A University of Northampton graduate is using the skills he honed on his Games Art course to develop a much-anticipated video game called Adventure in Aellion .
Elliott Dodsworth and friend Luke O’Donoghue set up The Game Production Company after meeting on their first day at The Manchester College, in 2012.
Elliott (24) then went to University in Northampton to up his skills, and since returning to the north west in 2017, he’s linked back up with his college mate, and is now lead developer at the Manchester studio.
Together with a small team, they are developing The Game Production Company’s debut title, the open-world multiplayer, Adventure in Aellion. Watch a teaser of the game on YouTube.
The game is now two years into development and there’s a working version available for gamers to try out, and suggest improvements.
“Generally people have loved the look of it. People are always praising our art – I helped with the style, atmosphere and colouring quite a lot so that’s been great to hear.
“Some people have been engrossed with the game which was absolutely amazing to see, our stand was full the entire time at PLAY Expo Manchester earlier in the year and we have only made improvements since then.”
With the full game slated for release on PC, Linux and Mac in 2020, Elliott’s excited to be on the cusp of finishing the company’s first title. He said: “It’s been an amazing experience and I have learnt a lot. For me, the whole thing has been a combination of excitement and panic, especially at events where people play your game right in front of you, and you wonder ‘will they enjoy it?’.
“Whatever happens, the experience has been brilliant and I look forward to making many more games in the future. This is the job I want and I hope to have it forever.”
Elliott, who is originally from Marple and attended Marple Hall High School, has been quick to praise the Games Art degree at the University of Northampton, which he feels helped him to refine his skills.
“My games art training has influenced the art style of the project significantly. The primary skills such as 3D modelling, rendering and 2D art are obviously helpful in my everyday work, but the concept art theory has been vital – colour theory and composition has been the most useful thing I learnt as I apply the 2D techniques in 3D.”
Games art is just one string to Elliott’s bow, as his involvement in Adventure in Aellion shows.
“I do quite a lot, I am primarily responsible for putting it all together, but I do a bit of everything.
“I used to do a lot of 3D and 2D art as well but we have hired artists now so I tend to oversee their work instead, using my technical understanding of art to help make pleasing scenes, good colour selection and interesting scene compositions. I also do some of the level design and about a third of the 3D assets.
“As the only one who knows how to in the team, I do all the programming too and I produced a few of the game’s soundtracks. I’ve been learning music since high school and my family is musical too. I don’t know if they will make it to the final game, but I’m pretty proud of them.”
“Recently we have been doing marketing and I have been learning how to market games for online audiences. It’s still early days but I am already learning so much about this area. I am very lucky to have a job that lets me learn about the different parts of making games successfully.”
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