Train2Game News: Something Money Can’t Buy

NicolaHi guys, I’m Nicola, the winner of the Rapid2D competition that you can see on the front page of the Train2game site.

Nicolas chequeThis article is partially to share a world of thanks to the people at Train2game that helped me and continue to support me to reach my dream, partially for all the people that write on the forum asking questions like “is this real or is it a scam?” , “should I start this course?” and “will I gain success?”…

Nicola Modern JagoBut, above all, this article is for you, students that, like me, are inside Train2Game to follow your dreams.

On June 18, thanks to Eric Wiltsher and Harry Cole, I spent a wonderful, amazing, unforgettable day meeting famous people inside the game industry.

Andrew Webber (Microsoft), Nicola, Andy Payne

Andrew Webber (Microsoft), Nicola, Andy Payne

I had a tour in the Microsoft Lift London Studios (Soho, London) and I saw a real team working on a game. I shook the hands of people like Andrew Webber, Ian Livingstone, Andy Payne, Lee Schuneman, and I received more than 6 hours of mentoring about how to become someone inside the games industry. Precious information that certainly will help me.

Nicola and Philip Oliver

Nicola and Philip Oliver

When, 8 months ago, I started the course never, if someone said “Nicola, prepare yourself because the next year you will meet the life president of Eidos” I wouldn’t have believed it and never would have I felt so close to changing my life for the better.

Ian Livingstone

Ian Livingstone

So, for all of you that sometimes feel bad and think that nothing will change, keep focused on your dreams, take ALL the opportunities that Train2Game gives you and you’ll find that surely you’ll be rewarded.

Great Future, my friends.

Nicola Valcasara

Train2Game News: The future’s a game as Nicola’s incredible journey across Europe pays off

Nicola When Nicola Valcasara faced nothing but dead-end jobs in his home-town of Verona, he went on an incredible journey which ended on the doorstep of one of the world’s biggest companies.

The ambitious Italian rode almost 2000 miles through Italy, France and the UK on his Honda motorbike to seek his fortune.

Nicola, aged 26, of Lowerstoft Close, south east London, said: “I was delivering pizzas in Italy and working in an amusement park, anything to get by really, but then I found myself out of work for a year…

“I’d always had the ambition to work in the games industry but there are no real opportunities anywhere in Italy. I’d spent months applying to companies but got no response.

“I couldn’t see any future at home and one day I just jumped on my motorbike and rode off into the night with my heart set on finding work.”

After five days of travelling across Europe Nicola finally arrived in London. “It wasn’t that I believed the streets were paved with gold but I knew it was a major centre for the games industry and that’s all I wanted to get in to.”

David Cameron has made the video games and apps industry one of his main focuses of the UK’s economic recovery offering major tax breaks to companies offering new jobs and opportunities to talented people and financial support to major organisations. But Nicola’s arrival in the capital was a nightmare – within 24 hours a gang tried to steal his motorbike and a few days later he was conned out of £300 by a company which promised to get him into the games industry.

“It was terrible, I’d parked my bike in the street and five men tried to steal it – the police woke me up at 3am. The next blow was meeting up with a man who convinced me that his firm could teach me what I needed to know to realise my techy ambitions. They ripped me off. I was pretty despondent.”

Nicola and chefs

“I didn’t know he was in the competition. When he told us he had won we were in shock. He’s a very quiet guy, then out of nowhere he told us he had won £10,000”, head chef Sandro Jaupi

But within ten days Nicola had found himself a job as a chef in one of London’s top restaurants.

“Things were looking up and I have always enjoyed cooking – but it still wasn’t what I was looking for. I knew Microsoft’s London offices weren’t far from where I was working and I’d always wanted the chance to prove my abilities to them in particular. It was like I was standing on the doorstep of a dream.”

Nicola started burning the midnight oil in a bid to break in to the games industry. “I used my wages to pay for aTrain2Game course, one of the biggest training colleges in the UK, and right away I began making games and apps.”

It was then he entered the national Rapid2D development competition to find the best apps created for Microsoft’s Windows 8. Nicola was amazed to hear he’d won the top prize of £10,000. Part of the prize was to see his work go up on line, a visit to Microsoft’s new centre in London and to receive mentoring from Gurus.

Myra and Andrew presenting the cheque

“I can’t believe it – it was worth that incredible journey through the nights on a motorbike from Italy. Now I have money in the bank, I’m learning to build games which is my real ambition and I’ve got an introduction to Microsoft. I feel like I’m really on top of life.”

Dr. Jan Telensky senior JV of Train2Game where Nicola is learning said: “We think Nicola has done really well and what a journey he went on to get here. We wish him all the best. This really is an exciting time to get into the industry, particularly with the Government tax breaks and the support of major organisations. Our students are becoming main players in games design.”

Nicola coaching Andrew

Nicola coaching Andrew Weber, Microsoft at Le Mercury {deuxiéme}

Nicola chefs and cheque

Sandro Jaupi, head chef (Nicola’s boss)

How do you feel about Nicola winning?

Absolutely amazing,

He has worked for us for around 5 months.

He really likes gaming; all he talks about is gaming in the kitchen.

He works in the kitchen for a job but his heart is set on making games, this is like a dream come true for him.

Nicolas cheque

Train2Game News: Rapid2D winner interview

NicolaTwo weeks ago, the winner of the Rapid2D £10,000 competition was announced as Nicola Valcasara and this week he was interviewed by Eric Wiltsher on RTI.

Nicola is a truly inspirational young man and his story is quite incredible.

You can listen to the interview at www.rti.fm in the podcasts section

or read the transcript below:

An Interview on RTI with a student from Train2Game Who won £10,000 with Rapid2D

Train2Game News: Rapid2D £10,000 competition winner announced!

Rapid2DValca Entertainment announced as the winners of the Rapid 2D app design competition

Today lives changed for the team at development company Valca Entertainment as they were granted £10,000 as the winners of the Rapid 2D app development competition 2013. In this exciting competition entrants were tasked to develop Windows 8 apps but it was all about quality and quantity with developers entered into a draw with each game they produced. The winner was announced on www.rti.fm at 3.00pm adding kudos to this already life changing prize.

Myra Smallman, Director of Rapid 2D, said about the games engine “What we have tried to do with Rapid2D is to make it available to everyone and anyone who wants to make games. So, we have a free basic version on the Rapid2D website and very little coding knowledge is needed to be able to operate that. The novice that wants to be games designer can produce a game from the free version.”

On working in the mobile industry, Rik Alexander managing Director at AppCrowd, said “With a smaller company you can turn around apps a lot faster in the mobile market and it is a lot more enjoyable. You don’t need as many overheads and you don’t need as many people, you can be much more nimble as a team. A smaller team can communicate easier which means you make less mistakes.”

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Myra Smallman and Rik Alexander

For more information visit http://www.rapid2d.com