Newsletter the First

A week overdue, lets just pretend I said I’d do a newsletter every 2-3 weeks. OK?

So what’s been happening? Well, we have 26 folk attending the UNversity Facebook event, plus a little bit of activity on twitter where I’m posting as @UNversity, and where we (now) have the tag #UNversity. And this blog. And several blogs started by folk taking part. A lot has been happening so where to begin…

The numbers… 26 people ‘attending’ UNversity on Facebook. This is more than the number of sign-ups to the previous UNversity, two years ago, and so far seems to be more active. So that is good.

The attendees… range from students who have just finished their first year to folk who have just graduated from 4th (honours) year, and even some alumni and staff.

The projects… are a mix, including some revision/resit and Coursera/online course projects, but the most posted about projects are all development projects. Below I’ll highlight just a few of the projects – if your project isn’t here, look for it to be written up in a future newsletter!

Martin is working on a pretty sensible project for someone who has just finished first year: having created one game for the 2D programming class, he’s going to start by creating a game according to the other option that was given in the coursework. Doing a piece of work at a similar difficulty level is a good option – will allow some scope for improvements and building on what has been learned. Reminds me a little of the Lightspeed project from two years ago – which was very well scoped, and turned out to be quite fun and very playable.

Speaking of Lightspeed, Kieran, who developed that, is working hard this summer – with an internship, a personal UNversity project and a group one. The group project is a re-write of the Global Game Jam entry Graveyard Baby Hospital, for release on XBox indie. If ever a Facebook page deserved a ‘like’, this has to be it!

Also doing lots, David is working on a multi-platform game engine and creating a game for the Mac app store involving fish. The fish look fishy, and the engine looks, well… shiny:

Shiny donut

David's polar engine renders a shiny donut

Keeping things visual, Jonathon is working providing concept art for a couple of secretish projects, but is blogging some of his work. I have some reservations about the direction this is taken. I would have picked option 1 to work with, assuming the direction is supposed to be ‘punk’, but have a look yourself and see what you think. Original concepts here, and you can view the evolution of the design on the blog.

This leaves loads of stuff to post about in the next newsletter (android projects, when algorithms meet asteroids, more engines, more games, and generallyjust more), but I’ll close with a special mention for Franco Steinburg, for demonstrating that you can still take part in UNversity even if you really really hate Facebook!

4 thoughts on “Newsletter the First

  1. Some good progress already with unversity progress.

    Funny you should say option 1 though as regards to my designs, that was my personal choice! the project leader disagreed though.

  2. Some interesting projects! I look forward to reading more about them. :)

    On a side note, that banner image looks familiar…

  3. You can always join us on Facebook Ross, then you can read all about them as it happens :-)

  4. Great newsletter; there are a lot of entrants, and it sounds like everyone’s doing some interesting stuff.

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