Sheridan Students Take Home Top Awards at 2016 Level Up Showcase
Congratulations to the team from OddBird Studio on winning both Best in Show and Best Artistic Achievement in the sixth annual Level Up Student Showcase, held earlier this week in Toronto. Now in its sixth year, the Level Up Student Showcase puts the next generation of game developers at the forefront, highlighting Ontario’s top postsecondary talent in the field of game design. The competition included over 100 games submitted by various schools including OCADU, Algonquin, UOIT and the University of Toronto. Past winners of the Best in Show category have gone on to achieve commercial success; the 2014 winner was released on the Nintendo Wii U, with 2015’s winner slated for release this year on Steam, a popular online gaming forum. This year, over 1000 people attended the Level Up Showcase.
OddBird Studio consists of Sheridan students Joshua Cappelli, Shae Humphries, Brendan Muir, Cody Romphf, Benjamin Scott, and Zack Wolfe. The award-winning game, Arrow Heads, is a fast paced local multiplayer archery game inspired by Towerfall and Smash Bros, and features bird-like characters. Unlike many other entries at the Level Up Student Showcase, Arrow Heads was developed by a group of 2nd year students over the course of five months during their spare time, while many of their competitors’ entries were final year curriculum projects. OddBird Studio’s experience in developing the game was not without its hardship. “The team originally had another take on the game’s flow, but it didn’t play well and we had to rework our concept into something that gave a better experience” said Cody Romphf. “We wanted to aim as high as we could and put everything into it.” Their efforts paid off, as they were swarmed by industry reps in attendance at the Showcase following their wins.
Sheridan’s team was joined on stage by industry leaders Scott Lee, World Director at Ubisoft Toronto and Liz England, Game Designer at Ubisoft. Studios like Ubisoft are constantly looking to add talent to their team and use events like Level Up to recruit. Lee said, “Ubisoft is always on the hunt for talent and we know the talent’s going to come locally.”
Level Up isn’t the only one who praises Arrow Heads’ creativity. Indie game reviewer WeiseGamer says Arrow Heads has some “really cool unique ideas” and notes that visually, the game design is “beautiful” even in it’s demo stage.
Want to play this award-winning game? OddBird Studios has made it available online for free!
Visit their website to try the latest build of Arrow Heads. All the team asks is that you provide them with some feedback on how they can make the game better.
Image Credits: OddBird Studio, Michael Assadourian, Console Creatures