The British Academy of Film & Television Arts (BAFTA) has now opened the gates for young game designers between the ages of 10 – 18 to submit their entries. The competition aims to inspire young designers of the future by enabling them to create their own games.
Entries, from the UK, can be submitted up until the 14th of March 2022. These entries come in the form of ideas for a potential game that is then created, if selected as the winner. Entries will then be whittled down to a shortlist of 40 finalists. The winner/s will be announced at a special virtual ceremony on 30 June 2022.
The idea behind the contest is to reemphasise the positive effects gaming can have. Busting the popular trope that gaming is something to be avoided in favour of “more productive” activities, the YGD competition aims to get parents and teachers on side too.
Speaking on the quality of entries for the competition, Chair of the BAFTA Games Committee and CEO of UKIE, Dr Jo Twist OBE said:
“Young people hold the future of the games industry in their hands and in their ideas and we cannot wait to see the fresh ideas, new concepts as part of this year’s competition, and look forward to celebrating and recognising the diverse work of budding game developers across the UK.”
It’s not just the winner of the contest that benefits from the event. Each finalist will have the opportunity to take part in exclusive masterclasses. They will also be offered digital mentorship (if over the age of 13), and receive careers advice from industry experts.
Participants can enter individually or as a group of up to 3, and there are four categories for the awards. There’s the YGD Game Concept Award, which is split into 10-14 years and 15-18 years age groups. This award is for those with an original concept for a new game. Plus the YGD Game Making award, also split into the same age groups, for those creating games with game development software.
Previous YGD winners and finalists have gone on to win and be nominated for the BAFTA Debut Game award.