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Master Session “Darq”

The SAE community includes the exchange with successful professionals who share valuable background information with us on campus in good company.
Since we cannot invite you to the school at the moment, we are simply bringing the events to your home for the moment. Take part in the zoom sessions, listen to the professionals and get in touch with them. In addition, the session will be streamed live on YouTube.

At the beginning of the series there was an SAE Master Online Session with Feardemic, Dreamloop Games and the game ...

DARQ: Complete Edition

DARQ is a breathtaking nightmare surrealism game that has been nominated nine times (!). For, among other …
- Best game
- Best audio
- Best sound
- Best Game Music
- Best Adventure Game
- Best Cover Art

Mehdi Benkirane, Business Development and Sales Manager at Remote Control Productions, Europe's largest developer family, led through the exciting hour with his guests

  • Scott Millard (Managing Director at Feardemic - Publisher of DARQ) and
  • Joni Lappalainen (CEO at Dreamloop Games - Porting Developer von DARQ)

Scott and Joni talked about the creation of DARQ, their jobs in the games industry and let us take a look behind the scenes.
The professionals were then available to answer questions in an interactive Q&A session.

Click here for YouTube recording,

Among other things, the following points were highlighted:

  • How did the game DARQ come about?
  • How and why was the game signed?
  • What are the criteria for a game publisher?
  • How does the process of selecting porting partners work?
  • How do you run an independent Lean video game studio?
  • Communication between manufacturer / sales / porting partners
  • Why is passion a driver for the creative process?
  • What are the challenges when porting?

 

Scott Millard:

Mr. Millard is Managing Director of FEARDEMIC sp. z o.o, a wholly owned subsidiary of BLOOBER TEAM S.A, a publisher of computer games and their related entertainment products.
Previously Mr. Millard had held various positions in games industry. Most notably the Asian distribution of Bethesda games including the Award winning Elder Scrolls Skyrim and Asia versions of The Elder Scrolls Online.
Previously Mr. Millard served as Managing Director of Namco Bandai Partners Singapore Pte Ltd and Namco Bandai Partners Korea Ltd, a post he held for near 7 years that saw him oversee the releases of dozens of triple A titles.
Mr. Millard was co-founder of a Korean Games Association that represents the interests of foreign and local publishers operating in the packaged games sector in the Korean domestic market.
In 2005 Mr. Millard held the post of Vice President, Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Committee, European Union Chamber of Commerce Korea.
Mr. Millard’s also oversees e-commerce platforms and four physical distribution hubs across four countries for the world's finest headphone manufacturer. He consults for several games industry organizations and companies, and is a regular blogger and producer of opinion pieces for various publications.

JoniLappalainen

Joni Lappalainen is the CEO of Dreamloop Games, and an instrumental contributor to Finland’s gaming and startup scene. Joni serves as the Vice President of Tampere Game Hub, the Chairman of the Board at Platform6, the co-founder of Tampere Startup Hub, and as a regional coordinator for IGDA Finland.
Additionally, Joni has served as a member of the board of education for Oulu University of Applied Sciences, and as a producer for more than 20 game projects.
In his spare time, Joni relentlessly builds Finland’s gaming ecosystem by mentoring young game studios and plays video games under the judgmental eyes of his cats.

MehdiBenkirane

Over the years, Mehdi has worn many hats allowing him to combine his passion for digital technology and business development. By observing trends and maintaining a high level of dialogue with key players in the entertainment / tech industry, he has led many budget sensitive go-to-market strategies ensuring optimal ROI, conversion, and retention rates. An SAE graduate himself, Mehdi has worked as an independent engineer for acts such acts such as Killswitch Engage, The Streets, and Tom Middleton prior to heading the coordination of the various academic departments across the Benelux and Francophone regions, after which he headed industry relations for the SAE group in Europe. Shortly after his career at SAE, Mehdi worked as a music publisher for games until he eventually committed fully to the Games Industry by joining Remote Control Productions as business development and sales manager. Mehdi’s core activities consist of positioning RCP’s family studios ’own projects with publishers worldwide as well as securing co-development and / or work for hire projects.

