×

BAFTA Young Game Designers Make Games for Social Change

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) selected 40 entries as finalists in its Young Game Designers (YGD) Competition 2019 on Monday, according to a press release.

53 budding game designers as young as 10 were named as finalists in the annual UK-wide competition, selected by a panel of gaming industry professionals. The winners will be revealed in June at a ceremony in London.

Many of the finalist entries for 2019 deal with social issues, including climate change, transgender rights, and mental health. One of last year’s winners, Sophia Shepherd, commented on this years entries in a press release.

“All of the finalists’ games this year are of such incredible talent,” Shepherd stated. “It has been so great to see young people tackling themes such as environmental issues and representation of LGBTQ+ communities. I’ve loved my year with BAFTA YGD; meeting incredible people from the games industry and going to events has been an exciting experience I’ve thoroughly enjoyed. All the finalists have so much potential and I’m very excited to see what they all do next.”

The finalists are split into Game Concept Awards and Game Making Awards. Game Concept entries are “paper-based written game idea(s)” and the Game Making Award entries are prototype games made using free software. The two award types are split further into age groups, from 10 to 14 years of age and from 15 to 18 years of age.

The finalists’ entries can be viewed here, and some of the entries are available to download and play.

Dr. Jo Twist OBE, chair of the Games Committee at BAFTA commented in a press release.

“Games are a fantastic art form for creators to express themselves,” Dr. Twist stated, “and I am delighted to see young people tackling important topics through their design and concept entries this year. Their creativity and ambition for social change through the medium of games is inspiring. A very well deserved congratulations and good luck to all the 2019 finalists!”

The winners will receive various prizes, including “games, hardware, software licenses, tours of games studios and a mentor from the games industry to help them develop their skills further,” according to a press release.

There is another award, the YGD Mentor Award, which recognizes one person making efforts to educate the next generation of game designers. The winning mentor will also be announced at the ceremony.

The awards ceremony will be held June 29 at BAFTA at 195 Piccadilly in London.

Popular on Variety

More Gaming

  • Telling Lies - Logan Marshall-Green

    Sam Barlow's 'Telling Lies' Government-Surveillance Thriller Game Sets Release Date

    After more than two years in the works, “Telling Lies” — the investigative thriller from acclaimed game creator Sam Barlow — is ready to take the stage. The game, produced with and released by Annapurna Interactive, will be available next Friday, Aug. 23, via Steam and Apple’s Mac and iOS app stores. “Telling Lies” will [...]

  • David Messinger, Activision Blizzard

    Activision Blizzard Hires CAA Veteran David Messinger as CMO

    Activision Blizzard tapped David Messinger, a former 15-plus-year veteran of CAA, as its first corporate-wide chief marketing officer. Messinger, based in Santa Monica, reports to Coddy Johnson, Activision Blizzard’s president and COO. It’s the first time the video-game company has appointed a CMO who will oversee the global marketing operations across all of Activision Blizzard [...]

  • Editorial use onlyMandatory Credit: Photo by

    Oculus Co-Founder Nate Mitchell Is Leaving Facebook

    Oculus co-founder Nate Mitchell is leaving Facebook 7 years after launching the first Oculus Rift headset with a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign. Mitchell announced the move on Reddit Tuesday, calling it “bittersweet news.” Mitchell said that he would take some time off to spend with his family. And while he committed to still being involved in [...]

  • nomadic seoul

    Nomadic Expands Abroad, Opens VR Center in Seoul

    Location-based virtual reality (VR) startup Nomadic is getting ready for an international expansion: The company will open its first VR center outside of the States in South Korea later this month. The new location, housed in the CGV Gangbyeon multiplex in Seoul, is being opened in partnership with theater chain CGV and technology provider CJ [...]

  • Singularity 6 - Anthony Leung and

    ‘Meaningful’ Games Start-Up Singularity 6 Raises $16.5 Million Round Led by Andreessen Horowitz

    Singularity 6, the start-up founded by ex-Riot Games developers that’s aiming to create a community-oriented game where players “can feel like they are valued and belong,” closed $16.5 million in Series A financing. The funding round was led by venture-capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, with participation from seed investor London Venture Partners (LVP), which previously put [...]

  • Activision Q2 2019 Results Above Expectations,

    Activision Blizzard Q2 Beats Outlook, But Not Last Year's Second Quarter

    Down may not be the new up after all: Activision Blizzard celebrated its Q2 2019 earnings as a success story Thursday, with CEO Bobby Kotick saying: “Our second quarter results exceeded our prior outlook for both revenue and earnings per share.” But while the results were considerably better than the company’s previous outlook for the [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content