BAFTA nominees from Dare to be Digital crowned

For immediate release: Sunday 11 August

The three BAFTA-nominated games from Abertay University’s Dare to be Digital game design competition were announced tonight after a record-breaking weekend.

A record-breaking audience of over 13,000 people played the 15 games over four days at the free Dare ProtoPlay games festival in Dundee. An extra day was added this year due to the huge demand.

The three teams who now compete for the exclusive BAFTA Ones to Watch Award at the 2014 BAFTA Video Games Awards are:

- iKnow, with The Unknown for Android phone (Luyue Zhang, Zhaoxuan Li, Qiwei Feng, Chenying Wan and Neil Cullen)

- Mazhlele, with Project Heera for XBox360 & PC (Dhruv Dave, Neeraj Shastry, Shashank Dhongde, Tanmay Chinchkar and Shriram Srinivasan)

- Team DOS, with Size DOS Matter for iPad (Nick La Rooy, Trond Fasteraune, Silje Dahl, Mattis Delerud and Lars Andersen)

All three of the main awards were sponsored by Sony Computer Entertainment Europe.

Chenying Wan, team leader of iKnow, said: “We really didn’t expect this. I think we could win the BAFTA, I really believe that. We’ve faced some big problems making our game, but looking back they were all worth it to be here now.”

Tanmay Chinchkar, team leader of Mazhlele, said: “It’s amazing to win the BAFTA nomination and to see such a huge crowd for our tournament at ProtoPlay today. The biggest satisfaction is seeing people enjoying our game, shouting others on.”

Mattis Delerud, leader of Team DOS, said: “It’s amazing being here, and was really worth the trip and all the struggles we’ve been through. Our next step is moving to the UK, finishing the game, making is as perfect as we can – and getting used to making games every day as a career.”

The Dare ProtoPlay festival was opened on Thursday by the Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs Fiona Hyslop and games industry legend Ian Livingstone.

Cabinet Secretary for Culture Fiona Hyslop said:

“My congratulations go to all of the teams that took part in Dare to be Digital and especially the three winning teams that will now go through to the BAFTA Ones to Watch Award for new games talent. Once again Dare to be Digital has underlined Scotland’s place at the very heart of gaming excellence.

“I always enjoy the Dare ProtoPlay festival and this year was stronger than ever, showcasing incredible innovation including examples of how augmented reality can be used. I expect to see much of this talent and intellectual property being transformed into new businesses in Scotland to follow the successes of previous Dare to be Digital participants. 

“The joint theatrical and digital collaboration between the National Theatre of Scotland and Quartic Llama, founded by former Dare to be Digital participants, called Other, that was showcased at the festival illustrates how computer game technology can enhance other sectors as well.

“As a creative nation, Scotland is the perfect home for game production with our cutting-edge skills, talent and infrastructure and once again Dare to be Digital has underlined Scotland’s place at the very heart of gaming excellence.”

Imre Jele, Creator-in-chief at Bossa Studios and member of the BAFTA Games Committee, said:

“The quality of games shown at Dare ProtoPlay advances every year at an astonishing rate. We're not only looking at small prototypes showing seeds of ideas any more, but can play products surpassing the quality of many commercially released titles.

“This means the job of judges is getting more complex, but also more rewarding every year. Choosing the winner from such an amazing line up was a great challenge. But I truly believe all three are worthy of the title, and the attention of both BAFTA and players.”

Professor Louis Natanson, who leads computer games education at Abertay University, said:

“The entrants to Abertay University’s 2013 Dare to be Digital game design competition are truly the best yet, in terms of their professionalism, their technical achievements and the incredible creativity we’ve seen this year.

“The BAFTA-nominated winners – iKnow, Mazhlele and Team DOS – stood out from the very tough competition for their exceptional game design and commercial appeal, but all 15 teams have the experience now to enter the games industry or start their own businesses.

“Building a professional, playable and exciting game in just nine weeks is a very, very hard thing to do, and these 75 students have all excelled during their time in Dundee. We look forward to hearing about their new companies, game releases and many successes in the future.”

Dare ProtoPlay is sponsored by Creative Scotland, Dundee City Council and EventScotland.

For more information, please visit the Dare to be Digital website - http://www.daretobedigital.com/

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For media enquiries, please contact Chris Wilson (Communications Manager) – T: 01382 308522 M: 07837 250284 E: chris.wilson@abertay.ac.uk

ABOUT DARE TO BE DIGITAL

Dare to be Digital is a video game development competition for undergraduates at universities and colleges of art, hosted and run by the University of Abertay Dundee.

Teams of student programmers and artists compete in an intensive 'hot-house' development environment over the summer vacation, building fully-functioning prototypes for assessment by industry judges and a public vote at Dare ProtoPlay in Dundee, 8-11 August 2013.

The three winning teams from Dare to be Digital each year become the sole nominees for the BAFTA Ones to Watch Award.

ABOUT ABERTAY UNIVERSITY

Abertay University launched the world’s first computer games technology degree in 1997, and runs both the UK Centre of Excellence for Computer Games Education and the international game design contest Dare to be Digital. Our unique partnership with BAFTA makes Dare the exclusive pathway to the BAFTA Ones to Watch Award, a major recognition of up-and-coming games talent.

Through the Abertay University Prototype Fund start-up and small developers across the UK have access to funding to create new prototypes and attract additional investment, another practical way Abertay supports the growth of a sustainable, successful games industry.

Abertay has the highest number of Skillset accreditations for computer games courses as well as holding full Skillset Media Academy status, recognition of the important industry skills that are developed on our courses.

 


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