Bolton Students Learn to Slay Dragons

Posted on Tuesday 4th March 2014

Screenshot from Shadows: Heretic Kingdoms

Final year students on the Game Design course at the University of Bolton already learn to use cutting-edge game development tools – but now they also learn how to slay dragons.

Thanks to a special arrangement with game industry consultancy International Hobo, games developer Games Farm, and games publisher bitComposer, third year students at the University will get six weeks of work experience working on a forthcoming computer role-playing game entitled Shadows: Heretic Kingdoms. The game will be published on the hugely popular PC platform Steam later this year.

Students will work directly on the project, a game of dark fantasy featuring magic, undead monsters, and devastating dragons, and will learn about industry-standard Quality Assurance procedures, iterative game design practices, and practical narrative design techniques for videogames.

 University of Bolton lecturer and researcher Dr. Chris Bateman, who also founded the International Hobo consultancy, is enthusiastic about what this opportunity means for the students and the companies involved. Chris stated: 'The Games courses here at Bolton already provide an excellent balance of practical and theoretical skills, geared towards the commercial videogames industry. Allowing the students to work on actual game projects not only means they graduate with published game credits – invaluable in the eyes of employers – but it ensures that the games being developed will be of a superior quality.'

Daniel Krauss of the publisher bitComposer was also excited about the benefits of the University’s work experience programme: 'The British game development scene has been an inspiration to the world for its creative inventiveness and amazing game series like Tomb Raider and Grand Theft Auto, which I have been playing and enjoying ever since those franchises started. We're very pleased to have the talented game design students at University of Bolton working with us on this title.'

Games Farm is a successful developer of console and PC videogames based in Kosice in the Slovak Republic. Since 2004, it has worked with leading British creative consultancy, International Hobo, to create exceptional entertainment experiences. The two companies first worked together in 2004 to create the sleeper hit Kult: Heretic Kingdoms, which earned several 90% review scores in the specialist press, and which is the predecessor to the new game. They have since worked together on dozens of commercial videogame projects in a variety of different genres. 

bitComposer Entertainment AG is an independent PC and video games publishing company based in Eschborn, Germany. The company focuses on the national and international marketing of entertainment products for PC, console and mobile platforms. bitComposer draws on experienced development teams and providers from across the globe to realise its in-house projects, licensed products and commissioned productions. S.T.A.L.K.E.R: Call of Pripyat and Jagged Alliance: Back in Action are notable brands on the international scene.