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Industry and Education


If it's related to the games industry or education, it goes in here!

Universities offering game related course

If you know of any Uni's offering game related courses (in any State), please post it in this thread.. I'm going to collect all the info to put on the links page

Submitted by Tripitaka on Mon, 17/03/03 - 5:20 AMPermalink

I know a guy named Graham Meikle who is a professor in the Media Department at Macquarie University in NSW (it's about to get a name change to reflect their changing emphasis) who is extremely keen to include game design in their curriculum, and possibly even apply for funding for the development of a complete game. Desiging a game specifically as an intellectual endeavour and free from any commercial constraints would be fascinating. Swinburne (in Melbourne (?)) is also running a course. The new Computer Design course in the Architecture Faculty at Sydney University claims to have relevance to game design but isn't set up specifically for that topic.

Although this is off-topic, I know of a number of people doing PhDs on game design, and from a surprisingly large diversity of disciplines.

Submitted by Sertan on Mon, 17/03/03 - 7:14 AMPermalink

quote: I know a guy named Graham Meikle who is a professor in the Media Department at Macquarie University in NSW (it's about to get a name change to reflect their changing emphasis) who is extremely keen to include game design in their curriculum, and possibly even apply for funding for the development of a complete game. Desiging a game specifically as an intellectual endeavour and free from any commercial constraints would be fascinating.

That's great news! Macquarie University is about ten minutes drive from my house. Thanks a bunch, Tripitaka. [:D]

Submitted by Jacana on Mon, 17/03/03 - 1:17 PMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Tripitaka

Swinburne (in Melbourne (?)) is also running a course.

Just curious what Swinny is running. I left Swinny to go to AIE this year and at that stage they didnt have anything games related running....

Submitted by Tripitaka on Mon, 17/03/03 - 11:51 PMPermalink

I wasn't sure what Swinburne is doing - someone just mentioned to me that they had some sort of game-related course either planned or running. After a tappity tap I saw on their site a Bachelor of Design (Multimedia Design) which incorporates a few elements of both design and graphics, so that's what they must have been talking about. I'd say you're probably better off at the AIE, anyway.

I'm keeping my ear to the ground because so many universities seem to be starting things up and I'd love to do something post-grad. Sertan - definitely give Graham Meikle a buzz if you're interested, his email address is on the MQU page.

Submitted by Sertan on Wed, 19/03/03 - 3:09 AMPermalink

Tripitaka, I sent the email. Here are some of the main responses found in his reply:

quote:I agree gaming is a hugely important media industry and
there should be more tertiary courses available. But I also think your
friend has perhaps confused me with someone else -- I've never said anything
... about including game design in my curricula, because the areas in
which I teach are quite different (I don't teach design of any sort).

Hmm... thanks Tripitaka. [B)][;)]

quote:... my colleague who convenes
our Multimedia degree program; I've forwarded your message to that person.

Well, at least there's someone interested.

Submitted by Tripitaka on Fri, 21/03/03 - 12:18 AMPermalink

OK - I should have made that clear, that Graham's looking into games from more of a scholarly viewpoint as opposed to teaching people how to design games, per se. I come at the issue from both angles so I tend to conflate them. Sorry about that.[:I]

By coincidence, there's an article today at ([url],4057,6154833%255E421,00.html…] about exactly what we've been talking about!:

Games fans do it by degrees
By Michelle Pountney
March 20, 2003

COMPUTER games enthusiasts have new heights to aspire to with Australia's first degree in computer games technology.

But the degree is far from three years of playing computer games.

Programming skills, physics, vector calculus, algorithm design and analysis, artificial intelligence, mobile computing and modelling behaviour are all in the textbooks for students enrolled in the La Trobe University course.

Course head Dr John Rankin said the demand for highly skilled computer games programmers was growing fast in Melbourne.

Eight students completed the three-year course last year, but only seven graduated as one was poached before his final exams with an offer he could not refuse.

(check the site for the rest).

Submitted by rsims on Mon, 24/03/03 - 9:11 PMPermalink

For all those interested in Games Design and Games Programming, QANTM (a Brisbane-based Games, E-Learning and Multimedia organisation) plans to offer an accredited Bachelor of Interactive Entertainment (with majors in Animation and Games Programming).

Addition details can be obtained from me directly.


Submitted by rezn0r on Tue, 08/04/03 - 3:59 PMPermalink

Yes the QANTM Bachelor courses look pretty good.

I hope that any university courses in game development are not as superfluous as current IT course streams... it would be a shame to see the industry flooded with hacks holding certs 5 years in the making who think they know what they're doing, but have no idea what a debugger is. Such is the case with corporate IT these days, as evidenced by studies showing that without canned solutions, IT professionals are generally incompetent.

Luckily places like QANTM and AIE seem to be on the right track with close ties to the industry and a more relevant curriculum (as opposed to the university mentality of making people jump through hoops with units such as Comm Schol and AAP).


Submitted by Haiku on Fri, 12/12/03 - 12:44 AMPermalink

Hi, this thread has been very interesting. I just graduated from a Comp. Sci. bachelors degree and want to do postgrad studies in computer games.

What postgrad computer games courses are available?


After an unequalled 20 years of game making, independent developer Strategic Studies Group is to split into two companies.

SSG will remain in Sydney, with foundation members Ian Trout, Roger Keating and Gregor Whiley concentrating on producing the historical strategy games that SSG was originally famous for. The next release from SSG will be Korsun Pocket, an accurate and highly exciting simulation of a desperate battle on the Russian Front in the winter of 1944.

The new company is Infinite Interactive, headed by Steve Fawkner, and centered in Melbourne. As well as Steve Fawkner, creator and designer of the Warlords series, Infinite Interactive comprises almost the entire team that created the critically acclaimed Warlords Battlecry II. SSG will hand over the development of Warlords IV to Infinite Interactive. Warlords IV will be Infinite Interactive?s first release and will be published by Ubi Soft.

The split, which is due solely to the difficult conditions facing independent software developers, is entirely amicable. Both entities will work closely together, and every effort will be made to ensure the continuation of the Warlords series beyond Warlords IV and Warlords Battlecry II.

More details about Infinite Interactive, SSG and their respective projects can be found on their websites:

Grand Prix Challenge in the Herald Sun

Todays Herald Sun (Melbourne, 5th March 2003) has two pages about Grand Prix Challenge - a full-color full-page screenshot of the Melbourne track for the cover of the 'Connect' section and an full page interview with me on page 3 of that section.

Nice to see the local papers starting to cover our games industry more and more (Evolution was featured a couple of days ago too)


Submitted by souri on Thu, 06/03/03 - 9:45 AMPermalink

Hey, wow!.. Any chance of anyone scanning it in and putting it somewhere for those of us who missed it ?! [:)]

Submitted by souri on Fri, 07/03/03 - 10:32 AMPermalink

Phwooar.. I like the ad for GPC on that page [:)] I gotta say though the game looks incredible.. The Monaco turn looks *stunning*.. There was an article on the net somewhere that compared some of the F1 games out now with shots in the same areas (the Monaco turn was one of them), and I gotta say GPC wiped the floor on the competition.. it should be somewhere in Sumea news (I'm sure I posted about it)..… (the Monaco shot on Zaph's site)

Submitted by souri on Fri, 07/03/03 - 10:41 AMPermalink

Oh, and I heard some of the crowd in GPC were Infogrames Melbourne House developers.. [:)] Any other easter eggs in there? [;)]

Submitted by Zaph on Fri, 07/03/03 - 10:57 AMPermalink

Yes, the crowd contains many of the developers who worked on the game.

Other eastereggs:
The Infogrames Melbourne House building is visible on the Melbourne track, complete with a huge armadillo poster covering part of the building :-) (you might have seen that if you saw the Channel 10 news or Sports Tonight coverage of the game tonight - which you can see if you go to my GPC page [url][/url])

There are three cheats in the game to unlock modes (which you can unlock by completing the game too) - two of which were cheats in previous games (Lemans and GP500)

Sadly there's no giant heads (or giant chins) or things like that - the F1 license is very strict these days :-(

From memory there was a brave seagull and a monkey on the Monaco track somewhere - they might not have made it into the final version though.

Kevin 'Zaph' Burfitt
Producer, Infogrames Melbourne House
(and a programmer too)

Australian game publishers/distributors


Does anyone here have any information on publishers and distributors of games in Australia? I've been trying to dig up some information and have found most of the major houses, but would love some more information on the less well known ones.

My initial interest in publishers came while looking for sponsors for a 100-man LAN event that I help run. It hasn't been hard to source Australian arms of major publishers such as Vivendi, UbiSoft, Take 2, Activision, Electronic Arts, Infogrames and Microsoft, so that satisfied all of our sponsoring needs.

My curiosity has been piqued a bit by my personal interest in Australian and international games which don't get the attention of said companies. Assuming that it's very rare to land a contract with a big publishing house (it's cool to see Ty getting so much hype, btw):

1) What other options do Australian developers have to get their works published in Australia and around the world? (Are there other options?)
2) Where do small-time developers outside Australia go when they want to sell their games over here?

The only names I seem to remember off the top of my head (Manaccom, Expert?) appear to be publishing games very infrequently, and I'm pretty sure every Australian release I've seen on a shelf since about 1997 has come from one of the major houses I mentioned earlier.

I don't know a great deal about publishing, so any sort of feedback is welcome.

Submitted by Daemin on Wed, 05/03/03 - 10:38 PMPermalink

For a Lan event I'd say get some ahrdware people on board, either retailers or manufacturers, that's what the Valhalla people have done. (500 person lan event in Adelaide)

Australian Games Developer Awards 2002 article

Yes! I got responses from ALL (except one) of the winners from the Australian Games Developer Conference Awards 2002!! Post your thoughts and comments on the article here!!

Submitted by Sertan on Sat, 01/03/03 - 4:37 AMPermalink

Adam Lancman... Australia's Hiroshi Yamauchi (if I am talking about the right guy here, that being Nintendo's long-time president, now retired... [?])?

Steve Wang... someone from Microforte will be evaluating my DT project which should be nice. [:)]

Jonathan Chey... being a superhero fan, I lapped Freedom Force almost immediately. I say 'almost' because my pocket doesn't go that deep. [;)]

Steve Stamatiadis... Krome Studios developed Halloween Harry!? I love that game! Never played Amazon Queen... unless Jill of the Jungle is the same game with a different name.

Daniel Visser... I read about Melodie Mars in an issue of Atomic. Pretty interesting stuff, and looked pretty to boot.

That was a great article, Souri. Good stuff. [:)]

We like a man who comes right out and says what he thinks - when he agrees with us.

Submitted by Brain on Sat, 01/03/03 - 9:17 AMPermalink

You haven't played Flight of the Amazon Queen!?! OMG!!!!

I think I may have played it before Monkey Island, so it has a rather special place in my heart. @:-)

Chris Bowden

Submitted by souri on Sat, 01/03/03 - 12:46 PMPermalink

I'm pretty interested in seeing how Infogrames Melbourne House tackle the Transformers Armada title.. I grew up in the 80's and I loved the cartoon show and movie - but the developers at that time (I think it was Ocean) made a really cheesy and extremely disappointing c64 game.. You had to go around and collect pieces of the emblem, and if you did one tiny mistake - Boom.. start over at the beginning spawn point. [:)] I wonder how IMH will implement the transforming robot idea as part of the game design..
Krome made Halloween Harry when they were Binary Illusions, I think.. very early days..

Submitted by Cam on Sat, 01/03/03 - 9:53 PMPermalink

omg - you MUST go out and find a copy of Flight Of The Amazon Queen - where else will you find a character named Joe Cool and have him fight of an evil scientist bent on turning the worlds last amazons into dinosaur women?!? oh.. and what other game has you dressing in drag to fool the mafia huh?

Submitted by Sertan on Sat, 01/03/03 - 10:29 PMPermalink

Well... I played one classic Krome game. That should be good enough... shouldn't it?

And just out of curiosity, you wouldn't happen to be Cam Shea now, would you?

We like a man who comes right out and says what he thinks - when he agrees with us.

The number of game developers in NSW

I wonder.. why is the number of games developing studios in NSW so pitifully small? You'd think that in a state with the largest number of people in Australia, and a good amount of resources/talent would be more than enough to support a big number of game companies.. as it is, NSW is a VERY distant third, behind Victoria and Queensland - both of which have many, many good studios..
I can see why Victoria has so many devs and start ups with the amount of the support the Victorian government has for the games industry, and hey, Queensland seems to be snagging all the overseas investments (and ya can't blame them.. would be a great place to work with all that sun, beach etc).. And then you have NSW, with only 3 mid to large sized dev studios.. I have 3 programmer friends who had to move interstate to get into the games industry, and I think that's the current trend at the moment.. If you're in NSW, your options are very, very limited unless you make the move..
I wonder if the NSW government has any initiatives for encouraging games development.. most probably not.
Sorry.. I am just thinking out loud. [:)]

Don't get me started on the amount of devs in W.A and S.A...

Submitted by Daemin on Thu, 27/02/03 - 11:31 PMPermalink

But then again Adelaide is almost the back end of beyond, we've got 2 development houses, which is a fair bit considering the number of people we have living here - under 1 million in the suburbs... While Melbourne's got several million people living in the "city" and suburbs... And the development houses in Queensland are spread all over the coast I believe, just as the beach and the sun is, and they also have a far greater population than SA.


Submitted by Malus on Fri, 28/02/03 - 12:42 AMPermalink

Most of the Queensland developers are just out of the CBD in Brisbane in areas such as New Farm and Fortitude Valley. Don't actually know of any on the beach, but it would be a good idea, surf during your lunch break lol.

Dean Ferguson - 3D/2D Artist

Submitted by aki on Fri, 28/02/03 - 4:35 AMPermalink

I've wondered about this too and its frustrating for me, as a NSW resident. Is it the lack of support in the state? Export tax issues? I know there was some schemes in the past to promote IT and R&D areas in the state, with the development of things such as the Australian Technology Park.

Does anyone think that this statistic will change anytime soon, or is it pretty much gonna be the way it is? Who here has relocated for a game company outside of NSW?

