It’s time to export – sign up for free today

A new two-year initiative from Pact is underway to help production companies explore or expand international sales opportunities.

The Pact Export Accelerator is now underway – and production companies can sign up for free.

Assistance for companies will be delivered under the UK indies banner.  It follows extra resourcing from UK Trade & Investment (UKTI).  This is the government department that works with UK-based businesses to support their work in overseas markets.

Over the next two years, more than £1million will be invested in this exports initiative.  Joining up should take no more than two minutes of your time.  Click here for details and sign-up.

Dawn McCarthy-Simpson, Director of Market Development at Pact, said: “Businesses have everything to gain and nothing to lose by joining the Pact Export Accelerator – indies have made many millions of pounds from sales through the international content markets in recent years.

“UK content has never been more popular and production companies of all sizes are taking advantage, but this new and enhanced support means there’s never been a better opportunity to start exporting or do even more business around the world.”

The Pact Export Accelerator is designed to help companies just beginning in the exports market – and also to support more experienced businesses.

China

From September 2013 to April 2014, Pact will support delegations to 11 content markets in eight months.  The past few years have seen the UK indies develop strong ties in new major markets in Brazil and the Far East.

And in 2013, the UK indies will also have a presence in China.

Companies that join the new Pact Export Accelerator will gain access to a new level of business support.  Assistance includes:

  •     Workshops and seminars from industry leaders and global broadcaster briefings;
  •     access to 11 supported international markets with up to £3,000 funding (per company) for each market;
  •     access to virtual boards for additional bespoke support; and
  •     access to regular updates on new territories and global trader bulletins.

There is no charge to sign up.

For more information, please email Dawn McCarthy-Simpson or Felisha Weekes or call 020 7380 8245.

Pact is a UKTI accredited trade organisation.  More information about UKTI and exports or the Pact Export Accelerator.

Published on August 19, 2013  |  Permalink


China – Seeking UK Games Developers

A platform to provide opportunity for the UK game developers to promote and distribute their quality games in China market.

One of the largest social game companies in Asia now looking for game developers from the UK who are interested in publishing high quality game products in China and to enter to the Chinese gaming market.

Register your interest

Only UK companies who’ve registered with our website are eligible to obtain more information on this opportunity. You’ll be asked to login with your current credentials, or register your company details if you’ve not already done so.

For further information visit the website.

Published on August 19, 2013  |  Permalink


BAFTA nominees from Dare to be Digital crowned

The three BAFTA-nominated games from Abertay University’s Dare to be Digital game design competition were announced tonight after a record-breaking weekend.

A record-breaking audience of over 13,000 people played the 15 games over four days at the free Dare ProtoPlay games festival in Dundee. An extra day was added this year due to the huge demand.

The three teams who now compete for the exclusive BAFTA Ones to Watch Award at the 2014 BAFTA Video Games Awards are:

- iKnow, with The Unknown for Android phone (Luyue Zhang, Zhaoxuan Li, Qiwei Feng, Chenying Wan and Neil Cullen)

- Mazhlele, with Project Heera for XBox360 & PC (Dhruv Dave, Neeraj Shastry, Shashank Dhongde, Tanmay Chinchkar and Shriram Srinivasan)

- Team DOS, with Size DOS Matter for iPad (Nick La Rooy, Trond Fasteraune, Silje Dahl, Mattis Delerud and Lars Andersen)

All three of the main awards were sponsored by Sony Computer Entertainment Europe.

 Chenying Wan, team leader of iKnow, said: “We really didn’t expect this. I think we could win the BAFTA, I really believe that. We’ve faced some big problems making our game, but looking back they were all worth it to be here now.”

Tanmay Chinchkar, team leader of Mazhlele, said: “It’s amazing to win the BAFTA nomination and to see such a huge crowd for our tournament at ProtoPlay today. The biggest satisfaction is seeing people enjoying our game, shouting others on.”

Mattis Delerud, leader of Team DOS, said: “It’s amazing being here, and was really worth the trip and all the struggles we’ve been through. Our next step is moving to the UK, finishing the game, making is as perfect as we can – and getting used to making games every day as a career.”

