Four teams of student games developers are creating iOS games in front of tens of thousands of consumers at the Gadget Show Live for Epic’s Make Something Unreal contest.
Co-sponsored by Train2Game, the competition takes place across all five days of the technology event, and aims to build up the profiles and experience of the students as well as bringing games development to the masses.
The teams, which include Commando Kiwi, Derp Studios, Digital Mage and Indigo Jam are currently creating titles for iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch based on the Fighting Fantasy book series.
The winners are set to receive a commercial Unreal Engine 3 license for iOS, as well as potential job internships at Epic.
“These guys are under pressure, real crunch pressure much like real game developers are, and they’re stepping up and doing some pretty amazing stuff,” Epic Games’ Mike Gamble told Develop.
The teams, who have had six months to develop their games using UE3 since winning the Train2Game and Epic Game Jam in November, are now finalising their projects live at the Gadget Show.
Gamble said that after receiving such positive feedback from consumers and those not traditionally in the company’s target markets, the studio would look to return to the event next year.
He also revealed that he would be pushing to move the Make Something Unreal Contest to an earlier date in September or October to give students longer to develop their games for the live show.
“We’re hoping to build on the format, maybe take a little more time and start the competition earlier so that it’s not quite such a rush, but I’m going to be recommending we do it again,” said Gamble.
“We’ve had sufficient interest from parties outside the current ones involved, and maybe we'll be able to get TV involved next time.”
The deadline for students to finish their games is Sunday, when the titles for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch will be judged by Ian Livingstone and Steve Jackson based on use of IP and playability.