New studio Dark Rock Games has released its first game – and has plans to help Wales snap a piece of the UK games industry.
The studio was formed by University of Wales, Newport graduate Adam Griffiths along with three other graduates from the school’s Games Development and Artificial Intelligence course. 31 year-old Griffiths decided to start the studio, in part funded to the tune of £20,000 from the Knowledge Exploitation Fund, because he didn’t want to make his wife and children relocate.
"The computer games industry is one of the biggest in the world yet there are very few companies in Wales making games," he said. "As a result, many people like myself who are gaining degrees in computer game design are having to leave the country in order to find jobs.
"Newport’s University has two excellent computer games development courses producing talented students with lots of potential. It seems ludicrous that Wales is losing them to other countries because we have no computer games industry."
Dr Mike Reddy, Senior Lecturer in Computing at Newport Business School, added: "The release of this game represents a considerable success for Adam and his team at Dark Rock. He was always determined to create job opportunities for games developers in Wales and he has put his money where his mouth is with this game which is an imaginative version of the classic retro Breakout game.
"At Newport, we believe it’s essential to maintain close links with the computer games industry to enable our students to successfully find jobs when they graduate. We already have graduates working for major games companies such as Sega and Blitz, and this year sees the first woman graduate from the course."