Latest Event Updates
Bristol Games Hub Newsletter
The latest updates from the hub, news from Bristol & SW developers, jobs, opportunities & events.
Bristol Games Hub is a non-profit space for games and play. We run this newsletter, host events and also rent desk space at a cost price with no strings attached so you can get on and create amazing games. Contact debbie at aurochdigital dot com for more information or with news items for the next newsletter and let us know if you have any news you would like sharing in the next one by 15th July please!
Next Games Hub Anti-Social: 27th August, 7.30pm
We’ll give you more info on what they will be closer to the time, but stick the date in your diaries! If you have a suggestion for a talk, drop us an email!
Games Hub News:
BGH Marketing Group Meetup
The Hub marketing group, an informal meet-up of people to talk about the means and ways to market games, is meeting on Wednesday 17th at 7.30pm. We’re talking Reddit & Facebook this time plus a general chat. If you want to come along, please email tom at aurochdigital dot com so we know you’re coming as numbers are limited! If you can’t make it, we’ve got an email discussion group too here.
Going to Develop: Brighton?
We’re putting together an informal dinner for developers, on the evening of the Tuesday 14th. If you are interesting in coming for some food, drop us an email to debbie at aurochdigital dot com. Spaces are limited, so we can’t promise anything!
Monday 22nd June: Unity Meetup – More Procedural Meshes!
Full info is below in events. Info page is here.
SW Freelancer/Company Dev Directory
If you’re looking for people to help on a project, or you are available for work – put your details in. Please only list info you’re happy to have in the public domain:http://bit.ly/bghdirectory
SW Game Dev Jobs Facebook page – Find roles and post new openings here…
Dev Scene News
Pocket Gamer Connects – San Francisco
After successes in London, Helsinki, and Bangalore, Pocket Gamer Connects is going stateside and bringing the premier mobile-focused B2B event to San Francisco on the 7th and 8th of July. More information is available at pgconnects.com, and you can keep up with the event on #PGCSanFran. If you’re headed out there, contact Bristol-based journalist Peter Willington, who will be in attendance.
Creative Gaming Award
PLAY15 festival introduces the new ‘Creative Gaming Award’ You can submit concepts, alpha and/or beta for any game that deals with the medium in a creative way. Categories are;
– Most Creative Game
– Most Innovative Newcomer
Deadline is 15th July and there is no cost to enter and winner gets €3000! Full info on this PDF.
First off, a huge thanks to all who have signal-boosted the news of Dark Future: Blood Red States. We had great coverage from PC Gamer, Kotaku, Game Debate, Rock Paper Shotgun, Pocket Tactics and many more! We’ve also announced the winner of our Chainsaw Warrior: Lords of the Night competition – to write the best 80s action movie style review! We’re also recruiting and have a jobs page on our site now, which can be found here and below.
Twice Circled, “I released the Big Pharma beta earlier this month. It’s a game about running your own pharmaceutical company. I’ve been astounded by the response from Youtubers/streamers with some really high profile people covering it, including Northern Lion and Sips from The Yogscast. Despite a few graphical bugs and some performance problems, the general reception has been overwhelmingly positive and I couldn’t be happier. The full release on Steam is planned for later this year. For further information, head over to the official website.”
Jobs & Opportunities
We have now filled the Producer role (and welcome Kelly Venables to the team!) We’ve still got open vacancies for an experienced programmer and an office manger/book keeper! http://www.aurochdigital.com/jobs/
Creative Youth Network
Creativeyouthnetwork.org.uk do great work with young people and are looking for a paid mentor to help a talented upcoming game developer – anyone interested?
Games Hub Marketing Group (June 17th 7.30pm)
Join us at Bristol Games Hub for a peer learning session about how to tell fans about our games. We’ll be looking at social media and Reddit. Email tom at auroch digital dot com if you want to come along!
Lunchtime Talk: Bringing computing into the real world (1pm Friday 19 June – Pervasive Media Studio)
We all love our computers, but generally they are mostly something we keep indoors. In this week’s talk, the PM Studio are delighted to welcome digital artist and creative coder Seb Lee-Delisle to the Studio. Seb will be showing us that really amazing things can happen when we take our computers into the elements.
