first week, while El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron debuts in the top 40 at 39, a month after its release.

The UKIE Gfk Chart-Track All Formats Top 10 for the week ending 8th October 2011 is therefore as follows:

1. FIFA 12 (EA)
2. Rage (Bethesda)
3. Dark Souls (Namco Bandai)
4. Gears of War 3 (Microsoft)
5. F1 2011 (Codemasters)
6. Zumba Fitness (505 Games)
7. Dead Island (Deep Silver)
8. Deus Ex: Human Revolution (Square Enix)
9. LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean (Disney)
10. Resistance 3 (Sony)

Releases this week include PES 2012, Forza 4 and Just Dance 3.

So Train2Game, what are your thoughts on FIFA 12’s continuing success? Will it be dislodged by any of this week’s new releases? And have you been playing RAGE or Dark Souls?

Leave your comments here on the Train2Game blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

[Source: UKIE Games Charts©, compiled by GfK Ch

Train2Game news: UK charts – FIFA 12 is third biggest ever launch

Train2Game blog readers probably won’t be too surprised, but FIFA 12 has shot to No.1 in its debut week on sale, becoming the third biggest ever UK game launch ever.

It overtakes the launch of Grand Theft Auto IV and only the previous two Call of Duty titles have enjoyed bigger first week sales. FIFA 12 takes top spot from last weeks’ chart topper Gears of War 3.

Regular Train2Game blog readers will be used to seeing the FIFA name in the charts, with the previous title in the series, FIFA 11, still in the UK charts top ten as recently as last month.

The success of FIFA 12 sees F1 2011 from Codemasters slip one spot to No.3, ahead of non-mover and previous long time chart topper Zumba Fitness at No.4. Meanwhile, another former No.1 in the form of Dead Island drops to No.5 in its fourth week on sale.

Deus Ex: Human Revolution slides one to No.6, sitting one spot ahead of the PlayStation 3 exclusive new entry Ico & Shadow of the Colossus HD remake bundle.

UK developed Driver: San Francisco slips to No.8, LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean remains at No.9, while Call of Duty: Black Ops once again re-enters the top ten.

X-Men: Destiny from Activision enters the charts at No.18 in its first week on sale.

The UKIE Gfk Chart-Track All Formats Top 10 for the week ending 1st October 2011 is therefore as follows:

  1. FIFA 12 (EA)
  2. Gears of War 3 (Microsoft)
  3. F1 2011 (Codemasters)
  4. Zumba Fitness (505 Games)
  5. Dead Island (Deep Silver)
  6. Deus Ex: Human Revolution (Square Enix)
  7. Ico & Shadow of the Colossus Collection (Sony)
  8. Driver: San Francisco (Ubisoft)
  9. LEGO Pirates of the Carribean (Disney)
  10. Call of Duty: Black Ops (Activision)

Releases this week include Dark Souls and RAGE. Train2Game students can find out more about RAGE from id Software in the Train2Game interview with Creative Director Tim Willits.

What are your thoughts on the success of FIFA 12? Will it remain a big seller for almost a year, like its predecessor?  Can Dark Souls or RAGE knock it from No.1?

Leave your comments here on the Train2Game blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

[Source: UKIE Games Charts©, compiled by GfK Chart-Track]

Train2Game news: Game developers need to make new IP a franchise from the start say id Software

Train2Game students who go onto work on Triple-A titles will need to be ready to develop whole game franchises. At least that’s the case if id Software Creative Director Tim Willits.

“You need to make a franchise, especially for us. We’re doing everything we can to turn it into a franchise, “please let it sell so we can make another one!” he told

And Willits said they needed to make sure the story was deep enough to do this from the start.

“Even from the beginning when we talked about the story and the setting, we said we need to make it rich, we need to have deep environment,”

“We have the comic books that we’ve used to support the game, we have the book we use to support the game, the iPhone – heck, the whole iPhone game was about Bash TV, which is only a ten minute experience in the overall game.” said id Software Creative Director.

He suggests that the RAGE franchise could even expand to include mobile and social games.

“So we definitely, from the get go, planned to make this a much bigger franchise, a much richer world, that allows us to have different games, and we can make more mobile games, heck, we could make a social game with Rage if we wanted to. And hopefully we can make a Rage 2. Hopefully.”

In an his in-depth interview with, Willits handed out advice to those looking to get into the games industry: make sure you create things and finish them.

“If you want to make levels, make levels in you spare time, all the time. If you want to be an artist you always have to be drawing. If you want to be a programmer you need to make small apps. You have to have a passion to do it for free if you ever want to really get paid for it.” he said.

It’s very similar to the advice Willits gave Train2Game students about how to get into the games industry in an interview with the Train2Game blog last month.

