Barclays x Ukie Mobile Games Growth Programme

Ukie in partnership with Barclays Games and Esports has launched its Mobile Games Growth Programme. This is a brand new business support programme to give UK mobiel companies the skills and expertise they need to grow.

The Mobile Games Growth programme is a dedicated and prestigious programme for a cohort of 10-15 CEOs and leaders of promising UK mobile games developers, with entrepreneurial outlooks, looking to improve their business skills and knowledge. Participating businesses will:

  • Learn the vital skills required to scale their businesses
  • Get expert advice on: Setting the foundations of growth: mission, vision and strategy; business models, in-game economies and platforms; funding and finance; game launches and user acquisition
  • Learn directly from and build their network with proven industry leaders

Applicants will need to show an entrepreneurial outlook and will be asked to show how their businesses have the ambition and potential for growth. Some of the areas that will be considered in applications are:

  • is your business incorporated;
  • have you already assembled a team;
  • have you already released a game or have a game in production;
  • has your business generated revenue or raised funding;

Participants will take part in:

  • 12  x 3 hour workshops – Each workshop will focus on a particular key topic. They will also include a keynote from an industry leader who will talk about their experiences of scaling a business, based around the theme for the workshop.
  • 1 x Inductions and 1x wrap up sessions and some additional networking opportunities
  • 2 hours of one to one coaching / mentoring dedicated to their businesses

The core areas that will be covered are:

  • Setting the foundations of growth: Mission, vision and strategy
  • Business models and platforms – deeper dives and insights into the main business models and how to get the best out of them
  • Funding and finance – what the best type of funding is for you business and where to look for it
  • User Acquisition – data, ASO and effective game launches

The initial induction and masterclasses will be held on the afternoon of Tuesday 15th November and all applicants should please make sure that they are available to attend this day.

CLICK HERE to apply.

The deadline for applications is Friday 28th October.

Games Talks Live

Games Talks Live is hosting a series of short talks interspersed with general networking to encourage collaboration and communication between local developers and visiting guests on Thursday 27th October at Ormeau Baths. Shahid Ahmad, former PlayStation Director Strategic Content, will be the keynote speaker.

Shahid has been named Games Industry International’s Top 10 Persons of the Year and 100 Top Influencers in the British Games Industry, Develop’s 25 People that Changed Games, MCV’s Brit List 100 and received Develop’s Publishing Hero award for his team’s role in opening PlayStation up to developers and for commissioning No Man’s Sky, Hellblade, The Persistence, Velocity 2X, Hotline Miami, Rogue Legacy and over a hundred others. The Strategic Content initiative helped to establish countless developer and publisher success stories.

The in-person speakers announced so far are:

The Business track talks will run from 3pm-6pm which everyone is welcome to attend, but is intended for those responsible for pitching projects, sourcing new business, growing existing business etc. General talks will run from 6pm-9pm.

The talks will be streamed live on YouTube if you’re unable to attend in person; link available by signing up for a (free) livestream ticket, but there aren’t any hybrid meeting opportunities for those watching virtually.

Each evening will have an array of further speakers from local developers, visiting publishers and others to be announced nearer the time. Speaking sessions will be interspersed with networking breaks to encourage everyone to get to know as many people as possible and foster potential future collaborations.

The golden rule of the event is there should be no recruitment activity – even from companies that are kindly sponsoring / speaking.

Book your place here.

The Pixel Mill Trainee Programmers 2022

The Pixel Mill Trainee Programmers 2022 is an industry-led new entrant paid training programme (RLW) that seeks to find and develop the best new and emerging talent within the video game and immersive industries, providing them with training and live project experience.

The Pixel Mill Trainee Programme is split into two parts:

  • Bootcamp: A 4-month development programme for 6 participants, where they will receive Unity training as a programmer, workshops on different aspects of game development, as well as working together to create, develop and publish 2 short video games over 8 weeks.
  • Trainee Positions: After completing the Bootcamp, participants will have the opportunity to interview for the 3 trainee positions. Those who receive a trainee position will be placed with video game and immersive studios within Northern Ireland. During the programme, participants will be moved between studios so that they can maximise the experience of working on live projects and different workflows. Companies may be based in The Pixel Mill itself or at their own premises. Those who do not receive a trainee position will receive further support.

