Yesterday Andy Watson and Phil Harris attended the TIGA Movement event in Dundee on behalf of Blazing Griffin. We were certainly interested in the talks and networking but we also had a surprise: a pre-alpha version of Distant Star for people to play and some awesome new concept artwork which will be revealed over the next few weeks.

TIGA is the non-profit trade association representing the UK’s games industry. Members include independent games developers, in-house publisher-owned developers, outsourcing companies, technology businesses and universities. Of course Blazing Griffin are one of the members, hence the invite, and the evening started with Jon Sykes doing a brief overview of the Scottish Game Jam, part of the Global Game Jam happening this weekend.

The value of jams is now well established and Jon took us through the history and expansion of the event in Scotland, now at three venues in Dundee, Edinburgh and Glasgow, where it started. Blazing Griffin will be there to judge and help with the media feed for the weekend so you can follow all the news and talk to our own Phil Harris. They can be found on twitter under @scottishgamejam and @PhilipGHarris.

Following this, Guerilla Tea did a presentation of the design and development of their attractive and engaging heli-chopper game, Fangs Out, showing us gameplay and discussing elements of the design and development decisions they made. The last speaker was Ubisoft Reflections Head of Innovation, Denes Nagymathe, who spoke well about the strength of indie development and how he had used these techniques to engage with Ubisoft Reflections and create a job where he acted as an inspirational guide to the various projects which were being developed.

Of course one of the important things for us was to see what people thought of the Distant Star pre-alpha build and reaction to both that, and the new concept art, was great. People commented about the smoothness of the gameplay, clear on-screen direction and the potential capacity the game had whilst Andy and Phil discussed some of the programming techniques and background history to the game.

As we work towards an alpha build of Distant Star we’re already delighted with the feedback and the studio are working very hard to get all the elements in place very soon.

So next week will be the long promised look into the in-game history.

Back in seven.

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