The Dare ProtoPlay festival was opened on Thursday by the Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs Fiona Hyslop and games industry legend Ian Livingstone.

Cabinet Secretary for Culture Fiona Hyslop said:

“My congratulations go to all of the teams that took part in Dare to be Digital and especially the three winning teams that will now go through to the BAFTA Ones to Watch Award for new games talent. Once again Dare to be Digital has underlined Scotland’s place at the very heart of gaming excellence.

“I always enjoy the Dare ProtoPlay festival and this year was stronger than ever, showcasing incredible innovation including examples of how augmented reality can be used. I expect to see much of this talent and intellectual property being transformed into new businesses in Scotland to follow the successes of previous Dare to be Digital participants. 

“The joint theatrical and digital collaboration between the National Theatre of Scotland and Quartic Llama, founded by former Dare to be Digital participants, called Other, that was showcased at the festival illustrates how computer game technology can enhance other sectors as well.

“As a creative nation, Scotland is the perfect home for game production with our cutting-edge skills, talent and infrastructure and once again Dare to be Digital has underlined Scotland’s place at the very heart of gaming excellence.”

Imre Jele, Creator-in-chief at Bossa Studios and member of the BAFTA Games Committee, said:

“The quality of games shown at Dare ProtoPlay advances every year at an astonishing rate. We’re not only looking at small prototypes showing seeds of ideas any more, but can play products surpassing the quality of many commercially released titles.

“This means the job of judges is getting more complex, but also more rewarding every year. Choosing the winner from such an amazing line up was a great challenge. But I truly believe all three are worthy of the title, and the attention of both BAFTA and players.”

Professor Louis Natanson, who leads computer games education at Abertay University, said:

“The entrants to Abertay University’s 2013 Dare to be Digital game design competition are truly the best yet, in terms of their professionalism, their technical achievements and the incredible creativity we’ve seen this year.

“The BAFTA-nominated winners – iKnow, Mazhlele and Team DOS – stood out from the very tough competition for their exceptional game design and commercial appeal, but all 15 teams have the experience now to enter the games industry or start their own businesses.

 “Building a professional, playable and exciting game in just nine weeks is a very, very hard thing to do, and these 75 students have all excelled during their time in Dundee. We look forward to hearing about their new companies, game releases and many successes in the future.”

Dare ProtoPlay is sponsored by Creative Scotland, Dundee City Council and EventScotland.

For more information, please visit the Dare to be Digital website – http://www.daretobedigital.com/

 

Published on August 13, 2013  |  Permalink


NEWS: Dare ProtoPlay 2013 – Scotland’s biggest games festival opens

Scotland’s biggest computer games festival opens in Dundee

The free four-day Dare ProtoPlay computer games festival was opened today (Thursday 8 August) by the Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs and games industry legend Ian Livingstone.

Fiona Hyslop joined the creator of Lara Croft: Tomb Raider and thousands of members of the public to play brand new games created by students on the University of Abertay Dundee’s internationally-renowned Dare to be Digital competition.

Fifteen teams of students from across the world travel to Abertay University each year to build a game in just nine weeks, with three winners then nominated for the exclusive BAFTA Ones to Watch Award for new games talent.

The Dare ProtoPlay computer games festival is free and open to the public from Thursday August 8th to Sunday August 11th in Dundee’s Caird Hall and City Square.

Cabinet Secretary for Culture Fiona Hyslop said:

“Scotland’s computer games industry is undoubtedly one of our global success stories and the Dare ProtoPlay festival never fails to showcase the innovative and cutting-edge skills, talent and infrastructure that Scotland has to offer.

“I am particularly glad to see a focus this year on involving women in game development, and promoting opportunities for them to get involved and become inspired to realise how their creative talent can help diversify and enhance this fast-growing and exciting market.

“Scotland is recognised globally as a creative and innovative nation and I’m delighted to open the Dare ProtoPlay festival which is an excellent platform for young people, game developers – emerging and experienced alike – design experts and gaming enthusiasts to experience the very best of video game production.” 

