The 2012 Dare to be Digital competition came to a climax yesterday, when the winning teams were announced at a star-studded, glamorous and confetti covered awards ceremony.
The awards were handed out at the end of the three day ProtoPlay event, which drew in a record crowd of over 10,000. Players, developers, families, students and a large number of industry experts, mentors, judges, journalists and speakers had the chance to play all of the games created by the 15 teams who competed in the 2012 competition.
There are three main awards. These are awarded on an equal basis and given to the teams which show the greatest commercial potential, creativity and use of technology. The three winning teams are then put forward are nominees in the BAFTA Ones To Watch award, a new category within the academy’s games competition, created specifically for Dare to be Digital teams.
- Starcrossed (Windows Phone 7) – Kind of a Big Deal (team leader Kimi Sulopuisto, Petri Liuska, Andrew MacLean, Minttu Meriläinen, Vili Viitaniemi)
- Pixel Story (PC) – Loan Wolf Games (team leader Martin Cosens, Luke Harrison, Ashley Hayes, Thomas McParland, Benjamin Rushton)
- Project Thanatos (PC/virtual reality headset) – Raptor Games (team leader Hugh Laird, Andrew Coles, Tom Kemp, Tom Laird, Alexandra Shapland)
However, there’s more. Much more. This year, the Dare teams could also walk away with the Intel Visual Computing Tools Audience Award, or a £25,000 prize from Channel 4, to fund and support the completion and commercial release of their game.
The winners of those awards were:
- Raptor Games – Intel Visual Computing Tools Audience Award, with each team member receiving an Intel Ultrabook.
- Loan Wolf Games – Channel 4 prize.
In addition to the 15 Dare teams, this year’s ProtoPlay also featured a two day Indie Games Festival, an independent games showcase, one day HTML 5 workshop and a three day game design workshop for 11-16 year olds.
The Indie Festival featured speakers from companies including Turbulenz, Reloaded Games, CCP, Channel 4, Games Analytics, Axis Animation, SCEE, Spilt Milk Studios and Information Dynamics, covering topics as diverse as the crossover between games and other creative industries, the future of gaming, marketing on a shoestring, the use of data analytics, HTML5 and making sure indie developers spend their time, wisely.
Not bad for a £20 ticket.
The indie games showcase offered independent developers and studios the chance to demonstrate their games to the ProtoPlay consumer audience and show the world what they’re working on. Many Scottishgames.net stalwarts were there including Pixels On Toast, Domipheus Labs, Guerilla Tea, Lucky Frame, Braindead Ape, Outplay, Quartic Llama and Proper, along with the teams from the Dare+ workshop and other new companies and projects.
The Scottish government remains very strongly behind the whole Dare event. The government funded the inclusion of teams from China, India and Finland, to the tune of around £100,000. The Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop popped through to Dundee on Friday, to have a gander at the event and get her hands on the games.
We’ll be running a whole series of round-ups, summaries, reviews and analysis of Dare, the festival and the showcase as weary developers drag themselves back into the office.
In the meantime, it simply remains to say congratulations to all of the winning teams, all of the participants in the competition and all of the organisers, students, volunteers, visitors, judges, mentors, visitors, players and companies involved in yet another awesome – and unique – games event created in Scotland.