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BAFTA reveals 2017 Young Game Designers winners

Three out of four recipients are girls, Unity picks up Hero award for supporting talented kids

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts has announced the winners of this year's Young Games Designers competition.

The initiative is designed to highlight the most promising future talent in the UK as well as encourage more kids to explore a possible career in games development.

As always, there were two main categories: Game Concept for written ideas and Game Making for prototypes, demos and other playable projects. Both categories are split into two age groups: 10 to 14-year-olds, and 15 to 18-year-olds.

Interestingly, three out of the four winners were girls, giving the BAFTA contest a much higher proportion of female developers than the current games industry.

Winners received a mix of prizes, including mentorship from games industry members, tours of select games studios, free development software, and a prototype of their game built by established developers.

Here are this year's winners in full:

  • Game Concept Award (10-14): TorchLighter by Elsie Mae Williams, 13
  • Game Concept Award (15-18): Guzzlesarus' Culinary Capers by Anna Carter, 15
  • Game Making Award (10-14): CyberPNK by Spruce Campbell, 12
  • Game Making Award (15-18): Fractured Minds by Emily Mitchell, 18
  • YGD Mentor Award: David Chilver, Lowerstoft Sixth Form College
  • YGD Hero Award: Unity Technologies

"The creativity and skill demonstrated by all of our YGD winners and finalists this year is hugely impressive, exciting and truly inspiring for anyone working in the industry," said BAFTA Games Committee chair Nick Button-Brown.

"I'm particularly encouraged by the number of female winners this year and it's great to see that initiatives such as YGD have inspired such a diverse and talented group of young people to try their hand at game design, with some astounding results."

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James Batchelor


James Batchelor is Editor-in-Chief at GamesIndustry.biz. He is based in Essex and has been a B2B games journalist since 2006