Latest Event Updates

May Newsletter

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Bristol Games Hub Newsletter

Below is news 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 jake at aurochdigital.com for more information or with news items for the next newsletter and let us news for the next one by 15th June please!

Next Games Hub Anti-Social: 28th May, 7.30pm

Join us for two great talks!  This month we’ve got:

Making Sense of Steam Greenlight & Hyper Thetical Games Demo!

Making Sense of Steam Greenlight; Join us for an informal panel looking at Steam Greenlight and how to get your game passed on it, as well some general thoughts about the process. Sam Chester from Owlbear looks at how they got Barbara-ian through in just over two months on the system, while Tomas Rawlings looks at the process of getting Call of Cthulhu: The Wasted Land through and Alexander Birke will talk about The Adventures of Bertram Fiddle. They will share hints and tips, then get you all to join in a discussion about the system.

There is also a demo from Hyper Thetical Games; “Designed in UE4 specifically for VR, CentraSphere is a checkpoint racing game set inside a sphere for 1 – 2 players. Single players race for extra time checkpoints while shooting targets for bonus points before running out of time and being plunged into darkness. 2 player pits players against each other battling for checkpoint supremacy, shooting will create slow bubbles on the arena to impede opponents. A full featured version is on our long term plans, but we have 3 other games planned to make first.”

So join us then…we’ve got a buzzer! We’re at 77 Stokes Croft on the 3rd Floor. The entrance is off Thomas Street, just up from the junction of Thomas St/Stokes Croft, above what was DHS Heating.

Games Hub News:

Also note; May Meetup – Intro to Procedural Mesh Generation is on 20th. More info below in Events.

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

Hyper Thetical Games

Ele-Mental is a fast paced arcade game of colour matching and enemy dodging available on  PSVita in the Playstation Mobile store, from the newly established indie game studio Hyper Thetical Games. A simple concept but with very challenging gameplay, requiring quick thinking and a high level of hand-eye coordination. Players must use the face buttons to switch elements to absorb enemies of the same elemental type. As a sucker for difficult games, Chris wanted to make this a challenge for anyone to play, but also make some modes accessible for any new player to get started. Each game mode includes a high score so players can keep on improving. Enemy absorption stats are tracked from each game and certain milestones will earn points which can be used to unlock more features, music and game modes. The games second version release saw the inclusion of PSTV compatibility.We are currently working on a third and final version which will add some very difficult challenges to earn medals. A special reward has been planned for the first person to collect them all and show us the proof. We are now working using Unreal engine and intend to bring a sequel that will graphically live up to the element nature of the name, and of course the mental part. The release of our game CentraSphere that was showcased at the South West VR conference is also just around the corner and we have another new project we intend to start working on and announcing soon. Check out our website for more information on our work. www.HyperTheticalGames.com

Creative Gaming Award

PLAY15 festival introduces the new ‘Creative Gaming Award’ You can submit concepts, alpha, 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. Winner gets 3000 euros! Full info on this PDF.

GAMe-ONe Show

GAMe-ONe is a new games exhibition here in Bristol at the UWE Exhibition Centre. It’s on October 24th and 25th 2015. There are lots of ways for developers to get involved and show their games to gamers. See here for the stand & signup info and here for thefloorplan. The Indie section is a table top allocation that is without charge to the small developers in exchange for them promoting the event to all their existing customers.

Kinect Testers Needed!

This is a request for interested female participants to take part in an investigation into how virtual avatar representation can affect perceptions of the environment & body. This experiment makes use of Microsoft Kinect and will involve a small amount of physical exertion, primarily using arms. Short semi-structured interviews will be given throughout the experiment, and the entire experiment will take approximately 45 minutes, total. The research has been approved by UWE’s research ethics committee. If you are interested, please visit: http://doodle.com/uwn5f8kvza4hu4bg
Or for more information, please contact: Sophie2.Pink at live.uwe.ac.uk

Auroch Digital

We’re running a competition for Chainsaw Warrior & Chainsaw Warrior: Lords of the Night where you can win an original copy of the game! Full info is here. The BBC game we did (with Demon Apathy and Force of Habit) is still live on BBC Taster, please give it a play and rate it! We’re also looking for an office manager/bookkeeper. Full info is here. Thanks!