Submitted by Daemin on Fri, 28/02/03 - 8:29 AMPermalink

I would think the cost of setting up a business (office space rental?) in Sydney would be larger than both Melbourne and Adelaide, but then Adelaide is probably the cheapest so that kinda doesn't make too much sense.

For Queensland I'd say its the sun that's bringing the international developers there, for Melbourne I'd say that its the more popular city than Sydney, so that's why developers would go there.

Submitted by Sertan on Fri, 28/02/03 - 9:48 AMPermalink

It could be that productivity in those two cities are higher than in NSW due to the difference in interest for entering the videogames industry as a career choice. Could be.

We like a man who comes right out and says what he thinks - when he agrees with us.

Submitted by souri on Fri, 28/02/03 - 10:01 AMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Daemin

I would think the cost of setting up a business (office space rental?) in Sydney would be larger than both Melbourne and Adelaide, but then Adelaide is probably the cheapest so that kinda doesn't make too much sense.

Having the actual office in the CBD in Sydney would be costly, but they can always set up in the 'burbs around Sydney.. Microforte are in Chippingnorton, which is like way out west from Sydney.. Personally, I'd prefer to commute to Chippingnorton than to the CBD.. I used to work right in the middle of the city and had to travel every day by train. Peak hour train commuting is worse than you can imgaine!
I think Microforte are moving location soon actually..

Submitted by inglis on Fri, 28/02/03 - 11:28 AMPermalink

gearbox could be moving down, thats 3 companies in a month.
creative assembly, thq and possible gearbox. very good news :)
keep em' coming :)

lachlan inglis
Showreel WIP:

Submitted by davidcoen on Fri, 28/02/03 - 11:50 AMPermalink

ahhh, but NSW has at least 5 pokermachine companies and numourious animation houses (ok, so i didn't know we had a disney animation studio here...) and a few software houses, just only MF and perception (or whatever) for game companies with money that i know of...

Submitted by souri on Fri, 28/02/03 - 10:28 PMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by akiWho here has relocated for a game company outside of NSW?

Not me, but a few friends have moved to work at Blue Tongue and Infogrames Melbourne House..
I've known quite a few *extremely* talented pixel artists from about 7 years ago who have all disappeared.. these guys would have been extremely talented game artists, but they moved on into the field of graphic design or something else dubious. I'm sure these people would have jumped at the chance at working in the games industry, but 7 years ago there wasn't as much activity happening in Australia, let alone NSW. :)

Submitted by GooberMan on Sat, 01/03/03 - 1:05 AMPermalink

I used to live in Sydney until October 2001 (moved up here to apply for the QANTM course) - lived about a 10 min Drive from Chipping Norton too. I guess the main reason is the cost down there - it's cheaper in Queensland for example than pretty much anywhere in Sydney to rent/lease a place.

Ethan Watson
Current job: Programmer, Krome Studios

Submitted by Daemin on Sat, 01/03/03 - 8:27 AMPermalink

I guess Sydney is the Movie capital of Australia (even tho Adelaide is kinda trying).

Melbourne and Brisbane are fighting it out to be the Games capital of Australia then.

Submitted by souri on Wed, 05/03/03 - 11:28 PMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Souri

And then you have NSW, with only 3 mid to large sized dev studios..

I guess that is down to 2 mid to large sized dev studios now (Microforte, Perception?).. something is stirring up at SSG.. Closing down? Splintered off to Melbourne? Who knows..

Submitted by Tripitaka on Mon, 17/03/03 - 5:40 AMPermalink

The state of technology in NSW is absolutely hopeless, whereas in Victoria the government is actively supporting new ventures. That's why the AGDC moved down there.

Trying to be a game designer in Sydney certainly does narrow your options.

The Australian Effects & Animation Festival - Melb


Australian Centre for the Moving Image

May 12-13, 2003

In an exciting new move for the Australian Effects & Animation Festival, dates have been set to stage a special event in Melbourne for the first time in May. Heading the line up will be Jim Rygiel, Visual Effects Supervisor on Peter Jackson's acclaimed Lord of the Rings trilogy. Rygiel will be flying direct from New Zealand to speak at AEAF Melbourne on the digital creation of The Two Towers, the second installment in Jackson's film epic.

Nearly two months after opening, The Two Towers continues to break box office records in Australia and around the world. Featuring 800 visual effects shots (compared to 560 shots in the Fellowship of the Ring), Rygiel's direction on The Two Towers has earned him and his team a second Oscar nomination for Best Visual Effects in as many years. This nomination quickly follows on from his win at the 2002 Academy Awards for Fellowship of the Ring, a win that justified Lord of the Rings as one of the most talked about film projects of recent times.

In his presentation at AEAF Melbourne, Rygiel will give detailed insight into the creation of a digital Gollum, that other-worldly character whose role is pivotal in The Two Towers; Treebeard, leader of the Ents who protects the trees of the forest, and the awesome battle scenes at Helm's Deep.

More than 70 on-screen minutes of the 179-minute-long film can be credited to the work of the visual effects team and the computer programmers at Weta Digital who created a specific software for crowd control called 'Massive'. Massive was essential to the effectiveness of the battle scenes at Helm's Deep and the massing of the Orc Armies as the software enabled the digital characters to make their own 'decisions' on what to do in a crowd situation.

Rygiel leads the program of speakers at the first Melbourne event organisers of AEAF have staged. For eight years, Sydney has played host to the Festival, bringing the world's most influential visual effects artists and computer-animators together at one location.

Rygiel joined the program at the last AEAF event which was held in Sydney in December 2002, presenting a session on Fellowship of the Ring with colleague and fellow Oscar winner 2002, Randy Cook. They were joined on the program by visual effects masters, Anthony La Molinara (Spider-Man) and Rob Coleman (Star Wars Episode II). All now vie against each other for the elusive Oscar in the Visual Effects category at the forthcoming Academy Awards ceremony in March.

With the AEAF now touring to cater to the local industry in other areas of Australia, May 12-13 will see AEAF at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image in Melbourne, again featuring a strong line up of local and international guest speakers.


A Festival Pass costs $250.00 + gst and includes entry to all AEAF events. Student prices are also available.

Please visit for program information or phone 02 9319 4277

The Australian Effects & Animation Festival

May 12-13, 2003

Australian Centre for the Moving Image

Federation Square, Melbourne

Bigworld press release

For Immediate Release
20 February 2003

BigWorld official licensing agent for award-winning massively multiplayer online technology

SYDNEY, Australia. February 20, 2003 ? BigWorld Pty Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of Micro Fort? today announced it is now the official licensing agent for the BigWorld massively multiplayer technology.

The BigWorld Technology? took over three years and $8 million to develop. The technology offers the world?s most scalable, fault-tolerant, and customisable MMOG middleware available.

Microsoft has recently backed The BigWorld Technology? by using it in the development of a future Xbox release of a Micro Fort? MMOG game title.

The BigWorld Technology? is a unique approach to massively multiplayer gaming. It not only allows millions of people to play in the same world without sharding it also allows the creation of the next generation of MMOGs with technology that provides action-game style interaction with high levels of detail over low bandwidth connections.

John De Margheriti, Chief Executive Officer of BigWorld said, ?The BigWorld Technology? allows game developers to bring to market their MMOGs a lot faster than other alternative solutions. Our technology is complete? incorporating the server back-end, a 3D PC client and the tools needed to start developing games immediately. No other company currently offers such a comprehensive solution."

The BigWorld Technology? server architecture is based on modern distributed object patterns. It was designed to be free of the limitations demonstrated in existing MMOG implementations. The server is compatible with clients running on any platform including PC, next generation consoles. The initial solution comes with a PC client front end.

?Providing fast, smooth game-play, while keeping the bandwidth costs low was one of our key objectives,? said Simon Hayes, CTO and chief architect of The BigWorld Technology?. ?Our sophisticated and highly efficient load balancing allows thousands of players to come together, to play epic battles or attend grand weddings. The server cluster quickly adapts, focusing more resources on the area of high activity, keeping the load across all servers evenly balanced. The end result is a smooth game-play experience for the players, and cost-effective use of the servers.?

The entire BigWorld Technology suite will be on show at the US Game Developers Conference in Expo Booth #1634. Appointments are not necessary but are preferred. Contact Micro Fort? will demonstrate why BigWorld Technology has recently won the Asia Pacific Information and Communications Technology Awards (APICTA) for outstanding achievement in the areas of Information and Communications Technology.

To make an appointment and further information:

John De Margheriti or Robert de Waal
BigWorld Pty Ltd
Canberra Technology Park
Phillip Avenue

Phone: +61-2-6162-5120
Fax: +61-2-6242-5090

Submitted by Sertan on Thu, 27/02/03 - 8:47 AMPermalink

Thanks a lot, Souri! [:D]

This'll be a big help for my DT case study.

You even got contact numbers!

Yes! [:D] I'm a happy man!

We like a man who comes right out and says what he thinks - when he agrees with us.

Submitted by souri on Thu, 27/02/03 - 12:07 PMPermalink

You better darn well get an A for that case study then.. no excuses.. [:)] Oh, and don't forget to submit it on Sumea as an article. [;)]

Submitted by Sertan on Fri, 28/02/03 - 9:46 AMPermalink

Sure. Glad to. [:)]

We like a man who comes right out and says what he thinks - when he agrees with us.

Submitted by souri on Fri, 28/02/03 - 9:30 PMPermalink

Looks like Microforte have some competition with Bigworld now..

Silver Platter Announces New MMOG Middleware

Silver Platter Software, a middleware tools company, today unveiled Alloy -- a new networking engine for MMOGs. Based on distributed computing principles, Alloy aims to replace the server farms used in traditional client-server games with dynamically assembled "virtual servers" composed of player computers. The company claims this architecture is compatible with existing game development environments.

Alloy features dynamic scaling, so that additional server capacity can be raised by the publisher if demand turns out to be higher than earlier anticipated. The company claims Alloy can support hundreds of thousands of players in a single game world.

Silver Platter Software (formerly Horizon: A Glimpse of Tomorrow) will show Alloy at the GDC next week.

Although it looks like Bigworld offers a lot more (content creation and tools).. I wonder if they offer a license just for the server technology..

Submitted by Sertan on Sat, 01/03/03 - 4:27 AMPermalink

I will be focusing on BigWorld Tech though, since I have to look into an Australian innovation... BWT is Australian, right? Seeing as Microforte are Australian, BWT should be too... right? [B)]

We like a man who comes right out and says what he thinks - when he agrees with us.

Submitted by Sertan on Sat, 01/03/03 - 4:40 AMPermalink

Oh, good.

We like a man who comes right out and says what he thinks - when he agrees with us.

Submitted by Sertan on Fri, 07/03/03 - 8:58 AMPermalink

Some rather annoying news (well, annoying to me, at least):

My case study must be 900-1100 words. This sucks. I wrote a nice big 4000-word report and now I have to trim it down as much as I can. This will undoubtedly affect the quality of the final report...

- Sertan Saral

Submitted by souri on Fri, 07/03/03 - 10:51 AMPermalink

Hey, the 4000 word report would be very cool to read anyway.. send send!! [:)]

Submitted by Sertan on Sat, 08/03/03 - 12:27 AMPermalink

[:(] Too late... it ended up being about 1800 (I couldn't edit it anymore, but the teacher said it's ok...) words though, if you're still interested.

- Sertan Saral

Submitted by souri on Sun, 09/03/03 - 2:32 PMPermalink

Very interested.. send! [:)]

Submitted by Sertan on Mon, 10/03/03 - 7:34 AMPermalink

Cool. I'm happy to hear that. [:)] I'll send it to you sometime tomorrow. You don't mind if it's in Word, right?

- Sertan Saral

Submitted by souri on Tue, 11/03/03 - 9:01 AMPermalink

Yep, word is fine... looking forward to reading it!

Submitted by Sertan on Tue, 11/03/03 - 8:08 PMPermalink

Uhh... this may be a stupid question so sorry if it is, but where do I send it to? I tried clicking on your nick, and then "Send an email" but it only opened a small text box which doesn't allow attachments or the like. [?]

- Sertan Saral

Submitted by souri on Wed, 12/03/03 - 3:05 AMPermalink

send it to sumea at sumea dot com dot au ... thanks!

Submitted by Tripitaka on Mon, 17/03/03 - 5:09 AMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Souri

Looks like Microforte have some competition with Bigworld now..

There are a few different companies working on similar software (e.g. Lithtech), most of which went into development around 1999. But the difference was that while the other companies had great ideas that were the hit of all the usual industry shows, Microforte were the only ones who actually backed it up with progress two years later. That's what gave them the upper hand and eventually got Microsoft on board.

Uni for programmers? (Melbourne Unis)

I'm a Victorian yr 12 student looking to get into Games Programming and design. To get the most options I'm looking to do a Bachelor of Computer Science at one of the Melbourne Uni's. Anyone know of any courses or universities that wouold suit or any uni's that are seen as being exceptional in the field?

Submitted by Jacana on Sun, 23/02/03 - 11:47 PMPermalink

I have heard Monash RMIT and Swinburne have great programs. I did Software Dev at Swinny Tafe :) One of my instructors was doing a software course at Monash and said it was great.

I do know that you really should look into the course. A lot of them are fairly Java focused and do not offer a lot in the way of C or C++.

Last I heard from my instructor at Swinny Monash was looking to start a Games Dev program. Might be worth checking into.

I also know Monash will be fairly .NET focused as they were one of the major test centers for it. One of the Monash instructors was invloved in the development of .NET :)

Hope that helps you out... Just know that last I looked there wasn't any programs in Vic that were games focused - so you'll be getting a standard CS degree.

-I spent my Valentines Day getting drunk with 40 guys!

Submitted by Cam on Sat, 01/03/03 - 9:51 PMPermalink

rmit has a course called a (multimedia systems) - which is kinda weird but could fit the bill of what you are after.. its a cross faculty course with art and design, engineering, computer science, and business. with third year you choose to major in one of the faculties. their first lot of third year students started this year.. so they're still working out the kinks.. but the first year i think there were about 30 students.. our year there is about 50.. and the newbies i think there is about 70..

it has games related subjects.. and if you find you'd be more interested doing other stuff that you never thought of before.. it leaves that open too.. but very much still getting organised sadly..

