The three nominees for the BAFTA Ones to Watch Award were revealed today (Sunday 10 August) at Dare ProtoPlay, Scotland’s biggest video games festival.
These three games were the winners of Dare to be Digital, an international game design competition for students run annually by Abertay University in Dundee.
Each summer, 15 teams of five students are picked to develop a new game in just eight weeks, before facing the scrutiny of thousands of members of the public. Over 13,000 members of the public visited the free four-day festival this year.
This year teams from as far afield as China, India, Malta and the USA travelled to Dundee for the Dare to be Digital student competition.
The winners were samurai stealth game Chambara; action game Don’t Walk: Run, where three players compete as a film’s actors escaping the wrath of its world-controlling director; and Sagittarius, where you use the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset to aim a crossbow from a moving chariot.
Kevin Wong from Overly Kinetic, the creators of Chambara, said: “We’re all really honoured and really excited to get a BAFTA nomination, and to see all the children come to our booth and enjoy the game so much. That’s what we live for.”
Vivek Deshpande from Too Mainstream, the creators of Sagittarius, said: “We’re elated, we really didn’t think we’d win. All the Dare to be Digital games are incredible. After this, we’ll go back to India and develop the game further, and are hoping to release it in the near future.”
Niall Taylor from Torque, the creators of Don’t Walk: Run, said: “This is amazing, I don’t believe it – we nearly fell off our chairs. Everything has completely changed in our lives in the last eight weeks.”
For the second year running, the three main awards were sponsored by PlayStation®First, the academic development programme of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe.
Luke Savage, Academic Development Manager at PlayStation®First, said: “Dare to be Digital is such a unique game competition. It’s a terrific showcase of the next generation of game developers, which is why we’re delighted to support the three main awards again this year.
“PlayStation®First is fostering the next generation of talented individuals looking to get into the games industry, and we can’t wait to see what the Dare to be Digital teams do next.”
Don’t Walk: Run also won the Channel 4 Award. The team will receive £25,000 of support to start a business and complete their game, which will then be published by the broadcaster.
The Design in Action Award for Commercial Potential went to A Fox Wot I Drew for their game Baum. The team will receive financial support and mentoring to bring their game to market.
The Artistic Achievement Award, sponsored by the Foundry, went to Seek by team Five Pixels.
The Audience Award for the most popular game of the festival went to World Eater by Taleforge, and the Team Choice Award went to the Pillowettes.
As well as the 15 students games in the marquee in the centre of Dundee, dozens of games were shown across the four days in the Caird Hall.
These independent games companies were all able to compete for the £25,000 Creative Scotland Ground-Breaking Innovative Game Award. The prize went to Future Fossil Studios.
Entrants to the Future Internet Games Contest were also on show, run by the Future Internet Consortium. This competition was looking for experimental pervasive games that enable large groups of people to play together in the real world and went to IasAR by Ateo.
The winner of the BAFTA Ones to Watch Award will be announced early next year at the British Academy Games Awards in London.
For more information about the competition and the festival, please visit http://www.daretobedigital.com/