Force of Habit

Friendship Club has had a few new releases on Early Access, including the Armour Update (http://timmybibble.com/blog/release-18-armour/)! We’ve also rigged the animation engine (Spine) with the ability to directly make calls to FMOD via marker keyframes which is blimmin’ great – sound event implementation without the need for extra programming (give us a shout if you want a little bit of insight into this – we can maybe do a blog post). Oh yeah, and you can now have unlimited bullets too, as if eight per player weren’t enough already…

Fundsurfer

Fundsurfer is a Bristol based funding platform for creative, social, and green projects. Raise money through crowdfunding, startup loans, peer-to-peer lending, and more.

We really want to help some game projects! Our crowdfunding fees are normally 5%, but we are slashing that to 2.5% for all game projects that go live before the end of June.

There’s more information about what we do at https://www.fundsurfer.com/crowdfunding/for/games

Duel Launches!

PM Studio-based Duel has now launched in the UK; check it out here – http://duel.me/ – they want feedback!

Opposable Games

Greenlight Greenlight Greenlight! Opposable Games is preparing for launching a Salvaged Greenlight campaign right now. We’re looking to launch in a couple of weeks so please keep an eye out and give us a vote when it goes up. The link won’t work until we publish the Greenlight but you can have it anyways, here it is, don’t say we never give you anything.

We’ve been in the studio recording dialogue with the excellent Kate Davies for the Salvaged multi part audio log Salvaged prologue, which has been rather fun. The logs are proving to be a wicked intro to the game and are lovely and atmospheric due to the efforts of audio extraordinaire Joe Charles AKA LabGrownMusic AKA Gizmode. Check them out right here – Part One, Part Two, Part Three. Part Four will be up tomorrow so keep an eye out on our social feeds for news of that one.

We’ve also been getting pretty blog-happy with a series of explorations of the Salvaged development process, here’s a selection from the excellent Salvaged writer-designer Daniel Dowsing.

A Control Room, VR and Dual Screening
‘Guardian’ – Thaddeus and Contracts
‘Angels with Machine Guns’ – Agents
‘How We Roll’ – Gameplay
‘Bang! Bang!’ – Weapons

There’s even more beautiful promo art from the very talented Lewis Gilliard up on the Salvaged site so go check that out, sign up to the Salvaged newsletter if you want more info and do keep an eye our for our Greenlight! Cheeeers!

Jobs & Opportunities

Aardman

Here at Aardman we have some particularly meaty and exciting projects in the pipeline at the moment and need more talented and enthusiastic devs to come and join our steadily-growing team of awesome.
We are looking for:

  • Good HTML5 / JS game developers, particularly those familiar with Phaser to join our team working on a chunky and highly creative project which is all about inspiring the next generation of game makers. Would be ideal for any ex-Flash game devs who have graduated onto JS.
  • Unity devs who like an interesting technical challenge to work on a game project for some innovative and rather cool new hardware (may involve sheep).

For more info please contact digital at aardman.com

Watershed

Graduate Job opportunity at @wshed as a Researcher, funded by @JerwoodFworking across creative team, marketing & PR: http://wshd.to/14e The successful participant will work with colleagues across the organisation, supporting the creative producing teams, marketing and PR and the Head of Development with insight, research and ideas. They will work with Watershed’s Talent network to capture their stories for wider sharing – offering them a unique way into a thriving network of creative economy collaborators and partners.

Auroch Digital

Auroch Digital is a small, friendly, creative company that makes innovative computer games.  We have a staff team of 13 plus freelancers and partners. We’re centrally based in Bristol with offices in Bristol Games Hub on Stokes Croft. We are looking for an experienced, qualified bookkeeper and office manager to take care of our finances, ensure the office runs smoothly, efficiently and effectively and  provide personal assistant support to both the Directors. We need a highly organised and friendly person to be at the heart of our business! No experience in the games industry is necessary. Full info and how to apply is here.

Bristol Data Dome Commissions

Bristol now has a 3D immersive data dome in the At Bristol Planetarium in Millennium Square. It’s going to need content and there are up to three development commissions available to produce prototype works that will profile the potential of the dome for Bristol audiences. The estimated total budget for all the commissions is £60k. After the workshop, teams will be invited to complete a short and simple proposal document and attend a pitching session on or around Tuesday 2nd June when the commissions will be awarded. If you are interested REACT invites you for lunch and to an afternoon workshop at Watershed Friday 22nd May to explore the potential of this exciting new environment for your company and for communities in the city. If you want to go please email joanna.lansdowne at watershed.co.uk

Events Diary

GamesAid (May 11th)

GamesAid’s sell-out Comedy night, ‘Stand Up for GamesAid’ returned to the world-famous London Comedy Store on May 11th, marking its third year. The previous two years have seen great success as the event has established itself as a favorite in the industry calendar.

