Last week, the first collaboration between dot big bang and Girls Make Games took place. It was a one-day workshop offering the chance to create a cyberpunk level with support from dbb devs, run by Community Engineer Ashley Koett, and it proved immediately popular.
“The workshop filled up overnight!” says Ashley. “We ended up expanding it to accommodate 45 students, and some other dot big bang devs helped me out. It was exciting to see how much interest there was, especially on our first collaboration with Girls Make Games!”
“I was thrilled to work with Girls Make Games,” she continues. “Their mission statement really resonates with my values as a woman in the gaming industry. They’re doing amazing work to start changing the industry to be more inclusive and diverse, so I was excited to work with them and use dot big bang to empower girls.”
The workshop was virtual, but at the end, all the participants shared multiplayer links to their games, and played through each other’s levels. “There was something so fun about seeing everyone’s virtual avatars all together, playing games and hanging out,” says Ashley. “It was really special to get to watch everyone try out each other’s obstacle courses at the same time. Each game was so distinctive, and it was impressive that they were all made in about an hour.”
The feedback from participants was positive. Isa, aged 14, said: “I thoroughly enjoyed my time today, and I learned a lot about a new coding engine!”. Katie, aged 13, said the workshop was more fun that she’d expected. “I learned a lot about how they code,” she said, “and how to use their code to improve my own stuff.” Swarnika, aged 12, said: “I was able to learn many amazing things using the platform, and the staff who helped me were really fun and engaging. I would love to do this again!”
With this workshop proving successful, dbb x GMG are set to continue collaborating on the shared mission of opening up game development, and offering easy access to tools and training. “A core part of what Girls Make Games does is to bring game development and the associated skills to anyone, anywhere,” says dot big bang CEO Robert Anderberg. “Because dot big bang gives you real development tools that work on any device, it allows Girls Make Games to run workshops for people who wouldn’t have been able to participate otherwise.” He adds: “I was super impressed with what everyone built – it was fantastic to see such variety in what was made!”
“This partnership truly promotes our collective missions to inspire the next generation of gamers and creators globally,” says Stephanie Nguyen of Girls Make Games. “GMG girls can tinker with the engine and build games with friends, from anywhere in the world!”
Educators interested in learning more about dot big bang’s education program can sign up for a newsletter here. You can also follow Girls Make Games on Twitter and Facebook to stay up to date with the project, and find out more at girlsmakegames.com.