Pitch & Play for the 32nd Game Design Class

One night is the sum of an entire years work from the Game Design students of Vancouver Film School. This fabled night, the end of the pilgrimage, is titled Pitch & Play. Many students refer to it simply as Industry Night, for it is this night that the graduating class of students presents their final games to a studio full of industry officials with eyes for fresh talent. This is the night for them to seize life and ascend from game student to actual Game Designer.

On Feburary 6th 2014, three final games were showcased from the graduating class of GD32 (GD=Game Design, 32 = Thirty Second class to go through the program. Labels are super cool!). As a bonus for the crowd, a fourth game was shown as well. A group of students from the GD34’s created a flash game in the first half of their 1 year program, it was shown as the night’s appetizer.

Figure 1: Kdu Novaes – Mechanics and UI Designer, Chema Leon – Programmer

Stacking Smores opened the night! It was designed and created in two terms (4 months) for the Flash Project that all students partake in during their 2nd and 3rd terms. Throughout the year, students are encouraged to not just think about finishing a project, but how they could use that project in the future after VFS. Stacking Smores was created with the intention of eventually porting it to mobile devices. With this final goal in mind, this group of students produced a highly polished product worthy enough to be shown during Pitch & Play! “We hope this was a good appetizer for tonight, please enjoy the GD32 projects!” was the closing statement by the team artist and Women in Games Scholarship winner, Nicha Jaijadesuk.
You can play the game HERE

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GD31′s Pitch & Play Event

Pitch & Play is an event held every term during which student teams present their final projects to an audience from the game industry. As students currently in the pre-production phase of our final projects, we were lucky enough to be given the opportunity to attend this event and cover the games on show.

Senior Instructor Andrew Laing was the host of the evening, and kept the audience entertained throughout the night with his funny, and somewhat corny, jokes.

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Pitch & Play for the 30th Game Design Class

Every Game Design class has a special day that they look forward to, it’s called Pitch & Play. It’s the night that the whole year builds up to, it is the culmination of 8 weeks of planning and design, and 12 weeks of development.

Pitch & Play is the event where student teams show off their games, first with a formal 5-10 minute presentation, followed by a social mingler where invited industry guests have a chance to sit down and play their games, ask questions, provide feedback and get to know the students better before they graduate.

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GD29 Pitch & Play

Dave Warfield introduces the 29th pitch and play, excited again to see what VFS students can do with 4-5 months of creative control.

VFS recently hosted the Pitch & Play event for GD 29 and we were fortunate enough to be invited in order to write this article. The games that were presented tonight were The Banishing, Draka, Sneakpunk, Infinite Spectrum, and Nuts for Gems. As members of student teams currently in pre-production on our final projects, it was really interesting and inspiring to see the final result of these five months of work.

Sean Smillie acts as master of ceremonies and gives a personal introduction for each team and their game and explains that student teams get an industry mentor.

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Has it been a year already?!

I can’t believe it’s been a year already. It seemed like only yesterday I started out at VFS. I know this is a common statement for all students that go to VFS. The year seems to go by just like that. And now we’re somehow at the end of the year. Pitch and Play is behind us, and all that remains is Grad Night which amazingly is tonight.

It’s been such a long year of writing long documents, coming up with new ideas for game pitches, late nights cursing myself for pressing ctrl+S in UDK and hunting down people that might have stolen my Nutella (it turned up in my backpack, but I still have no idea how it got there, I swear). And now we’re hours away from Grad Night. I’m not getting sappy here (yes, I am) but I’ve loved this year. Don’t get me wrong, there have been times I’ve hated my ideas, doubted my talent and questioned if I even have it in me to be here, but getting to the finish line proves to me that this really is what I want to do.

The Horroring came to a happy end, and Pitch and Play went so well for us and the entire class as a whole. We were all very nervous about the presentations but luckily they all went smoothly – without a hitch even. I’m so incredibly happy and proud; Yeah, who am I kidding I’m totally getting sappy.