Unity Group May Meet Up – Intro to Procedural Mesh Generation (20th May, 7.30pm)

Hello fellow Unity heads! We had a really good turn out at the last meetup so we hope to see just as many of you this time around. Alexander Birke will give the talk on how to create 3D models only with the use of programming, a bit of cleverness and a hefty dose of math. As always we follow the talk with a show and tell session where you can ask for feedback or help with whatever you are currently making with Unity. After the meetup we head of to the Bell for a relaxing pint or two. Signup to the meetup here.

Ken Eklund: The Future is an authentic fiction (6pm, 3rd June @Watershed)

Ken Eklund designs immersive play experiences about socially relevant issues like climate change and the environment. He’ll be speaking about his previous projects including World Without Oil, FutureCoast and Giskin Anomaly, as well as new cross-media works designed to engage people by playfully shaping positive futures. Ken is an internationally recognised game and experience designer, creating “immersive stories that seek to write themselves.” His socially relevant alternate-reality games explore real-world issues through collaborative play. His work springs from deep beliefs about the transformative effect of participation and the power of play to open people up to true inquiry and learning. More Info & Tickets

Quick Links

Thanks all!

April Newsletter

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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.

Auroch Digital

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!

Rumpus

The Adventures of Bertram Fiddle has been released on Steam. They’re getting some great reviews and have partnered with Deck13 in Germany to help market the game in Europe.

Opposable Games

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

Bristol-based game academic and designer Nathan Hook has self-published a board game, titles ‘Magus’ with a public launch over Easter at the Danish ‘Fastaval’ convention. The game is designed to capture the feel of roleplaying in a board game, being stressing flexible options and strong player – character role identification. Find out more here. The game is illustrated using a mixture of authentic medieval woodcut and original art from Bristol-based games artist Claire Morley. The two met via a board games jam organised by the Bristol Games Hub.

Jobs & Opportunities

Ground Shatter

Are looking for a junior Unity programmer to help out with SkyScrappers and more. Take a look here: http://groundshatter.com/jobs.html

Aardman

Any freelance developers on here with experience of making games or interactives with three.js / WebGL and available soon? Please get in touch ASAPgeorge.rowe@aardman.com

Play Nicely

Play Nicely are looking for a Unity developer to work on a mobile app. If interested, please email becky@playnicely.co.uk with a CV and links to any relevant work. Thanks!

Rancon

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.mason@rancon.co.uk to find out more.

FireTechCamp

Have paid tutor posts in camps for kids learning tech including game dev; https://firetechcamp.com/camp-instructor-job-application

Events Diary

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.

 

Quick Links

Wellcome Trust and Epic Games Launch Big Data VR Challenge

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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.

News Update! Raise Finance for your Creative Business

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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

Second is:

Bristol Media have a survey up – help them out if you can by completing it! https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/BristolMediaBarometer

News Update! Creative England Tender & Animation, Games & VFX Skills Survey

Posted on

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!

Thanks

PS. Board games night tonight at the hub, 7.30pm for all us GDC no-gos.

PPS. News update from GDC yesterday is here.

 

Bristol Games Hub Newsletter

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Next Games Hub Anti-Social: 26th Feb, 7.30pm

We’ve got two demos! Infinite State Games and Lukas Roper from Opposable Games.

Lukas will be showing a short presentation (or possibly a demo) on a VR hardware, technical side project that he’s been working on.

Mike from Infinite State Games is going to show us his Frutorious HD on iOS.  It is a completely re-designed and re-polished remaster of Frutorious SD.  The SD version released in 2012 was nominated for two TIGA awards. This version has totally HD art, every single level has been polished and re-balanced to within an inch of its life, and has had innumerable tweaks and improvements made over the last 3 years. It has 144 levels of goofy puzzle platforming action and NO IAP!  Oh also, the voice of Frutorious F.I.G. is provided by Bristol based rapper ChetMega. Come and have a play and give feedback & ask questions….

So join us on the 26th Feb 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.

Games Hub News:

We’ve got the new board games night on 4th March at 7.30pm – full info below in ‘Diary’ section…

Dev Scene News

Knowle West Media Centre – Visible You

A group of 8 Junior Digital Producers at KWMC are creating a documentary to address the issue of reported increased numbers of 13 – 19 year olds who are socially isolated. The team has started a Made Open crowd funding campaign here to contribute towards equipment that they need and promoting the project. You can read more about it here and get in touch with them on Twitter and Facebook.

