Train2Game News Future T Gaming looking for staff

Train2GameTrain2Game student, Ed Turrall, is looking for other Train2Game students to join his student studio, Future T Gaming, to work on an interesting idea.

Ed is looking for voluntary Students who have a year or two experience on the course in their respective field. He has a big idea and wants students who would be committed and skilled enough to bring the idea to fruition.

The main objective of the game is to conquer and occupy a new and uninhabited planet in a solar system far away from Earth. The plan once you reach this planet is to make sure you have the necessary resources for your crew and passengers. You start by building Greenhouse buildings where you can then plant food and start working on the atmosphere of the planet.

The way you build and plant objects will depend on what level you are which basically means you can do as much as you want as things will be cheap and sell for a lot. For example, you plant and harvest Oranges or Apples, these will cost you around 5cc (colony coins) to plant but will sell for 20cc and also give you 50exp.

Ed said, “The game idea I have is to make a game like all of these farming games, which are nice, but seem too boring after a certain level is reached. What I want to do is change this way of gaming and bring a new kick into the era of farming games.”

There are a number of positions available for all areas of games development.

If you are interested in joining Ed and Future T Gaming, visit http://beta.train2game-online.com/teams/team.php?id=106&fb_source=message to find out more about the game and to get in touch with him.

You can email Ed with your CV and Portfolio at mail@edwardturrall.co.uk

Train2Game News: DreamSpark Booklet

DreamSparkTrain2Game have released a small simple booklet detailing the benefits of DreamSpark and how it is benefiting Train2Game student studio, Gallant Cloud.

You can view the booklet below.

Train2Game News: Train2Game radio interviews Lewis Gordon

Lewis GordonI got the pleasure of interview Train2Game student, Lewis Gordon. Lewis is one of the founding members of Merkury Games and he talks to me about how the studio started and where the ideas for the games came from.

You can listen to the interview here: https://audioboo.fm/boos/1561950-train2game-student-lewis-gordon-talks-to-t2g-radio

Or read the transcript below:

Hi I’m Lewis Gordon from Train2Game doing the Games Development course.

How you doing Lewis?

I’m not too bad, yourself?

I’m good cheers mate. So give us a bit of your background then mate, what you been doing?

I started the Train2Game course three years ago, I’ve literally just applied for my extension on the course it’s self, but I started off originally just as a gamer and I turned around and thought, “I want to make games”, didn’t know much about it, saw this course, saw I could do it around my own time and work and thought it suited me to the best of my abilities really. Once I started the course I did struggle a bit and I met a couple of people on the forums them selves, one in particular, we started to bounce ideas off of each other and get some actual games rolling. The original one we made was just between me and the programmer, it was just literally the two of us. We had no designers, no artists or anything like that, it was just a case of we thought we’d make a game and it turned out it was actually working, which was a shock!

Nice! With the games you’ve made and stuff is that with the studio you’re part of now?

That’s right yeah, both games we’ve made are or are part of studio work.

Yeah? What was the studio called, your one?

The studios called Merkury games with an M-e-r-k-u-r-y.

Any reason you decided to go with that rather than the actual spelling?

Just because, like with our games, it represents how different we want to be. So instead of going the same route and going the same words and everything like that, we will just change a slight bit to make it our own.

Fair enough! I’ve had a look at a couple of the trailers for your games, I haven’t had a chance to play them yet, and they do look quite interesting and fun. Where do the ideas come from for them?

The first one, the pirates one, that was actually an idea from my portfolio project. We had to make a design document for a game and that was the one I came up with, then me and the other programmer decided “OK, let’s try to make this game”. So we kept putting ideas together and the ideas just kept expanding and expanding. That one, its self is still a work in progress because we are thinking about adding more levels into it and bosses and things like that but the idea, like with any kind of game, come from games we have played previously but just something that we’d want to play ourselves. If we think we can enjoy it, we just want to make sure people can enjoy it as well.

Yeah fair enough! So, you develop mostly for PC don’t you?

