We spoke to Rhianna Hawkins, a winner of the Game Concept Award in 2014, to find out what she's up to now.
We spoke to Rhianna Hawkins, winner of the Game Concept Award in 2014, to find out what she's up to now.
What did you/are you studying (school, college and university if applicable!)?
I'm currently studying English language, History and Psychology at college, and in September I'll hopefully be studying Computer Games Development at university.
What did winning BAFTA YGD mean to you?
It showed me that it is possible to have a career in games and taught me to have more faith in myself. Everything that I have learnt from BAFTA and the experiences I've had have been invaluable. Winning has helped me pursue my dream of working in the game industry and also shown me that there is another side to gaming such as public speaking and doing interviews, and that has been invaluable experience.
Do you have any advice for our young games creators?
If you ever get second thoughts about entering your game, my advice would be to enter it anyway - only by entering do you get a chance to win! Your idea might be what the judges are looking for and even if it isn't, then you can improve upon your idea or try something new next year. Just don't give up!
What do you think makes a good game?
Being able to captivate an audience is important – from puzzle-solving mobile games to AAA games, ensuring that your audience are immersed in the action is essential, as well as including fun game play.
What games are you currently playing?
At the moment I've been switching between playing Undertale and Assassin's Creed Syndicate.
Have you improved your computer skills this year? If so, how? Have you tried any new programmes?
During the year at college I was part of a team designing an app for the Technovation competition. Unfortunately we won't be able to enter it, however taking part has helped me improvemy computer skills and team work skills.
I also completed Charles Severance's online course in Python, and Stanford University's Computer Science 101 MOOC. Recently I've started looking at a course on Udemy which teaches the Unity game engine - hopefully I'll be able to complete it over the summer before I start university.
What are you up to when you’re not studying? Do you have any hobbies or outside clubs? Have you won any awards or completed any certificates etc?
At college I completed a course in beginners Japanese. I love to listen to visual kei or Japanese rock music and I enjoy watching drum covers of my favourite songs. Someday I hope to take up drumming.
What do you enjoy most about Game Design? Why?
There are many different styles of games which allows a lot of creative freedom and the possibility to explore a wide range of concepts. You get to introduce players your ideasand let them have fun! There are endless possibilities for game design so it never gets boring designing games.
What advice would you give to someone struggling on coming up with a Game Concept for the competition this year?
If you're having difficulties coming up with ideas, then relax and distract yourself with other activities. Inspiration can come from anywhere, however it can be difficult to find when trying to force it, so stepping away may help you think of something unique. If you find that you're still stuck, then using a jam game generator might be helpful in generating potential themes you may want to convey in your game.