There are some contests going on across the country which I feel will be of interest to most, if not all, of you. First, recruiting agency 3pod is holding a summer referral contest. If you refer a successful career position candidate to their office (see contest details), you could be the proud owner of a shiny new gaming console. You will need to refer a friend before September 30th, and that friend will need to be successfully hired by December 31st 2010. Village Gamer needs a PS3…is there anyone out there needing a referral?
Toon Boom Animation and Sci-Fi industry community MyOuterSpace.com are joining forces to make the greatest talent in the creative galaxy come forward and shine! This contest will challenge your creativity and originality and show the universe your support for MyOuterSpace.com. With the animated William Shatner starring in your lead role and three audio voiceovers to choose from, this is your opportunity to showcase your skills as a top-notch animator. Watch this video for more information about the upcoming contest, which will open for entries in August 2010:
Not exactly a contest, but still worthy of mention, the Gemini Awards are looking for your best artwork. In celebration of the 25th Anniversary of the Canadian Gemini Awards, organizers are creating a very special piece of Canadian art. According to their web site, they are looking for a unique way to tell the story of the 25 years of excellence in Canadian programming behind us, and many more years of innovation to come. This will take shape with ‘Gemini Nights’ which will in part be made up of user submitted images that are iconic in nature and instantly recognizable. It could be a show title, a screen shot from a promo poster, a character everyone knows, or a logo that speaks to success. Organizers ask that images be submitted by Wednesday, August 4th via their online form. Take note that you must have rights to any images which you submit for consideration.
Want to pitch a product to and get feedback from the likes of Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network and TELETOON? Get yourself over the Ottawa International Animation Festival’s web site and find out all of the details. The deadline to apply is September 1st, so don’t delay.
Pitch Participation Requirements:
* Project synopsis, including target audience, technique, format, rough budget, (1-2 pages)
* One episode synopsis
* Bios of key executives
* Short paragraph indicating your current stage of development and any additional information (i.e. interactive components, merchandise, etc.)
* Concept art (2 or 3 images)
XMG Studio would like you all to know about the upcoming launch of Cannon Cadets, its latest mobile game available for iPhone and iPod Touch users, rocketing into Apple’s App Store in early August 2010.
From the award-winning company that brought you Drag Racer, Little Metal Ball and Marine Sharpshooter, XMG Studio’s Cannon Cadets is a supremely addictive physics game with 80 visually stimulating and diabolically devious levels to challenge children and adults alike.
In this new game, you are Rocketboy, who must save your team of Cannon Cadets from Gordo, an evil lab monkey, and his robot army, that are determined to rid the universe of all that is fun. Players will shoot their cadets at the robots, trying to knock them out while dealing with complex structures that follow advanced physics rules including rolls, slides and hinges!
Each level is a new challenge, from basic structures to complex Rube Goldberg-esque machines that will test the skills of even the bravest cadet. As players advance, the Cannon Cadet team members will need to rescue fun new friends and add to the player’s arsenal of special powers to use against Gordo.
Features of Cannon Cadets include:
– 80 beautifully illustrated mind twisting levels on four unique planets
– 4 playable characters (RocketBoy, RocketGirl, Pop, and Granati)
– Hidden Bonus Levels
– Amazing game physics including hinged and moving objects, as well as complex chain reaction style challenges
Other Ocean Interactive invites you to challenge the speediest puffins on the island for the title of Fastest Flyer in Puffins: Let’s Race in their latest Nintendo DSi release. Race against the clock or go head-to-head with your opponents in a battle to the finish line. Use cleverly placed power-ups like the squawk shot to get ahead of the pack and claim victory. Race through four different game modes on eight different tracks to prove your skill, or challenge up to three of your friends via local wireless play. Do you have what it takes to become the race champion of Puffin Island, or will you be left behind with the rest of the flock? Let’s Race! is available now on DSiware for 500 DSi Points.
VanArts presents an Animation & Story Development Masterclass on September 24 & 25th in Vancouver with instructors Story Artist Matthew Luhn and Animator Andrew Gordon, both from Pixar Animation Studios. This exceptional opportunity will offer participants a rare and exciting opportunity to learn from the industry’s top talent. This class has toured the world, and this is one of only two North American stops in 2010.
