Channel 4 Partners With Dare To Be Digital To Find New Games Developers

Channel 4 has partnered with Dare to be Digital to launch 4Dare– an international competition for young video game developers. The competition will bring together teams of five arts and science students from seven regions to produce a game prototype in just ten weeks with industry support and mentoring. The teams are challenged with creating a game which engages a player’s brain as much as their thumbs as well as bringing new audiences to gaming. The winners of the competition will automatically become nominees for the BAFTA Ones to Watch Award.

Channel 4 will sponsor the individual regional centres as well as the major Dare ProtoPlay showcase events in Edinburgh and London where the teams’ prototype games are judged by the public and industry practitioners. The investment continues Channel 4’s innovation in producing public service content and development of new creative talent.

The 2008 4Dare competition will focus on teams based in Brighton, London, Cardiff, Dublin, Dundee, Birmingham and Frankfurt. Teams from India and China will also compete at the Dundee centre. The call for entries is now open at www.daretobedigital.com<http://www.daretobedigital.com/>

The partnership was trailed by Channel 4’s Chief Executive Andy Duncan at the recent launch of its new strategy Next on 4, he said;“Channel 4 is driven by innovation, talent and risk-taking and all of these are inherent in the Dare to be Digital competition. Video game design and production requires a fusion of art and science and 4Dare will bring together the top young talent from regional centres vital to the future of digital broadcasting in this area.“

Matt Locke, Commissioning Editor, Education, Channel 4 says;“The games sector is going through a period of major innovation and growth at the moment, with platforms like the Nintendo Wii and casual online gaming attracting mass audiences. As games are important way of reaching younger audiences, we think the partnership with Dare to Be Digital is an ideal way for us to work with this sector in a way that is true to Channel 4's strengths - supporting talent, encouraging innovation and diversity, and taking risks on new ideas. We look forward to seeing the exciting projects coming out of this year's 4Dare project.”

4Dare ProtoPlay will take place alongside the Edinburgh Interactive Festival from 10th- 12th August. A dazzling array of video games produced by the teams will be on show alongside other entertaining and educational activities relating to games. The event is expected to attract an audience of 10,000 and hundreds of would-be judges are already signing up online. 4Dare ProtoPlay will also travel to London in October to coincide with the London Games Festival.

Dare to be Digital was originated by Abertay University in 1999 and has grown rapidly to international status with BAFTA endorsement. Abertay’s 4Dare Director, Paul Durrant commented;“our partnership with Channel 4 is a marker for both the shift in media audiences and the broad appeal of video games across many different distribution channels. 4Dare ProtoPlay is a live extravaganza bringing all of the exciting dimensions of video games together with the opportunity to meet the talented young designers of the future and learn how games are created in a highly social environment.”

Press contact:

Rebecca Ladbury, Channel 4, 020 7306 5547, rladbury@channel4.co.uk

Kevin Coe, Abertay University, 01382 308452 / 07850 904110, k.coe@abertay.ac.uk


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