Orpington pupils gunning for BAFTA gaming glory

PUBLISHED: 11:29 19 July 2016 | UPDATED: 11:29 19 July 2016

Budding game designer Charlotte Campbell

Budding game designer Charlotte Campbell


The competition aims to inspire the game designers of the future

Inventive pupils at an Orpington school have made the finals of a national competition to design a computer game.

Charlotte Campbell and Vyshnavhee Gutunathan, both aged 14, and their teammates from Newstead Wood School in Orpington, have been shortlisted for their game Supernatural Cafe in the British Academy of Film and Television Arts Young Game Designers (YGD) competition.

They are due to attend an awards ceremony this Saturday (July 23) at BAFTA’s headquarters in London, along with finalists from across the UK.

Supernatural Cafe is a competitive and interactive game in which players can use mythical creatures to interact in a cafe setting.

Miss Campbell told the Bromley Times she was surprised to hear the team had made the final.

“I just couldn’t believe it,” she said. “I was out in the garden sketching when I heard about it, and I was just like, ‘oh my God’.

“There are lots of different mini games, so it works for all abilities and you can choose between the waiting staff and the customers.

“Some of the mini-games involve washing the dishes as fast as you can, or eating dinner.

“You can choose an avatar, which can be from fairies, werewolves or vampires.”

Now in its sixth year, the YGD competition aims to inspire the game designers and game-makers of the future by giving young people the chance to design and create their own game and develop it with industry professionals.

“As soon as we heard about the competition, I was thinking up game ideas and that is the first thing that came into my head, to do a restaurant game, as I thought there were lots of things that you could do, and you could use a lot of controls,” Miss Campbell explained.

“We introduced the supernatural to make it more unique so it would sell on the market.”

She added that she is keen on computer games and would consider game design as a career option.

“I have got a [Nintendo] Wii. We use that a lot and we have a lot of Mario games. I also have games on my phone,” Miss Campbell said.

“I think I would really enjoy it. I am a very creative person with lots of ideas and I liked the conceptual side of things.”

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