Author Archives: Zoe Sams

#ScreenScot Saturday – March

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March was a busy month – the weather had an identity crisis, and GDC took over our calendars as usual. This didn’t stop you though, and this month’s #ScreenScot images have been wonderful to look over! Thank you to all our returning posters and to the new contributors too, it’s been great seeing your work.

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Steven Taarland – Scholars @ GDC 2018

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With GDC finally here, we’ve dedicated this week to all representation from Scotland attending the conference thanks to IGDA Foundation programs. To round up our celebration of scholars, we have an interview with Steven Taarland. Steven is one of this year’s recipients of the Next Gen Leaders Program.

Hey Steven – What do you do?

I am a associate producer at Abstraction Games in the Netherlands. Prior to 2018 I was a associate producer at Tag Games in Dundee, Scotland. I am also currently a board member of IGDA Scotland.

Where are you from and what is your connection to Scotland?

I moved to Dundee in 2010 to study Computer Game Application Development at Abertay University. After graduating I took part in Dare to be Digital. After Dare i continued to live in Dundee and took a job as a junior programmer at Tag Games. In 2016 I started the Scottish Rainbow Game Developers Group, a group for LGBTQ+ developers and students in Scotland to network and connect. This eventually led to running Rainbow Game Jam, an LGBT+ Game Jam.

Why did you choose to apply to IGDA Scholarships specifically?

During my time at University I attend lots of IGDA Scotland events, and saw the opportunities IGDA Scholarships opened up for individuals over the years. Since the IGDA Next Gen Leaders scholarship is essentially aimed at individuals like myself, I jumped at the opportunity.

What are you most looking forward to at GDC?

I’m looking forward to meeting new people and old friends, to see some of the great talks and panels that have been lined up, and to generally just enjoy the week.

Is there a specific goal you’re hoping to achieve at GDC?

Over the last few years i have switched from Programming to Production in my career, and I applied to the IGDA Next Gen Leaders scholarship as it will allow me the opportunity to further grow my skill set as a producer, to meet and learn from my fellow scholars, as well as be able to meet other incredible developers from all over the world.

Anything else you’d like to add?

If anyone out there is interested in getting involved with IGDA or IGDA Scotland please reach out to anyone on the board and consider volunteering. For me volunteering and being part of the board have been huge stepping stones, and I imagine incredibly helpful in my application. For anyone attending GDC this year, have fun! Its a great opportunity, try not to burn yourself out doing too much. Finally if anyone reading this would like to join the Unofficial GDC Scottish breakfast please message me on Twitter (@steventaarland) 😀

Alice Bowman – Scholars @ GDC 2018

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With GDC finally here, we’ve dedicated this week to all representation from Scotland attending the conference thanks to IGDA Foundation programs. Alice Bowman is today’s featured scholar! Alice has been selected as one of 2018s IGDA Scholars.

Hi Alice! First off – What do you do?

I’m a PhD student at Abertay University, the project I’m working on is researching ways that games and interactive storytelling can help cancer patients. I’m passionate about telling stories, and I’m so lucky to have this very unique opportunity to develop new ways that storytelling will be able to help people. Aside from my research I’m a writer and a designer; I’m fascinated by branching and interactive narratives and most of my projects incorporate this.

Where are you from and what is your connection to Scotland?

I moved from London to Scotland in September 2016 to take a Designer role at Outplay Entertainment. Working at Outplay for a year gave me my introduction to the Scottish games industry, and helped me settle in Dundee. I loved working at Outplay, but when Abertay began recruiting designers for a PhD project to develop interactive narratives to support cancer patients I knew it was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up!

Why did you choose to apply to IGDA Scholarships specifically?

During my undergraduate degree at the University of East London my lecturers encouraged me to become involved in IGDA’s community, so I’ve had my IGDA membership for some time. The opportunity to go to GDC is huge for me, so I was keen to apply when I found out about the IGDA Scholars programme. Aside from it being an amazing opportunity in general, the focus on mentorship, and helping the scholars to develop really appeals to me, it’s great to feel so supported at this early stage in my career.

What are you most looking forward to at GDC?

There’s so much I’m looking forward to, its hard to narrow it down! There are so many talks that I’m really excited for, all of the ones that focus on narrative and storytelling in particular. But to choose one thing, I think I’m most looking forward to meeting people. There’s so much talent and enthusiasm somewhere like GDC, and I’ve only ever been able to participate in UK industry events before, so it’s really great to have this opportunity to meet experts from further afield.

Is there a specific goal you’re hoping to achieve at GDC? 