Submitted by rgsymons on Sun, 02/03/03 - 6:20 AMPermalink

There has been a number of meetings with prof's and industry people lately and you should expect announcments soon regarding new courses.

Be sure to pick a course that is as heavy on c++ as possible. Studios know you won't have used a dev kit before and will need to be trained, but they will not want to introduce you to c++ (which is what all dev kits now use and I don't expect that to change by PS3 or Xbox2 in 2005).

If you are into code, get a Comp Sci degree, it will give you far more choice and flexibility.

Since AGDC we have hired people fresh from Monash and AIE. (They are doing well.)



Submitted by Jacana on Sun, 02/03/03 - 9:24 AMPermalink

Hey Ross,

Thanks for the feedback on that. Always great to hear from those who are -there- :)
Oh yea - the coffee mug rules! It gets the most use out of anything from the GDC!

Submitted by rgsymons on Sun, 02/03/03 - 9:55 PMPermalink

No worries, glad the mug survived the journey back to Canberra. We are sponsoring AGDC again so you'll get another this year. (it's my goal to have one on every dev desk :)

La Trobe looks like they will be coming out with something soon, it will likely be a "straight" Bsc Comp Sci award but with a heavy focus on games and multimedia.



Submitted by Jacana on Mon, 03/03/03 - 12:05 AMPermalink

Hey - I love my coffee. I am sure that mug was packed better then almost everything else I brought up *grin*
Do we get a new design for next years GDC? Would be fun to sort of have my little Bullant coffee cup collection going!

What's your opinion on La Trobe as a technical Uni? I was only in Melbourne for about 6 years so I only went by word of mouth. So the recomended tech Uni's were Monash, RMIT, and Swinburne.

Just to add - I think at one stage I was reading RMIT's course stuff and one of their degrees does have a small amount of game focus. They mentioned that they had the head of Tantulus (iirc) as a guest lecture on the subject.

- If you don't have anything nice to say say it so everyone can hear!

Submitted by Daemin on Mon, 03/03/03 - 12:19 AMPermalink

quote:They mentioned that they had the head of Tantulus (iirc) as a guest lecture on the subject.

The most we ever got at Adelaide University was two people from Ratbag coming down for a talk once, which was pretty cool in its own right since we all went up for a few beers in the Unibar (which they paid for AFAIK).

Submitted by rgsymons on Mon, 03/03/03 - 8:34 AMPermalink

Haven't thought about it, but I would think we'd change it (boring not to), probably put one of our characters on there this time. I know we will be putting the AGDC 2003 logo on the other side.

Monash, RMIT, and Swinburne are the front runners, La Trobe do not have "form" but are trying hard to align a course with what the industry here are requesting. We will have to see if there is substance to this when they release their course offerings for next year.

I know most companies here (Melbourne) are happy to provide guest lecturers if they are given enough warning. It's really down to the course designers and lecturers to give us enough time to prepare and make sure that what is presented is relevant for the audience.



Auran, and O-R-B

I thought Orb was done by Strategy First..? Anyone know what Auran's involvement with this title is?

Submitted by Drift on Tue, 04/03/03 - 10:47 AMPermalink

I was wondering about this myself actually.

ORB was very ace indeed, very polished...I was quite surprised to see Auran involved with it. I thought they had quit the dev scene years ago.

I'm (almost) Famous!


I'm almost famous, actually I'm featured at the start of the AGDC video, just standing there looking like a dumbass behind the guy on the mobile phone.

I saw some other people there that I met at the conference, post up a msg if you cna see yourself?

Submitted by Sertan on Sat, 22/02/03 - 12:30 AMPermalink

[:D] Well, it'll be a long time before I get to go to the AGDC. [;)]

We like a man who comes right out and says what he thinks - when he agrees with us.

Submitted by rezn0r on Sat, 01/03/03 - 9:12 AMPermalink

I think I recognize Lava Monkeys programmer posture in the crowd there too. That would make me the one beside him.


Submitted by Sorceror Bob on Sat, 01/03/03 - 12:00 PMPermalink

Nope, they didn't take any footage of the expo, which was where i was most the time, showing hail off. So no Bob..

Saw plenty of my friends on there though :P

Submitted by Jacana on Sun, 02/03/03 - 9:20 AMPermalink

My arm made it in *snicker* It was during the Sony Party and I was talking with the guy from SSG (not that it means a lot to most people)

-I spent my Valentines Day getting drunk with 40 guys!

Howsit Going

I know there are a few people going to AIE this year, myself included. So how are those people liking it so far?
I'm having heaps of fun, the only downside is im in the top room which gets quite hot even when the air cons are going the whole time :P
Im currently doing my lipsynch assignment, a bit from galaxy quest (that is such a funny movie)
what is everyone else doing atm?
And on an unrelated note, who here has played splinter cell demo on pc? (and i guess its the same on x-box)
I reckon that game looks awsome and has some really kewl ideas which add to that kind of game. Like being able to take hostages and use them as cover cause bad guys won't shoot at you so long as the hostage is inbetween you and the guy. He'll shoot you if he gets a chance to. And you can interrogate guys which is awsome too.
what do you guys think about it?

It is infact ants who are the true rulers of this world!!!

Submitted by ronald_marc on Sat, 15/02/03 - 11:57 PMPermalink

are you a resident of canberra? whats it like is your rent expensive?
I'm interested to see how you go with your course.
I'm still playing wolfenstein online... I'm just an addict. and medieval total war.
eclectic is me. I can't afford an xbox.. ( i bought lightwave7.5) $$$

Submitted by Brain on Sun, 16/02/03 - 2:17 AMPermalink

I'm just about to leave Canberra. Heading upto Brissie on Wednesday to head into a BA of Multimedia. So withdrew from the Cert. II in Art Foundation at CIT before I started and applying for a Woolworths transfer. *laughs* Unsure what my net status will be once I get up there. Prolly use Uni and The Bunker for access...

Hope AIE goes shwimmingly. Keep us up to date on it all. And re Splinter Cell, haven't played the just released demo, but did the original. Pretty funky stuff. I'll wait for my bro to buy it when it hits the PC (it's a Tom Clancy thing, so it's an automatic purchase @:-)

Chris Bowden

Submitted by souri on Sun, 16/02/03 - 7:05 AMPermalink

I like those odds! [;)]

Submitted by Jacana on Sun, 16/02/03 - 7:06 AMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Souri

I like those odds! [;)]

Odds for whom tho? They were great for me and the other girl that was there *wink*

I will worry when I see "OMG your the chick that was dancing on the stage!" *grin*

I spent my Valentines Day getting drunk with 40 guys!

Submitted by Meatex Salami on Mon, 17/02/03 - 4:04 AMPermalink

What room are you in jacana?
and aren't you doing the diploma? Or am i drainbamaged?
nah i didn't go to the pub crawl.
It was just a couple of days 2 early (i don't turn 18 till 23rd of feb)
And i doubt i would of gone anyways.

It is infact ants who are the true rulers of this world!!!

Submitted by Jacana on Mon, 17/02/03 - 8:42 AMPermalink

Hey :) I am on the second floor on the side where admin is (first floor) so what is the right side to me :)
I am doing the Certificate IV right now (ie - Year 1 programming).

They are talking about doing the pub thing more often. I would say go even if you dont drink. Blitz played DD for me and got to drive my drunk butt home :) He didnt drink and seemed to have a good time. Besides its a great time to try and get your tutors drunk - oh how we tried!

I am there Tue & Thur nights at 5:30pm. If your around then feel free to pop your head in the classroom and look for me :)

-I spent my Valentines Day getting drunk with 40 guys!

Submitted by souri on Tue, 18/02/03 - 1:30 AMPermalink

expected sumea message from Jacana after Tuesday and Thursday nights..

"Maybe it's the beer that's talkin here but blah bghrg hg shgh ghsghh sghhsh gohg eghd hhdh hmdh 5 DOLLARS ?!!!! Get outta here......"

Submitted by Jacana on Tue, 18/02/03 - 4:49 AMPermalink

LOL :) Actually $5 would be good. At one stage a couple of the guys talked me into buying some drink that cost me like $10. *grin*

And I don't drink beer :) My main drink was tequila shots.

-I spent my Valentines Day getting drunk with 40 guys!

Submitted by Sorceror Bob on Tue, 18/02/03 - 1:20 PMPermalink

Lotsa AIE peoples here.. I graduated from Dip2 last year.

I've found the upstairs classes have always been fairly hot. Especially the dip2/programming room.. (the one Jacana is in).

Towards the end of the year we'd have the air conditioner going as cold as it could, and we'd still be sweating by lunch time.
Not sure if thats the same situation as you're having Meatex, but I feel your pain [:D]

Submitted by Meatex Salami on Wed, 19/02/03 - 6:42 PMPermalink

how come you do things so late?
im there from 9 till 5 on mon and teus and 9 till 1 on wed.
I might see if i can see you if im ever around at that time :)
Yeah it gets hot in the arvo and i have to get up lots and go stand next to the air con :)
Oh anyone in canberra who likes lpaying lan games should come to the barracks (in dickson, they have directions on their website i think) on this sunday.
The more people there the better.
Anyways i hope your schooling is going well with programming. Is it hard? Do you use heaps of maths? I hate maths, alot of artist seems to not like maths :P
Anyway speaking of AIE i should start getting ready
Come to barracks on sunday (or it might be another place nearby) and bring anyone you know. Like i said the more the better :)

It is infact ants who are the true rulers of this world!!!

Submitted by GooberMan on Fri, 21/02/03 - 1:24 AMPermalink

So many AIE peeps... I did QANTM last year, are there any new QANTMites around?

Ethan Watson, teh brand spankin' new Krome employee.

Submitted by Jacana on Fri, 21/02/03 - 3:07 AMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Brain

As soon as I leave Canberra, all the fun starts happening... @;-p

Yea well that's 'cos I didnt come up there till this year!! *grin*

As far as classes go I think first year programmers get the dreggs :)

I dont mind the time really. I gives me time to sleep in for the morning. Wake up. Have a nap. Wake up again. Then have class! :)

-I spent my Valentines Day getting drunk with 40 guys!

Submitted by GooberMan on Wed, 26/02/03 - 12:59 AMPermalink

One QANTMite from 2001, and three that I know of from 2002 (myself, rezn0r and lava_monkey). That's a lot :P

Ethan Watson
Current job: Programmer, Krome Studios

Submitted by Pantmonger on Thu, 27/02/03 - 1:34 AMPermalink

Well its not really the problem. Education being for all who want it and the idea of only educating to fill a void being a little silly. The problem is there are a lot of skilled people out there and you have to be better then those going for the position you want if you are to get it.
The Solution is to get better.
The Result in theory is an ever improving product produced by the cream of the crop.
Of course It doesn?t always work out this way, but thats life.

Pantmonger flinger of his 2 cents.

Submitted by Malus on Thu, 27/02/03 - 2:58 AMPermalink

Its just a matter of working harder everyday, sooner or later you'll be spotted as alot of the others give up with the "its all to hard" copout.
It would help if companies took risks and hired unexperienced people more often, basing a desicion on talent is more important in my opinion.

Dean Ferguson - 3D/2D Artist

Submitted by Doord on Fri, 28/02/03 - 9:35 AMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Malus

Its just a matter of working harder everyday, sooner or later you'll be spotted as alot of the others give up with the "its all to hard" copout.
It would help if companies took risks and hired unexperienced people more often, basing a desicion on talent is more important in my opinion.

Too right. there is about 7000 people which do the frist year at the AIE then only about 200 go on. (Number maybe a little of.) Then there is a few from that 200 which will get a job and it is mainly because the keep going.

Submitted by Jacana on Fri, 28/02/03 - 7:54 PMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Doord

Too right. there is about 7000 people which do the frist year at the AIE then only about 200 go on. (Number maybe a little of.) Then there is a few from that 200 which will get a job and it is mainly because the keep going.

LOL - You must be joking about those numbers. Right now there is 1 First Year Programming class with ummmm 18 people in it. Add that to the umm... 150 artists (and thats the HIGH end) in First Year. Second Year for the games dev stuff has two mixed groups with a max of 20 each :)

Maybe you should learn how to code because then you could write programs to work numbers for you!

-I spent my Valentines Day getting drunk with 40 guys!

Submitted by souri on Fri, 28/02/03 - 10:10 PMPermalink

7000 sure is a lot.. Maybe Doord did a typo and meant 700. (of course, that sounds like a lot too [:)]).. Multimedia Victoria says that "Over half of Australia's comptuer game development industry is based in Victoria, employing over 300 people." .. so if there's 600 people working in the entire industry, then there's gotta be some serious growth to cover those 200 or so students every year..

Submitted by Meatex Salami on Sat, 01/03/03 - 1:42 AMPermalink

well not counting dip 2 people there are 120 spots and 200 applicants for cert 4 in art.
Its not really that big of a place they only have 4 rooms.
Although 200 people in canberra wanting to learn 3d animation thats a fair bit. And it seems that more and more people want to get into it as well as the gamez and movie VFX industries become more popular.
The majority of people see the games industry as all fun and games (no pun intended) and both the games ans VFX industries are seen as glamorous. I guess one way of putting it is saying your a 3d animator is getting a higher "impress the chicks" index every year.

Who needs real life, UT2003 has amuch better poly count!

Submitted by rezn0r on Sat, 01/03/03 - 9:08 AMPermalink

What we need is a "launchpad" of some description, where those trying to get into the industry can showcase their work to developers.

This "Launchpad" should be sponsored by as many of these developers who trawl for talent as possible. :)

Submitted by Sorceror Bob on Sat, 01/03/03 - 2:33 PMPermalink

I think the numbers doord posted were an estimate of the numbers that have been through the AIE, and how many have stayed commited once they have left.

Submitted by Jacana on Sun, 02/03/03 - 9:08 AMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Sorceror Bob

I think the numbers doord posted were an estimate of the numbers that have been through the AIE, and how many have stayed commited once they have left.

Umm yea... with the numbers I gave there are like what... 175 first year students. Take that 175 and divide that by 7000 :)

-I spent my Valentines Day getting drunk with 40 guys!

