Games designers based at Wrexham Glyndwr University have met with Wrexham MP Ian Lucas as part of his fact-finding work into current gaming trends.
Mr Lucas sits on the House of Commons’ Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee, which is currently undertaking an inquiry into Immersive and Addictive Technologies.
Having heard about Glyndwr’s BSc (Hons) Computer Game Development course, Mr Lucas asked to visit some of its students and graduates – and to find out their perspectives on some of the issues in the gaming industry which his committee is currently investigating.
During his visit, Mr Lucas spoke with three games studios – Evil Owl, Round Squares and Treasure Map Tales – about the enquiry, the ethics of game design and how each studio develops their games, as well as playing a short excerpt of games each studio is currently preparing.
Senior lecturer in Computing, Richard Hebblewhite, said: “As part of our course, our students learn not only how to design games – but also the broader context of games development and the critical issues facing the modern industry.
“That means that they have a keen understanding of some of the issues they discussed with Mr Lucas during his visit – and the ethics of how these methods can and should be applied in games design.
“They discussed with Mr Lucas the use of methods such as feedback loops and in-game purchasing, the impact such methods have on gamers – and some of the positives and negatives of the modern gaming industry.”
As part of the visit, Mr Lucas was also shown the use of immersive technology which the university is providing as part of its PlaySpace project – where he was given the chance to try out a virtual reality rowing machine.
Senior lecturer in Computing Nathan Roberts said: “We are hoping to roll our PlaySpace project out to schools, colleges and businesses across the region over the coming months. It was great to give Mr Lucas a preview of some of the tech we have to offer, and to talk to him about some of the ways we have already been using it with local charities to improve people’s lives.”
Mr Lucas added: “It was a fascinating visit and I’d like to thank the staff and students of Wrexham Glyndwr University for making me so welcome.
“We discussed in detail the expansion of the gaming industry and the opportunities it is creating – while also talking about the challenges presented by issues around gaming addiction.
“It was also good to see the PlaySpace project and get some hands-on experience with immersive technology.
“As a member of the DCMS Select Committee, I have a keen interest in these subjects and the insight I gained during my trip to the university will help inform my work with the committee in London.”
Find out more about Wrexham Glyndwr University’s BSc (Hons) Computer Game Design course here: https://www.glyndwr.ac.uk/en/undergraduatecourses/computergamedevelopment/