I want to learn as much as possible while I’m there, and get as much from the experience as I can. My PhD research is at quite a formative stage, so I think I’ll hugely benefit from talks and discussion around serious games, interactive narrative and similar topics, and I’ll be trying to make sure I go to as many talks as I can on those subjects.

Anything else you’d like to add?

I have a confession to make – I almost didn’t apply for the scholarship as I thought there was no chance of me being chosen. Then I decided that applying would at least give me a very small chance, whereas not applying was a definite no. So, to anyone else in a similar position, make sure you take every opportunity that comes by as you never know which one is going to work out amazingly well!

IGDA Scotland Scholars @ GDC 2018

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This week the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco kicks off, and we hope you’re as excited as we are! Over the years we’ve had a multitude of scholars that have represented Scotland at GDC and this year is no different. We have 2 scholars across the IGDA Foundations IGDA Scholars, and Next Gen Leaders programs.

Over the next few days we’ll be doing feature interviews with each of our scholars – Alice Bowman and Steven Taarland – so that you get a chance to know them a bit better and what this opportunity means to them.

We’re extremely lucky to have such a close and thriving development community here in Scotland, and we’d like to thank Alice and Steven for agreeing to be interviewed.

Are you at GDC this year? The IGDA have a schedule of events available here. Our next monthly event will be a GDC themed event in Glasgow in April. If you’d like to speak, get in touch with us at info@igdascotland.org.

Headline Sponsor 2018 – Henderson Loggie

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We are excited to announce that our headline sponsor for 2018 is Henderson Loggie Chartered Accountants. Henderson Loggie will be supporting all our events for the year, so that we can focus on bringing you interesting content.

Henderson Loggie have sponsored numerous events in the past and they’ve always been extremely supportive of IGDA Scotland’s endeavours, whether that being through providing food and drinks, hosting us at their offices, or coming to talk to you all about how best to finance your game.

Steve Cartwright from Henderson Loggie had the following to say: “We are delighted to sponsor the IGDA event programme for 2018. IGDA provide a fantastic calendar of events for the games industry, which includes; demonstration showcases, learning and development and roundtable discussions and a good helping of fun thrown in too.”

It’s an exciting time for Scotland’s Video Games industry, with recent stats showing that the sector has grown by 27% in 2016-17. We are proud to be a part of this exciting and thriving sector”.

We hope you’ll join us in thanking Henderson Loggie for their continued support.

#ScreenScot Saturday – December – February

Happy (very belated) new year #ScreenScot! We’re glad to be back after our AGM, and wow have you all been busy! Here’s our #ScreenScot round up for December right through to February, covering festive games, Global Game Jam, Chill Jam, our Play Parties, and various other events in 2018. We’ve loved seeing the games and projects you’ve been working on, and we think you’ll agree that being able to see the development over the last 3 months of these projects is extremely exciting!

We’ve grouped each post by user, in order of the date they first posted. Massive thank you to Stuart Adams, Christos Michalakos, Pete Shea, Rao Dao Zao, Made With Numbers, Natalie Clayton, Rebound, Jess Hider, Amicable Animal, Kirsty Keatch, Blooming Code, Dickie, OIL / wee door, Alexander MacDiarmid, Tiago Martins, Ant Workshop, Kenny Creanor, Yarn Spinner, Aetheric Games, Terminal Transmission, tom Haygarth and Wrench Games for displaying amazing creations and making #ScreenScot so interesting to follow. If you want to join them and have your work displayed, be sure to use #ScreenScot on any of your posts!

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#ScreenScot Saturday – November

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Christmas is fast approaching and we’re expecting some festive #ScreenScot images for December – but first here’s our November Round Up!

@RaoDaoZao has been showing us how to get places and how to get places fast.

Tiago has been focusing on combat and impact.

Stuart Adams is working on some VR projects which we always like to see! Especially if they involve dogs in business suits…

Crannog Games have released Collectiboom – a treasure hunters dream (and nightmare)!

Rebound has been testing our abilities to see as many things on screen as possible at once – and we love it!

OIL was finally taken to the Indian Games Expo – we hope you all had a great time, we’ve loved seeing your updates!

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Really enjoying the visual style of Made With Numbers #ScreenScot images this month.

Martin has been giving us the people we all dream to meet – friendly bobble heads.

And JL Brady has been showing us a range of different #ScreenScot games – remember, we’d love to see your board games too! Anything at all that you’re working on.

Tony has been experimenting with light…

And while it may not have been a Saturday, who are we to exclude Orthrus Studios and their interesting visualisation on the work of their new project. We can’t wait to see what it becomes.