14 May 2024

What's on at the Abertay Digital Graduate Show?

What's on at the Abertay Digital Graduate Show?

Abertay Digital Graduate Show is returning to Abertay University, showcasing cutting-edge projects across video games, cybersecurity, virtual/augmented reality, 3D modelling, concept art, animation and much, much more.

For the first time, the event will stretch across two floors of the University’s Centre for Excellence in Computer Games, with more than 140 graduate projects on display to the public from Thursday 16 May to Saturday 18 May (12pm to 4pm).

Supported by industry sponsors Ninja Kiwi Europe, Team Terrible Games and Playground Games, the show is the highlight of the year for the Dundee games development community and offers something for everyone, regardless of age or experience.

Curator and lecturer in visual arts practice, Clare Brennan said:

We’re really excited to be staging our biggest ever Abertay Digital Graduate Show and there’s a massive range and depth of projects being brought forward by our students this year. There are now so many technical, management and artistic skills taught across our undergraduate degree programmes that we have a really diverse show in store, with projects that children and families can enjoy as well as those that will appeal to the game development community and our friends and colleagues in the industry. I’m really looking forward to opening up to the public and to seeing our students showcase the innovative and creative projects that they’ve all worked so hard to achieve.

Check out this short sneak peek of some of the projects in store at this year’s Abertay Digital Graduate Show...

 Yana Stoyanova (Computer Arts) – ‘BORYANA’ 

"Experience Bulgarian Culture through 2D Animation. A captivating 2D short movie which captures the essence of the rich Slavic culture and introduces it globally. The animated film will allow viewers to see the world through the eyes of a Bulgarian girl who is blind. You will engage with the unique perspective of a girl who has the ability to feel and see her surroundings through the remarkable sounds of Slavic masked traditions, Kuker bells and traditional patterns." 


Giuseppe 'Tony' Tonon (Games Design and Production) - 'Generating a Hive City'

"Generation of a slice of a megacity, taking inspiration from real life structures, architectural concepts and fiction. There are multiple levels of generation, all interacting with one another. This generation uses modular chunks made separately, then placed using a point cloud created in Houdini. Designers as well can access and edit the generation using tools in Unreal Engine 5 to modify the final look of the city, from growing the slice, randomizing different portions of generation leaving the others untouched, to substituting entire portions, while also being provided more granular control over single aspects of it."


Harry Petch (Game Design and Production) - EAGLEYE - Stereo VR Viewports As Game Mechanics

"A vertical slice prototype for a game made for virtual reality platforms which explores using stereoscopic rendering in VR to create game mechanics. One of your eyes is replaced with a cybernetic optic that can see in heat vision and be taken out of its socket and rolled into rooms, allowing the player to experience a power fantasy of perceiving things beyond their body. It is a novel way to approach virtual reality gaming. It takes 15 minutes to complete and has a single level with a puzzle segment and action escape segment."


Jamie Buttenshaw (Computer Games Technology) - Real-Time Rendering and Construction of Signed Distance Fields

"Using signed distance fields (SDFs) to create 3D geometry has been a known technique for decades, but until recently hardware limitations have prevented extensive use in real-time applications. SDFs are an elegant implicit representation of a solid volume and exhibit interesting properties, such as constructive solid geometry and shape morphing, which are difficult to achieve through traditional polygonal techniques. This project investigates the direct rendering of SDFs using DirectX Raytracing, and the real-time reconstruction of SDFs to allow for dynamic objects that take advantage of the unique properties of SDFs."


 Liam Doyle (Computer Arts) - Deadwood

"Deadwood" is a 2D animated pilot that focuses on uncovering the mystery of the supernatural as well as the creatures tormenting Hive City. A crew of convicted felons are recruited to take down our villain, the Mothman. Detective Deadwood, Arista and Black Dog are our so called ‘heroes’ that each wield unique supernatural abilities to face both the weird and wonderful world of the obscure. This project is aimed towards seeing what it takes to create an original animated television show."


