In 2007 I took part in Dare to Be Digital. This is a Video Game design competition where teams of 5 students form a team to make a video game prototype over 10 weeks during the summer. The teams are made up of Artists and Programmers.
The competition is very prestigious and the reward for the winning teams is a BAFTA nomination.
In 2007 I was very lucky. I was in a team that put forward an application which was unsuccessful. I was then fortunate, as a member of my team knew another team with a successful application who were looking for an artist. I joined this team and we pitched an idea for a motorcycle racing game to a panel of industry experts. The pitch was unsuccessful and the team never got in. I thought my luck had run out- but it hadn’t.
Another team who did a successful pitch were looking for an artist. The team Leader in this team knew the team leader in my second unsuccessful team. So I ended up joining Emergence Games who were in Dare to Be Digital 2007 with the game Forgotten Souls (turns out it isn’t what you know but who you know).
Forgotten Souls was to be a First Person Survival Horror game for the PC. The concept of the game involved a post- apocalyptic world where a child had survived. The world was roaming with daemons who wanted to steal the child. The player had to protect the child by using different found objects (boxes, debris etc) to build up barriers and ward of the daemons.
I could write at length about the competition and the problems the team had. Unprepared, badly organised, lack of vision and basically not knowledgeable enough to make the game the team pitch to the panel.
As I joined the team late I expected the current artist (the team was made up of 2 artists, including myself, and 3 programmers) to have done some concept work – he hadn’t. We were behind schedule before the competition began. This was annoying as teams had to prepare before competition starts and this was a pre-emption of what was to happen during the competition.
In Part 2 I’ll talk about the development of the game and the problems myself and the had.