I want to thank my entire class for being such an amazing gang of people. We all came together from different backgrounds and cultures and somehow now, it seems like we’ve known each other forever. I know I would not have gotten through the year without the support and help of all of these amazing people. I want to thank them once again for every late night spent at school, every pat on the shoulder before a presentation and all of the amazing moments we shared at the Game Design Campus.

What can I say, this is a special year. For anyone thinking about doing Game Design; it’s the ride of a lifetime and truly an amazing opportunity to learn and fail, and then learn from that again. To all future Game Designers: Work hard, be creative, learn that it’s totally okay to fail and then pick yourself up and try again. It’s an amazing industry and I’m really excited for the future.

This is me signing out. A final thank you to all the instructors and mentors for helping all of us become game designers fit for the industry. None of us could have done it without your amazing guidance. Thank you again.

PEACE AND LOVE,

Kris


Kristina Soltvedt Wiik graduates and joins the VFS Game Design Alumni today, she was our 2012 Women in Games Scholarship winner

Her final project The Horroring, can be played by CLICKING HERE

Pitch & Play: Class 28 from a students perspective

Months of hard work finally came to fruition for the game design program’s 28th graduating class last Thursday night. The class had their Pitch and Play event where they showed off their finished student projects to a sizable crowd. Five teams took to the stage to present the culmination of all their efforts to an eager crowd of industry professionals.

The evening was kicked off with an opening speech from none other than Dave Warfield, head of the VFS game design program. He then passed the mike to one Sean Smillie, VFS instructor and mentor, who served as the charismatic master of ceremonies for the remainder of the presentations.

The first student team took to the stage to present Demonella, a third person shooter starring a deeply disturbed little girl in a horror-themed carnival setting. Their demonstration pitted their character’s abilities of spitting fire and summoning demonic hands against waves of exploding sentient toy bears, along with a few other circus terrors.

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Pitch and Play : Game Design Class 28

Pitch N Play 28

It’s time for another Pitch and Play!  Tonight (Thursday, May 30, 2013), in the Main Studio at the Game Design campus, the 28th class of VFS Game Design students will present to the Game Industry the final games they’ve spent the last 4 months designing and developing. The students are excited to share their hard work and are looking forward to having experienced game industry people review, play, and provide feedback on what they have created. This feedback is invaluable to help them prepare their portfolios for their graduation on June 20th.

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Unity Visits VFS Game Design

Unity Presentation

Last week (Tuesday, May 21, 2013) the students of VFS Game Design got an unexpected treat when a few folks from Unity Technologies dropped by for a visit.

Carl Callewaert (Unity Evangelist), Randy Spong (Field Engineer), and Kevin Robertson (Business Development) toured the VFS Game Design campus, and had a good look at all the final project games underway by Game Design classes 28 and 29.  It was a good time for Unity to visit, because at the moment, every student final game project is being created using Unity!

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Game Design Industry Night : Pitch N Play #27

2013 April Game Design Class 27 Pitch N Play

On Thursday, April 4, 2013 at our industry night event Pitch N Play, the 27th class of VFS Game Design students will present the final games that they have spent the last 4 months designing and developing. The students are excited to share their hard work and look forward to having experienced game industry people review, play, and provide feedback on what they have created. This feedback is invaluable to help them prepare their portfolios, for their graduation on April 18th.

This group of students will be presenting four games created using the Unity Game Engine.
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January 2013 Pitch And Play Review

Sean Smillie introduces the evening

On Thursday, January 31, 2013, VFS Game Design hosted it’s industry night event Pitch and Play, giving their 26th graduating class the chance to show off months of hard work, and industry professionals the opportunity to check out some great talent. The event saw another terrific turnout, with representatives from studios such as Next Level Games, United Front Games, and Jet Pack Interactive making an appearance.

The presentation also provided the backdrop for the official announcement of Game Design’s community blog and games site Arcade, with Dave Warfield calling for contributors to help make the site a showcase hub for student achievements.

Dave Warfield introduces Arcade to the Pitch and Play crowd

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