Industry Night Pitch N Play : Two Students’ Perspective

Banner for GD27 Pitch N Play

A night full of creativity and dedication – that was the impression we got from the Industry Night Pitch N Play on April 4, 2013, as the 27th graduating class of the VFS Game Design program showed off their final projects to an audience of industry professionals.

For the students, this was the high point of their year as they presented the result of four months of hard work. For the visiting industry professionals, it was the chance to get a glimpse at the new talent and their fresh and creative ideas. Even by VFS standards, the turnout was quite extraordinary. Relic Entertainment, Capcom and Fathom Interactive were only a few of the local companies present at this event.

Game Design Senior Instructor Andrew Laing

Senior Instructor Andrew Laing set the tone for the evening when he opened by referring to the recent controversy about Richard Garriott, who, in an interview with Gamasutra, claimed that all the game designers he worked with “just really sucked.” But instead of letting this spoil the evening, Andrew concluded: “Well, he must have never met any of our game design students!”

And indeed, the five shown projects were quite impressive.  Since the 27th graduating class was relatively small, one of the teams from the 28th Class, term five, was given the opportunity to present an early version of their project as a preview of their own industry night Pitch N Play coming up in June.

Chromeras

Chromeras is an online multiplayer game for the PC, and it provided a brilliant demonstration of what can be accomplished after little more than a month of development. The team had set up a match with their classmates on the production floor in order to demonstrate the multiplayer capabilities of their game.

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Best Final Project : Major Hertz

One of the ultimate outcomes of the VFS Game Design program is the final project, where “guided by mentors carefully selected from local development studios, student teams conceive, plan, and execute game design projects.” The results are presented at the industry night Pitch N’ Play. Students strive to be original and entertaining, and in the case of Major Hertz, they certainly hit the mark. The game was developed by students James Daniell, Alex Schmidt, Josh Reader, Michael Shannon and Ed Hicks (with collaborative help by Moritz Grabosch, Alastair Leong, Bobby Sangha, Alan Riva Palacio, Kevin Locsin, Daniel Martin and Cody Howes).

Major Hertz won the prize for Best Final Project for their graduating class and was recently one of the featured games at the 2013 Game Design Expo. I spoke recently with the graduates about the game and their experience creating it.
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