Allicorn Games

Bristol based Allicorn Games proudly launches their first title this month. “Heckabomb”, a twin-stick shooter for PC, will be available on Steam and other stores from Feb 27th.
http://store.steampowered.com/app/344300

Auroch Digital – Chainsaw Warrior: Lords of the Night hits Steam!

Our 2nd title with Games Workshop has just hit Steam. It can be found here: http://store.steampowered.com/app/307600/ – if you are a reviewer and want a review copy, drop us an email to geoff at aurochdigital.com. We’d appreciate if you could Like this Facebook post, Upvote this Reddit post and/or RT this tweet!  Thanks :)

Barbara-ian Hits Greenlight

Barbara-ian is a super fast paced twin-stick dungeon crawler focused on pure action. Using a physics-based combat system where 1 hit kills kills anything and everyone (including you), collect randomised weapons and master the procedurally generated dungeons. Unlike other dungeon crawler heroes, Barbara-ian has no inventory, no skill system, no health bars. She doesn’t want to duel with her enemies, doesn’t want to carry a bag full of calipers OR tongs, and she doesn’t need a spreadsheet to tell her how to kick ass. She just wants to smash.  Our greenlight page is here. There’s a beta-testing build available here (which everyone is welcome to)  Aaaaand the trailer, featuring a beautiful rendition of O Fortuna with the lyrics… adjusted, performed by myself, Sam Chester & colleague Kristian Andrews, is here  (Watch the volume on that one). Follow us on twitter for more updates! @SamChesterD & @KristianAndrews

Force of Habit

Busy busy busy! Let’s go with bullet points…

  • We released a mobile mini Sinking Feeling to iOS and Android. It was featured for a bit, which was awesome.
  • Our long-awaited bullet hell party game Friendship Club is coming to Steam Early Access very soon!
    • We’re announcing everything tomorrow Tuesday 24th. Stick your email address in here if you want the big notification. Or, you know, keep an eye on Twitter.
  • Finally, we’ve been working on a tool to help indie devs and small studios (like you!) manage their PR and marketing. More info on that in the next newsletter!

Jobs & Opportunities

2 Roles at Play Nicely

Play Nicely (www.playnicely.co.uk) are looking for an experienced freelance Unity 3D developer & a3D character animator. Experienced freelance Unity 3D developer to work in-house for an exciting project starting in the next couple of weeks. 3D character animator for rigging and animating high res human characters, AAA game quality. Can anyone interested in this role email megan at playnicely.co.uk with your availability, day rate and a link to your most recent portfolio please?

Unreal Offers Dev Grants

More info here.

EU Fund for Games is Open

More info here.

Bristol Anime & Gaming Con – Looking for Devs

…to show their games off at the event. Find out more and get in touch…

Events Diary

24th Feb: South West VR Conference

On Tuesday, 24th February, Opposable Games will be hosting the SouthWest VR Conference. Tickets have now sold out and the office is buzzing with excitement. We’ve got some incredible speakers coming to talk about aspects of narrative, storytelling and the way virtual reality will shake up the entertainment industry. After three months of hard work, planning and late nights, the team is almost ready for the event. As you can imagine, the event’s organiser Dan Page is over the moon! All the hard work is now paying off and in just under 4 days time, the fruits of the team’s labour will be realised.

Recently additions to the lineup include local tech start up Ultrahaptics, which has been continuously making headlines with its award-winning tactile technology. Delegates of the South West VR Conference will be given the chance to try out this impressive technology. Another recent addition is the mindbogglingly impressive company Nozon, who’ve somehow managed to add positional tracking to 360 videos.

Adding to our great features, exhibitors and speakers, we will be live streaming the event in virtual reality in Riftmax Theatre! This means viewers can put on their DK1 and DK2 Oculus Rifts, meet up with the rest of our virtual reality community and watch the event’s talks for themselves. In addition to this, we’ll be filming the event in 360 with the help of immersiv.ly, and making the talks available and viewable in VR at a later date.

During the day we will also be fundraising for UK charity GamesAid, a great organisation that helps disadvantaged and disabled children and young people. We’re on the lookout for volunteers to help out with the running of the conference. If you’re interested in virtual reality and want a chance to brush shoulders with some of the most influential people in the industry, this weekend is your last chance to contact us! It’s going to be an amazing day, we’re looking forward to seeing you.