Ian Livingstone said:

“It’s great to be back in Dundee to open Scotland’s biggest computer games festival, speak to the next generation of entrepreneurs, and to see games created by some of the world’s most talented students in just nine weeks.

“The Dare ProtoPlay festival is a very inspiring event, giving children the opportunity to meet game creators – and to show them that their passion for art, design or maths can be harnessed to move from playing games at home to creating their own games as a fun, rewarding career.”

Professor Louis Natanson, who leads computer games education at Abertay University, said:

“Games are an incredible artistic and creative medium, and we’re delighted to welcome Fiona Hyslop back to open Scotland’s biggest computer games festival at the very moment Dundee prepares its final bid to be UK City of Culture 2017.

“Scotland truly excels at creating computer games, and this weekend we’re showing families the latest games from up-and-coming companies right beside the brand new games created in our Dare to be Digital competition.”

The Cabinet Secretary also met the V&A’s first ever Game Designer in Residence, Sophia George, a former Dare to be Digital and BAFTA winner, as well as representatives from the National Theatre of Scotland, who created their first game this year with Dundee-based games studio Quartic Llama.

Last year’s festival attracted 10,000 visitors over three days, with a fourth day being added this year due to the high demand.

Running alongside the festival is a conference looking at convergence between games and the arts, film and TV, featuring speakers from organisations including Channel 4, Edinburgh International Film Festival, the V&A and the V&A at Dundee.

Dare ProtoPlay is sponsored by Creative Scotland, Dundee City Council and EventScotland.

 For more information, please visit http://www.dareprotoplay.com

 

Published on August 13, 2013  |  Permalink


£125k Digital Innovation Contest – Sport’

IC tomorrow has just launched the £125k ‘Digital Innovation Contest – Sport’. Some of the UK’s leading sports organisations – the Jockey Club with Channel 4, UK Sport, BT Sport, Legacy 2014 Commonwealth Games and Loughborough University – have partnered with us on this contest to encourage digital innovation in the sports sector.

The contest is offering five awards of up to £25k each in prototype funding. Besides picking up funding – while also retaining their intellectual property – winners will benefit from the exposure to a range of key sports stakeholders and the opportunity to test their proposed prototype with a relevant contest partner. To apply, it’s not necessary to have an existing app or service, or to be currently active in the sports industry.

The five challenge categories are:

- sport appreciation and understanding

- engaging the live stadium audience

- driving in-play viewer engagement

- personalising sport performance

- tracking athlete health.

Application deadline is 12 noon on Wednesday 14 August and the contest final will be held on 11 September in London (venue TBC). Further details are available at http://bit.ly/dicsport

Potential applicants are encouraged to come along to the briefing event we are holding this week on Wednesday 17 July. It will be a great opportunity for anyone who is thinking about entering the contest to ensure their application fits the judging criteria. The briefing will be available to watch via live webinar for anyone who is unable to attend in person.

Briefing Event

When: Wednesday 17 July, 2.30-6pm

Where: Innovation Warehouse, 1 East Poultry Avenue, London, EC1A 9PT

Registration: http://bit.ly/sportbriefing

Our Twitter handle is @ICtomorrow

Suggested tweet: New £125k @ICtomorrow contest for digital innovation in sport. Briefing event on 17 July in LDN: http://bit.ly/dicsport

Published on July 24, 2013  |  Permalink


Games legend Ian Livingstone to speak at Dare ProtoPlay

Game industry legend Ian Livingstone has been confirmed to speak at Dare ProtoPlay, the UK’s biggest indie games festival run by the University of Abertay Dundee.

The industry conference is being run on the theme of ‘independence and convergence culture’, looking at where the games industry meets art, film and television.

As one of the founders of the UK games industry Ian will share his experiences of building multiple successful businesses, from his struggles as an entrepreneur setting up Games Workshop in the 1970s with Steve Jackson, to his success with Lara Croft: Tomb Raider and his vision of the future of the games industry.