Submitted by redwyre on Tue, 04/03/03 - 6:35 PMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by GooberMan

One QANTMite from 2001, and three that I know of from 2002 (myself, rezn0r and lava_monkey). That's a lot :P

And me!! How could you forget me?!


Submitted by GooberMan on Wed, 05/03/03 - 5:42 AMPermalink

Heh, didn't realise you were on the forums when I posted that message.

Ethan Watson
Current job: Programmer, Krome Studios

To Study or to stay home and do Tutes?

Hello People I'm new here,

I have an issue and maybe you guys can help to clear it up.
I have been drawing for years and animating, I've had some
professional gigs (storyboarding, animation), But I for the last 2 yrs
I've really want to get into games.

Now its not as I've said It's not a new decision, last yr
I went to a Tafe and did a Multimedia course and it was really bad!
(when I say bad I mean SH@T!) i think infiniD was the premiere 3d
I bought me a copy of lightwave (off ebay :) and i have just jumped
in. I have some cycles happening, it's progressing.

But i get frustrated with uvmapping and so forth. I'm sure I will improve
but do I need to pay thousands of dollars for tuition in another state?
or should i just take another yr off and try to hone my skills at home.?

Will companies appreciate my stamina? or should I just fork out
the money and try my luck at another institution?
I know it's ultimately up to me but i would like to hear some
comments... maybe some Industry people would give me some advice.

Thanks people.

What do you guys reckon?

Submitted by Brain on Sun, 16/02/03 - 2:07 AMPermalink

[url][/url] = Totally self taught. Nuff said. @;-)

Actually, I spose it depends on your work and education ethic. Myself, I do well when pointed in a direction. I'll take being taught by someone over teaching myself most of the time, cuz that's what works for me. Whereas other people solely teach themselves cuz that's what works for them. So yeah, essentially I'm saying "it's up to you". Sorry. @;-p

One thing about institutional learning is the networking bit. Yes, my Games Diploma at QANTM wasn't all it could've been, but I met a whole bunch of like minded people who inspired and drove me on, and of whom I still keep in contact with and work on projects with. And if the course is not the greatest, it'll either dishearten you or empower you. Either way, you'll know if you have a passion well placed in what you're training for.

Chris Bowden

Submitted by souri on Tue, 18/02/03 - 1:05 AMPermalink

Like Brain said, it really is up to you..
If you have the passion and the motivation to keep working and learning on your own, day after day for months, then go for it. Some people can do this, some people can't. However, there are benefits from learning at a place like AIE. When you run into problems or have questions, the lecturers are there right at your disposal. So if you're stuck on something specific, you can overcome it on the spot, no matter what it is. Also, learning by yourself is a lot of trial and error, with a lot of "crap, why didn't that work?!". Having help at hand is very beneficial, and in my opinion the faster way of learning. Having deadlines imposed on you, and comments and critics from your peers/teachers are also good too... you can do all this through the net, but having instant feedback is nicer, I think. I'm not saying that paying for an education is the be-all-and-end-all route, (there are plenty of people who have managed on their own) but if you're going it on your own, you gotta have the motivation to do it all yourself.
I think companies like to have that "2 year experience" thing to weed out the potential fluff from applying.. as it has been mentioned on the site, if you have the quality work to back you up, I'm sure they'll waiver that your lack of certificates and whatnot. It's your work that counts.. you can have all the certificates in the world, but if your work sucks, then you're not promised a job.

Submitted by ronald_marc on Tue, 18/02/03 - 5:22 AMPermalink

Thanks Brain and Souri. I appreciate the comments.
hmm I think I will see how I progress till september and then make a decision.
I have the motivation that's not a problem. money and time are my enemy.
Much to think upon.
thanks people.

Are there any innovators out there?

We (as in, my DT class) recently got an assessment task to complete whereby we investigate an innovation with Australian origins. Naturally, I wanted to write up something about computer games, but I can't think of any innovations that were introduced through an Australian games company.

So far, I was thinking along the lines of System Shock 2...

Anyway, if any of you can think of any, I'd be very grateful if you could post it up here.


- Sertan

Vivian: You go too far, Marlowe.
Marlowe: Those are some harsh words to say to a man, especially when he's walking out of your bedroom.

Submitted by souri on Tue, 11/02/03 - 9:24 AMPermalink

Try going a bit further back, with Melbourne House.. they did some innovative stuff with adventure games like Lord of the Rings, and also did the first karate beatem up on home computers - Way of the Exploding Fist.. I did an interview on the site about that game. [;)]

Submitted by Sertan on Tue, 11/02/03 - 9:38 AMPermalink

I forgot to mention one eency-weency bit of detail... the innovation has to be fairly recent (around 5 years old max.)... and the only reason I can think of for doing that is simply to make the case study harder (damn Board of Studies...).

Yeah, uhh, so any other ideas or should I stick to System Shock 2 because of the depth of play and atmosphere introduced into the genre?

Vivian: You go too far, Marlowe.
Marlowe: Those are some harsh words to say to a man, especially when he's walking out of your bedroom.

Submitted by Daemin on Tue, 11/02/03 - 11:24 AMPermalink

Apparently Ratbag games innovated with the Difference (sp?) engine, where it was the first 3d engien to handle an infinite number of textures or something...

Maybe DEADBEEF or something might be able to answer this better?

Submitted by souri on Tue, 11/02/03 - 1:12 PMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Sertan

I forgot to mention one eency-weency bit of detail... the innovation has to be fairly recent (around 5 years old max.)..

Something recent - I would suggest Microforte's Big World technology..

quote:John DeMargheriti - The BigWorld Technology client engine is a high performance software platform for developing 3D Massively Multiplayer Online Games (MMOGs).

BigWorld Technology is a unique approach to massively multiplayer gaming that not only allows millions of people to play in the same world without sharding, but also solves the challenges of typical online gaming: bandwidth, load balancing and level of detail.

.. that was from a recent interview at .. I'm sure there's plenty of places where you can find more about Bigworld tech..

Submitted by Sertan on Tue, 11/02/03 - 7:17 PMPermalink

Thanks guys.

I'll check back here from time to time.

As a way of gratitude, I'll post the final case study on these forums for all to read. [:D]

EDIT: BigWorld Tech seems to be the way to go! Thanks a lot! [:D]

Now, I hope I can find all the info I need (which is not my way of asking for help [;)])!

Submitted by Daemin on Tue, 11/02/03 - 11:45 PMPermalink

What about some of the cool GBA technologies that (can't remember developer name, could be torus?) developed.

Submitted by Sertan on Wed, 12/02/03 - 2:42 AMPermalink

quote:What about some of the cool GBA technologies that (can't remember developer name, could be torus?) developed.

I'll look into that as an alternative if I can't find enough on BigWorld Tech. Thanks anyway. [^]

quote:and you're more than welcome to have it as an article on the site than a forum message post.

I'd love that! Thanks! [:)]

Vivian: You go too far, Marlowe.
Marlowe: Those are some harsh words to say to a man, especially when he's walking out of your bedroom.

Submitted by souri on Wed, 12/02/03 - 8:44 AMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Daemin

What about some of the cool GBA technologies that (can't remember developer name, could be torus?) developed.

That would be Torus and voxel technology on the GBA?

GRAPHITE 2003 details

An International Conference on Computer Graphics and Interactive
Techniques in Australasia and South East Asia
11-14 February 2003, Melbourne
; [Program Now Online!]

GRAPHITE 2003 is a unique opportunity for researchers, technologists,
artists, industry professionals, educators and students to experience a
state of the art showcase of technical and artistic work from this
region and from around the world. This years conference will include a
wide selection of presentations and panels, art gallery, electronic
theatre screening, and social events.

The Victorian Minister for Information and Communication Technology,
Marsha Thomson, will officially open GRAPHITE 2003 on Wednesday,
February 12. The Minister will talk about the importance of a thriving
multimedia and computer graphics industry to Victoria and will detail
how the Victorian Government will continue to support the growth of the

GRAPHITE 2003 will take place in Melbourne, Australia at the exciting
new ACMI Building, Federation Square. Space is limited, so please
register early.

Featuring Keynote Presentations from:
David Kirk, Chief Scientist and Vice President of Architecture at NVIDI
Mark Billinghurst, Director of the Human Interface Technology Lab (New
Stelarc, Honorary professor CMU and techno-theorist.

And featuring the following tutorials:
* Performance OpenGL: Platform Independent Techniques
* Implicit Modelling
* Augmented Reality Interfaces
* An introduction to colour in computer graphics
* Seeing in 3D
* Next-generation virtual worlds with VRML, X3D and MPEG4
* RenderMan for Artists and Designers

GRAPHITE 2003 Art show will explore themes that move towards a
twenty-first century sensibility, profiling speculative works that
imagine the future. Selected works explore issues of the haptic virtual
reality environment, artificial life, the electronic space, emergent web
based video practice and how we negotiate the mediated technological
interface. Our relationship with the technological object, our
environment and the nature of interaction will be examined and tested
throughout the weeks of the exhibition. Become immersed in the magic at
SPAN Gallery, 45 Flinders Lane, 4th February to 14th February 2003.

To register, and for further information, please visit:

Sponsored by: ACM SIGGRAPH
In co-operation with: EUROGRAPHICS
In association with: ACMI
With the support of: State Government of Victoria

Submitted by souri on Wed, 19/02/03 - 11:12 PMPermalink

So, did anyone go to this??

Submitted by AndrewM on Sun, 02/03/03 - 2:31 PMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Souri

So, did anyone go to this??

Certainly would have been nice to go to this. I'm a big fan of Dave Kirk. Going to AGDC kinda put a stop to me going anywhere :-)

Hi everyone, I'm back again..

Andrew McGregor
Engine programmer
Tycom Studios

Bachelor of animation at griffith

Hey i was just wondering if there is anyone here who is currently doing the bachelor of animation course at griffith in brisbane. I am planning on going there next year and was just wondering if anyone could tell me if its worth enrolling or if there are better courses in Queensland. I am mostly interested in 2d animation however I also love 3d. Could anyone help me out?
Thanks alot.

Submitted by Pantmonger on Sun, 02/02/03 - 4:12 AMPermalink

BA at Griffith in animation, do you mean at QCA (which is Griffith by another name, and if it's still around)?


Submitted by Brain on Sun, 02/02/03 - 12:44 PMPermalink

Yeah, it'd be QCA.

I applied for the BA Animation, as I've seen a fair portion of work come out of there, and was mighty impressed. I've also not heard a negative thing against it so far (not that I've talked to masses of ex-students, but still...) You'll get plenty of 2D, as it's based on the fundamentals. Heck, you could do 2D all through the course if it wasn't a requirement (which no doubt it is. Broadens your scope on animation)

Chris Bowden

Submitted by Forlostu on Mon, 03/02/03 - 9:07 AMPermalink

Yeah the QCA is just another of Griffith's colleges. Hey Brain, you said you applied, did you nake it? I applied for this year but my portfolio application was rather unimpressive so i didn't make it. I've decided to just spend this year practicing my skills then reapplying next year.

Submitted by Pantmonger on Mon, 03/02/03 - 9:14 PMPermalink

I got in a few years back, then on week 2 they tried to slug us by telling us we needed to buy hardware worth over $1300 because one of the lecturers decided we needed it now. (Being a poor student with no family support this was not possible) That combined with the fact that the lecturers where so fanatical about Disney you would think they where taking kick backs and the fact that they hated Japanese?s anime Quote ?I have never seen anything good come out of Japanese anime? made me run from the course. My fianc? who did post grad stuff there had similar experiences, but this was all 4 ? 5 years ago so I can?t say what it is like now.


Submitted by Brain on Tue, 04/02/03 - 1:16 AMPermalink

Forlostu: No, didn't make it in. Shall try again next year.

Pantmonger: *cringe* Yike. They can't still think like that. Disney's animation has certainly dropped in quality over the last few years. And dismissing Anime is wrong. So very wrong.

Chris Bowden

Submitted by Dilphinus on Tue, 04/02/03 - 11:31 AMPermalink

Personally, I think QCA (Queensland College of Art, Griffith University) is a cool and great place to study Animation. They teach you the basics and then you can move on from there on your own. Most important thing is to learn the basic principles of drawing and animation. I did traditional animation and computer animation (not at QCA, unfortunately!). But it's one of the schools recommended by my lecturers. Learning 2D animation is fun and you'll don't realised that there is so much behind animation!

I think QCA is the only place to learn animation in Australia. If you have the financial means, go for Sheridan College in Canada. It's also another tough school to enter...but almost all the graduates get jobs! And Sheridan College is a renowned school for animation.

Submitted by Pantmonger on Tue, 04/02/03 - 7:34 PMPermalink

No offence but it seems to be a weird thing to say that you think QCA is a great and cool place to study animation if you have never studied animation there. I only commented because I have, because my fianc? has, and because I have a large pool of friends that did. I don?t disagree that learning the basics of 2D animation would be a good thing but this is a degree, so an informed decision on where you want to spend 3 years of your life can go a long way. My understanding is that it is the only BA in animation in Australia, but don?t let that fool you, all that means is that they have tacked an extra year onto the studies and have added a bunch of tenuously linked subjects such as art history to give it enough weight to be called a BA, the amount of actual animation you do is still about the level you get in a Dip of Animation. Think long and hard before going there, or get accepted and have a look in I think you have 2 t 3 weeks in which to bail before incurring any bad points.


Submitted by Forlostu on Wed, 05/02/03 - 8:54 AMPermalink

ok thanks for all your replies. I also applied for QANTM last year but didn't make it either. However reading some of your comments on QANTM in other posts has made me think that i got lucky in not making it. Im self teaching myself at the moment with Richard Williams book the 'Animators Survival Kit'. Its great. Has anyone else got it?

Old AGDC awards results?

The conference has been on for four years now, right? Does anyone have the award winners of the Australian Games Developer Conference from years past? They seem to have been lost in the abyss! I'd to at least keep a record of them all on this site. (What's the point of having a reward if there's no record of it anywhere!)

Submitted by Mario on Wed, 29/01/03 - 8:08 PMPermalink

This is the first year they had awards I believe. Don't seem to remember them prior to this year.

Submitted by souri on Thu, 30/01/03 - 1:56 AMPermalink

ahh, ok.. thanks for that. [:)]

Just for the record...