Yeah, for ourselves, PC market is the one we are going for. Just purely because PC Gaming is more or less for the hardcore gamers. We can obviously look at mobile phones and consoles but end of the day, Consoles are becoming more and more like a PC so might as well go directly to the market that’s asking for it.

Your studio now, you said that it started off as just you and another developer, so what have you got now?

So originally it was just me and the programmer. Now, I don’t know the exact numbers, I think we’ve got about six artists, some of them are on and off – just doing work when they can, we’ve got out games designer and obviously QA involved as well. So we’ve got a good variety of people, some new, some experienced and some just looking to get involved really.

How long have you been doing the studio?

The studio started this year, so we finished the first game and thought, why don’t we try and make this in to a studio? Get some people together and make some games that would actually be appealing to people and not just us.

Yeah, is it all Train2Game members you’ve got as your team?

Near enough all of our members are Train2Game except for one which is just a person I know personally.

Nice one. So what are your plans for the future?

Plans for the future, we are hoping that we can turn this company in to something that can.. For us it’s not making a profit that drives us, it’s making them games, but if we can make anything off the work we do that’s a bonus none the less!

Perfect! Well I think that’s all we have time for today Lewis so thank you very much for your time buddy!

That’s no problem at all

I will talk to you soon

Talk soon

Bye!

Bye!

Train2Game News: Icey Monty featured in Newmarket News

Icey MontyThe success of Train2Game student studio, Icey Monty, has been noticed by studio founder Nick Walker’s local paper, Newmarket News.

The article in the paper talks about the success the young studio have been having lately and their recent partnership with Strongbow.

You can read the article in the link below.

Train2Game Student News Icey Monty Newmarket

Well done guys! Keep up the good work.

Train2Game News: Microsoft allowing self publishing on Xbox One

Xbox OneMicrosoft have announced they will allow self publishing for indie titles on the Xbox One. This is excellent news for Train2Game students.

Microsoft have also announced that each console can be used as a development kit, much like the way that Apple devices can be used as such.

Here’s the official statement from Xbox corporate VP, Marc Whitten:

“Our vision is that every person can be a creator. That every Xbox One can be used for development. That every game and experience can take advantage of all of the features of Xbox One and Xbox LIVE. This means self-publishing. This means Kinect, the cloud, achievements. This means great discoverability on Xbox LIVE. We’ll have more details on the program and the timeline at Gamescom in August.”

Whitten also told Kotaku that dev kit functionality will not be available at launch, but will be added ‘at a later date’.

This dispells all concerns of the accessibility and exposure of indie game on Xbox One, Whitten promises they will live on the Xbox Live Marketplace with the major titles.

Whitten explains “Of course there will be different pivots inside of that. There will be everything from what are we curating, kind of like spotlight content, to the normal discoverability stuff like recommendations, what’s trending, what’s got a lot of engagement on the platform. But you shouldn’t think of it as there’s an indie area and a non-indie area.”

With this announcement it opens up an entirely new indie market for Train2Game students and Student Studios with all the features of the Xbox One, allowing you to get creative with features such as Kinect and the Cloud.

Train2Game News: Train2Game Radio talks to Domm Young

Domm YoungI got the pleasure of talking to Domm Young who is Icey Montys new developer. You can hear how Domm started coding and how he got involved with Icey Monty.

You can listen to the interview here: http://audioboo.fm/boos/1475212-train2game-radio-talks-to-student-domm-young

Or read the transcript below:

Hi I’m Domm Young, I live in Portsmouth and I’m on the Developer course with Train2Game.

Hiya Domm, how you doing mate?

I’m not bad thank you. Yourself?

I’m alright cheers bud. So tell me a bit about yourself then?

I came out of college when I was 19. I’ve always wanted to be a Developer. I worked on a lot of stuff during my college time. I did Visual Basic to start with, it’s not the language I had in mind but it’s the only one they taught there at the time. From then onwards I’ve just been doing jobs that I didn’t really want to do and in my own time I’ve just been working on my own thing, but about a year ago or so I decided to join the Train2Game course because I needed a little bit more structure and discipline in my learning and that’s basically what’s brought me to here, really.

What started off your want for coding and stuff like that?

