So, you’re at University studying 3D Character or Environment Art, VFX, Animation, Programming, Comp Sci or Game Design, right? You might not be thinking about it just yet, especially not in your first or second year, but you’re going to be hoping to get your first role in the games industry pretty soon aren’t you?
You’ll need a place to take your first steps into the industry, utilise your skills, and be supported and mentored. The world of graduate jobs and internships in video games is a tough one, though. It’s competitive and many don’t make it. You’re going to need some strong evidence of what you can do to help get your foot through the door and your coursework, believe it or not, probably won’t be enough.
Whether it’s your own finished game, an industry standard piece of artwork or some strong C++ scores to show off on your CV, you need something extra. This is where Search for a Star and Sumo Digital Rising Star will give you the tools you need to succeed, and the good news is, you can sign up for this year’s challenges now.
What will you have to do?
With the support of Epic Games, Sumo Digital, TT Games & TT Odyssey, Boss Alien, nDreams, D3T, Red Kite Games, First Touch, and Firesprite we’re going to help you land that first role. If you’re up for the challenge you’ll be going through a standard industry recruitment process over the next 6 months, firstly sitting a C++ test if you’re a programmer, or having your portfolio reviewed in the art categories.
You’ll then be producing a piece of artwork or your very own game, with industry feedback and support every step of the way. You’ll be working to a brief designed by panels of industry experts in your field, which means that the game or assets you’re producing are exactly what those hiring managers are hoping to see. Students from the last couple of years have since gone on to work at studios such as Sumo Digital, nDreams, Playground Games, BossAlien Frontier Developments, Skymoons Interactive, Sony Interactive Entertainment & Coatsink! It goes without saying that they also produced some pretty awesome games and artwork too, which you can check out here.
This won’t just help you to land a job. As a first or second-year student signing up for the Rising Star challenges, the personalised feedback you receive from industry mentors at 100s of different UK studios will help you to improve your work, and you’ll get a snazzy badge to show off on your portfolio and CV for completing the challenge.
The final stage of the challenge for those in their final year entering Search for a Star will be exclusive interviews for jobs and internships with our partner studios, as well as a whole host of games, software, tech and goodies from all of our partners. Last year’s winners even managed to land goodies from Wacom and Unity3D.
Why should you enter?
“But I’ve got coursework to do… I’m too busy… Sounds a lot of faffing about!” We hear you cry… We know. But trust us, it’ll be worth it when you’ve got a portfolio piece better than all of the other people applying for those internships and graduate jobs. And you’ll have months to finish the project, so there’s no pressure!
Don’t take our word for it, listen to Alfred, our Sumo Digital Rising Star Programming winner in 2017. “I almost didn’t enter the competition, but I thought it was worth a try, and it was. Just do it. It’s easy, and it only takes 5 minutes to sign up, and the first round only takes 2 hours to finish. There’s no reason not to do it, you might win…” Wise words from Alfred. He went on to secure an internship at Boss Alien a couple of weeks after his win. You can hear some more wise words from other students who entered here, too.
So, where do you sign up?
You can sign up to take part in the challenges here. Don’t worry, you won’t need to do anything yet. Just fill in the form, and you’ll be able to submit your portfolio or complete your C++ test any time before December 2018.