Denitsa Velikova (Computer Arts) - The Making of Kuker

"Kuker is a personal piece inspired by the notion to produce a hyperreal, high-quality character. The project explores techniques for groom and cloth creation, sculpting and using scanned data to achieve high resolution skin details. It also covers topics of texturing, shader setup, lighting and composition for the best results when rendering."


Berenika Zemanek (Computer Arts) - The Vibrance of Shadows

“The Vibrance of Shadows” is a game environment demo showcasing a small fragment of a Japanese city. The player can explore this location and experience it during three different snapshots of time: daytime, sunset and night. The progression of time influences more than just lighting - shops close, bars and izakayas open and the brightest and most vibrant fragment of the environment moves away from the bigger street to the small alley full of street food. The artistic choices behind this project draw on traditional Japanese aesthetics, in particular the embracing of shadows as a mean to emphasize the beauty of objects and places."


Alex Dorian (Computer Arts) - A Conversation with Death

"In this interactive story, players will take on the role of a soul in a surprisingly office-like limbo, speaking to grim-reapers, demons and death itself to try to avoid the inferno and bargain your way to a more pleasant afterlife. But they must be careful, as based on their choices they can find themselves facing a variety of endings, some far preferable to others."


Daria Savova (Computer Arts) - Verdorium

"This visual artwork project tells a story of a future world, where nature and technology blend. Concepts are created from 5 places with a mix of futuristic inventions and natural elements. The idea is to paint a future where nature and technology get along just fine. There is also a twist added to this conflict-free world by introducing two different religious views - one all about the high-tech side and the other more dedicated to nature. These beliefs are not just about spirituality; they influence the way architecture and objects look in this world."


Joseph Bardolph (Computer Arts) - Lonely Working

"This project aims to create a photorealistic environment composed of pine plantations, fields, native beech, oak, spruce and box wood forests, high cliffs and long grass meadows. This project's objective is to be as authentic as possible to the Vercors region's atmosphere to showcase this little-known region to more people. A portion of the environment itself is to be explorable in first person by a player, like a virtual hike, enabling the public to experience the mountain for themselves."


Sarah Henderson (Computer Arts) - Shores of Desolation

"This 3D environmental piece is set in Britain after the climate apocalypse, where pollution has reached tipping point and humanity is severely impacted. This fully-rendered 3D environment creates an environment to showcase an example of the living situation 10-15 years after the climate apocalypse, creating a deeper understanding of this uninhabitable world."


Shane Rooney (Game Design and Production) - Using Spatial Design within Urban Combat

"A level design project which focuses on using spatial design techniques to create an immersive FPS combat within an urban environment. The aim is for the player to be influenced by both the level and the gameplay to take cover and move methodically throughout the level, feeling both intimidated yet determined to push forward during each combat scenario by using their own knowledge & understanding of these urban spaces."


Gordon Bicker (Game Design and Production) - Froggy Sanctuary

"Froggy Sanctuary is a first-person adventure platformer game where the main design goals were centred around creating levels which were inclusive of various needs of members of the public in mind from the ground-up of development. The project aims to bring great enjoyment to both younger and older audiences as you immerse yourself in fun Froggy chaos and navigate levels which have been tailored for inclusivity. Accessible level design is an exciting area which has plenty of potential for being looked into more within the industry, this project is Gordon's interpretation and development based on the area."


Jake Brodie (Game Design and Production) - Sight Through Sound

"In this project, audio is the main form of navigation for players. As they progress through the level they will be guided by audio assets in certain directions. The more noise the player makes, the more of the world around them is revealed by a light circle. As the player moves around this circle grows until they stop, where it then shrinks in size."


Jake Sullivan (Game Design and Production) - An Exploration of Video Game Vegetation

"This project is a full look at vegetative environments, from photo capture techniques to environment creation. Every aspect of the environment has been custom made for this project, from the ground textures to the vegetation, landscape and shaders. Industry standard techniques have been used to capture vegetation from the Cairngorms and bring it to life inside Unreal Engine 5. Using procedural tools, pine forest biomes and large-scale landscapes have been created to try and capture Scotland’s scenery."

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