Project: SAM has been selected as one of the teams to take part in Tranzfuser 2019, a talent programme that recognises and launches the best of the UK’s games development talent into the industry.
Project: SAM heralds from the University for the Creative Arts (UCA) Games Incubator Studio, an enterprise initiative based at UCA Farnham and set up to support emerging games developers. Andy Bossom, the Incubator's director said: "the studio enables UCA graduates to deliver their unique IP to market in a pre-revenue environment."
Project: SAM 'Start Menu'
Project: SAM is a story-driven role-playing game set in a futuristic world, developed by Alessio Giustarini and Maciej Gniadek who graduated from BA (Hons) Games Arts in 2017. “We were trying to give our own take on the rogue-like genre of games. We wanted to give it a true level of difficulty that comes from the skills and knowledge you pick up whilst exploring our world,” said Alessio.
Alessio said: “We quickly learnt how to work in a studio environment. Being able to bounce ideas off of the tutors and the other teams in the studio were vital to our growth. Our time in the Incubator definitely had a positive lasting influence on our workflow, our development speed and our confidence in general.”
Project: SAM 'Map Overview'
Part of the support provided by the Incubator Studio was to connect up-and-coming games developers with people in the industry that could help projects succeed. This is how they learnt about Tranzfuser.
Project: SAM will represent Tranzfuzer’s Surrey Hub, which has been set up and supported by Alemba, a software development company based locally to UCA in Woking.
Working with Alemba now means that Alessio and Maciej will benefit from their offer to help nurture the next generation of games developers in the region. Alemba will provide free access to office space, marketing and PR help, mentorship, assistance with business plan development, and a pool of eager testers.
Project: SAM 'Hub'
So where did Alessio and Maciej’s passion for gaming and games development come from: “Games were always a part of my daily life, and I always had an interest in getting into games development. There were three games that really changed my view of gaming, Call of Duty 4 was the first game I got truly absorbed by, League of Legends really showed me the competitive side to games, and The Witcher 3 showed me the true potential of telling a story through video games,” offered Maciej.
Alessio added: “Very early on I realised that I was interested in both science and art, and growing up in Italy I had to choose between them and ended up studying science, but I realised that it wasn’t what I wanted to do so, I moved to the UK and did an Art & Design Foundation course at UCA Epsom. After a tutor told me about the Games Arts course at UCA Farnham, I decided that having led a life dedicated to playing games, such as League of Legends, Tekken and Minecraft, the course would be the perfect mix of both my interests: science and art.”
Alessio and Maciej at Guildford Games Festival
So what’s next for Project: SAM? Come October they will be participating in EGX London, the UK’s biggest gaming event. Project: SAM will be part of Tranzfuser’s stand, and players will be able to play and test the finished game for the first time.
To find out more about Project: SAM follow them on Twitter.
To find more about the Games Arts courses currently available at UCA visit the course pages.