26th Feb: 7.30pm – Games Hub Anti-Social

See above for details.

26th Feb: New European Media Meeting

New European Media is an industry association that advises the European Commission on its funding programmes. Its constituency includes all major European organisations working in the networked and electronic media area: content providers, creative businesses, broadcasters, network equipment manufacturers, network operators and service providers, academia, standardisation bodies and government institutions. NEM is currently developing a proposal for a major European fund to accelerate the development of ‘immersive entertainment technologies’. On February 26th the organisation is hosting its General Assembly in the UK for the first time. This will be a major event, featuring leading figures in the fields of media and entertainment technology including a presentation by Colin Davidson, Chief Scientist at The Imaginarium Studios. Colin is a double Academy Award winner and a world expert on 3D, computer vision, VFX, performance capture, and image-based modelling. You can get more information and register for the event here: http://nem-initiative.org/19th-nem-general-assembly/

4th March: BGH Board Games Night

Join us on 4th March from 7.30pm at Bristol Games Hub to play board games! We’ll have a few here but also bring yours along to play. Last event was great fun and lots of new and classic games were played… Email tom at aurochdigital dot com if any queries…

4-6th March: GDC

GDC is here again in San Francisco, USA. You might want to support Dames Making Games going there to show off dames making games?

Quick Links

Thanks all!

Ye Hub of Games Bristole 2015 Newsletter for all Things New!!

Posted on Updated on

Bristol Games Hub Newsletter

Below is news 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 news letter, 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 geoff at aurochdigital.com for more information or with news items for the next newsletter and let us know news for the next one by 15th February please!

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 your information in the public domain: http://bit.ly/bghdirectory

SW Game Dev Jobs Facebook pageFind roles and post new openings here…

Next Games Hub Anti-Social: 29th January, 7.30pm

This month we’ve got:

Jack the Ripper: Shadow Over Whitechapel – An Anatomy of our Crowdfunding Campaign so far..

Auroch Digital and their GameTheNews.net project are about to launch their crowd-funding campaign for the playable documentary title on the Jack the Ripper murders. Auroch’s community manager @AurochJake & designer @TomasRawlings will give a tour through the extensive prep work that has gone into the campaign and the particular challenges with launching a campaign based on real events.

So join us on the 29th January 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.

Plus – if people are good, there will be a special post-social bit of gaming (shhh)…

Unity Developers Group

The first Unity meetup of the year is to take place on 28th January 7.30pm. A new year awaits and with Unity 5 looming in the horizon it is going to be an exiting one. The meetup will follow the traditional format with us gathering at the Games Hub, showcases of what people have made or a chance to ask for questions to the problems the members are facing in their current development. Signup for the meetup can be found here: http://www.meetup.com/Bristol-Unity-Game-Developers-Meetup/events/219916255/

We hope to see a lot of cool prototypes since the meetup lies after the Global Game Jam. As always we will be heading to a nearby pub at around 10pm after we finish..

Dev Scene News

On 24th February, 2015, Opposable Games will host the SouthWest VR Conference at the At-Bristol Science Centre

SouthWest VR Conference is a one-day event with a focus on narrative and storytelling within virtual reality. The format will consist of quick-fire talks from significant industry-leading figures with plenty of time to network and try out the hardware, software and 360 degree movies on show.

Taking place at the At-Bristol Science Centre in Bristol on February 24, the conference has already attracted big-name official guests such as Oculus, the developer of the Oculus Rift virtual reality head-mounted display, Aardman, Pinewood, The Imaginarium and Yogscast, with quick-fire talks by Atlantic Productions’ Alchemy VR, Unity 3D, nDreams and Innerspace lined up. Other high profile speakers will be announced in the coming weeks.  We’ll touch upon the challenges and lessons learnt telling stories and making games, experiences and films for virtual reality devices, but don’t plan to be too hung up on the technical side of things in the main track. For those that would like to talk tech however, a second track will feature demos and talks on VR input, gesture, facial recognition and more from some of the smartest minds in the business.

SouthWest VR, which is to be hosted by renowned games journalist Will Freeman, will also provide delegates with a chance to try out the latest in virtual reality technology including the Oculus Rift Development Kit 2 and Samsung’s Gear VR Innovator Edition, powered by Oculus along with a few special surprises. The line-up of speakers and guests at SouthWest VR includes: Callum Underwood, European developer relations manager at Oculus; Phil Harper, creative director at Atlantic Productions’ Alchemy VR; Patrick O’Luanaigh, CEO of virtual reality-focused games studio nDreams; and Nick Pittom, director of critically acclaimed VR studio Fire Panda.