Electronic Arts Australia (development) is no more.

I rang them a few days ago to check they got my showreel, and was told that the development arm has been shut down recently.


Anyone know what's happened to the people working there? I know they were working on The Sims GBA...

Submitted by Blitz on Thu, 23/01/03 - 9:03 PMPermalink

Not surprising. From what i hear EA have not done too well in the last year or 2, with most of their online game projects going tits up.
(And that Majestic(?) thing didn't help either)
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by Daemin on Thu, 23/01/03 - 11:21 PMPermalink

Also I think EA, along with all the other International Publisher / Game Developers, are closing down shops all over the place, and only keeping their biggest and best facilities open. Mainly becuase you hear of all of them not making profits etc.

Submitted by souri on Thu, 23/01/03 - 11:48 PMPermalink

I heard EA Australia was closing up shop a while ago - probably on Bigkid I think.. Couldn't find any more news or details on it. They didn't have a website, did they? (well, the one they did have was more games related).. aaanyway, thanks for the news. I've put them on the 'inactive' list on the dev page.

Submitted by Grif on Fri, 24/01/03 - 7:01 AMPermalink

George Fidler (who was, if memory serves, the head of EA Aus) is now with Creative Assembly in Brisbane.

- Grif

Submitted by Gaffer on Fri, 24/01/03 - 8:50 AMPermalink

what does creative assembly do, havent heard of 'em

Glenn "Gaffer" Fiedler | Senior Programmer | Irrational Games

Submitted by souri on Fri, 24/01/03 - 9:20 AMPermalink

Glenn, Glenn, Glenn.... haven't you looked at the rest of my website? [;)] I've had Creative's profile and info up for ages..

"The Creative Assembly, the developers of the innovative, award-winning and hugely successful Medieval: Total War and Shogun: Total War have expanded their operation overseas. George Fidler, previously the Chief Operating Officer of Electronic Arts Australia heads the new team, in Fortitude Valley - Brisbane, Australia"

Submitted by Blitz on Fri, 24/01/03 - 10:16 AMPermalink

OMG How can you not know Shogun: TW!!!! :)
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by souri on Fri, 31/01/03 - 11:36 PMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Blitz

Not surprising. From what i hear EA have not done too well in the last year or 2, with most of their online game projects going tits up.
(And that Majestic(?) thing didn't help either)

Originally posted by Daemin
Also I think EA, along with all the other International Publisher / Game Developers, are closing down shops all over the place, and only keeping their biggest and best facilities open. Mainly becuase you hear of all of them not making profits etc.

From Shacknews

Electronic Arts today announced their latest quartely results (…), and once again the numbers are impressive with a 48% revenue increase and $250 million in net profits. Not all is well for the employees of EA though, as the company will consolidate studios in Los Angeles, Las Vegas and Irvine - in order to create one big studio in Los Angeles. According to this story(, about 50 jobs will be lost. Las Vegas is the location of Westwood Studios, and it means this company will shut down. Same goes for EA Pacific (recently finished C&C Generals) which is in Irvine. Thanks HomeLAN Fed. Update: HomeLAN Fed has has a further update on the news ( Most of the C&C Generals team (EA Pacific) will move to the new LA studio, and new C&C games are planned. For those of you worried about Earth & Beyond, the servers and support will be moved to the EA Redwood Shores studios which also houses the Motor City Online servers.

42% revenue increase!!! It all reminds me of Australian Banks.. record profits, and shutting up locations to maximise even more profit$.. I hope EA doesn't bid for Vivendi Universals game sector for that reason.

Submitted by Maitrek on Wed, 05/02/03 - 1:00 PMPermalink

It's all about good business sense nowadays!!!
I wouldn't dream that they'd care about any of the people they've laid off as a result of the the dudes at the top of the chain, it's *good* news to have less employees and a more centralised product development process. Makes for good stockholder and investor reports - as shown :)

Snootchie bootchies!
Any off-topic issues send to

Submitted by Daemin on Thu, 06/02/03 - 2:09 AMPermalink

Business is a whole lot about the boom-bust cycle - from what I've inferred. First the company gets bigger, hiring more staff, creating more jobs, getting more capital, then once some tougher times hit they lay off employees, and concentrate their efforts on only a few key aspects. Then once that's over they'll start hiring one more and the cycle will continue.

What happened to Mystical Development?

Anyone know what happened to them? their website seems to be offline.
Mystical Dev profile:

their website:

Submitted by Daemin on Thu, 23/01/03 - 8:21 AMPermalink

I know of a Mysticgd (, but they're located in the netherlands etc.

No idea what's happened to that company, its a shame that Australian Game Development Companies seldom update their websites with anything cool.

Submitted by Maitrek on Thu, 23/01/03 - 10:07 AMPermalink

Speaking of updating websites, what does "coming soon" mean on your web page Daemin, it's been like that for well over a decade :P

Snootchie bootchies!
Any off-topic issues send to

Submitted by Daemin on Thu, 23/01/03 - 11:19 PMPermalink

Maitrek, You lie - only for a half a year maybe!

Submitted by souri on Sat, 25/01/03 - 1:09 PMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Daemin

No idea what's happened to that company, its a shame that Australian Game Development Companies seldom update their websites with anything cool.

I think Ratbag are going for the record.. .. 2 years since last update! [:)]

Submitted by Daemin on Sat, 25/01/03 - 11:44 PMPermalink

Apparently last year at the time of my last interview they were going to get a dedicated web guy, but I guess that fell through. As far as I know the current RatBag website was done by one of their programmers, hence why it isn't being updated now.

I'll ask them when they contact me, about the website updates. You never know - I may be the one doing the next update?!?

can you help (Sydney courses)

gday again my next question is where in sydney would a good place be to study in game development,2d,3d and all stuff like that.the army is giving me 4 grand to study anything i want,so i would like to do games and game media.i only have 1 yr to spend the money thoe. mainly sims and strategy or action.working on games as a level designer or as a military consultant or in a mag as a reveiwer in the game biz.any1 know where i could get a start.i have great ideas, like every 1 dose,i just need the chance to use them.could some1 email me with any info you think could help.thanks DG.[?]

Submitted by souri on Sat, 25/01/03 - 12:41 PMPermalink

That's it.. I'm gonna make this topic sticky until there are a few good answers to this one. [:D]
There's a lot of 3D related courses advertised in the back of Digital Media World. I'll hunt some down and write it here..

Submitted by devils guard on Sat, 25/01/03 - 11:05 PMPermalink

thanks,atleast i got a responds.i thought i stunk.mmmmmm maybe i do.

Submitted by Dilphinus on Sun, 26/01/03 - 1:52 PMPermalink


I think Charles Sturt University offers something in Games. But I'm not sure if they still have it. University of Technology Sydney might have something. And also the Australian Radio and Television School have short courses.

Submitted by devils guard on Thu, 30/01/03 - 12:44 AMPermalink

thanks ill check them out.its nice to have some help

Submitted by souri on Thu, 30/01/03 - 8:52 AMPermalink

I've had a look and I could only find these two places... I don't have any first hand knowledge on how good they really are or how much the course costs for the Enmore centre, but you should check them out (and let us know [;)])... I'm sure there are dozens of small 'multimedia/3d graphics' institutions littered around Sydney too of varying degrees of usefulness..

Tafe NSW Silicon Graphics Centre
Design Centre, Enmore College
110 Edgeware Road,
Enmore NSW 2042 .. phone: 02 9394 5716

(Note: the Enmore design centre is top notch)


Mad Academy
Building 220, Room 101a
Fox Studios Australia,
Driver Avenue,
Moore Park, NSW 1363

(Discreet Approved Training Centre - learn 3DS Max from Discreet themselves? Can't go wrong there!)

Most of the courses last for a few days, and cost around $1000 or so.. but there's a new one

3D Artist / Animator's Course
(5 months / full time / $9900)

It's out of your price range unfortunately, but it looks interesting. I wish I could go to that!

** argh.. just re-read your first post... These courses are for 3d modelling, not a level design or a mag as a reveiwer etc.. I'm not sure if there is any level/game design related courses in Sydney..

Submitted by Brain on Fri, 31/01/03 - 3:02 AMPermalink

Unaware of Games courses in Sydney, though if you were wanting to do level design or magazine reviewer, go about it another way. Do an Architecture or Creative Writing course.

Shall keep my eyes and ears out though...

Chris Bowden

Submitted by souri on Fri, 31/01/03 - 11:38 AMPermalink

Gazunta might be able to give you some tips on being a games journalist.. (here's your cue Gazunta [;)])

Submitted by devils guard on Wed, 05/02/03 - 10:48 AMPermalink

wow thanks for your replys.i do have more money than the 4000 grand now my better options.great thanks ill check the enmore site out and the 10000 grand course.its 4 free and the goverment pays.ha ha
its all part of a vetrans deal.thank u again.
Gazunta would b nice to hear what u have to say.

Submitted by Sertan on Fri, 07/02/03 - 4:10 AMPermalink

- You could try to look for some courses at [url][/url]. They have Australian courses, I believe. You might find one located in Sydney.

- You could also check out the Academy of Interactive Entertainment, though it's based in Canberra, and you said Sydney...

- At Charles Sturt University, Bathurst Campus, there's a Bachelor of Computer Science(Computer Games Technology).

Of course, you could try your hand at courses that aren't game specific, but the course provides practical work where the area you decide to work on is up to you. Some of these are at University of Technology Sydney, under the Faculty of Design.

That's all I know.

Vivian: You go too far, Marlowe.
Marlowe: Those are some harsh words to say to a man, especially when he's walking out of your bedroom.

Undergraduate degree/course enquiries

Hi I'm new here. Looking for a good full-time animation undergraduate course (leading to a degree) in Australia but I don't have much info so I hope some of you here can help. The animation course doesn't need to be games-related. I saw from previous topics a school AIE in canberra? what does AIE actually stand for? How about the animation courses offered by some universities like Griffith?

Submitted by Kirby on Fri, 17/01/03 - 7:28 AMPermalink

My friend from uni (in the animation degree at the moment) did a great animation course leading up to getting into the degree at griffith I can find out for you where she did it and what school etc?

PM me your email and I'll give send you some more details/correspondence if you wish?

quote:Originally posted by Nick

Hi I'm new here. Looking for a good full-time animation undergraduate course (leading to a degree) in Australia but I don't have much info so I hope some of you here can help. The animation course doesn't need to be games-related. I saw from previous topics a school AIE in canberra? what does AIE actually stand for? How about the animation courses offered by some universities like Griffith?

Submitted by souri on Fri, 17/01/03 - 9:19 AMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Nick

what does AIE actually stand for?

Academy of Interactive Entertainment

Submitted by Dilphinus on Fri, 17/01/03 - 12:38 PMPermalink

This is solely my own opinion. I think Griffith is very much the traditional art school. They focus more on basis art concepts and 2d animation. If one wants to do 3D or computer animation, I doubt Griffith will be able to offer that. Of course, getting a basis concept of animation - classical/traditional animation is still the best way to get started. Learning how a person walk and the wave principle and stuff like that is great fun. And not many people actually realised that there's so much to learn about drawing and animation.

Now basically everything is about technologies. Learning software like Lightwave, Maya...etc. No big deal if you know how to use the software if you don't know anything about animation principles. If not, you will end up being an 'operator' in doing the modelling and following instructions from the creative/art director. One must have good writing skills and creativity. Must have a good story or else what are you going to create? How are you going to generate interest in your work?

Just my own opinions. Did film and animation in college...but mental block now. Can't do anything creative at the moment cos it's so restrictive in school. Can't do this can't do that...!!! I graduated from a college similar to TAFE in Singapore.

By the way, Queensland College of Art (Griffith) is a good school to go to! That is if you have the passion. It's hell difficult to get a creative job that you enjoy and not feel restricted.

Submitted by souri on Sat, 18/01/03 - 12:45 AMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Kirby

PM me your email and I'll give send you some more details/correspondence if you wish?

Post some details here too if you can, Kirby. I'm sure there are many people who would be interested to know more!

Submitted by Jonathan Guthrie on Sun, 19/01/03 - 2:37 AMPermalink

Hey, thanks for the replies.
Anyone knows much about Swinburne's Multimedia Design course?
From what I read on the website, the course has animation, digital video and 3D it good?

Next Years Game - Requires Artists

Calling all Artists!

We (Blitz and I) have successfully entered into the Next Years Game competition with a game design that we both worked on since the Conference. We have a decently filled Design Document that is the core of our design, and being only programmers we require help from a few dedicated artists for this project to succeed.

Therefore I am putting the call out for several artists here on sumea that would like to join our project. I would thing that we'd need about 1 or 2 Modellers / Animators with 3DS MAX or Maya experience, 1 or 2 2D / Texture Artists, and possibly one Level / misc designer. We are specifically searching for people within Australia only.

If this sparks anybody's interest then if they could contact me via email (through sumea) or on ICQ (9791201) then I will send them the design document for them to look at.

Look at my most recent journal entry or contact me for more information.


Submitted by davidcoen on Fri, 10/01/03 - 9:41 AMPermalink

what is with people being so secretive about design concepts... i could make a comment, but it is a secret. you have to email me and then i might tell you what i think.

Submitted by Maitrek on Fri, 10/01/03 - 9:59 AMPermalink

lol - if I asked that q of Daemin I'd get my ass kicked into orbit and land in Madagascar.

Lets just say some people are protective of their "intellectual property". It's understandable, maybe he values his idea/concept alot. However I have to say, it does reduce the possible exposure of the idea to people potentially interested in investing time/work/money to the project.

This isn't on topic. I think the reasons for keeping a design doc "secretive" are obvious, as obvious as the reasons for making it open to public scrutiny.

Snootchie bootchies!

Submitted by Daemin on Fri, 10/01/03 - 10:06 AMPermalink

Well david, are you interesting in joining a team for an NYG project?

If not then I don't see a reason for exposing the design document just yet.

