Josh Dunlop, Teeside University, MA Concept Art for Game & Animation

Failbetter Games on internships, incubations & funding

From the depths of the Unterzee, a new ally surfaces…

Famed for their interactive narratives and immersive storylines, Failbetter Games are an independent games studio best known for creating the adventure-filled Fallen London and the atmospheric exploration game, Sunless Sea.

Always eager to gain different insights and perspectives in game development, Failbetter are passionate about helping small studios, professional individuals and interns break into or advance within the games industry. In addition to already providing internships and developer incubation facilities, Failbetter have also recently announced Fundbetter, a new initiative to provide funding opportunities to narrative game developers.

[pullquote align=”right” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]Explaining your idea to someone else will spark new directions that you couldn’t have imagined on your own.[/pullquote]

“We’re interested in seeing more narrative games made by more kinds of people – definitely new graduates, but also people who are returning to work or changing careers.” says Hannah Flynn, Communications Director at Failbetter Games. “Our internships, incubations and funding scheme are our way of paying forward the luck and experience we’ve had in six years of game development. We’ve been through a lot of ups and downs, but since the success of Sunless Sea we’re in a position to do proper, paid internships and give space, free coffee and advice to incubees who would otherwise be working on their own.”

In an industry where publicly offering internships and incubators is uncommon, Failbetter’s decision to not only offer them but also an initiative to help fund independent projects, is a relatively progressive step when compared to a lot of their peers, with benefits reaching beyond just those taking them up on the offer.

“We benefit hugely from interacting with our interns and incubees. Hearing their perspectives and working with them on PR, marketing, business development or narrative design feeds different ideas back into everything we’re doing.”

“It’s really easy to put your head down when you’re developing and focus on that one thing. But explaining your idea to someone else will spark new directions that you couldn’t have imagined on your own. So it’s not one-sided: we get as much from it as they do!”

Failbetter’s approach to actively encourage and help the development not only of individuals, but of the wider games industry, has resulted in an inclusive and enthusiastic work environment.

“I’m personally interested in encouraging women into all aspects of the games business, especially marketing.” Says Hannah.  “This job is the most fun I’ve ever had at work and Failbetter are a truly great, smart, talented and welcoming team.”

Failbetter Games currently offer access to the following for students, graduates, indie games developers & anyone else interested in working with them :

Fundbetter

Announced last week, Fundbetter is a new funding initiative introduced by Failbetter to help fund small narrative game projects.

Particularly interested in text-centric games, Failbetter are looking for a variety of game applications that demonstrate strong linear storylines, choice-based narratives, interactive writing or ‘storyful’ strategy.

Failbetter are looking to fund projects in the £2k-£20k range, however they’ll go higher for a promising project. They will also consider funding interesting low-budget projects, if they think the game is extraordinary enough!

Internships

Hot on the heels of the Fundbetter announcement, Failbetter have opened up internship applications, offering paid internships for those aged 18 and over at their office in Greenwich, in areas like Game Design & Narrative, Game Development, Marketing, Communications & Social Media, and Art.

Offering both full-time and part-time options within a flexible two-week period, the Failbetter internships provide their interns with a direct insight into the games industry. By allowing interns to apply for a specific area of their choice, the internships allow young game enthusiasts to fully immerse themselves in an area of games that excites them, and to see if it’s truly the path for them!

Incubations

If you’re already a developer working on your own games or part of a micro studio, Failbetter offer a free incubation program. Whilst they can’t provide software licenses or computer equipment, they can offer:

  • A desk for up to 3 days a week
  • Access to informal mentoring and guidance from writing, editorial, art and marketing teams
  • Access to internal meetings and information about operation of a successful studio
  • Internet, tea and coffee and a breakout meeting space
  • A standing invite to monthly drinks for developers, writers and journalists

The terms and length of each incubation will differ from project to project, depending on team and project size, and on other factors.

Failbetter’s incubation program helps to make great games greater by providing the support and knowledge that smaller studios and individuals need to get ahead in their careers.

 

You can find out more about the services Failbetter offer through their website: http://www.failbettergames.com/

Failbetter will also be giving a presentation about Sunless Sea and Zubmariner (its underwater expansion) at EGX Rezzed on the 9th April in London: https://www.egx.net/rezzed

Genie Todd | 4 March 2016

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