Interested Train2Game students will be able to use RAGE’s mod tools following its release next month.

So Train2Game, what are your thoughts on Willits comments? Does new IP need to be considered a franchise from its inception? Or can games still be one offs?

Leave your comments here on the Train2Game blog, or on the Train2Game forum.


Train2Game news: Single player and MMO game design will converge says id Software Creative Director Tim Willits


Train2Game Game Designers will build games in which MMO elements form part of the single player narrative.

At least that’ll be the case if the predictions of id Software’s Creative Director Tim Willits come true. In an interview with MCV, he discussed the future of narrative in games and believes social aspects will become an integral part.

“Storytelling is key in open world games, and then just the sheer variety of things you can do.” He told the industry publication.

“We have games like Skyrim, where there’s just SO much you can do: you can develop your character the way you want, you can develop the game the way you want and play it the way you want, and that’s a great trend I hope will continue to grow”

“But it’s the social aspect of games which is hugely important” Willits stated.

“In the future, I believe we will have many more games where the choices that you make in your single player game will affect games that other people play. Yes, we have massively multiplayer games now, but they’re so connected and tied-in and you’ll have a much more social component to many bigger games.”

And when asked if single player and multiplayer MMOs could converge over time, the RAGE Creative Director said he believed they would.”

“Yes. Just think of Fallout” he said. “If you went off to do something and you’re playing through and you made one faction more powerful.”

“Maybe, when your buddy gets there that faction still is. That’d just be cool! If things that you did in your game affected the universe, where you’re not necessarily directly competing, but different people’s outcomes are affected by what you do.”

The Train2Game blog was fortunate enough to speak to Tim Willits at Gamescom last month, and in an in-depth interview he discussed how id Software developed the different aspects of RAGE.

Willits also revealed that he believes modding is an excellent way for Train2Game students to get into the games industry. Train2Game students would therefore be wise to get their hands on the RAGE SDK which as reported by the Train2Game blog will be available following the games release!

Do you agree with Willits? Will single player games include MMO elements? Is it something that you’d like to see? And how will it impact on game design?

Leave your comments here on the Train2Game blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

[Source: MCV]

Train2Game at Gamescom: Interview with RAGE Creative Director Tim Willits


Train2Game  attended Gamescom from 17th August to 21st August.  During our time in Cologne we were fortunate enough to get hands on time with RAGE and speak to Creative Director Tim Willits.  

During our interview he discussed the ideas, design and development process behind RAGE. Willits also reveals how he got into the industry through modding, and suggests Train2Game students should do the same if they want to follow in his footsteps.

Read the interview with RAGE Creative Director Tim Willits below, or listen to it on via Train2Game Radio.

Leave your comments here on the Train2Game blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

Train2Game at gamescom Tim Willits Creative Director of ID Software talks about Rage to Danny Palmer

Train2Game at gamescom Tim Willits Creative Director of ID Software talks about Rage to Danny Palmer and he shares his tips to working in the games industry.

Train2Game news: FPS is the ‘best’ genre say id Software


Many Train2Game students will be very familiar with Id Software; the game developer is arguably the father of the first person shooter with the likes of Wolfenstein, Doom, Quake and soon, RAGE, coming from the studio.

However, despite the amount of competition in an FPS market – with Call of Duty currently the most successful – Id Software still believe the genre still has a massive future.

“The FPS I feel is the very best genre because it places you, the game player into the experience like no other type of genre does.” creative director Tim Willits told Quakecon.

The comments from Id software echo those made by Irrational Games Ken Levine earlier this, as previously reported by the Train2Game blog.

“It’s one less barrier to the experience,” The Bioshock  creatorsaid on the subject of making games immersive through a first person view.

“It’s a strange thing to be in someone else’s shoes. It’s something we do very naturally as children, but it’s something that is much more difficult for adults. I think that games give us enough of a nudge in the right direction to have that childhood experience of play.”

While RAGE will be played from a first person perspective, Id Software’s title will feature driving and RPG elements, and Willits believes this is a positive step for the games industry.

“Even the word genre is a bit too constricting and I think that people should remove labels from games and let games just be games.” He said.

“I’ve always felt that the future is very bright for first person shooters. We have so many fans and there are so many different directions it could take that I believe that in itself, it’ll be around for years and that id software will be around for years too.” Willets added.

RAGE will be helped along by the fact that graphically, the games Art & Animation looks very good indeed, and as reported by the Train2Game blog this week, id Software believe that “graphics will always matter.”

RAGE could provide a great opportunity for Train2Game students, given that modding tools will be available for the PC version.

So Train2Game, do you think the FPS is the ‘best’ genre? Or is genre becoming an obsolete word?

Leave your comments here on the Train2Game blog, or on the Train2Game forum.

[Source: CVG]