Wales Games Developer Show (June 19th)
Pop over the border to see what the great devs in Wales have been up to and make some new connections! Info is here: http://www.walesgamesdevshow.org/
Unity Meetup – More Procedural Meshes! (June 22nd 7.30pm)
At Bristol Games Hub: The Unity meetup is back, on a Monday no less! This time around we have the second instalment on how to create 3D models from code ready for you. In this final part of his talk, Alexander will cover the following topics:
- A short recap on creating procedural meshes to introduce newcomers to the topic and provider a refresher to everyone who attended last time
- UV coordinates & Texturing. How to put pretty pictures on the surfaces of your meshes.
- Bezier curves. Create smooth curves to define surfaces or paths
- Delaunay Triangulation. Turn an arbitrary series of points into a surface with Triangle.Net
Signup to the meetup can be found on our meetup page:
Board Game Night (1st July, 7.30pm)
Join us at Bristol Games Hub on 1st July to play amazing board games. Bring a title along and/or join in another game. All welcome – email tom at aurochdigital dot com if you want to come along.
Lunchtime Talk: Hardware Startups, Manufacturing, and the Far East: a how to (1pm Friday 17 July – Pervasive Media Studio)
This week the PM Studio welcomes back product designer, maker, manufacturing engineer and 3D printing enthusiast Richard de Lancey. He was nominated for Stuff Magazine’s Design of the Year award for his work on AlphaSphere and is currently running his third startup business; DELCO – a design and manufacture agency based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
- Why start-ups fail. Learn from those who have.
- Moral codes in gaming.
- The making of Lemmings
- The quiet growth of the games industry
Auroch Digital has 3 permanent employee positions available. Please share them with your contacts, thanks.
The roles are: Producer, Experienced Games Programmer and Bookkeeper/Office Manager. For all the details, see here; http://www.aurochdigital.com/jobs/
THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT WORKING FOR AUROCH DIGITAL
- We develop great games, projects and people
- We work with major partners such as the BBC, The Wellcome Trust & Games Workshop
- Flexible start and finish times
- You get an extra day off for your birthday
- Once you’ve been with us for a while, you’ll get a training budget to continue your professional development, extra annual leave days, access to cycle scheme and other benefits
- We’ve been going from strength to strength for 5 years and we’re expanding
- We’re fair and we’re flexible
- We’re keen to listen and take on board your opinions and ideas for your role and for the company
- The Directors are also co-founders of Bristol Games Hub, a non-profit space for games and play
Next Games Hub Anti-Social: 30th April, 7.30pm
This month we’ve got:
Special Effect – How they are making games accessible for all!
Check this video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5uhsUKFDiso – and see the joy that Ben (who has Spinal Muscular Atrophy) gets from being able to play games. We can help that happen for more people!
Special Effect‘s Barry Floyd is coming along to talk about their important work and how we can help in their mission. Special Effect’s mission is, “…to enable anyone, whatever their physical disability, to enjoy video games and leisure technology. But we’re not just doing it for the sake of fun. By giving people the means to participate, we’re kick-starting rehabilitation, self-esteem and, most importantly, inclusion.”
So join us on the 30th April at 7.30pm – we’ve got a buzzer! The entrance is off Thomas Street, just up from the junction of Thomas St/Stokes Croft, above what was DHS Heating. After the chat, the usual rounds of networking, socialising and chatting video games!
Games Hub News:
April Unity meetup – D- D- Double the talks!
We are back and this time around we have not one but two talks lined up for you to enjoy. In the first talk Tim Wicksteed from Twice Circled will talk about how to achieve a resolution independent interface for your Unity game. In the second one Pretty Pixel will give demo their crowd funded Unity game Lux and the Shadowmaker. The meetup is talking place the 22nd of April at the Bristol Games Hub and starts at 7.30. As always signup is through our meetup page.
SW Freelancer/Company Dev Directory
If you’re looking for people to help on a project, or you are available for work – put your details in. Please only list info you’re happy to have in the public domain: http://bit.ly/bghdirectory
SW Game Dev Jobs Facebook page – Find roles and post new openings here…
Dev Scene News
Looking for Investment? Apply for VentureFest!
Venture Fest is now welcoming applications to exhibit at the Engine Shed event on the 9th June. The events sees a wide range of tech entrepreneurs and investors converging on Bristol to discover what’s next and who to invest in. They have 20 slots for the Start-Up Village and 10-12 slots for the Investor Pitches. They’re estimating over 1000 visitors on the day. If you wish to exhibit there, then the deadline for applications is 24th April. Apply for the Start-Up Village here, and the Investor Showcase here, both can be accessed from their website.
