Gender Balance in the Games Industry

Very quick note – if you’re a woman working in games, please take this survey – Ella Romanos and the Next Gen Skills Academy need your input!

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A Brief Diversion into Jewellery

My wife has just set up her online jewellery shop at www.gothglitz.co.uk.
Not only that, but she’s also started a blog about her craft at gothglitz.wordpress.com. Take a look and spread the word to anyone you think might like it!

I’m hoping she will have time to create some beautiful custom jewellery for one of the characters in Winter. That’s another avenue for cross-promotion. When Steve and I talk about transmedia, we really mean it 🙂

Doctor Who Computer Games – a new format?

So, there are four Doctor Who games releasing this summer. This is interesting partly just because new Who games are cool – maybe these will do the license justice. The last one, Destiny of the Doctors, was appalling and even the best Who game yet – The Mines of Terror – was clearly supposed to involve K9 and the Daleks, but had to change them for licensing reasons. And it’s a little disappointing for me personally, because I’ve wanted to work on a Doctor Who game for over a decade. But at least someone’s doing it…

But I’m more interested because of the format. These are free episodic downloads for PC and Mac, developed in parallel with the TV series, and written by TV writers. One of the producers has described them as four extra episodes of season 5. So creatively, there is a possibility of something quite special. I would be nervous about the involvement of writers with no experience in the interactive form, but under the guidance of Charles Cecil of Revolution, I’m pretty confident they’ll create something that works.

My only worry is that it does look a little low-budget – in the screenshots posted so far, the lighting looks poor and character models are both waxy and wooden. They’re apparently aiming for “stylised” look, but haven’t really introduced a style to make up for the simplification. I hope the finished product is a little more polished than the work in progress screenshots.

Nevertheless, I’m excited about the possibilities of this format, and I hope it’s very successful. If you want more detail, Develop magazine have a very detailed article here.

Doctor Who makes triumphant return

We all wanted it to be good, but the sheer quantity of changes made even the most ardent fan a little nervous – new Doctor, new companion, new TARDIS, new executive team, new logo, new titles, new music…
So what a relief to be swept away on the tide of exuberant joy that was the Eleventh Hour! Matt Smith absolutely makes the role his own. I’ve read criticisms that he lacked gravitas, or was too silly, but those – on the basis of just one story – are completely unfounded. I don’t expect to see Matt Smith’s full range in one story. I don’t want to. I want to see wild adventure one week, and creepy shocks the next. I want raw excitement and then pensive melancholy. I want to be surprised.
And the new series of Doctor Who is just the show to do it. Congratulations to everyone involved.

Geronimo!