The aim of the programme is to find motivated people from across all interactive content disciplines that have programming skills. Individuals applying should come from a software development background, but no specific academic qualifications are needed. However, you should be able to demonstrate your ability and knowledge through professional experience or personal projects. More importantly, we want people who can bring passion for making interactive content, be that video games or immersive, and have strong problem-solving skills.

Deadline for applications is 12 Noon on Friday 21st October.

For more information and to apply, please CLICK HERE.

Business Development Workshop

The Pixel Mill is hosting a Biz Dev for Indies workshop on Thursday 20th October from 2pm-4pm with Chris Filip. The workshop will be held remotely, however participants are welcome to join at The Pixel Mill.

The workshop will cover approaching business development for new and existing game development studios. From attending trade shows and online events to etiquette when having publisher meetings, this workshop will blend information and interactivity. Bring your questions, and keep in mind we’re all looking to learn so your experiences and ideas will be very useful! Chris is one of the business mentors at The Pixel Mill, with previous experience working as a Game Designer and Producer, as well as helping run the Tentacle Zone and Game Anglia. He currently works with Creative UK, managing their games business support and funding programmes.

The workshop is free to attend but these will be limited space to attend in person at The Pixel Mill. If you are interested in attending the workshop please email

The Belfast XR Festival is open for submissions

The Belfast XR Festival kicks off on Wednesday 9th November at The Black Box in Belfast to showcasing the best of local and international immersive technology content. The Belfast XR Festival is part of the Belfast Film Festival running from 3rd to 13th November. Its ambition is to create an unmissable annual gathering for XR that inspires storytelling.

The underlying ethos of the Belfast XR Festival is to bring virtual and augmented reality content to new audiences locally. The festival aims to have 8 virtual reality stories and 2 augmented reality experiences.

Deepa Mann-KlerFestival Director said: “We don’t want to limit ourselves to the range of amazing talent that is out there, so have no specific theme for the festival. If you have something that you are proud of, that you think audiences will enjoy then please share with us.”

“We are not explicitly seeking new work to premiere and are happy if content has already featured at previous festivals. We want to see a full range of standalone content from 360, AR and VR with a maximum runtime of 15 minutes of each piece to maximise audience journey and their ability to experience multiple pieces in one hour. We will be opting for static content with little interaction or the need for the audience members to move as this will provide a better user experience as well as simplifying the onboarding process.”

Entry fees are waived for small creators and those from underrepresented and/or underprivileged backgrounds.

To submit please click HERE.

The submission deadline is Saturday 30th July.

Interactive work placement opportunity

Northern Ireland Screen is partnering with a range of studios working in Northern Ireland’s interactive sector (video games and immersive) to offer Interactive Work Placements to applicants who have recently completed an interactive related course.

The Interactive Work Placements are for 12 months, full time and paid (Real Living Wage), with the opportunity to work on some of the most exciting projects in Northern Ireland.

The Interactive Work Placements are open to applicants who have completed their FE/HE course within the last two years. There are nine placement opportunities available with a number of local interactive and gaming companies. Applicants can apply for multiple placements if they meet the essential criteria.

Deadline: Friday 22nd July at 12noon

For further information and details on the placement scheme please visit the company placements section of our website.

Teams have been announced for Tranzfuser 2022

This year there was a huge surge in applications to Tranzfuser, with the quality bar yet again raised by innovative and creative graduate teams of developers. The Tranzfuser review panel selected 22 teams, based at Local Hubs right across the UK.

The competition sees a cohort of 22 graduate game development teams enrolling on the summer-long programme of entrepreneurship development, with budget allocation along side hard deadlines – all designed to replicate as close as possible the ‘real world’ experiences of running an independent studio.

Each year since Tranzfuser launched in 2016 we have seen entrepreneurial collaboration across our network flourish and adapt to the growing market. This year, applications ranged from VR projects exploring innovative gameplay, to retro metroidvania PC games.

Tranzfuser 2022 will see the teams invited to participate in various online and in-person events, taking the best learning from the past few years and applying it to the way of working of today. Throughout the summer-long programme, the teams will have access to mentors from the indie game dev sector as well as a structured roster of learning to participate in. Taking the approach of giving the teams the freedom to explore their projects as well as their team dynamic whilst retaining a framework to the programme has proven to be highly effective over the years.