Green Capital Digital Challenge
See how this event is shaping up and learn about the three games groups who’ve been flying the flag for gameplay in the competition! Watch short film here.
Free Game Book!
A new academic book covering how to apply a wide range of research methods to games and game culture has just been published. It includes one chapter written by Bristol-based game academic and designer Nathan Hook. The book is published as a free download, with print-on-demand hard copy also available. More info can be foundhere.
It’s been a busy month for us – as well as releasing the mobile version of Chainsaw Warrior: Lords of the Night with Games Workshop, we’ve also been working with BBC Radio 1 (along with amazing help from Force of Habit & Peter Simon) on a newsgame for the election. You can check that out here. We’ve going to have even more cool news coming soon, so sign up here if you want to be among the first to know!
The Opposable Games team have been incredibly busy beavering away developing our tactical sci-fi action game Salvaged, and boy is it looking good. It’s a little unconventional in terms of how the game is played (single screen, dual screen, dual monitor or VR), and after our initial testing, we decided to have a pretty big rethink about exactly how the game works. Our resident writer-designer Daniel Dowsing has detailed our thought process in a couple of new blog posts, which you’ll find below:
‘Lost and Found’: New Salvaged Part 1
‘A Place in the Universe': New Salvaged Part 2
One of our rather awesome 2D artists, Lewis Gilliard, has been creating some pretty special pieces of Salvaged promo art, which we’ll be releasing on a weekly basis. Make sure you like us on Facebook and sign up to the Salvaged Newsletter to keep up and as they’re sure as heck rather purrdy.
If you don’t know much about the game already then a good place to start would be to meet Salvaged protagonist Alex Pieterson. Finally, we’re getting into the Instagram thing, so do give us a follow for a few exclusive bits and bobs of concept art (and most likely some stupid photos of Joe Blakeston).
PS – LASER QUEST PHOTO
Nathan Hook has self-published his board game Magus
Jobs & Opportunities
Are looking for a junior Unity programmer to help out with SkyScrappers and more. Take a look here: http://groundshatter.com/jobs.html
Any freelance developers on here with experience of making games or interactives with three.js / WebGL and available soon? Please get in touch ASAPgeorge.firstname.lastname@example.org
Play Nicely are looking for a Unity developer to work on a mobile app. If interested, please email email@example.com with a CV and links to any relevant work. Thanks!
Hi! Here at Rancon we’ve got lots of exciting Unity and C# based projects coming up, with the I additional Flash and Xamarin project for good measure. Check outrancon.co.uk for details. So we’re after any freelancers in and around Cheltenham who might have availability across the next 6 months for a few days at a time. Emailrob.firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.
Have paid tutor posts in camps for kids learning tech including game dev; https://firetechcamp.com/camp-instructor-job-application
Unity Meetup (22nd April, 7.30pm)
Next Unity meetup will take place the 22nd at 7.30pm. See above for full info. Sign up page is here!
Anti-Social (30th April, 7.30pm)
Special Effect are coming along. See above for full info.
This is a great opportunity peeps! Need to email them by the 31st March if interested!
THE WELLCOME TRUST AND EPIC GAMES LAUNCH: THE BIG DATA VR CHALLENGE
The Evolution of Data Visualisation – Taking Research to the Next Level
Tuesday, March 24th 2015 – For many, the collision of the video games world with the serious business of biomedical and humanities research seems like an unlikely event, but that’s exactly what the Big Data VR Challenge is designed to facilitate.
By harnessing some of the brightest minds in interactive entertainment, the Challenge is attempting to solve an ever-present problem in research – how to sift through huge data sets to find connections, trends and solutions in order to unlock hidden meanings.
The Challenge is a joint initiative from the Wellcome Trust and Epic Games, and today marks the call for submissions. At stake is a $20,000 prize for the winning team, whilst all six participating teams will each receive $5,000 to cover out of pocket expenses. The selected teams will be invited to participate in the first workshop at the Wellcome Trust on Thursday 9th April when three research topics will be unveiled.