Submitted by Blitz on Fri, 10/01/03 - 1:33 PMPermalink

Actually there is a very good reason for keeping designs out of the public domain. If we ever did happen to get this game published, and the game contained an idea similar to that which someone had commented about our design, they could sue us for stealing their ideas' It's a weird legal thing, but it exists so publicly releasing designes that may change is not a good idea (if you can't guarantee you won't release the game commercially).
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by Maitrek on Fri, 10/01/03 - 1:54 PMPermalink

I'd be surprised if anyone would claim intellectual property of a game idea...the games industry isn't geared that poorly yet.

Snootchie bootchies!

Submitted by Blitz on Fri, 10/01/03 - 1:57 PMPermalink

It's something publishers lawyers get antsy about though, so better to play it safe eh?
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by Pantmonger on Fri, 10/01/03 - 8:25 PMPermalink

I think the additional bit of information that would be good to have is 'how much of a time commitment are you expecting' Is this going to equate to full time, or just the odd hour here and there?


Submitted by Blitz on Fri, 10/01/03 - 10:35 PMPermalink

Definitly not full time. Me and Daemin both have school so we can't soend full time working on it either so we can't expect anyone else too :) However we would be expecting people to be comitted to the project. Expecting to spend 5-10 hours a week on it would be an estimate at this stage...Daemin might have a better idea.
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by Daemin on Sat, 11/01/03 - 12:06 AMPermalink

I would say 5-10 hours a week seems very reasonable for someone also having another "full-time" activity, this is a hobby project after all. Possibly closer to the due date, or during holidays, we would need to work longer hours on this to get it into a reasonable product i.e. "Crunch-time". But I doubt crunch time would be more than 30 hours a week (Maybe more for us programmers, who knows).

The main aim of this project as I see it is to create something of good quality that we all want to do, and to have fun and learn new skills while doing it, but also try to work it as a real game development studio and have a few milestones that we want to hit (like the competition due date). And if in the end we win any placing in the competition then that's the icing on the cake.

For people that want to know more of what the game is that we have designed, its a Real Time Tactical simulation, tied together with the strategic resource management aspect, and also loosely with a storyline. As the game box blurb reads (which I wrote fairly quickly before submitting it):

quote:The Earth is ravaged and polluted, most of the population left for the stars centuries ago. The remaining people live in isolated domes, oases of clean air and water, ruled over by cruel warlords. You are a soldier and leader in one of these armies and your faction is poised to regain their former power and glory. Take charge and lead squads of soldiers through the insides of the domes, control platoons of soldiers and vehicles outside in the post-apocalyptic environment. Manage your scarce resources and personnel during extended campaigns. Fight. Sneak. Survive.

Submitted by davidcoen on Sat, 11/01/03 - 10:08 AMPermalink

thankyou, cool, i should have said i would be happy with a blurb, but i was in bitch mode.

'cause of my profile on polycount, (about 30 models there, and have done requests for people) I get about 1 design doc mailed to me a week begging me to join, invariably a lot more lame than what Daemin and Bliz have by way of blurb. no god and devil/ vampires or wearwolfs/ light sabers even.

if you can't find a quick modeller, i could make you a few units/textures/ animation [would help if you have concepts] or perhaps just a test model would be of use to you... but usually seems to have a lot of bouncy students about... any of them bitten?


Submitted by Groovy Audio on Sun, 12/01/03 - 10:19 AMPermalink

ARGHHHH probabally a little late but i'd love to do any artwork i can for the game, im not that good at modelling, i never tried it but i'm sure i can make some original model designs for characters if you are willing to accept me :D

~z e r 0

Submitted by beatsta on Tue, 14/01/03 - 12:10 PMPermalink

I may be able to help out with models,uv mapping, and animations..over how many months wwould the project be going for? and when will it be starting?

Submitted by Blitz on Tue, 14/01/03 - 10:26 PMPermalink

The first stage of the project will be finishing a couple weeks before the final submission date (July 23 if i remember correctly), and we may, or may not continue with it after that...we'll see how things go.
It will be starting pretty much immediately, although we (me and daemin) haven't received the engine yet, which may be a couple weeks away, so we probably won't be getting people to do much until then...
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by beatsta on Wed, 15/01/03 - 10:56 AMPermalink

do you have character sheets done up for the characters you want made? if youu feel it won't jeopardize your I.P. feel fee to email me with the requirements and i will see what i can do :)

Submitted by Daemin on Sun, 19/01/03 - 7:56 AMPermalink

We've got a concept artist already that will do the majority of such drawings.

Submitted by sy on Tue, 08/07/03 - 6:08 AMPermalink

Hi there,

well, I know, I'm a little late, and I've never been to australia - maybe austria, but however, maybe you're interested in some music for your game design. I would be glad to help out, since I'd like to write more music for games. If you're interested, check out a few titles from my upcoming demo at The text is in german, but the titles denote what the music is about.
If you like this stuff and want some music, I'd be glad to help your team. mailto


Submitted by Daemin on Tue, 08/07/03 - 8:22 AMPermalink

Heya sy, I'm sorry but I have to say that I already have someone doing the sound and music for the game.

Although right now the project is lacking in the Artist department...

The state of the Australian Game Industry.

On the outside it looks as though all is great, the power hitters of the Australian game industry are all working on projects and there are a few jobs laying around for those with enough ambition and skill to nab them.

However is all as good as it seems? Australian developers are forced by American publishers to design and develop their titles so that they can be squarely aimed at the American audience. An understandable move since the vast majority of people who purchase their games will in fact be American themselves.

This I feel is very bad for the health and state of the game industy in our country. How are we going to distinguish ourselves as a nation of great game developers if we are forced by those who control the purse strings to make stuff that looks and feels like all the rest of the American stuff on the market?

Developers get feed the lines, ?you will alienate the American market? or ?they won't go for it? which I rekon is a load of crap. Some aspect or another of ?Australian? culture (its always a bit distorted) is popular in the United States, take for example the crocodile hunter. Love it or Hate it and no matter how it distorts the image of the Average Aussie it is a show that has a Australian flavor and is HUGE in America. Then if you take a look at our ?motherland? (the Brits) they have always been avid fans of our soaps.

We CAN push whats left of our culture onto other nations in the form of Electronic Entertainment, cept don't do it like a crappy T.V. show. Aussie Developers are a pretty clever bunch of people we know you CAN make games with fresh and FUN gameplay, just don't be afraid to give it an Australian setting and storyline.

But how mochumbo? Our publisher laughed at us and told us that they could never sell a game with Bunyip in the title. Well i'm not sure of an immediate solution, what I do know is that a government funded firm similar to the Australian Film Finance Commision is required to help make this happen. Don't the government realise that film is a rusting artform and games are the way of the future?

Anyways nothing like a morning rant to kickstart the day.

Submitted by mochumbo on Wed, 08/01/03 - 9:35 PMPermalink

No, I had not seen Ty (I'm more of a PC gamer). I have to say this is EXACTLY what i'm talking about, a big thumbs upto Krome for making what looks like a great game and EA for forking out the funds. I think I might have to buy a cube or a ps2 just for this one. My whole point is, no matter what kind of games you make or genre you are into you can give it an Australian flavor. Ty is an EXCELENT example of what i'm on about and I just wish that there were more games out there like it.

I'm not suggesting that every developer make a game that is super oker, just don't be afraid to give your games an Australian edge to them.

Submitted by Blitz on Wed, 08/01/03 - 11:53 PMPermalink

I'm just wondering WHY you feel that games need to be produced that have an "Australian" flavour?
IMO the number of games that have a specifically american flavour are quite small (usually a handful of military and sports type games).
I don't think that not having specifically australian flavoured games is bad at all for the industry. If anything it shows we are creative enough to go beyond the borders of our country and think freely...
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by souri on Thu, 09/01/03 - 2:19 AMPermalink

Sorry.. have to move the topic here! [:)]

Submitted by Maitrek on Thu, 09/01/03 - 11:24 AMPermalink

I'd like to think that good gaming transcends cultural barriers like basing it on a certain country's "flavour". Plus obviously Australia isn't the most dazzlingly rich in history place in the world. Most of Australia's history is largely ignored. If I were to set my game anywhere, it would definitely be in Europe, seeing as it actually has a rich culture and history and some atmosphere.

The problem is making a game based on an Aussie stereotype, or figurehead, isn't exactly creative genius. It's clearly not much more than a gimmick - and it's not going to be marketeable because of that. Ozzie gimmicks are a niche market. Alot of mass market products aren't necessarily rich in American culture either (except for the guns solve everything attitude :) ). I mean, name a product that was successful because of it's purely American-culture related material or marketing?

(actually I can't think of any, and I'm sure there's some out there, so please do!)

Submitted by Blitz on Thu, 09/01/03 - 11:50 AMPermalink

America's army didn't do too badly :P
The NFL games do very well from what i can tell, and the basketball games. Like i said, mainly only sports and the odd military game are very american influenced.
Even a game such as splinter cell (to take a recent example) isn't exactly highly influenced by american culture, even though the main character/organisation is american. It could have been english and would have sold just as well, and been exactly the same game except for a couple name changes and changing peoples accents.
But i agree with maitrks post above when he says "good gaming transcends cultural barriers".
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by mochumbo on Thu, 09/01/03 - 7:29 PMPermalink

I can understand what both you are saying that "gaming transcends cultural barriers" and i'm not suggesting that we make all games based on Aussie stereotypes. Although the odd one here and there is not all bad (ty looks so funny and cool.). But I do want to be able to play as an Australian side in my favorite RTS. I do want play a hitman style game set in the Bushranger era of South Eastern Australia and I do want my role playing games to feature giant killer wombats.

Maitrek: your suggestion that Australia has a dull and boring history is offensive. Yes we may only have 200 odd years of White fella's history on this big brown nation, but we have achieved just as much as any other nation in that time frame. Not to mention the 30,000 years of aborignal history that precded europeans landing on this country! As for games with American-culture:

*mafia (i love mob films and the sorpranos is my favorite tv show. So i like this game... yet American mob culture)
*sof series (your American gun culture in a bag here)
*Grand Theft Auto Series (organised crime and gun culture again... yet a very fun game, that could be set anywhere)

There are more, that have American characters and settings (which can be ANY WHERE in ANY CULTURE, but more often they are American) take Return to Castle wolf, American soldier duking it out with ze germans? I would much prefer see a Brit in that role. (A bit of bad example as that would be messing with the great, the orignal) I personally would like to make games based on Australian culture, but if you want to set it in Europe thats also great!! Just don't go setting it in America with American characters, because there are PLENTY of American developers out there already doing just that.

Submitted by Meatex Salami on Thu, 09/01/03 - 8:55 PMPermalink

Well for one Ty sucks.
I hold no loyalty to developers for any reason after RARE.
The developed the best FPS game and pioneered the idea of stealth over Quake style run and gun. Also realism, gadgets, objective based missions (in an FPS) rather than kill kill kill kill ooo exit.
After that i thought RARE were da bomb. But they only made banjo kazooie and all the others were standard or below. Most of the good dev guys from goldeneye left after to work on timesplitters series which has excellent gameplay but shoddy story.
So the point is regardless if its an aussie developer if the game isn't good then it doesn't matter
I would have to agree there aren't THAT many games that are really american flavoured although you will rarely see POV's (in story line or anything else) that aren't american. Most games bad guys won't speak english or will with an accent. etc.

It is infact ants who are the true rulers of this world!!!

Submitted by Maitrek on Fri, 10/01/03 - 6:33 AMPermalink

I'm not going to argue with someone as patriotic as yourself too much, because that's just clearly two areas that we differ in, and I don't want to offend you again. But I have a couple of things to say none the less....and you actually brought up a point I considered, that a bush ranger game could make for some interesting gaming. Although I'd hardly be the one to push this idea, seeing as it's amoral and a violent game style, but it is a new twist on a familiar theme which can be popular with the average gaming public and publishers themselves.

I'd have to say, that the I find the title of the game Mafia kind of funny, seeing as it is actually an organised crime syndicate based in one city in Palermo, Sicilia in Italia, and in fact, the italian-american new york gangsta mob are called "the mob" and calling them the mafia is simply a misnomer. I actually think a game set in Sicily would be a way better setting for the game too, but perhaps this is an example of american marketing :)

I just don't think that taking any current game, and twisting the theme to fit into Australian culture is a positive step for the industry because it gives the impression we are a bunch of creative f***wits and until we move away from obsession with guns and warfare and to a more internationally popular flavour of games, Americans will always paste themselves as the good guys, because that actually will help sales due to the fact that they are an extremely patriotic nation that is full of pride for what they have achieved (just as you are with Australia) and there are more of them than there are of us - hence making a bigger market.

Americans are violence-based conflict obsessed! That's why that market is so good, because that's what games are's such a great mixture from a marketing/publishing point of view. However if games were more diverse in their gameplay perhaps then different settings would be explored.

If you want to play the Australian side in the game and get treated as some kind of military lab rat/cannon fodder on the shores of Gallipoli, be my guest :) But the facts of the matter is, Europe/America are the most war mongering nations, whereas I'd much rather paint Australia as a nation of peace in games.
even though we have laid down our lives in war before, making games about it is not the way to celebrate the loss of lives, and it's a pretty disgusting tribute to the atrocity of war as well.

Just my two cents...

I really think that multi-cultural non-divisive/secularist games are a far better idea. For instance, why are the Germans always the bad guys? How does that make them feel? Or Russia, or what about middle eastern nations? The problem with this kind of good guy vs. bad guy gaming is that it has two sides to it! *You* might want to be the good guy, and thats great, but what about the people you paint as the bad guys?

In any good guy v. bad guy conflict I draft into my game, the conflict is on ideals *alone*, and there is no naming of nations or any identity associated with either side except for what they think, and I think that this should be more prominent in developers' minds to promote more responsible games and perhaps a better picture of what makes up something bad, and something good, other than a name/identity associated with it.

Of course - in the case of historical games based on actual warfare this is a different story, here the subject matter is from a far more depersonalised viewpoint, where you'll find that most strategy gamers will choose to be either the good or bad guys, just for the challenge of winning the battle. But that doesn't mean to say that Germans/Japanese/Vietnamese will be at all happy about the concept of other nations enjoying virtually kicking their asses.

