What a crazy couple of days!
Crazy in that fantastic way, of course.
The 3-day Get in the Game event, held in Liverpool, started off with an introduction to the program, the tutors and representatives from the organisations that are running the project.
After the brief introductions, the collective of finalists was split into two groups – one to take the introduction Agile Development and the other (ourselves included) to have some help with public speaking and pitching.
Well, this was… unusual!
We all had to create a short “speech” about a subject we’re passionate about – that wasn’t video games! My other passion (outside of video games, of course!) is MMA. Creating an “introduction to MMA” seemed simple enough and filling 2 minutes with details was easy.
Keeping within 2 minutes, that was the challenge!
All of these mini-presentations were recorded on camera and, after everyone had their turn, we watched and critiqued as a group. Learning to take criticism is something you’ll hear a lot of creative types talk about. Discussions about this sort of thing are all over the Internet, so I won’t bore you with my interpretation of the concept – but just say that it was an incredible eye-opener to see just how I react and present myself.
I guess the biggest thing here wasn’t so much about what to do, but what not to do. And not in a negative sense or idea, bust just little things. You’ve most likely already heard about not having your hands in your pockets nor fold your arms, but some things I unconsciously do could be misconstrued. For instance, I tend to lean forward. This might not seem like much, but I’m not exactly a small person and some people could mistake this for threatening behaviour – when I’m actually just excited to be talking about a subject I love! Like I say, really enlightening stuff!
The second day saw the two groups swap over, for us this meant heading to the Agile development training.
Gaslight had not long closed out a 3rd party contract (*taps nose* one of those hush-hush sort of affairs ;-) and, after completing this short introduction to Agile development, we know that development project would have benefited from these development methodologies.
Hindsight is 20/20 and all that!
On the final day we had a presentation from Leo Cubbin, one of the Producers from Media Molecule (the folks behind Little Big Planet!). He talked about the development and thought processes behind the game, how it was pitched (internally) to marketing and more. This was a great insight to how a game, with such success, went through the stages and became what we all know.
Up next was an interview and Q&A session with JAW (Just Add Water) team member Stewart Gilray
[Update: We’ve been fortunate to meet Stewart on numerous occasions and not only is he (and all of JAW!) a very talented individual, but a great guy to talk to. Very candid and open about the trials and tribulations of going from small studio to where they are now! Great stuff :-)]
All 3 days were preparation for the teams to deliver a pitch presentation to Sony! This is coming up in November and will be at SCEE headquarters in Liverpool!