SouthWest VR will be fundraising for UK charity GamesAid, which will be running a GamesAid Tenner collection. Attendees are asked to bring £10 with them to donate to GamesAid.

The conference is supported by Invest Bristol & Bath, Creative Skillset, the Digital Cultures Research Centre, Webstart Bristol, the Centre for Digital Entertainment, the BMT Group and Unity 3D.  For more information, tickets and links to our social media visit www.southwestvr.com

Skills empowerment workshop for women working in the games industry – 3rd Fed 10am-5pm in Bristol

Following on from the UK Gender Balanced Workforce Survey last month, which had an overwhelming response of over 300, this series of workshops across the UK supported by renowned industry speakers is set to empower women involved in the games industry by focusing on the skill areas women identified as wanting to advance in more… Sign up to take part here:
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/skills-empowerment-workshop-for-women-working-in-the-games-industry-bristol-tickets-15251731339

Global Games Jam 2015

We’ve had this at the Watershed, Creative England and Bristol Games Hub. This year UWE is hosting the event and it’s FREE to enter! – UWE is hosting GGJ15 Bristol! Registrations are now open! The Global Game Jam 2015 is taking place around the world on the 23rd January with UWE as a registered site. Doors open from 4pm at Frenchay Campus. It is a chance to come together, be creative, share experiences and express ourselves in a multitude of ways using video games. Be it programming, iterative design, narrative exploration or artistic expression, after a 48-hour development cycle you will have taken part in the world’s largest game creation event. Many participants have gone on to release their titles, but taking part is also an excellent way to expand your portfolio of work. We encourage people with all kinds of backgrounds in game development and creativity so if you are interested please register at the UWE Global Game Jam Site with your team details at the following link: http://globalgamejam.org/2015/jam-sites/gamestech-university-west-england

Auroch Digital

First off we’d like to say congratulations to our Director of Operations (and hub director) Debbie Rawlings as she’s been listed in the Top 100 Women in Games! Also we’re gearing up to launch our first Kickstarter in Feb – our project on the Jack the Ripper murders. You can get a flavor of it here. We’re also giving a talk about the project at the next anti-social to share our planning process.

Pretty Digital

Have been awarded support by Creative England after successfully meeting the crowdfunding targets in the Queen of Code competition. Work on their first game has begun! http://www.prettydigital.co.uk/

Jobs & Opportunities

Aardman Opportunities

Aardman Digital are looking for talented Flash Animators and HTML5 Developers to work on a number of exciting new projects looking to kick off around early February! If this sounds like your cup of tea, and you’re interested in joining the best team EVER, please contact digital at aardman.com for more information.

Game Jam Co-ordinator

As part of the GamesLab South West programme, Creative England are looking for a delivery partner to organise a 2-day Game Hack for indie devs in the region. If you are interested in applying to run the jams, please email ella.waving atcreativeengland.co.uk for more info. Do so quick as the final deadline for completed applications is 30th Jan.

PlayWest/UWE

Our Game Simulation Post for Bloodhound SSC is now live, and has a closing date of19th January, so if this is of interest, act quickly. £24k / 1 year fixed term with possibility of extension. Looking for experience of making things pretty and go FAST in Unity. Click through to Computer Science & Creative Technology. See here: http://www.jobs.ac.uk/job/AKH006/games-technologist-vehicle-educational-simulator-project/

Events Diary

23rd Jan, 4pm+ GGJ15

Global Games Jam! It’s at UWE – see above.

28th Jan, 7.30pm Unity Developer Group

At the hub – see above.

29th Jan, 7.30pm – Games Hub Anti-Social:

Auroch Digital will give a tour though the extensive prep work that has gone into their new crowdfunding campaign – see above.

30th Jan, 1pm: Syncself 2 – How Tech can enhance the Storytelling Experience (PM Studio)

Friday, 30 January 2015 13:00 to 14:00: Karen Palmer will introduce us to SYNCSELF 2, a Transmedia Parkour Neurogame, an immersive storytelling experience in which the obstacles that the freerunners face within a film are determined by the user’s mental focus. http://www.watershed.co.uk/pmstudio/events/fri-30012015-100pm

24th Feb – SouthWest VR Conference

Full info is above!

Quick Links

Thanks all!