“Games Britannia”, a week long videogame festival, is the brainchild of Brinsworth Academy Trust’s IT Department in response to the recent NESTA Next Gen report demonstrating the misalignment between the UK education system and video game industry.
Sheffield’s SUMO Digital provides the main keynote speaker, with producer Steve Lycett delivering a series of lectures throughout a packed day to 500 children from across the region. Steve will spend 1 July talking, advising and showing off some of SUMO’s games and giving an in-depth look at producing videogame titles, with a privileged insight into SEGA Sonic&All-stars Racing.
Several other workshops will take place on further days featuring industry luminaries Ben Daglish, Commodore 64 music legend and creator of over 100 game soundtracks, Dr Jacob Habgood,Ssenior Lecturer of Games Development at Sheffield Hallam University and digital artist Ritchie Moore, a former student at Brinsworth Comprehensive School, who has worked on prestigious titles such as John Daley ProStroke Golf and DJ Hero 2.
Students will also get the chance to play a range of British games from the past 40 years in the festival’s“Retro Zone” featuring original computers and consoles from the Sinclair ZX-81 and ZX Spectrum, to the Mega Drive, SONY Playstation and Nintendo handhelds. The festival will also include some of the rarer and more obscure machines including the MB Vectrex, Amstrad GX4000 and SNK Neo Geo Pocket.
Mark Hardisty, co-ordinator of the videogame event said:“The school recognises the festival will provide an exciting opportunity to engage students from across the curriculum. It will deliver unique, innovative and inspiring opportunities which captivate student interest which are at the heart of learning. The science, technology and art in videogames are drawn from a wealth of talent and delivered by great collaborative work. This project strives to help students witness these connections and enjoy broadening their knowledge”.
Games Britannia runs between 27 June and 1 July 2011.
Supporters of the festival include TV and Radio Presenter Iain Lee, who provided a video introduction to the event, REPLAY Events Ltd, and Revolution Software and Introversion Software, who both provided giveaways and software licences.