Geared toward animators and storytellers, experienced professionals, students, and enthusiasts alike, this masterclass provides you with the tools needed to create your own stories and feature-quality animation, plus offers a great opportunity to meet and network with others in the industry. The course will be held at the Fletcher Challenge Theater – Simon Fraser University, 515 West Hastings Street in Vancouver. Registration for this two day masterclass is $499.00, with early registration highly recommended.
As a completely new addition to Sherwood Dungeon, players will gain access to Bow & Arrows at level 21. Players will earn two additional equipment slots for these items, as well as the ability to purchase magic arrows (Fire, Ice, Poison, Night) from the local weapons merchant. In addition to the new weapons, this update includes numerous changes such as AI improvements, economy and item rebalancing, and a complete dungeon overhaul, replacing old maps with new ones.
Fitting the grassroots nature of Sherwood Dungeon, this update was made possible through the direct support and feedback of Sherwood Dungeon’s loyal fan base, which beta tested the update and helped work out any bugs. Lacking the need for a high-end gaming PC, a credit card or login, Sherwood Dungeon proves that high-end fantasy gaming doesn’t need a box, a download, or a monthly subscription fee to deliver high quality gaming for casual MMO players. To join the more than one million players continuing development of this high-quality, 3-D experience, visit the Sherwood Dungeon MMORPG web site.
EA Sports announced today that there are now two ways to play FIFA 11 Wii—traditional 11 versus 11 football matches plus a new street football mode. Hit the pitch for a Wii-specific take on customary 11 versus 11 football matches with over 30 officially licensed leagues, 500 teams, more than 15,000 players to choose from. Or, hit the streets to compete in 5 versus 5 street matches with the world’s elite players.
FIFA 11 Wii features numerous gameplay enhancements that bring the beautiful game to life on the Wii console. An all-new attacker vs. defender trick system creates head-to-head battles as you move up the pitch, performing dozens of elaborate new tricks to throw the defender off-balance. The new button-based shooting mechanic puts control back in the users’ hands – and with new shot types and animations you’ll find all-new ways to score each game. Blast, finesse, chip or tap it by the keeper for the goal that lifts your team to glory!
Hit the Streets with players decked out in street wear. Each player boasts a distinctive style of play with unique abilities to match. Use the wall to jump past defenders or bank passes to teammates. Choose to play arcade style and you can build up and then activate your power meter to blast shots, ignite a speed burst or send shockwaves over your opponents.
Challenge your rivals in the hottest locales around the world, everywhere from Brazil to London to the streets of France. The stage is set for victory with a soundtrack that brings the culture of the area to life. Plus, for the first time on Wii, test your game in an indoor setting. Customize the game to suit your style of play. Choose from different match types—first to score, Tug of War or timed—and from a variety of different goals to test your skills, including elevated nets for lofted touch shots, wall goals for continuous action and mini nets to test accuracy.
Autodesk, Inc. has released three new training modules as part of the Autodesk Animation Academy 2011 curriculum (terms & conditions) for secondary schools. The modules provide students with tools and a curriculum to help develop the skills needed to create mobile game applications. Separately, Autodesk has also announced new instructor certification for Autodesk Softimage software, as well as a new cost-effective cross-certification program for trainers wanting to teach multiple Autodesk Digital Entertainment Creation (DEC) products.
The three new Animation Academy modules provide students with an easy learning path to help master 3D tools for interactive content creation. The modules are designed to be used with Academy Award–winning Autodesk Maya software, and focus on storytelling and game creation using both Unity3D game engine and Maya Cloth and Fur. The modules add 180 hours of free training material to the Animation Academy program, which now comprises four full semesters of coursework.
* Environmental Storytelling — Students learn to model an environment inspired by an historical event. A character model is included along with an overview of the pipeline for mobile game production.
* Game Creation — Students learn how to create a game with the assets created in the Environmental Storytelling module. They can export their level and props directly into the Unity3D game engine.
* Ricky 2.0 Superhero — Pre-existing modules in the series enable students to hone their animation skills based around a unique character named “Ricky the Rat.” In this newest character module, students learn how to use Maya Cloth and Fur.
This new material extends Autodesk’s latest post secondary games curriculum, which was released in March 2010. All curricula created for the Autodesk Animation Academy are now available on the online Autodesk Education Community, where students and educators can also download free (subject to the terms and conditions of the end-user license agreement that accompanies the software) copies of Autodesk Maya, Autodesk 3ds Max, Autodesk Softimage, Autodesk MotionBuilder, Autodesk Mudbox and Autodesk SketchBook Pro software.
