Five reasons to study a two-year fast track degree in Birmingham
Oliver Williams, Deputy Head of the Birmingham Institute of Creative Arts, takes us through his top five reasons for why Birmingham is an ideal place to study a two-year fast track game, digital marketing or film course.
Some of the best AAA games in the world are developed right here
The Forza series is developed by Playground games based in Leamington Spa, Sea of Thieves is developed by Rare in Twycross, the Formula One Series is developed by Codemasters Birmingham (which is within walking distance of the University) and Ubisoft in Leamington Spa worked on the Watchdogs 2 game. All of these companies have visited us previously to view student work and give advice and this close relationship can lead to students landing jobs at these studios. One example is Joel Page who studied one of our courses before going on to work at Codemasters. Find out more about his journey here.
Leading Indie and Mobile products are developed here too
Pixel Toys in Leamington were on stage at the Launch of the iPhone 6s showcasing new gaming features implemented in Warhammer:Freeblade. Pixel Toys continue to grow and make successful games and have several of our alumni working in their studio, including Arthur Fostier and Joshua Bromley.
Sega Highlight in Solihull develop a range of hugely popular Sega Franchises such as Sonic Dash and Sonic Jump and Senior lecturer, Venita Pereira, was Lead Designer on Sonic Jump. If you like casual mobile gaming, Kwalee in Leamington are one of the best around, ‘Tens’, ‘Looper’ and ‘GoFish’ are particularly good.
Birmingham hosts awesome events all year round
Birmingham is firmly on the map as a key destination for creative industries, hosting leading events such as BBC Digital Cities for aspiring digital marketers. In September 2019, BBC Digital Cities hosted a week-long series of events for the creative industries, offering practical, hands-on workshops, masterclasses and conferences and free digital skills training. Events included a digital arts and creative Hello Culture: Remix conference at Fazeley Studios, innovation and digital technology workshops and more.
The city is also home to regional film festival, Cine-Excess, an annual international film festival and conference on global cult film cultures, and Flatpack, a Birmingham-wide experimental film festival celebrating cinematic and audio-visual invention. BA (Hons) Film Business and Promotion students have opportunities to visit and volunteer at both of these, as well as networking with producers and distributors at guest speaker or wider regional events.
Gaming students can look forward to events such as Insomnia in April. If you like playing blockbuster games before they are released, finding new indie gems, reliving retro classics, meeting YouTubers and watching e-sports, then these events are for you.
There’s a supportive developer and film community
The developer community is there to help you start-up either as a new developer or set up as a gaming business. Associate Professor Zuby Ahmed runs Games at STEAMHouse, which helps new companies start up in the games sector and is based in Digbeth, which is right on our doorstep. Digbeth is also home to the Custard Factory, one of the UK’s leading destinations for creative and digital businesses, independent shops and alternative culture.
There is a supportive community of filmmakers and content producers in Birmingham and the West Midlands, who regularly gather to network, share work and garner support for their projects. Visit The Producers’ Forum, a member-supported, regional organization fostering peer-to-peer support and the interests of creative producers of all types, for upcoming opportunities.
The student gaming, film and digital marketing scene is vibrant and active
With over 150 students studying gaming with us in the School of Games, Film and Animation alone and plenty of societies to join such as the; e-sports society, Film Society, Fighting Game Society, and the table top gaming society, there’ll be plenty to keep you entertained.