His talk is on Thursday 8th August, on the first day of Dare ProtoPlay. Tickets are available now at the Dare to be Digital website – http://www.daretobedigital.com/190_Dare-Indie-Fest-2013-Speakers.html

Ian Livingstone said: “Dare to be Digital is an excellent example of how universities should prepare graduates to work in the games industry, by giving them the opportunity to see a project through from start to finish – and then put it on show to thousands of members of the public.

“I’m very pleased to be returning to Dundee to speak at the Dare ProtoPlay conference, share my experiences with the next generation of games entrepreneurs, and meet the other games developers bringing our industry together with the arts, film and television.”

Professor Louis Natanson, who leads games education at Abertay University, said: “Having a speaker of Ian’s stature at the Dare ProtoPlay conference will be a fantastic inspiration for all the developers and aspiring entrepreneurs in the audience.

“Ian’s achievements are quite incredible, from co-founding Games Workshop and creating genre-defining games, to championing the critical importance of teaching computer science in schools to the future of the UK economy.

“We’re delighted to welcome Ian back to Dundee and to Abertay University, and to showing him and thousands of members of the public the incredible games created by students on Dare to be Digital.”

Other talks will explore convergence from different angles including business, creativity, culture, cross-media discoveries and how big companies can converge with independent games developers.

Other speakers at the Dare ProtoPlay conference include:

- Imre Jele, Creator-In-Chief, Bossa Studios
- Ken Hay, Chief Executive of Edinburgh International Film Festival and Filmhouse
- Colin Macdonald, Games Commissioning Editor, Channel 4
- Jody Smith, Multiplatform Commissioning Editor, Channel 4
- Gina Fegan, founder of the D-Media Network
- Troels Linde, Head of Program at EUCROMA
- Salvatore Fileccia, Incubation Director at Lift London, a new Microsoft studio
- Philippa Tomlin, Creative Director of Other, National Theatre of Scotland
- Tom deMajo from Other’s game developer, Quartic Llama
- Simon Meek, creative director of The Story Mechanics
- Sophia George, the V&A’s first Game Designer in Residence

Dare ProtoPlay marks the end of Dare to be Digital, the international game design contest for students run in Dundee each summer by Abertay University.

Dare to be Digital gives exceptionally talented students a life-changing opportunity to be mentored by games industry experts – and to take the stage at the BAFTA Video Games Awards as winners.

The Dare ProtoPlay computer games festival is open to the public from Thursday August 8 to Sunday August 11 in Dundee’s Caird Hall and City Square.

The event is sponsored by Creative Scotland, Dundee City Council and EventScotland.

For more information, please visit http://www.daretobedigital.com/190_Dare-Indie-Fest-2013-Speakers.html

 

Published on July 19, 2013  |  Permalink


Mobile phone game ‘could find cancer cures’

A smart phone game which results in players analysing real cancer data is being developed with the aim of discovering new treatments.

Cancer Research UK has hired Dundee-based Guerilla Tea to build “GeneGame”.

The charity has already enlisted the help of the public to classify variations in vast amounts of gene data using its site Cell Slider.

It said in three months “citizen scientists” had analysed data that would have taken scientists 18 months.

The charity said advances in technology had helped scientists to identify new causes and drivers of cancer.

However, it said colossal amounts of data needed to be analysed by the human eye rather than machines – and this could take years.

Now it hopes to create a game which will will be fun to play while at the same time classifies data from research archives, which can then be fed back to Cancer Research UK scientists. We hope that by the end of the year we’ll have a game that not only is fun to play but will play a crucial role in developing new cancer cures sooner”

This will help them “drastically speed up” research into the genetic causes of cancer, and in turn develop potential new cures.

GeneGame is to be launched in the UK later this year.

Amy Carton, citizen science lead for Cancer Research UK, said: “We’re right at the start of a world-first initiative that will result in a game that we hope hundreds of thousands of people across the globe will want to play over and over again and, at the same time, generate robust scientific data analysis.

“Combining complicated cancer research data and gaming technology in this way has never been done before and it’s certainly no mean feat but we’re working with the best scientific and technology brains in the business.