It was basically all down to the fact that when I was younger and playing games and stuff, I always thought it would be cool to implement my own things and I always had an imaginative way of thinking. So when it come to the PC I started playing a game called Vice City at the time, I’m sure everyone knows that!

Indeed.

There was stuff you could do by changing some of the scripts like replacing some of the models in the game but you could also add predefined scripts that were already done, you could put them in to the game and see how they worked. I thought that was pretty cool. From then onwards it was just basically researching and seeing how that all worked.

So were you doing a lot of Game Mods and stuff like that during your college years?

A little bit. When I started learning Visual Basic I thought, I’m going to be learning Visual Basic through the three years I’m at college I might as well get comfortable with using that. Obviously it got constraints when it comes to making games like the fact you can’t, you know, it misses an API basically. I was playing around with that and making little games on screen. When I left college, I started learning C++ as a full time thing and then obviously I found out that the Train2Game course also teaches C++ so it works out really well.

Now you’re with Train2Game you said you were working on other projects. What are you working on now?

I joined a company called Icey Monty. I found Nick on the Train2Game forum and then through Nick I met John. Within that company we do a lot of client work, primarily, that’s mainly our focus. We put our clients first and then we work on our own thing during the evenings or at weekends. Most of the time it’s just ideas we throw about, we get together in a call, we write a few documents and then we see if we can implement it and then if it actually works out, we’ll go ahead and do it. If it seems like it’s going to be boring or it’s not going to work out we decide not to bother with it any more. We’ve got a few projects we are playing around with it at the moment, one being a sort of racing game where you start off and you’ve got to see how far you can get whilst being obstructed by various types of Zombies, it’s just an idea we are throwing out there but at the moment it’s all in the works.

Yeah. So is it a few time job for you now working with Icey Monty?

It is now, yeah. I worked in retail, prior and then I got the chance to join Icey Monty, doing something I really like doing and no one would turn that down.

That’s gotta be a bit of a relief hasn’t it!

Yeah exactly. I’ve been working in jobs I hate for most of my life, since I left college. I’ve worked in stuff like Warehouses and Call Centers and Retail and all that sort of stuff. As soon as I heard Icey Monty were interviewing, I inquired more about it and managed to get hooked up with an interview, that’s where I met John, and it happened straight away. He asked within a couple of days if I wanted to start and I handed in my notice at work.

Excellent. So what was it you think they liked about you so much then?

It was more the drive. I didn’t care how much it was more the fact I wanted to do what I like doing and that’s all I really cared about. As soon as Nick told me they were looking for someone to be a developer for them, he told me what they were using like Unity and C# and stuff. Straight away I started getting straight on to it, started learning Unity, obviously told him about it and both of them were quite shocked about the drive that I had. So I think that played a big part in the reason why I got the job.

Excellent so with this full time job then you can pay the bills alright then?

Yeah, it’s fine. I am happy as long as I can make ends meet and do what I love doing really.

You sound like you’ve got a real love of all things code.

Yeah, that’s right, yeah. Like I said, it’s the only thing I ever wanted to do and I’m sure it’s the only thing I’ll ever want to do.

Excellent. So what are your ambitions to move on to or go forward to in the future?

Icey Monty is my first ever game industry job, working with programmers full time so I hope to stick with those guys. Working with John and Nick is really laid back, you couldn’t ask for a better set of managers to be honest with you.

Excellent! So I think that’s all we’ve got time for today Domm. So thank you very much for your time.

Not a problem at all. Thanks for having me!

My pleasure.

Train2Game News: Train2Game Radio – Ryan Mitchelson

Rage Quit GamesI spoke to Ryan Mitchelson recently about his position with Train2Game, his new game and his feelings on the Unity engine.

The site mentioned in the interview is still under construction but does have links to their social media if you would like to learn more about the company.

You can listen to the interview here: http://audioboo.fm/boos/1422444-train2game-radio-talk-to-ryan-mitchelson

Or read the following Transcript:

Hi I’m Ryan from Fife.

Hiya Ryan, how you doing mate?

I’m doing good, how about yourself Mark?

