Sony, actually… and file this under the category of longest most unwieldy names ever, Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide Studios Europe External Development Studio (yeah… really) in collaboration with Creative England and Birmingham Science Park have put together a contest called PlayStation Pioneers, with a grand prize of £25,000. That’s about 40K in real money!
So, how then do you go about winning this money? Well, here are the details:
- The opportunity is open to UK-based developers only
- The goal is to take a concept/prototype and develop a playable ‘vertical slice’ suitable for consumer trial/user testing in summer 2013.
- The deadline for submissions is 31st October 2012
- Five finalists will then be selected to exhibit at this year’s LAUNCH conference taking place at Birmingham Science Park on 13th and 14th November 2012 and present their concepts to a panel.
- £25,000 will be awarded to the winning entry
- XDev will have the first right of refusal in regard to publishing the final game.
- The winner will be announced by the panel at LAUNCH on 14th November 2012.
What isn’t explicitly listed in those requirements, your project will be for PlayStation Mobile.
That deadline is fast approaching (less than 2 weeks!). Keep in mind though, you are submitting a *concept* by October 31st, not a complete game.
The other line of note you should be aware of was:
XDev will have the first right of refusal in regard to publishing the final game
In other words, if they like you game, they get first crack at being the publisher. Given that most indie developers would love to have a publisher, this shouldn’t be a huge deal, but is certainly something you should be aware of.
If you have never heard of it before, PlayStation Mobile is cross platform game development system based around Mono. It is C# based, built over OpenGL ES and able to target the PlayStation Vita, as well as select Android mobile devices ( most Sony Android devices, plus select devices from HTC, Asus and a few other manufacturers ). This site has a series of tutorials you can used to get started.
You can read the original announcement thread right here.
If you are interested in proceeding, be sure to read this guide (PDF link). It gives more details of what is involved. From that document, here is what is recommended in your proposal:
1. Concept summary (ideally one page).
2. A walkthrough/storyboard detailing the proposed ‘vertical slice’ playable.
3. Artwork/Visualisation that is representative of proposed final quality.
4. Design briefs (prototypes where possible) explaining key features.
5. A summary schedule and risk assessment re delivery of the ‘vertical slice’ playable to be delivered for full
consumer trial/user testing in summer 2013.
6. A commercial/financial business model, illustrating market potential for the concept on PS Mobile certified
platforms; (PS Vita, Xperia, Sony Tablet S etc.)
7. Details of relevant prior experience.
The PDF however has no more legal issues regarding publishing or IP ownership.