BAFTA-winning student game unveiled

BAFTA-winning student game unveiled

For immediate release: Friday 16 March

The BAFTA and Dare to be Digital ‘Ones to Watch’ award for a new student game was awarded tonight to Swallowtail, a team from Norwich University College of the Arts and the University of Abertay Dundee.

‘Ones to Watch’ is a unique BAFTA prize, only available to competitors in the University of Abertay Dundee’s world-leading game design competition Dare to be Digital.

The winning game is a beautiful, colourful puzzler called Tick Tock Toys for the iPad, where you need to clear a toy box to help your clockwork robot pass a series of obstacles.

Each summer 15 teams come to Abertay University to build a working game in just nine weeks. The games then go on show to thousands of members of the public at the Dare ProtoPlay games festival in Dundee.

Last year’s festival was opened by the man behind the Raspberry Pi credit card-sized PC, David Braben.

Sophia George, team leader of Swallowtail, said: “We’re really thrilled and shocked to win – and very excited for the future. We’d really like to release Tick Tock Toys for the iPad

“Dare to be Digital has been such an amazing experience, from coming to Abertay University, working through the whole Dare experience with amazing mentors, and now to the BAFTAs.

“We hope we’ve made our universities, teachers and families proud of us.”

Sophia studied at Norwich University College of the Arts before moving to Dundee to study Abertay University’s applied Professional Masters in Games Development course.

Swallowtail’s other members are Rosie Ball, Mark Bamford, Kristian Francis and Callum Goold.

Scotland’s Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs Fiona Hyslop said: “Scotland is known the world over as place of great creativity and innovation, with our computer games industry undoubtedly one of our global success stories.

“I would like to congratulate Swallowtail on being named BAFTA 'Ones to Watch' in 2012, the Year of Creative Scotland. They and the other nominees from Dare to be Digital are helping to enhance Scotland’s international reputation for creative excellence and contributing to the success of our creative industries sector.”

Professor Louis Natanson, who leads computer games education at Abertay University, said: “Winning a BAFTA is a life-changing experience for anyone looking to enter the games industry, and we’re delighted to see a game as enjoyable and as professional as Tick Tock Toys taking the ‘Ones to Watch’ award this evening.

“The quality of the Dare to be Digital games is quite incredible. Building a game in just nine weeks is an amazing achievement, and thousands of people saw, played and enjoyed these games last summer at our Dare ProtoPlay games festival in Dundee.”

He added: “These students are entering the games industry at a fascinating time, with unprecedented opportunities for small teams to publish their own games online.

“Just look at the huge success of Minecraft, whose creator Markus Persson won the BAFTA Special Award this evening. Small, creative teams can create sustainable businesses, which is a major focus for both Dare to be Digital and Abertay’s Prototype Fund.”

All three BAFTA-nominated teams also had the opportunity of pitching their games to a panel of industry experts at a special BAFTA and Abertay University Prototype Fund event on Thursday night.

Applications for Dare to be Digital 2012 are now open at http://www.daretobedigital.com/ with a closing date of April 10 at 5pm.

The career-launching award was announced at a glittering ceremony in the London Hilton, Park Lane, hosted by comedian and games enthusiast Dara O Briain.

(Ends)

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

IMAGE CREDITS

YouTube game trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FC5xOUwGGac

Art credit: Tick Tock Toys by Swallowtail

Team photo (L-R, please credit to BAFTA/Richard Kendal): Mark Bamford, Callum Goold, Rosie Ball, Sophia George, Kristian Francis.

NOTES TO EDITORS

The Year of Creative Scotland began on January 1, 2012 and spotlights and celebrates Scotland’s cultural and creative strengths on a world stage. Through a dynamic and exciting year-long programme of activity celebrating our world-class events, festivals, culture and heritage, the year puts Scotland’s culture and creativity in the international spotlight with a focus on cultural tourism and developing the events industry and creative sector in Scotland. More information about the programme can be found at: www.visitscotland.com/creative

The Year of Creative Scotland is a Scottish Government initiative led in partnership by EventScotland, VisitScotland, Creative Scotland and VOCAL. More information and resources to help businesses and organisations engage with Year of Creative Scotland are available at www.visitscotland.org/yearofcreativescotland-toolkit  


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