Brains Eden 2016 saw a record 165 students in 33 teams taking part in the 48-hour game jam, held at Anglia Ruskin University, making games based around the theme "Parity".
The Dangerous Arcade Elitists from Howest University in Belgium collected the prize for Best Mobile Game, winning a tablet for each team member, presented by ARM.
Team LTS Games from the University of Alicante in Spain won the Judges Choice award and received 12 month subscriptions to the Unity Certification Courseware and Unity Plus. Screenshots from this game can be seen here.
Disco Ninjas Visit PlayStation
After winning this year's annual Brains Eden festival, Team Disco Ninjas from NHTV Breda University spent the afternoon at PlayStation headquarters in London. Team leader Tim Baijens explains what happened on the day:
Our first stop was a meeting with the Developer Support team, where we were able to have a crack at some awesome PlayStation VR demos. We got attacked by a shark in a virtual underwater cage, and became part of a literal cat and mouse game in The Playroom VR. The latter pitted us against each other to steal the cheese right from under our programmer's nose.
Lastly, we got to play The London Heist, which led to some funny shooting antics - everyone absolutely loved it. After lunch, we connected with the Third Party Relations team. They went over all the requirements of publishing on PlayStation 4 (PS4). This was great for us as it highlighted the incredible amount of work and additional costs that go into getting a game certified for PlayStation. First off, you have to set up a company (or be a sole trader) to self-publish, and be aware that the marketing is, ultimately, in your own hands. Luckily we had already taken care of setting up a company.
One of the big takeaways for us was that actually making a game that runs PlayStation 4 is the easy part of the process! Developers have to ensure the PlayStation Store page is localised to all the supported languages, the game needs a PEGI rating, quality assurance checks - in short, a long list of requirements. Sony ensures developers don't simply port their game, they establish a quality standard to adhere to, safeguarding consumers so they won't end up with broken games.
After hearing all about the publishing side, the Game Content team provided feedback on the game we produced at Brains Eden 2017. This team helped us with questions on specific hardware or PlayStation features, and the occasional fresh input on the game's design. The streaming scene and spectator interaction were two of the more prominently discussed subjects - both very interesting areas for us to explore. Speaking with the network team was one of the more technical discussions of the day. In layman's terms, PlayStation has a great deal of integrated functions within its platform; this will allow us to smoothly integrate some of the more advanced features into our game.
Overall, the day was fantastic and we had an opportunity to speak with a range of people at PlayStation, all whom provided invaluable knowledge and feedback to our team going forward. After this busy day, we are looking forward to using our new-found skills, and getting our game published on PS4!