“We’re ready for the challenge and believe the results will have global impact and speed up research.”

Guerilla Tea’s Mark Hastings said: “We’ve always believed games technology as the potential to provide huge benefits to other sectors and this project will be a wonderful example of that.”

Cancer Research UK’s first initiative, Cell SliderTM, launched in October 2012 and allows the public to classify archived breast cancer samples.

Dr Joanna Reynolds, director of science information, Cancer Research UK, said “Over 200,000 people have already visited our CellSlider site, from over 100 countries, making more than 1.6 million classifications.

“With GeneGame we are being bolder, braver and bigger and we hope that by the end of the year we’ll have a game that not only is fun to play but will play a crucial role in developing new cancer cures sooner – ultimately saving lives.”

Published on July 19, 2013  |  Permalink


Dare ProtoPlay Computer Games Festival, Dundee

Thursday 8th – Sunday 11th August

10am to 6pm (5pm Sunday)

The UK’s biggest indie games festival is back this August in Dundee’s Caird Hall and City Square.

- Free entry
- Family friendly
- Play brand new games – and meet their creators

Last year saw 10,000 people – from toddlers to grandparents – enjoy new games created by students and leading games companies. Due to the huge demand, this year’s event has added an extra, fourth day.

Dare ProtoPlay marks the end of Abertay University’s game design competition Dare to be Digital, with the student game creators battling for the BAFTA Ones to Watch Award. The event is sponsored by Creative Scotland, Dundee City Council and EventScotland.

For more information, please visit http://www.daretobedigital.com/

Media opportunities

Computer games educators and creators are available for advance interview for previews.

All members of the media are welcome to attend on Thursday 8th August for news and feature coverage.

 

Published on July 17, 2013  |  Permalink


CONNECTING THE DOCS

Do you want to get your documentary and digital ideas made into reality, whether through traditional, independent or innovative routes? Do you want to know how to focus your creative energies where they will bear the most fruit and money? Do you want to grow your audience on all screens?

Sheffield Doc/Fest and Crossover Labs, supported by Creative Skillset, are delighted to announce Connecting the Docs – a groundbreaking training and networking opportunity aimed exclusively at documentary-makers based in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland – designed to arm participants with the skills and inside knowledge to make sense of today’s reality of fractured funding models and internet-connected audiences. 

Connecting The Docs is a series of three-day reboot camps in Glasgow (August), Belfast (October) and Cardiff (December) providing documentary-makers with the skills to survive in today’s production reality, maximising your potential for traditional funding models and distribution systems, expand your reach by moving to non-traditional funding and distribution strategies, and grow your audiences by moving from linear to cross-platform creative ideas.  

Attendance costs £125+VAT per person and is subject to a selection process. Successful applicants will be required to pay a deposit of £25+VAT to reserve their place. Deadline for applications Wednesday 31st July

For more information and instructions on how to apply please see: www.bit.ly/ConnectingDocs

For general enquiries please email chris@sidf.co.uk

Published on July 15, 2013  |  Permalink


MIPCOM 2013

PLACES NOW LIMITED

Are you interested in attending MIPCOM 2013 with the UK Indies?

We have good news, if it is your first time attending MIP, you will be charged £1,750 and will be eligible for a free accreditation to get into the market.

If not, to remind you, we are offering two packages, the standard shared table package which is £1,975 and then the advanced package which we call the ‘sponsored table’ package where you have your own booth for the whole market with extra storage space for £5,200.

Grants are available for £1,500

To remind you, we are offering On the UK indies stand, businesses will have:

  • Company listing in UK Indies product guide;
  • company listing at the reception desk;
  • companies’ promo/showreel on rotation on screens on the stand;
  • invitations to key receptions and networking events;
  • dedicated pocket for company literature and business cards;
  • use of shared meeting facilities;
  • reception service – messaging, directing buyers to view work and managing appointments;
  • wi-fi internet access; and
  • locker facilities.

Please contact Felisha@pact.co.uk  in the first instance.

 

Published on July 15, 2013  |  Permalink