Commando Kiwi Takes Top Honors in Make Something Unreal Live with ‘The Warlock of Firetop Mountain: Lost Chapters’
‘Fighting Fantasy’ creators Ian Livingstone and Steve Jackson crown the winner of Make Something Unreal Live at Gadget Show Live 2012; all four ‘Fighting Fantasy’ iOS games to be supported by AppyNation publishing deal
BIRMINGHAM, UK (April 16, 2012) – Epic Games, Inc. and Train2Game announce that Commando Kiwi, developer of “The Warlock of Firetop Mountain: Lost Chapters,” is the winner of Make Something Unreal Live, an unprecedented game development competition that concluded today at the Gadget Show Live. Four teams presented their new iOS games based on individual books in the “Fighting Fantasy” series to the franchise’s esteemed creators, Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone OBE, and the duo determined that Commando Kiwi’s fresh twist on the third-person adventure genre makes the best use of the property and exhibits the most outstanding commercial potential. The studio’s winnings include a full source Unreal Engine 3 license for iOS that may be applied to a future project as well as a holiday at the luxurious AquaCity water park and resort in Poprad, Slovakia.
All four iOS games were publicly debuted this week and are primed for release on the App Store in the coming weeks through a new publishing deal with AppyNation.
Teams competing in Make Something Unreal Live have been developing their games since advancing in the Train2Game and Epic Game Jam last November. Five months of development went into overdrive this week at the Gadget Show Live, where students presented projects twice daily to industry legends, implemented changes based on expert critiques at a rapid pace and submitted their near-final games for today’s judging.
By using the Unreal Development Kit (UDK), the free edition of Epic’s award-winning Unreal Engine 3 technology, all four teams, whose members are enrolled in Train2Game’s blended learning courses, are poised to publish their games on the App Store under standard UDK licensing terms. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to The Prince’s Trust.
“Commando Kiwi really captured the essence of ‘The Warlock of Firetop Mountain’ with great gameplay and visuals,” said “Fighting Fantasy” author and co-creator, Ian Livingstone. “It’s remarkable what these student teams were able to produce working remotely for such a short period of time using UDK. Although only one of the teams has won this amazing prize, the experience students have gained is invaluable and I fully expect to see many of them working in the video games industry. We look forward to playing these games, and Steve and I are sure that Fighting Fantasy fans everywhere will really enjoy these new interactive experiences based on the books.”
“I’m just dead proud of my team. They’ve worked really hard and this competition has changed our lives forever,” said Jonny Robinson, producer of Commando Kiwi and team captain for Make Something Unreal Live.
“The quality of the games produced for the Make Something Unreal Live competition at Gadget Show Live is a testament to the teaching that the students have received on Train2Game courses,” said Myra Smallman, course director, Train2Game. “The competitive process that they have been through should give them a glimpse of what it’s like to work in a professional studio and the experience should go towards giving them the skills to gain employment in the games industry.”
Epic Games European Territory Manager and Make Something Unreal Live mentor Mike Gamble summed up today’s dramatic conclusion to the competition. “Priming the next generation of game developers benefits the industry as a whole. This competition may be over but the journey for four new studios has only begun.”
Details of the studios and titles:
Commando Kiwi (@CommandoKiwi) – “The Warlock of Firetop Mountain: Lost Chapters”
Derp Studios (@DerpStudios) – “Citadel of Chaos: Dire Consequences”
Digital Mage (@TheDigitalMage) – “Armies of Death: Rise of Agglax”
Indigo Jam (@IndigoJamGames) – “Deathtrap Dungeon”