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Screen Queensland Announces Successful Recipients of the 2018-19 Game Development and Marketing Investment Program

Screen Queensland Announces Successful Recipients of the

2018-19 Game Development and Marketing Investment Program

The Queensland Government through Screen Queensland (SQ) is providing $180,636 in funding to support the development of five Queensland games via SQ’s Game Development and Marketing Investment program.

“Screen Queensland launched the Game Development and Marketing Investment program in February of this year as we saw the need to support the burgeoning games sector in Queensland,” said Screen Queensland CEO Tracey Vieira.

“Queensland boasts a competitive and healthy games industry and our local games developers are being recognised as being some of the strongest and most compelling creators not only in Australia but also in the international games community,” said Ms Vieira.

“This program provides funding support to local developers to create and market high-quality games with the potential for commercial success. It supports a trajectory of growth by investing in local developers as the foundation of a successful, innovative and sustainable industry.

“We are also thrilled to announce a new outcome from this round of funding – the first diverse games attachment with 5 Lives Studio.”

Screen Queensland offers further support to local games developers through Travel and Marketing support including sending a delegation to last month’s Game Connect Asia Pacific (GCAP) and PAX in Melbourne plus SQ Mentorship opportunities.

“Our end game is to help our games sector flourish and keep our people and IP in Queensland,” said Ms Vieira.

Funding is to be matched by the five recipients in the form of cash, in-kind or other funding sources. The five successful teams include early career and established developers as well as diverse recipients and are:

1.         Unannounced Title, 5 Lives Studios

2.         Unpacking, Witch Beam

3.         Lanterns, Artefact Assembly

4.         Fledgling Heroes, Subtle Boom

5.         Lifeboat Earth, Alex Butterfield

Screen Queensland’s inaugural games funding recipients have achieved significant success to-date and are estimated to have injected more than $1.5 million into the local economy.

Recipients included: Toast VR’s Richies Plank Experience which is now available on Viveport and Oculus; Affable Games Speaking Simulator and Screwtape Studios Damsel both featuring at PAX 2018 on the PAX Rising floor for indie developers; and Lamington Games’ Super Drop Land which has been released in iOS and Android and has achieved over 300,000 downloads to date, majorly in China and Japan.

“We are proud of David Kilford and Lamington Games success so far,” said Ms Vieira.  “David is a resident of Screen Queensland’s sqhub, another new initiative launched by SQ this year, and where we offer game development workshops as well as other professional development workshops.

“David has also been supported with SQ’s Travel and Marketing grants allowing him to pitch Super Drop Land at major games conferences which have been critical to the game’s success. He has also been invited to Google Playtime – an exclusive, invitation-only event for Google Play apps and games developers in Singapore in November.”

The Game Development and Marketing Program will open again in early 2019.

Game Development and Marketing Investment (GDMI) Round Two Successful Applicants

Unannounced Title, 5 Lives Studios

Queensland team members: Michael Diskett; Christopher Conte; Brent Waller; Dean Ferguson; Mitchell Clifford

Project synopsis: 5 Lives is currently developing a third person survival adventure game, set in a fully procedural world.

Unpacking, Witch Beam

Queensland team members: Wren Brier; Tim Dawson; Jeff Van Dyck

Project synopsis: Unpacking is a zen puzzle game about pulling possessions out of boxes and finding ways to fit them into a new living space. While there’s a challenge to fitting everything in just right, it’s also a game of self-expression and making connections between a place and the items that fill it. The narrative follows a woman through the moves in her life. This story is communicated indirectly through dates, locations and the items the main character has brought with her into each new home. The gameplay is slow and contemplative, encouraging the player to experience a sense of intimacy with a character they never see and a story they’re never told.

Lanterns, Artefact Assembly

Queensland team members: Ash Stevens;Nic Lyness

Project synopsis: Lanterns takes two players on a journey of co-operative puzzle solving that will test both their coordination and communication. Player’s wield magical lanterns that reveal and manipulate objects in the world in order to help, and sometimes hinder, their partner.

Fledgling Heroes, Subtle Boom

Queensland team members: Brendan Watts; Anya McNaughton; Anders Grønningsæter

Project synopsis: Take to the skies in this side-scrolling one-touch adventure! Fledgling Heroes sees the player soaring as Biscuit the macaw, swimming as Penny the penguin and sprinting as Lucky the quail (and others!) through beautiful handcrafted environments filled with pirate lizaaarrrds, sharks, wizard lizards, dragons, lizard cannoneers… and much more! Design your own crazy adventures with the built-in level editor and share them with the world.

Lifeboat Earth, Alex Butterfield

Queensland team members: Alex Butterfield; Anya McNaughton; Tobeh Thomson

Project synopsis: Lead a country on an alternative version of Earth and balance the needs of your people and tensions with other players’ countries, whilst working to hold climate change to a survivable level.  The game progresses from 2020 to 2100, enough time for players to stabilize and secure Earth’s future or render their planet an unrecognisable hellscape.  Just like the problems facing humanity today, there will be no easy answers and no success without sacrifice.