Feardemic Games sp. z o.o. is a publisher of computer games and related entertainment products.
Feardemics mission is to deliver to its audience quality entertainment experiences that evoke the most interesting and what some believe to be the most important of human emotions: fear, trepidation and revulsion. These are the feeling that keep us safe and warn us of impending disaster, and in turn frame our understanding of joy, elation and happiness.
Feardemic is more than just a publisher or game developer. It's an idea and a philosophy. Feardemic is a full-service publisher and investor in intellectual property and game development studios. Feardemic is a subsidiary of Bloober Team SA, a publicly traded company behind a psychological horror classic Layers of Fear (2016) and a cyberpunk horror> Observer_ (2017) and Blair Witch (2019) and based in Europe’s cultural capital - Krakow Poland!

Dreamloop Games is a 15-person independent game development studio from Tampere, Finland. Our fun-loving crew has a mission to create rock-solid games that are fun to play, aesthetically polished, and challenging.

We have extensive experience porting Unity 3D and Unreal Engine 4 games from PC to consoles and deftly navigate console-specific certification processes. In addition to bringing our own title “Stardust Galaxy Warriors” from PC to PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch, we have a strong track record of helping developers and publishers successfully launch titles across all major consoles.
We offer a full art pipeline from concept design to finished game- or marketing / community-ready assets. We're well-equipped to create full assets from scratch or step in as a part of a pre-existing pipeline.
Our audio team has extensive experience in producing and implementing game audio, as well as in composing music. Our critically acclaimed own-IP title Stardust Galaxy Warriors features a full-length album-quality soundtrack.
Dreamloop Games is a proud member of Remote Control Productions, Europe’s largest game development family.

Remote Control Productions
remote control productions (rcp) is an independent, internationally active production house and represents Europe’s largest developer family with 10 studios in 4 countries, a gamification company, an internal publisher and an agency for digital marketing. Since 2005 the Munich-based company together with its teams has shipped more than 350 projects for all major platforms including Angry Birds Epic, Bus Simulator 18, Angry Birds Evolution, Ostwind (Windstorm), Sacred Legends, Knights of Valor or Pet Hotel.

Unfold games is a video game development studio based in Los Angeles, California. Founded by a former film composer Wlad Marhulets, the studio is known for its customer-first approach, open communication, and transparency. Their first title, DARQ, became one of the most shared PC video games of 2019 (Metacritic) and ensured its rapid growth, with multiple new projects planned in the near future.

 

Game at a glance DARQ:
Complete Edition tells the story of Lloyd, a boy who becomes aware of the fact that he is dreaming. To Lloyd’s misfortune, the dream quickly turns into a nightmare and all attempts to wake up end in failure.

While exploring the darkest corners of his subconscious, Lloyd learns how to survive the nightmare by bending the laws of physics and manipulating the fluid fabric of the dream world. Apart from gravity-defying puzzles, Lloyd will have to use stealth when around enemies. He has no chance of winning in an open confrontation since the creatures he will encounter are much more powerful and faster than him. Instead, he has to rely on careful planning to avoid getting detected.

While in development, DARQ won Best Of The MIX Award at PAX West 2018 and landed on the front page of reddit multiple times, becoming one of the most upvoted posts in the history of Reddit. Created almost entirely by a first-time solo developer (and a few talented contractors), DARQ launched to commercial success and critical acclaim on Steam and GOG. Since launch, DARQ has won numerous awards, competing both with indie and AAA titles (most recently, DARQ was nominated for TIGA’s Best Adventure Game Award, alongside The Last of Us Part II). Ultimately, DARQ became the 42nd Most Shared PC Game of 2019 (Metacritic).