BAFTA Ones to Watch Award Nominees Unveiled at Edinburgh Festival

Friday, 13 August 2010: Organised by Abertay University and sponsored by Turner Broadcasting in association with its comedy brand Adult Swim, Dare ProtoPlay, one of the most eagerly anticipated games events of the year, has unveiled 15 new computer games to the public at the Edinburgh Festival. Three shortlisted games will become the sole nominees for the Ones to Watch Award at the 2011 GAME British Academy Video Games Awards.

Drawing thousands of games enthusiasts every year, Dare ProtoPlay, which celebrates innovation in games and takes place between 13-15 August at venue 150 at Edinburgh International Conference Centre, is Scotland's biggest free video gaming consumer event.

The 15 games have been designed by some of the leading young games designers from around the world as part of the 10 week Dare to be Digital competition.

Over the past 10 years Dare has produced some of the most exciting young talent to emerge from the academic sector and attracts support from some of the world’s biggest names in entertainment development. Sponsorship comes from heavyweights such as Turner Broadcasting, Intel, Sony, Wacom and NCR.

Dare to be Digital is organised and run by the University of Abertay Dundee and judged by some of the leading names in computer games development. The international competition attracts students from across the globe to take part in a 10-week challenge in an attempt to come up with the next big game. 75 students had 10 weeks to complete their prototypes at Abertay’s Dare hothouse, before the ProtoPlay showcase at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Elaine Russell, Dare to be Digital project manager, explains:“Dare ProtoPlay gives the public the unique opportunity to play cutting-edge games developed by young developers who could go on to produce some of world’s leading computer games in a few years time. Visitors to the event will also get the chance to test out new games from some of the biggest names in the industry now, such as Adult Swim by Turner Broadcasting, Realtime Worlds’ APB and Kinect Sports by Microsoft.

“Dare to be Digital offers future game stars the chance to experience the hot-house environment of commercial games development, and to involve industry in the design and delivery of courses. For this reason, students around the world see it as an exciting challenge and the computer games industry views it as a hotbed of new creative talent.”

The games unveiled at the Dare ProtoPlay showcase will be on a wide range of platforms, including iPad, PSP Go, Android Phone, Windows 7 phone, Wii, Xbox and PCs. Visitors can play and vote for their favourite games at the event.

The competition is also backed by BAFTA, with the three finalists entering the‘Ones to Watch’ category at the annual GAME British Academy Video Games Awards.

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Photography (higher resolution images available on request)

Dare ProtoPlay 1: Ben and Ethan Gardner trying out new games at Dare ProtoPlay

Dare ProtoPlay 2: Ethan and Ben Gardner trying out new games at Dare ProtoPlay

Dare ProtoPlay 3: Robyn Geddes (right) and Ethan Garden try out a new game at Dare ProtoPlay

Notes to editors:

The Dare ProtoPlay (13-15 August 2010) Programme:

15 new Dare games: created by young talent from across Europe, Asia&America. Creativity, market potential and use of technology are the primary objectives for the young developers, which the audience will see reflected in games produced for iPad, PSP Go, Android Phone, Windows 7 phone, Wii, Xbox and PCs. Visitors can play and vote for their favourite games at Dare ProtoPlay.

Studio games&technology showcase: Members of the public will be able to play for free: Kinect Sports by Microsoft; Adult Swim by Turner Broadcasting; Realtime Worlds’ APB; Blitz 1UP’s indie games; Denki’s new Xbox 360 game Juggle! alongside Quarrel and Denki Blocks! and LittleBigPlanet, WipEout Pulse, MotorStorm: Pacific Rift by Sony Computer Entertainment Europe (SCEE).

Intel partnered with SCAN will bring TEAM DIGNITAS, a SCAN/Intel sponsored gaming team to Dare ProtoPlay and the public will be able to play against some of the best e-sports champions on the latest 3XS custom gaming PCs.

Dare Workshop 13/14/15 August: For serious young participants, Dare ProtoPlay is offering 12-16 year olds the chance to learn the skills of developing a video game in a mock-up studio. A two and a half day workshop partnered with BAFTA will see teenagers working as a team, creating their first title.

Dare ProtoPlay Bamboo: The world’s largest graphic developer Wacom will showcase the Finalists’ work from the Dare with Bamboo competition.

Industry talks: Industry leaders will introduce the audience to the latest technology including Kinect from Microsoft, development tools from Adobe and the most powerful gaming machines from Intel. BAFTA will discuss how to get into the industry and the vital role that education plays through the UK's first Centre for Excellence in Computer Games Education at the University of Abertay Dundee.

How to get into games: Representatives from Abertay are offering assistance through the Support for Business programme, which will provide prototype grant funding to small games development companies. Students and graduates will be employed to undertake part of the grant-funded projects. There will also be a chance to look at some of the games created by the students from the UK’s first Centre for Excellence in Computer Games Education in the University of Abertay Dundee.

About Dare to be Digital

Dare to be Digital is organised and run by the University of Abertay Dundee, with sponsorship from Turner Broadcasting, Intel, Wacom, NCR, the Scottish Government, Scottish Enterprise and Dundee City Council. The teams are mentored by prominent video games studios including BBC, Blitz Games Studios, Cohort, Rare, Realtime Worlds, Rockstar North, SEGA, Sony and Ubisoft. Technology support is provided by Adobe, Autodesk, Codesion, Crytek, Emergent, Hansoft and Sony. Teams of student programmers and artists compete in a 10-week 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, scheduled for the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in August.

The three winning teams from Dare to be Digital each year become the sole nominees for the BAFTA“Ones to Watch” Award, and the 2009 Dare and BAFTA winning team was also nominated for a BAFTA Scotland New Talent Award.

About Adult Swim

Operated by media giant Turner Broadcasting, Adult Swim is a cutting-edge comedy brand aimed at adults 18-34. The hub of Adult Swim content in the UK is online portal www.adultswim.co.uk, which features both long and short form content, games and social networking extensions. A TV deal was struck in June 2010 to showcase some of the best Adult Swim shows on FX, as part of the channel’s Saturday night comedy line-up. Adult Swim programming is non-conformist and irreverent, with a comedy soul. Shows such as Robot Chicken and Aqua Teen Hunger Force have earned the brand a discerning and loyal following in the UK.

Adult Swim is available in the UK on www.youtube.comadultswimuk, Playstation Home and iTunes, via mobile on Mobix, Sky mobile and Orange Mobile, and on VoD services BT Vision and LoveFilm. It can also be found on social networking sites www.facebook.com/adultswimuk, www.fxuk.com/shows/adult-swim and www.twitter.com/AdultSwimUK. Additionally there is a DVD distribution deal in place with Revolver.

About BAFTA

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts is an independent charity that supports, develops and promotes the art forms of the moving image by identifying and rewarding excellence, inspiring practitioners and benefiting the public. In addition to its Awards ceremonies, BAFTA has a year-round Learning&Events programme that offers unique access to some of the world’s most inspiring talent through workshops, masterclasses, lectures and mentoring schemes, connecting with audiences of all ages and backgrounds across the UK. BAFTA relies on income from membership subscriptions, individual donations, trusts, foundations and corporate partnerships to support its ongoing outreach work. For further information, visit www.bafta.org.


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