Carl Callewaert, Lead 3D Instructor at The Gaming and Animation Institute of Fredericton and Director of Animation at motion capture company Measurand, worked with Autodesk to co-develop the new game creation modules.
“I have been teaching Autodesk technology for over 10 years, and I was eager to extend my experience teaching college-level game design to high school students,” said Callewaert. “These new courses provide students with the building blocks for creating their own game, a valuable knowledge base that will help prepare them for future real-world job opportunities and further studies in the game development field.”
Callewaert adds: “Autodesk has done a great job in making this curriculum and their tools accessible to high school students. Any student can download a free copy of Maya software and begin to create games immediately — it’s that easy.”
The Autodesk Certified Instructor (ACI) program — offering coaching, mentoring and accreditation services for instructors teaching Autodesk software — is now available to instructors of Autodesk Softimage software. Qualified program candidates will receive an ACI Workbook along with access to downloadable training guides and online courses to help prepare for three online certification tests. After the exams are completed, candidates are required to attend and pass a three-day observational assessment seminar to qualify as an ACI.
A new, cost-effective cross-certification program helps trainers certified in 3ds Max, Maya, Autodesk Flame, Autodesk Lustre or Autodesk Smoke software apply for certification on other Autodesk DEC products by passing the application-specific certification exams, all without having to participate in another training workshop.
Telefilm Canada announces its support of the 35th edition of the Toronto International Film Festival, held from September 9 to September 19, 2010. Telefilm Canada’s participation enables TIFF to deliver a first-class event to a growing audience of film aficionados and industry members, in addition to providing prime networking and business development opportunities to Canadian and international representatives from the audiovisual sector.
“The Toronto International Film Festival is an internationally recognized and immensely respected film festival, bringing the world’s attention to the filmmakers it showcases during its eleven days of programming while also offering valuable development and business opportunities to emerging and established film talent alike,” said Sheila de La Varende, National and International Business Development Director at Telefilm Canada. “We are proud to once again support the Festival, and are pleased to see that Canadian titles will be prominent in this year’s selection, including on opening night.”
This year’s opening night Gala film will be the world premiere of the Telefilm-supported Score: A Hockey Musical. Written and directed by Michael McGowan (One Week, Saint Ralph) and starring Olivia Newton-John and songwriter Marc Jordan alongside newcomers Noah Reid and Allie MacDonald, the film also features cameos from Nelly Furtado, George Stromboulopoulos (The Hour with George Stromboulopoulos, CBC), Evan Solomon (CBC), legendary hockey-dad Walter Gretzky, and hockey star Theo Fleury among others.
The 35th edition of the Festival will also mark the return of industry initiatives such as Telefilm Canada PITCH THIS!, a pitching competition open to aspiring Canadian filmmakers, and TIFF’s Talent Lab, an artistic development program that provides emerging talent with the opportunity to learn from the world’s best film artists. The Festival’s full schedule will be made available online as of August 26, 2010.
Open Text Corporation has announced the availability of Web Site Management 10.1, featuring usability enhancements to accelerate common tasks and make it easier for website managers to integrate with corporate information and resources along with a sample project that speeds up delivery of new websites. It also offers integration points to many consumer social applications including Facebook and Twitter as well as enhanced native social capabilities with Open Text Social Communities.
The latest release of Web Site Management is the next iteration of Web Solutions 10, a major release introduced last year. A key member of Open Text’s industry-leading portfolio of Web Content Management (WCM) products, Web Site Management is a powerful, easy-to-use Web site application that empowers employees to keep content fresh and relevant and offers extensive multiple-language support and social tools.
“At the core of an engaging Web experience is vibrant, relevant content and an immersive social community integrated with internal business processes and infrastructure,” said Lubor Ptacek, Vice President of Product Marketing at Open Text. “Web Site Management makes this possible with rapid implementation, a strong reputation for usability, and a useful set of integrations with content sources. As demonstrated by the release of 10.1, our strategy is to continue building on these strengths.”
One of the focus points for Web Site Management 10.1 was to not just make it easier for editors and administrators to complete website management tasks, but to actually accelerate daily editorial work. For instance, a new redlining component allows editors to quickly and easily make an editorial assessment of page content. Enhanced drag and drop capabilities allow editors to change the order of content in lists and visualize results of edits immediately. A new asset management panel with SmartEdit, and drag and drop speeds up work with digital assets.