Deborah FarleyHead of Talent and Outreach, said: “Whittling the applications down to the 22 teams selected was no easy task; the talent, passion and ingenuity displayed in all applications received is to be highly commended and should be celebrated as sign of things to come for the UK-wide sector. As ever, we’re delighted to be partnering with our network of Local Hubs as they each offer their base of teams unique tailored support.”

The teams selected to take part in Tranzfuser 2022 are:

As with every year of the competition, the teams will be invited to participate in a consumer-facing showcase towards the end of the programme with the further opportunity to pitch for further funding support from the UK Games Fund.

Last year’s winners Solar Flare LondonMeteorite Media and Episod Studios all recently exhibited at WASD.

For more information about this year’s teams, including details of their games, visit the Teams page.

MiniGame @ The Pixel Mill

Northern Ireland Screen is seeking new teams to video game development that are motivated to develop and release their first title to apply for MiniGame. The call is open to video game studios based in Northern Ireland that are working towards developing their first game.

MiniGame will encourage studios to create mini/short games that they can publish within 5 months. These can be narrative games that can be completed in less than an hours, an endless runner with unique mechanics, a turn based strategy with interesting rules. Concise games that people can pick-up and enjoy in a day.

MiniGame will be hosted in The Pixel Mill based at the Ormeau Baths in Belfast, or remotely if teams are not based in Belfast, where companies will have access to facilities and mentors.

Northern Ireland Screen is inviting applications from studios to take part with support for up to 3 successful companies to develop their business and build their teams. As part of MiniGame companies will receive:

  • Up to £25,000 in development funding per company across 2 stage
  • Access to facilities and mentors at The Pixel Mill

Interested companies will initially be invited to complete an online expression of interest. From there, shortlisted companies will be invited to attend an interview and pitch presentation.

For further information please click here.

Deadline for applications is Thursday 4th August.

For further information please email Rory Clifford, Interactive Manager,

Interactive Study Placement opportunities

Northern Ireland Screen is partnering with a range of studios working in Northern Ireland’s interactive sector (video games and immersive) to offer Interactive Study Placements for students currently studying interactive related courses and seeking work experience.

The Interactive Study Placements are for 12 months, full time and paid (Real Living Wage), with the opportunity to work on some of the most exciting projects in Northern Ireland.

The Interactive Study Placements are open to students currently in full-time education who are seeking a work placement year as part of their college/university course. There are seven placement opportunities available with a number of local interactive and video game companies, including:

  • BillyGoat – Programmer
  • Brain and Nerd – Junior Games Designer
  • Buck Eejit – 3D Generalist
  • GoTestify – Junior Test Lead
  • INCISIV – 3D Generalist
  • RETìníZE – Production Assistant
  • RocketFlair – 3D Generalist

Applicants can apply for multiple placements if they meet the essential criteria.

Essential Criteria

  1. Applicants must be in full time education at a FE/HE Institution and are seeking a placement for their work experience year. Applicants must be planning to return to full-time education at the end of the placement to complete their course.
  2. Applicants must be resident within Northern Ireland for the duration of the 12-month placement.
  3. Applicants must demonstrate they are studying a course which is relevant to the interactive sector (video games and immersive), for example 2D Art/Animation, 3D Modelling/Animation, Game Design, Computer Science, VFX, UX/UI Design.

Please read the Candidate Information Pack for further clarification on each individual placement.

Deadline: Monday 27th June at 12noon

Click HERE to apply.

Northern Ireland Screen x Creative Enterprise present Business Support Programmes for Screen Businesses (Info Session)

Northern Ireland Screen and Creative Enterprise are excited to present a webinar exploring Creative Enterprise’s latest offering of business support programmes for screen businesses including film, tv, games, immersive, animation and creative tech. The webinar will take place on Thursday 9th June at 1pm.

Over the years, Creative Enterprise has proved transformational for participating businesses, with an earned reputation for providing intensive support, connections, and opportunities to fulfil growth potential.

During the session we will introduce the full offering of business support programmes available including Games Scale UpFemale Founders and the investment-readiness programme Evolve. At the end of the webinar, we’ll open the session up for a Q&A from the audience.

Click HERE to register.