I’m not to bad ta muchly! So what have you been up to lately Ryan, what sort of things have you been doing?

Recently I’ve been working on getting prototypes put together for a game that I’m trying to establish, along side trying to set up a company for myself and the people that I work with.

What game is it that you’ve been working on? If you can say.

The game is called Bounce. The aim of the game is to keep a ball bouncing throughout the entire level. There’s going to be several different levels to the game with obviously getting more and more complex as they go by. Oh and it’s a physics based game as well so hopefully it will be an interesting game for people to play.

You said you were working with other people, who is it you’ve been working with?

Recently I’ve been working with Laurence Kinane.

Yeah he’s a Train2Game student isn’t he?

He’s currently a Train2Game student, at the moment he is trying to finish off his course so that we can work full time on games together.

So what’s your position now with Train2Game?

Well I decided to, after a while, not continue with the Train2Game course mainly due to financial reasons, but I have learned a lot from them and I’d like to say thank you for the knowledge I have gained from Train2Game, but at the moment I don’t really have any position with them, I am just trying to establish my own company.

Fair enough. Do you have a name for the company?

It’s called Rage Quit Games.

Something every nerd can get behind!

Oh yeah definitely! That’s why we decided to go with that name, we thought it would be appropriate.

Yeah we have all had a Rage Quit at some point or another!

Oh yeah, I think it happens daily for me to be honest.

So what is it you are making Bounce with at the minute?

We are using Unity.

You’re using Unity are you? How are you finding using that?

Using Unity is absolutely amazing! To be honest the thing I love most about Unity is being able to build extensions on top of it. One example being that I use Visual Scripting system, one of them called Playmaker which is an incredible powerful extension that allows me to essentially script the entire game just using little boxes that I connect together, each box has a certain amount of information in it.

Excellent! So yours is a coding background then I imagine?

Not so much, I am much more of a designer at heart. That’s why I decided to go with a visual scripting system because I did try to learn coding but I found it just wasn’t for me. I eventually just ended up really stressed out with it.

Yeah, I have tried learning code myself a couple of times and it does just look incredibly daunting whenever you look at it.

It is! I mean, it does make sense when you actually look at a sheet of code you can understand and edit it, well for me anyway I can edit things and make them work as I see fit, but writing code from scratch and remembering everything is the most difficult part for me personally.

Did you say you have a website in design at the minute or is out and about with people to see?

It’s almost out and about, I reckon by the time this interview goes up, it will probably be ready and available to the public to go and have a look.

Perfect then so if you’d like to give me a link so everyone can go and have a look at it?

It’s www.ragequitgames.co.uk

That’s perfect.

Is that ok?

That’s perfect and excellent so everyone can go and have a look see at that now.

Excellent

Well thank you very much for your time today Ryan and I will talk to you soon.

Not a problem, thank you for having me!

Train2Game News: Train2Game in The Guardian

Train2Game and Icey Monty have been mentioned in an article in The Guardian news paper.

Under the Learn and Earn heading in the paper they talk about Nick Walker of Train2Game Student Studio Icey Monty. The article discusses how Nick runs his own app creating company at the age of nineteen and lives debt free, allowing him to enjoy a healthy social life, with never going to University.

Click to enlarge the image to read the article.

The Guardian 28 May 2013 T2G

Train2Game News: Unity goes free to develop for mobile

unity-logoGood news for Train2Game students, the Unity engine is now free to use for development for iOS and Android.

In a move to further democratise game development, Unity is making its basic mobile tools free for independent developers and small studios.

Unity is a game development ecosystem: a powerful rendering engine fully integrated with a complete set of intuitive tools and rapid work flow to create interactive 3D content. It also has thousands of quality, ready-made assets in the Asset Store and a helpful knowledge-sharing Community.

Starting today, indies will be able to publish their games and apps to iOS and Android in the build menu. Publishing options for other mobile platforms, such as BlackBerry and Windows Phone 8 will also be included “at no additional cost” once they are released.

Unity CEO David Helgason said “We were able to make Unity free for the web and for desktop computers a while ago, but have been dreaming of doing the same for mobile for what seems like forever.

