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University Shares Design And Animation Expertise With Booming Middle East Games Sector

For immediate use: 5 December 2006

Game art, design and animation experts from De Montfort University (DMU) are to share their skills and knowledge at an international e-games conference in the Middle East where the fledgling computer games industry is booming.

Recognised as gaming industry experts, Michael Powell, Steve Abrahart and Chris Hinton from DMU's Faculty of Art & Design, will deliver a full-day gaming workshop on the industry, at the eGames conference, hosted Middle East College of Information Technology in Oman this weekend (9 December).

Organised by Knowledge Oasis Muscat, the eGames event is the first conference in the Gulf region to bring together educators and students with game developers, telco providers, publishers, and other professionals interested in mobile and serious gaming.

Industry speakers from Ericsson, Nexgen Studio, Oman Mobile, Sun Microsystems, and Game Frontier among others will lead discussions on mobile game development and mobile entertainment, serious gaming and its development as well as applications to education and business, and competitive computer gaming and eSport.

The DMU workshops will include teaching on drawing that focuses on speed and form, and a concept art techniques demonstration, and a conference panel on designing learning-based games.

Michael Powell, Course Leader for DMU's Game Art Design BA (Hons), said: "Computer games are getting serious. Not only as a modern popular entertainment format, but also as a powerful vehicle for education, cultural dissemination, training, public policy, healthcare, simulation and many other applications which fall outside the entertainment norm. More and more people in education and training are discovering the real potential of games and this is what we aim to highlight."

Chris Hinton, Multimedia Design Subject Leader at DMU, said: "Our involvement in the eGames workshop and conference reinforces De Montfort University's mission to provide students with the necessary skills and knowledge to enter into the games industry. We fully support this eGames event as it provides a unique opportunity for both experts in the industry, business and educators to exchange ideas and perspectives as well as sharing understanding and best practice relating to the future of the Gulf's gaming community.'"

Steve Abrahart, Senior Lecturer in Animation Design at De Montfort, said: "Game artists these days have to have a more mature understanding of the process and workflow used in creating real-time assets for games. Time management and deadlines have always been of utmost importance for publishers when developing art assets, but it is often quoted that with the new breed of consoles manufacturers have given artists a bigger canvas and a smaller brush to work with. Artists now need to work fast and smart, producing in-game assets and developing concepts. Hopefully the e-games workshop will give students in Oman an insight into some techniques for working smart with the conceptual side."

The NTI Creative Industries Centre for Knowledge Exchange, a partnership between De Montfort University and the University of Derby, has been instrumental in developing projects including this which see academics sharing their expertise with creative industries in the East Midlands region and further afield.

ENDS

Notes for Editors

For further information, pelase contact De Montfort University Press Office on 0116 2577021.

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