Dr. John Williams, Head of Science Strategy, Performance and Impact at the Wellcome Trust, said: “We are lucky to live in a world where we are surrounded by an astonishing amount of data in all its various, sometimes nebulous, forms. Researchers need to be able to handle data better – to follow threads, play with connections and immerse themselves – without feeling overwhelmed. This is where the skills of the games industry can really help. The Big Data VR Challenge has the potential to convert that information into knowledge for the wider benefit of the research community, and that is hugely exciting.”
The highly immersive nature of virtual reality provides the best format in which to explore the potential threads and connections that may present themselves within huge data sets. The Challenge will explore how skills like intuitive UI development, management and manipulation
of large data sets and the creation of immersive, inherently understandable worlds can be usefully applied to the scientific community. Game developers are familiar with working with large data sets.
A modern open world game, for example, is built from a huge amount of data, combining massive geometry, textures and sounds and a lot of effort goes into building processes to transform, load and validate all of that data.
The Challenge will also explore how entertainment-focused game design skills can impact the handling of big scientific data sets which are not necessarily innately engaging, easily understandable, or traditionally entertaining.
“Year on year, the games industry continues to improve the science behind these amazing pieces of entertainment. The calculations required to recreate a lifelike environment are enormous. Our latest demo enables a player to explore more than 250 square kilometers of open terrain which is all generated in real time, something that would have been unthinkable as little as two years ago. Game developers are continually pushing the boundaries of what is possible, which in a way gives them a strong affinity with science researchers who are trying to define the unknown,” commented Mike Gamble, European Territory Manager, Epic Games.
Teams with an interest in creating immersive VR experiences are invited to apply to take part in the Big Data VR Challenge, which will be run with peer review during the development stage, and a jury to determine the overall outcome. The Challenge will culminate at this year’s Develop Conference in Brighton. In the first instance, studios should register an interest in participating by sending an email to bigdataVR@bastion.co.uk. Applications to participate will close at midnight on Tuesday 31st March.
About Unreal Engine
Developed by Epic Games, the award-winning Unreal Engine is known for bringing high-fidelity experiences to PC, console, mobile, Web and VR. Unreal Engine accelerates the creation of games, applications, simulations, visualizations and cinematic content. Download Unreal Engine for free at unrealengine.com, and follow @UnrealEngine for updates.
About the Wellcome Trust
The Wellcome Trust is a global charitable foundation dedicated to improving health. We provide more than £700 million a year to support bright minds in science, the humanities and the social sciences, as well as education, public engagement and the application of research to medicine.
A couple more bits of news! First is this…
Helping you to raise finance for your creative business
Turning a bright idea into a commercial success can be a challenge, especially for a creative business. Creative England and the Creative Industries Council are running a free event to help you learn how to access different forms of finance and grow your company.
The event features:
Revolution Software’s Charles Cecil MBE. Find out how he raised £100,000s through crowd funding.
- Panellists include:
Phil Geraghty – MD, Crowdfunder – Crowdfunder has raised £1.5m for campaigns since launching, and has the potential to help you too.
- Darren Westlake – CEO, Crowdcube – With Crowdcube, Darren is determined to solve the lack of financing options for small businesses. He started his first company aged 26 and has since successful built and sold two companies
- Jenny Tooth – CEO, of the UK Business Angels Association. Jenny has over 20 years’ experience in helping SMEs access investment.
- Irene Graham – MD of the British Banking Association. Irene works specifically with SMEs to help them navigate the financial landscape.
- Caroline Norbury MBE – CEO of Creative England, an organisation that has invested over £14,400,000 into the games, TV, film and digital media industries.
- Sarah Thirtle – Head of Business and lending programmes for Creative United, specialist in finance for the creative industry.
Taking place at Facebook, London, on March 19th. Click here to see the full schedule and to book your place: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/finance-your-creative-business-tickets-15974293542
Bristol Media have a survey up – help them out if you can by completing it! https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/BristolMediaBarometer
Hi all, a couple of bits of news you might be interested in…
Firstly: Creative England are looking for a person/organisation to deliver services to the SW games development community. Deadline is 13th March to submit a tender. Full info and contact for questions is in the PDF here.
Second: Invest Bristol+Bath (IBB) in partnership with the West of England Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) have got a survey for freelancers and companies in the region. Please help them by filling it out!
PS. Board games night tonight at the hub, 7.30pm for all us GDC no-gos.
PPS. News update from GDC yesterday is here.