“Mobile games development is possibly the most dynamic and exciting industry in the world, and it’s an honour to be able to help so many developers be so successful in fulfilling their visions and in building their businesses.”

Taking to Twitter, Unity rendering architect Aras Pranckevičius said that there will be some compensation for developers who had already paid for their licence but he is unsure of how the compensation scheme will work.

This is obviously amazing news for Train2Game students and student studios as it is one less boundary stopping you from developing games. You can download the engine and start developing today from here, http://unity3d.com/

Train2Game News: Train2Game Radio interview with Icey Monty

Icey MontyI got the pleasure of interviewing the Train2Game Student Studio Icey Monty earlier this week. They are really going from strength to strength in this industry and you can read about or listen to their company adventures below.

You can listen to the interview here: http://audioboo.fm/boos/1350533-train2game-student-studio-icey-monty-talks-to-t2g-radio

Or read the following transcript:

John: Hi, my name’s John, I’m on the Developer course and I’m from Scotland but now live in Newcastle.

Nick: Hi I’m Nick, I’m also on the Train2Game course and I’m from Newmarket, Suffolk.

Hi guys, how you doing?

John: I’m good, how about you?

Nick: I’m good, really good.

I’m good cheers guys, so tell me who you guys are and what you have been up to?

John: We’re Icey Monty, we started our own company two weeks ago and we are now officially working on a couple of clients games.

Very nice. So what clients, what games? If you can say of course

John: Nick is working for a professor in California at the minute, he specialises in eye to brain coordination. He’s asked for a thing to be created that will measure reflexes, how quick the eye can send a message to the brain. So Nick’s been working on that for the past two or three weeks now and I’m working on a racing game for a client in the Ukraine. He’s got a website that currently gets about three hundred thousand hits a day so that’s pretty cool!

You seem to get a lot of international work. Where do you source your work from?

John: I’ll let you answer that one Nick.

Nick: Sure. Well we started off by just posting in the Unity commercial forums just saying we are a small start up and we are available for work. After that, we had about two or three jobs leading from that and from there we had the funds to start a website and since then we haven’t had to contact anyone really. We’ve had people contact us for the last few weeks.

So, is it just the two of you working then?

Nick: It is, yeah.

Are you happy working in a small team?

Nick: Oh absolutely yeah!

John: Most Definitely.

Nick: So much better than with the pressure you get with a large team.

John: Especially from a management side of things.

Nick: Oh definitely yeah. Things are a lot more flexible for us now. Things are a lot more laid back. Some days it doesn’t even feel like working really. A bit of a cliché but we really enjoy it so it’s nice.

Excellent. So you’ve had quite a lot of success so what advice would you give to students who are looking to start making games professionally?

John: Oh, be prepared to work, a lot. That’s how we done ours. When we got a clients job we literally wouldn’t rest because the way we thought about it was, this is our dream and they’ve given us the opportunity to where we want to be with our careers and our lives, so really we are indebted to these people.

Nick: You give them everything you can offer them. Don’t think of it as a job, you’re giving them your expertise. You’re showing them that you can do these kind of things, your proving yourself in the market, in the work you do.

So work hard and you will be noticed, kind of thing?

John: Yeah. The other thing we do is, if we know we are ahead of our schedule, we will actually contact the client because we’ve had an idea, literally me and Nick will talk all day – obviously we still get our work done, we don’t sit down and have a nanny chat, but if we come up with a cool idea we will contact the client and say “Look, we are a bit ahead of schedule, would you like this added to your game?” at no extra cost, it won’t cost you anything, we are just really enjoying what we are working on at the minute.

Perfect, so always go that extra mile for them?

Nick: Yeah, it pays back ten-fold.

John: It does, insanely.

So finally then lads, where can people find out more about Icey Monty?

John: If you just go to www.iceymonty.com which is our professional website or you can go to www.iceymontyblog.com and there are things we are working on personally for our clients projects, obviously with permission, some of the systems we create or just some general ideas and some doodles we do through the day.

Perfect well thank you very much guys!

John: No problem, thanks very much!

Nick: Cheers!