Also, seeing as history has already been written by the winners, the 'evil' guys in these games have no argument to defend themselves, and their point of view is often ignored (I'm not disagreeing that some of the nations that I have virutally wiped out weren't evil :) We all have a bit of a war-mongering side sometimes), but it is generally considered that war is a justified mass slaughter. (note : I personally disagree with society on this one and I'll end the crap about it now and I don't expect a response, hopefully this just helps people see where I'm coming from)

As for my view on pure-Australian gaming?
Like I said above, bushranger would be interesting, despite the somewhat amoral gaming, also the goldrush could make for some interesting gaming - however it's slightly harder to make a *fun* marketeable game out of seeing as you don't kill much in the gold rush.

I can't say I've ever really thought about it much. Like I said, I base conflict on ideals and situations, rather than any particular pre-crafted historic evil such as nazism, communism etc etc, and the characters in the games may or may not be from particular nations, that's really random in many senses.

And finally as for Australianised content in games, somehow I doubt that it will happen, alot of content in games is either based on historical content (and as I stated Australia hasn't had a *huge* global impact), standard tolkein fantasy (which has nothing to do with any real nations), or modern/futuristic dystopian cyberpunk americanised stuff. Fitting Australianism inside is kind of hard...perhaps Australian ideals/characters can be put into some games (not ala Ozzie Mandril (?) or whatever in Escape from Monkey Island) but it's not likely we'll see giant killer platypi in games anytime soon.

Sorry for the long posts dudes! Please flame with equal fervour :P

Submitted by Jacana on Fri, 10/01/03 - 11:18 AMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Maitrek

Americans will always paste themselves as the good guys, because that actually will help sales due to the fact that they are an extremely patriotic nation that is full of pride for what they have achieved (just as you are with Australia) and there are more of them than there are of us - hence making a bigger market.

Americans are violence-based conflict obsessed! That's why that market is so good, because that's what games are's such a great mixture from a marketing/publishing point of view. However if games were more diverse in their gameplay perhaps then different settings would be explored.

Umm *blink* I'm an American and I am not conflict obsessed. Thats a rather general statement with nothing other then your belief to back it up.

If you follow that train of thought then many other countries would be just as big in the market. Israel or Ireland just off the top of my head.

"Yes I Code"
As found on AGDC name tag 2002

Submitted by Maitrek on Fri, 10/01/03 - 1:44 PMPermalink

Sorry : this might seem a little bit b****y and will probably get removed.

Everyone time you stereotype a bunch of people, one of the people who I've just stereotyped pipes up about the fact they don't fit into the category.
Clarification (these are always needed) when I make a stereotype, in fact genereally when anyone does, it doesn't mean I have just judged you personally, I've just judged a large group of people, and made a general statement which doesn't apply to anyone in particular, nor does it apply to everyone in that group. That's a basic fact about stereotypes. There are plenty of Americans who aren't violence-conflict obsessed, but I might bring this quote of yours to life to kind of illustrate what I mean about gamers in general.

quote: Jacana : I have played Quake, Doom, Heretic, Hexen and I really liked these titles. Heck! Even Duke Nukem was not that bad - tho the porn theater and chick calenders was a real eye roller.


I do lan, I do frag, I do snicker when I sniper someone with a grenade launcher. Its funny.

One of my more recent shooters was Serious Sam Second Encounter (I think thats the title). It had a good co-op mode but even more impressive was the gore settings!

Peaceful conflict resolving? Nah :P
Okay, I also clearly recognise that these aren't the only games you've played - I'm just quoting, and NO, that doesn't prove you are violence conflict obsessed either...notice how I carefully crafted that quote to miss the bit about the flower mode to make you appear extra bloodthirsty? :P

Plus there is only 3.8 million people in Ireland, there are 6.1 million people in Israel, compared to 285 million people in America (including obviously Alaska and Hawaii etc). And compare the GDP per capita of the countries as you see what I mean by it being a big market.

And the fact that a fair percentage of americans *aren't* violence-based conflict obsessed is also your own personal belief wiht nothing else to back it up. There were ~ 11,000 firearms deaths last year, resulting in 38.5 deaths per 100,000. Compare that to Australia, (the most recent statistic I could find was 1999, and it's allegedly in decline) is 16.8 gun-related deaths per 100,000. At least 10% of those deaths in America are to fend off assault/criminals.

Let's start a violence game.
4 points goes to the victor of each section, 3 2 1 for the next places. We'll use Australia, Ireland, Israel and USA. All taken from (these statistics may not be brilliant, but they are a start).

Robbery and violent theft per 100,000 inhabitants (1999)

Australia : 121.72
Ireland : 54.27
Israel : 29.48
USA : 144.92

Homicides per 100,000 inhabitants

Australia = 3.62
Ireland = 1.41
Israel = 2.22
USA = 5.51


Ausralia : n/a (although australia sits just above Israel for sex offences)
Ireland : 6.01
Israel : 16.00 (most likely alot of unreported)
USA : 32.05

Serious assault

Australia = 736.69
Ireland = 12.38
Israel = 491.82
USA = 323.62

Whose the winner? Any takers?

Australia gets 13 points.
Ireland gets 5 points
Israel gets 8 points
America gets 14 points.

Being Australian we generally only show bad news about America and very rarely anything good, so my perspective would lack a bit of accuracy. I personally don't think that highly of Australia either, but where I live is reasonably quiet.
Don't take this personally, I don't use stereotypes to judge people, just to judge a gemographic or a market, I judge each person on their own merits.

Snootchie bootchies!

Submitted by Blitz on Fri, 10/01/03 - 1:44 PMPermalink

I agree, i wouldn't consider americans any more "violence-based conflict obsessed" than any other nationality. I might say that in general, a lot of americans are very unaware of what goes on outside their country, at least more so than mose other nationalities i've met. I don't mean to offend anyone with this, but i have travelled to a few places, and a lot of americans i've met tend to be pretty ignorant about the outside world. I've actually had several people in america ask if i rode a kangaroo to school haha, and many of them believed that everyone kept koala's as pets similar to the way they keep dogs and cats :)
Anyway, i think violent games sell just as well in any other country that they are available as they do in america (per capita of game buyers of coruse).
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by Maitrek on Fri, 10/01/03 - 2:00 PMPermalink

Okay, I say this stuff a little bit tongue in cheek, and it's not supposed to be taken that seriously...the last post? It's not even conclusive about whether Americans are violence obsessed or not, it's just got some crap statistics about violent crime...which has nothing to do with violence based media and entertainment, I'm making an analysis of the gaming market in America! Not about people or anything really that politcally important.

Why pick such a minor point from one of my posts when there are plenty of other better ones to discuss - and more on topic ones as well? Do people disagree about putting an Australian theme into a current game? What do people think about the identity of bad guys in gaming? Stay on topic people, just because I am flame-bait doesn't mean it's productive to test my asbestos suit.

Anyone have an international flavour of gaming to suggest? One that isn't based around sole american v bad guys? We are game developers, not mud slingers.

Snootchie bootchies!

Submitted by mochumbo on Fri, 10/01/03 - 7:04 PMPermalink

Maitrek: I never really thought of myself as being patriotic, but I guess I would have to be. Which is a shame really, since being super patriotic really isn't an Australian trait. most are laid back and have little interest in the way the country runs and wonders why the hell they even bother with the second verse of the national anthem, since they sure as hell don't know it (neither do I) I just got a little irrated that you could fob 200 years off history as being a yawn, when its excatly the same history that has provided you with the way of life you are currently living.

But i'm with you 100% in just giving a standard game an Australian twist or flavor not being creative. The real challenge is creating new and innovative game play (and in your case that has no violence) but why not stamp your culture on it why you are it?

Your idea of removing the Germans, Russians as always being the bad guys is a good one, and I like it.... However again it has to be all about the gameplay. You have to be doing something new, not a rehash of the same old stuff but with a different bad guy. This is what its all about, getting out there and making something that is DIFFERENT to everything else. If you had an Australian industry (and publishers to support it) that would go out there and say no i'm not going to make a game where the Americans wipe out such and such... again. I rekon we would have a much healthier industry

I like your Australian Gold rush idea, making innovative game play that goes beyond a standard "tycoon" series of game would be the hard task though.

Hrmmm international gaming:
bit of violence in this one:
A multiplayer game thats lock stock style england, you are in small teams of 2-3 and are given a task "steal this", "kidnap such and such", etc. Now the real twist is that there are 6-7 of these stories that intertwine and you would actually be pitted against someone who has an apposing story line. You wouldn't relise that you were apart of a much bigger underlying story untill you had played 6-7 rounds and gone through all the sub plots. Basically an extension of my mod bystander (yes its in an Australian setting, and yes I think it has innovative game play)

Submitted by Maitrek on Sat, 11/01/03 - 2:22 AMPermalink

So perhaps a better idea would be to discuss what exactly constitutes an Australian type of game? Aside from Squatter I'm pretty much flat on my arse for ideas.

Like has been said above, violent games are going to sell well in any country, because it's a rather universally popular subject matter. How exactly is Australia going to achieve any independence from this formula if we are aiming at the same market ourselves?

This next point of mine contains some *dreaded* stereotypes.
Think movies for a second - French movies are extremely distinct from Hollywood movies in their visual style, and their use of cinematic and cinematographic techniques. Spanish movies are (on the whole) totally different again, always some tragic romance involving death. Italian movies are always tragic comedies or those tear-jerker stories that guys love to hate. Hong Kong cinema varies from dodgy soap operas to mob/crime action movies to the straight out martial arts flicks. They have a distinct style of their own again. But Hollywood, well that's hollywood, very simple style, very methodically and structurally composed cinema with big name stars etc etc.

Australian cinema's big difference from american cinema usually was that whole old-school outback image, with real thick ocker accents, and dudes on horses with rifles. Then there's Mad Max I guess, which just had the accents. But the problem is, the only one that warranted a sequel, was the hollywood-ised Mad Max. At least it has the semi-Australian theme of a bit of an outlaw/anti-hero.

So is that our flavour? The nation of outlaw/anti-heroes? Does that make good gaming? God knows...the only reason I can see for this working is that the normal and familiar gameplay actions can be associated with this kind of game but again, it's really just taking a bit of an Aussie theme, putting in some accents and then leaving the rest of the formula up to the USA design again :)

Is this a bad thing? Is the USA style of game bad/wrong? Ask the current flock of gamers at the moment and you'll get a resounding no. Ask me? And I'll say it's a little bit stale having killed millions of bad dudes since 1991 when I was knee high to a grasshopper.

still just an idea.

Snootchie bootchies!
Any off-topic issues send to

Submitted by Blitz on Sat, 11/01/03 - 6:25 AMPermalink

Hey, crocodile dundee spawned a couple sequels :)
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by Maitrek on Sat, 11/01/03 - 8:45 AMPermalink

Err - true, Crocodile Dundee did make two sequels ... dunno why, is anyone willing to make a crocodile dundee game? Or a game based on that steve erwin dude?

Snootchie bootchies!
Any off-topic issues send to

Submitted by Blitz on Sat, 11/01/03 - 9:35 AMPermalink

How about a game where you take on the role of several different wildlife animals and attack the corcodile hunter :)
Each time you make a successful attack points get added to your crikey meter!
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by souri on Sat, 11/01/03 - 10:19 AMPermalink

I don't think Ty was crap at all. The reviews were mostly favourable, scoring from a 6 - 8 out of ten.. and most of the critiscm it's received has generally been that it was 'too safe' and not innovative in it's gameplay (same thing with Rocket Power Beach Bandits).. If that's the worst that can be said about the game, then they didn't do too bad [;)] I do remember one review where the reviewer said that she adored Steve Irwin, so loved all the accents in Ty.
I think adding Australian culture to every game released by Australian developers is a bit overkill though, and pretty restrictive in creative freedom in the end.

Submitted by Meatex Salami on Sat, 11/01/03 - 8:57 PMPermalink

I consider myself a bit of a hardcore gamer and my standards on what makes a good game are extremely high. I don't own a game that has gotten under 9.9 in the majority of nintendo mags. (cause i have a 64) For me a game that score 6 is horrible by my standards. I generally won't even look at anything under 8.5. Then again it depends on who the reviewer is. Although i would play it if someone else had it or something.
But hey thats just me but there are only a few games on each console that would be worth buying it for eg Halo for X-Box, FFX for PS2 and Eternal Darkness for the Cube

It is infact ants who are the true rulers of this world!!!

Submitted by Maitrek on Sun, 12/01/03 - 3:53 AMPermalink

I think that really, to me, the true Australian games industry is a multicultural one, where any type of game based anywhere can be done, with any kind of international flavour. Whether it's true Australiana doesn't matter, it's about making good games using whatever setting is absolutely best for the game. Imposing Canada-like or French-like restrictions on outside content and how much has to be influenced by Australianisms just doesn't make sense, and it's not true to our stance as a multicultural nation.

If an Australian "flavoured" game kicks arse, then so be it, it'll sell well in any country including America. If it takes arse, then it won't...doesn't matter what gimmicks you put in there.

I think I'd probably have to say that mochumbos "on the surface" evalutation is probably the true measure of the australian games industry. Due to the fact that there is alot of companies starting to produce games that are becoming of higher and higher quality, that the games industry is healthy.

Snootchie bootchies!
Any off-topic issues send to

Submitted by Daemin on Sun, 12/01/03 - 4:46 AMPermalink

Well said Maitrek, I couldn't have put it better myself.

Submitted by mochumbo on Sun, 12/01/03 - 8:27 AMPermalink

Maitrek, your point is DEAD on!! We SHOULD embrace other cultures (their media, cusine and other talents) so we can foster our multicultral society. And it makes perfect sense to pick the best setting for a particular game.

However every day our media, (not limited to computer games) is becoming increasingly Americanised, which I feel isn't a way to promote a more multicultral nation. Look at it this way, we have thousands of imigrants coming to this nation every year, all of them are very welcome to stay (as long as they play by the rules). Yet only 2% of those thousands come from North America (thats both Canada and U.S.A)

So my question is why should the Americans get to influence our media so heavily? Shouldn't our media only change 2% towards a more American standpoint and 98% towards these other cultures/countries? I suspect the answer most likely lies within the crazy corporation that bears the name "fox" to the yanks which just happens to be owned by Murdoc and News Corp (Thats an Aussie bloke and company just in case you didn't know).

