Gaming Wakefield youngsters working to create environmental game

An ambitious new video game about the environment is under development in Wakefield.

Thursday, 2nd September 2021, 10:58 am

Our Earth Your Choice is being created by local arts organisation One to One Development Trust with 25 young people aged eight to 20 who were recruited through an open call last year.

The project started in December 2020 and involves four teams of young people meeting online with the game developers to learn new software, develop concepts, and refine game mechanic ideas.

After each online session the participants can make things for the game or to share their concepts via an online portal.

Sign up to our daily Wakefield Express Today newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

The game is a visually striking top-down adventure set in different locations across the planet – from a dense forest under threat from pollution to a coral reef where new islands can be made out of recycled plastic.

As part of Wakefield Council’s Festival of the Earth, the team of developers and young people came together to showcase Our Earth Your Choice to a family audience at a gaming event which ran in WX, the former market hall.

Our Earth Your Choice ran on a suite of PCs where the public were encouraged to test the game, help find bugs in the code and offer suggestions on what might improve it as part of a quality assurance process.

Judi Alston creative director said: “The gaming festival was a fantastic opportunity to bring all the teams together for the first time in real life and to use the occasion to undertake some in-depth testing of the game with the public.

“The young people were brilliant ambassadors for the project both in their presentation, and in showing the game to the public”.

Our Earth Your Choice has already gained some reputable support. Writer, broadcaster and Gadget Show presenter Jordan Erica Webber did a talk to the teams earlier in the year about what it’s like working in the games industry.

Jordan who couldn’t attend the gaming event sent a recorded message which was screened during the presentation.

In it she praised Our Earth Your Choice in its environmental messages and its development of diverse characters that challenge the stereotype of how characters are often depicted in mainstream games.

Our Earth Your Choice was made possible with funding from Wakefield Council Creative Challenge. The game will be available for PC via gaming platform Steam later in the year.

To find out more use the hashtag #OurEarthYourChoice on social media or visit www.ourearthyourchoice.co.uk