On the back-end, Web Site Management 10.1 features a number of enhancements to servers for management and delivery of content, including a new graphical user interface that aligns the different server components. A new online help for administrators offers advanced search functionality and a clear navigation structure so information can be found more quickly and easily. Also contributing to lower support and training costs and allowing faster deploying of new sites is a new best practice project that provides an extensive set of pre-defined content classes and templates, along with SAP Portal examples.
On the integration front, Web Site Management 10.1 allows users to fully tap the extensive social capabilities in Open Text Social Communities (formerly Vignette Social Media) and lets them take advantage of Open Text Media Management 7 for managing digital media assets from across an enterprise. It also enhances third-party application integration with extended portlet connectors. Using a new HTTP connector, any type of social media component, such as Facebook or Twitter, can be added and administered.
Score Media Inc. and NuLayer have launched theScore iPad Edition, and it’s already up at the top as one of the leading free sports apps just days after launching in Apple’s App Store. TheScore iPad Edition offers the latest stats, news, scores and standings from every major sports league, while integrating the best content from The Score’s multiplatform properties – The Score Television Network, theScore.com, Hardcore Sports Radio (HSR) and ScoreMobile all in one app.
A hybrid of Score Media’s leading sports app, ScoreMobile, and it’s newly relaunched website, theScore.com, theScore iPad Edition brings iPad users the best of both platforms while offering original video and audio content from The Score Television Network and HSR.
“theScore iPad Edition takes advantage of all the great features the iPad has to offer and leverages its native performance and flexible web views,” says Jeff Brenner, Co-Founder, NuLayer. “It’s an awesome app that provides a socially-integrated way to explore the sports world. Fans are going to love it.”
theScore iPad Edition is the perfect companion for watching sports on TV or sitting around with your friends discussing the latest trade and stories of the day. It also gives users unlimited and immediate access to up-to-the-minute stats and entertaining content including:
* Real-time scores, breaking news and updates
* Original digital video segments available exclusively to iPad users like The Score’s hit web show, The Break and The Footy Show, a news program and podcast dedicated to covering all of the latest soccer news and highlights
* Integrated social tools for sharing articles, blog posts and videos
* The Score’s entertaining television content offering unique interviews with top athletes along with iPad exclusives from The Score’s world renowned reporter Cabral “Cabbie” Richards as well as the popular, irreverent NBA web show, The Basketball Jones
* A slick interface designed specifically for the iPad with an intuitive and clean navigation structure
Trailpeak, Canada’s premier interactive trail mapping network, has unveiled two features to support hiking, biking, climbing and paddling enthusiasts who visit the site for information on trails across Canada and the U.S.
Trailpeak’s innovative “hyperlocal widgets” feature allows visitors to customize their individual outdoor-adventures webpage, according to location and preference of the user. The gallery of hyperlocal widgets to choose from includes new and popular local trails, outdoor events, weather conditions, Craigslist, and Google maps.
“Our hyperlocal widgets feature has been designed to simplify information-gathering,” said Kurt Turchan, founder of Trailpeak. “Instead of searching different pages of our site for trail, event or member information and browsing external sites such as Craigslist and YouTube, we bring it all together on one page.”
The Trailpeak widgets page can be adapted by the user to include information and locations of particular interest to them. For example, a user in Calgary can track events in that city and can also go to the widget gallery and add the events or classified advertising widgets for Banff.
Trailpeak has also developed a video feature that allows members to upload video content by simply copying and pasting the embed code from any YouTube or Vimeo video. “We can’t wait to see the footage that our members will be providing for the benefit and enjoyment of their fellow adventurers,” said Turchan.
Next month, Turchan, and four Trailpeak editors will embark on a 10-day tour of Newfoundland and Labrador to explore some of the world’s most breathtaking scenery. The team will be equipped with hands-free, high definition head cams, allowing them to capture the landscape and trail conditions of a variety of adventures such as shipwreck survivor trails, sea kayak routes and hikes on Fogo Island and Terra Nova National Park. Video footage and trail data collected by the team will be added to Trailpeak’s database of over 10,000 outdoor trails and GPS logs across Canada and the U.S.
Outdoor enthusiasts and armchair travellers have been sourcing Trailpeak.com for information on thousands of trails ranging from tranquil paddling trips to spine-tingling downhill-mountain biking adventures for almost ten years. There is no fee to browse trail listings and video content on the community website that is maintained by hiking, biking, climbing, kayaking, canoeing, skiing, and snowshoeing enthusiasts across Canada and the U.S.