I personally want to make games with Aussie places and Aussie themes, and as a result am an advocate of Australiana. But I would just as easily settle for games (and other media) that is from a much wider range of cultures. The whole point is to make Games developed locally STAND out from the rest!

Submitted by Maitrek on Sun, 12/01/03 - 10:13 AMPermalink

Too true, lots of game developers do seem to feel the pressure to market their product directly to the American audience, but that's really unavoidable, alot of Aussie game developers are in such a tight squeeze as it is that creative freedom is a bit unlikely.

Speaking of creative freedom lacking in Aussie developers, just look at ratbags last 395,700 racing games. Sure they aren't American marketed, but they've been brand-name associated with dirt racing games, and they'll struggle to release anything other than that.

Unless the Australian industry could stand up on it's own two feet for a change, then there'll always be a lack of creative freedom, especially in terms of marketing content. Although independent game makers have the freedom to make what they want, those who are (sortof) lucky enough to have a contract with a publisher has certain expectation placed upon them that are unavoidable.

Snootchie bootchies!
Any off-topic issues send to

Submitted by souri on Sun, 12/01/03 - 11:36 AMPermalink

Ratbag are currently trying to kick off that Dirt Track Racing tag, I think.. they have two 'secret' games in production, one of which is Ikon.. I hear it's something like a third person shooter/racer..

Submitted by Blitz on Sun, 12/01/03 - 1:21 PMPermalink

Ratbag probably got a whole lot of re-use out of their code for the racing games. So it would have been very financially viable to make several games of similar genre. Thats my thoughts anyway :)
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by mochumbo on Sun, 12/01/03 - 9:15 PMPermalink

Maitrek, that again is exactly the problem! So I point back to my original post with a loose suggestion as to how to solve the problem. That is to have the federal government step in and form either a partially or fully funded organisation similar to the Australian Film Finance Corporation.

I think I need to sit down and write a letter to my member of parliment, pointing out that the game industry is now larger then the film industry and that in order for Australia to earn more export dollars through this new medium and to help broaden our artistic and cultural diversity we need assistance from the government.

Submitted by Drift on Mon, 20/01/03 - 4:13 AMPermalink

I feel the state of the industry is not so much the lack of Australian-themed games but the lack of games full stop. Compared to the U.S. and Japan, Australia lags behind in the number of companies and titles produced per year. Let's just get some content out there.

And since when did bunyips and crocodiles become so symbolic of Australian culture? Australia is a very different place than it was during those "shrimp on the barby" days. Come to think of it, I haven't seen Paul Hogan on TV in years. In my opinion, I think it's time we left that outdated stereotype behind for a more accurate, deserving image of this exciting, culturally-rich country.

Submitted by souri on Mon, 20/01/03 - 5:29 AMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Drift

I feel the state of the industry is not so much the lack of Australian-themed games but the lack of games full stop. Compared to the U.S. and Japan, Australia lags behind in the number of companies and titles produced per year. Let's just get some content out there.

We're not doing too bad with the number of game developers over here considering how small our population is.. America - 287 million people, Japan - 127 million.. Australia is like around 20 million... We might even have more game developers per capita than those countries..

Submitted by Drift on Mon, 20/01/03 - 8:56 AMPermalink

That's probably true. But how many games are actually produced each year? How many of these games are actually decent?

And if our population means we cannot match the international market in quantity then we should aim for least one good game ever few years. Look at the film industry. Comparably, there aren't many Australian films released each year but there are the occasional gems which crack the international market. By contrast, Australian games always seem outdone by their American/Japanese counterparts.

The industry is young and untested; we need to show the international studios what we can do (which is hope is something good).



I'm new to this forum and have an interest in animation and games design (that's why I'm here!).

I've searched for schools that offer Games Design and apparently only AIE and Qantm offer the course.

After looking at the past topics, I realised that Qantm is not much recommended.

I've lived in Brisbane, but have not been to Canberra. I'm not Australian and therefore, I believe I will be charged the high International Student Tuition Fees :(. Are there any courses that you can recommend me to take in Australia?

I've got a Diploma in Film and TV and did a minor in Animation and Digital Effects. I've learnt 3D Studio Max, Softimage, Flint and the usual Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Flash etc... I'm also interested in programming (which I know is realli tough!).



Submitted by Daemin on Fri, 03/01/03 - 11:05 AMPermalink

For game design I think that's about it, although coming from the game design roundtable at the conference the best way to get into the design aspect is to start with the art aspect (although programmers could still get there). I'd jsut say look up a nice art's degree in your local TAFE or college, or university and make sure that you're good at it.

If anything I might suggest you try to do a bachelor of arts, learning towards the comptuer side of things or something. Although I'm a programmer and doing a uni course in Computer Science.

Some advice though from the Game Design Roundtable (at the AGDC) is that you should read all books - not just sci-fi or fantasy, watch movies and tv shows, play all sorts of games, to get inspiration from. These sources then enable people to make good games and have good ideas for games.

Submitted by Blitz on Fri, 03/01/03 - 1:02 PMPermalink

From what i've heard one of the best ways to get into game design is to work your way up as a level making a few levels in unrealed or something might not hurt.
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by GooberMan on Sun, 05/01/03 - 7:50 AMPermalink

QANTM was good for a year, because Christian Schladetsch was a teacher there (I was lucky enough to have been there for the same year that he was). Now that Christian has gone, it will no doubt suck (especially since I heard rumour that they're going to be going back to their idea of using other people's engines for making games instead of doing your own stuff).

Submitted by souri on Sun, 05/01/03 - 9:43 AMPermalink

Steve Wang , producer at Microforte, wrote some VERY helpful advice which would be useful for you at

quote:Everyone with an idea thinks he is a designer. That doesn't mean you aren't, it just means its hard to assess. So much depends on a good designer. Design is far more than just ideas. The 'wouldn't it be cool if?' school of design is great for contributing brainstormed ideas as part of making a great game, but certainly does not make for a designer.

Often designers start off as QA staff, involved in the testing cycle. Here they demonstrate many qualities that are needed in a designer, including the ability to analyse gameplay to articulate clearly what doesn't work and why, and what suggested improvements could be made and why. This also helps develop an understanding of what can and can't be done, and what the cost of developing it is. For example its clear that it would be cool if you could be both a male or a female secret agent. Its very clear to a good designer that this means going to a large amount of extra effort to distinguish between them: different voice actors, different cut scenes, let alone (one would hope) different game play styles. Worst case, doubling your effort in producing the game. Its not that we wouldn't want to do it, its just that you need to ask yourself, could that extra 100 man months of programmer and artist time be better spent elsewhere?

Read the rest of his comments at that link..

Submitted by Dilphinus on Mon, 06/01/03 - 3:25 AMPermalink


I'm deciding if I want to go to Brisbane this July to do the Games course or just go to Tafe. But I have an offer to QUT to do their Creative Industries course. I'm kinda lost cos I've also a chance to be trained as a Art Teacher in my home country. It's a good choice cos I loved ART but I've to be in my home country for the next 8 years. The time factor is not too favourable to me cos I want to move to Australia.

Are there any other courses which I can do in Australia?

Many Thanks.

Submitted by Dilphinus on Mon, 06/01/03 - 11:30 AMPermalink

Thanks once again!

I thought the course at Charles Sturt University is no longer offered. I'll take a look at University of Queensland. But their fees for international students are really high!

Submitted by Meatex Salami on Wed, 08/01/03 - 12:43 AMPermalink

I have heard the University of Canberra is offering a games design related course this year or next.
Couldn't find anything about it on their website but they don't have anything on the degree in Forensic Chemistry which i know they run.

It is infact ants who are the true rulers of this world!!!

Submitted by davidcoen on Wed, 08/01/03 - 10:59 AMPermalink

ever thought of studying architecture or some other disipline with a focus on 'design'? or even find a good library and take a while to look for books that deal with 'how to design'... could be better then many cources about 'game design', and cheaper too IMHO (after studying architecture myself had little time for fluf book about 'game design', they tended to miss the point..)

Submitted by Dilphinus on Wed, 08/01/03 - 11:54 AMPermalink

Yeah, I've thought of doing interior design or multimedia. My background is in TV and animation. I've been accepted to do Media and Communications at QUT in July. Will be doing electives like interactive writing and stuff...

Another question...

Is the Games industry growing in Australia? How are the job opportunities like?

Submitted by Blitz on Wed, 08/01/03 - 12:24 PMPermalink

It's definately growing. Many overseas publishers look to australia because we are cheap and produce high quality work. Blue tonuge recently went on a hiring spree i believe, and MF are also STILL hiring for those positions to work on bigworld after they got their deal with microsoft. Creative Assembly (UK company i think. Did Shogun:TW etc.) are starting up a house in Queensland sometime this year.
There aren't HEAPS of job opportunities. Houses tend to not hire on staff until they get a publishing deal from what i can tell and then they hire a lot. It's very competitive (which is why i'm going to school again this year :) )
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by Dilphinus on Wed, 08/01/03 - 11:34 PMPermalink

Hi Blitz,

Which school you going to and which course are you doing?

Thanks :)

Submitted by Blitz on Wed, 08/01/03 - 11:55 PMPermalink

Going to the AIE in canberra to do 2nd year Diploma of computer game development (programming).
Finished a Bachelor of Comp Sci degree last year. Unfortunately, i found a lot of the subjects uninteresting and didn't work hard enough to get good marks :)
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by Meatex Salami on Thu, 09/01/03 - 1:33 AMPermalink

quote:Originally posted by Blitz

i found a lot of the subjects uninteresting and didn't work hard enough to get good marks :)

Hahahaha i know what you mean
had the same prob
If you want to get into design even though you could learn more quicker in a public library. It's better to have a degree of some sort.

It is infact ants who are the true rulers of this world!!!

Submitted by Dilphinus on Thu, 09/01/03 - 12:19 PMPermalink

Any idea how much is the course at AIE for international students?

Submitted by Blitz on Fri, 10/01/03 - 12:22 AMPermalink

It's the same for everyone. It's a private school, so it doesn't have HECS or anything.
The Diploma is about $7000/year
The Cert IV's are about $3000/year if i remember correctly.
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by Dilphinus on Fri, 10/01/03 - 1:27 AMPermalink


What course should I do if I have learnt 3D Studio Max and Softimage. I've not used 3D Studio Max for about 2 years. Should I do it again?

I've got basic animation skills.

Or shall I try for the 2nd year Diploma course?

How do AIE go about accepting students? What do they look for in the portfolio and what's the rate of students getting in?

Submitted by Daemin on Fri, 10/01/03 - 3:42 AMPermalink

Just visit their website and send them a few emails, I forget what the website actually is, but there should be a link from the developers section on Sumea.

Submitted by Dilphinus on Fri, 10/01/03 - 12:40 PMPermalink

Can advise me how much is the rent in Canberra. I've emailed to AIE but have not received any reply from them yet :(

Blitz, how much are you paying for your course?

Submitted by Blitz on Fri, 10/01/03 - 1:50 PMPermalink

No idea on the rent in canberra...i'll be finding out soon :P
AIE are probably on holidays and so may only be in one or 2 days a week, so just hang in there. I've got no idea what they look for in art portfolio's. I'm doing programming there so i only know what they do for that :)
I'm paying $650, but thats because i have a fully funded place. As i said before the normal cost for the diploma is about $7000/year (and it's a 2 year diploma).
Thats about all i can help you with i think. Perhaps someone else who's done the art courses at AIE will see this thread and help :)
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by Dilphinus on Fri, 10/01/03 - 10:41 PMPermalink

The cost for Certificate IV in 3D Animation and Film is A$8700 per year. :(

Submitted by Blitz on Sat, 11/01/03 - 6:28 AMPermalink

Brain, if you're itnerested in it it's still worth taking a look. If they offer funded spots for that course, and you get a funded spot, it's only $650 for the year, which is pretty good value.
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by Doord on Wed, 15/01/03 - 2:27 AMPermalink

I just finished at the AIE last year, and highly recommended it. You being an overseas student there is no who doubt that you will be paying more. But with two years only costing me $10000, I think that it would be a hell of a lot cheaper then any other game course you will find in Australia.

Just one thing to remember it that you will need about five years game experience before you go into game design. Mainly because it is a job that everyone wants to do.

Submitted by Blitz on Wed, 15/01/03 - 2:44 AMPermalink

Doord, what course/s did you do?
CYer, Blitz

Submitted by Crystalmesh on Wed, 15/01/03 - 8:33 AMPermalink

Pfffffft, formal education, who needs it? All you end up with is a big giant HECS debt. Just go buy a few books, read em, practice practice practice and practice some more, when you think your at a level where your portfolio stands out from the crowd go job hunting.[8D]

Submitted by inglis on Wed, 15/01/03 - 9:14 AMPermalink

im with that! :) especially after spending a year doing a 3d course where i learnt 95% of what i know myself....

Submitted by Dilphinus on Wed, 15/01/03 - 10:35 AMPermalink

I think going to a school will be getting to know people, learning to work in a team and how to get along with others. These are very important skills which you can't learn alone from books. Besides, you can learn how to use a software from books...but can they tell you the perspective and lighting etc? The books can't criticize or give comments. That's why we need to go to school to interact and have professionals guide us. Most of the time, we are expected to be independant and do our research and learn on our own, but we still need teachers and friends in order for us to improve ourselves and our skills.

Submitted by inglis on Wed, 15/01/03 - 10:45 AMPermalink

doing a course was good to bounce ideas off fellow students, feedback and motivation and for the first month good for the introduction to 3d.
i dont know about 3d books, i haven't read any of them.

Submitted by Blitz on Wed, 15/01/03 - 1:15 PMPermalink

Many companies these days say they are looking for people who have experience working in a team etc. so having a formal education may be good simply for that reason. Whether it's actually any use or not....
During my 3 years of uni, we had many group projects...about 3 or so a year. Out of those groups, only one group i was in was not an incredibly annoying and stressful experience where 1 or more people did not do any work, or even worse, they would say they had done the work, and then the night before it was due i find out they haven't done it and i have to do it and not sleep...
Here's hoping the AIE will be much more enjoyable :)
CYer, Blitz