Ubisoft Game Lab Competition 2017

The 7th edition of the Ubisoft Game Lab competition has come to an end last week, at the Rialto Theatre, wrapping up 10 intensive weeks of exciting twists and turns. It’s the game Zorya, presented by Polytechnique Montréal in collaboration with École des arts numériques, de l’animation et du design (NAD), that won best prototype, as well as the prize for best creativity and theme integration AND the audience award, for a total of $10,000 in scholarship money.

Fierce competition
This year, a record number of 19 teams, comprised of 149 students from 13 universities in Quebec, have delivered playable 3D-prototypes under the theme “Playing With Time”. “The mandate given to the students was quite strong, said Marc-André Saulnier, president of the jury. I am thinking, for example, about the constraints of an asymmetrical design offering different experiences to players and the integration of a game mechanic related to time that seem to have stimulated the teams to produce prototypes that are very cool, inspiring and fun. ”

Remarkable execution
The prototypes quality presented this year was impressive, but “Zorya stood out thanks to its creativity, its audacity and its simple, yet elegant, beauty, said Marc-André Saulnier. We were won over by the excellent execution of all the elements of the prototype, perfectly interwoven to create a complete and incomparable experience.”

Have a look at their gameplay demo

A springboard for students
The teams were supported by 38 mentors from the Montreal and Quebec studios. “The Competition allows us to work with the future of the industry and also have a pragmatic vision of skill sets that wouldn’t necessarily get our attention on a CV”, shares Alexandre Audette Génier, one of the mentors. He’s not a stranger himself to the possibilities generated by the Competition, winner of its’ 2013 edition and working at the Montreal studio ever since.

His perspective on the visibility offered to newcomers is shared by many students taking part in the competition. “It’s an excellent way to show your value to actors of the industry and let them know you can work under pressure with various technical restrictions”, affirms Xavier Gamache, from the Zorya project.

Furthermore, last June, members of the Zorya team were given the chance to present their game at E3, the world’s largest videogame conference. A unique experience for these students of Polytechnique Montréal and NAD:

THE WINNERS

Best prototype – $8,000
Zorya // Polytechnique Montréal in collaboration with École des arts numériques, de l’animation et du design (NAD)

Best game design – $2,000
Time Machine Idiots // Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) in collaboration with École de technologie supérieure, Polytechnique Montréal, Université de Sherbrooke, McGill University and UQAT Montréal

Best art direction and production – $2,000
Record // Université de Montréal in collaboration with École des arts numériques, de l’animation et du design (NAD) and Université du Québec à Chicoutimi

Best technical challenge and innovation – $2,000
Unchained // École des arts numériques, de l’animation et du design (NAD) in collaboration with Université du Québec à Chicoutimi

Best Quality of the “3C” (camera, characters and controls) – $2,000
Hiatus // Polytechnique Montréal in collaboration with UQAT Montréal

Best user experience – $2,000
Otenaw // École des arts numériques, de l’animation et du design (NAD) in collaboration with l’Université du Québec à Chicoutimi

Best creativity and theme integration – $2,000
Zorya // Polytechnique Montréal in collaboration with École des arts numériques, de l’animation et du design (NAD)

Jury’s Special Award – $2,000
Ambulance Express // Université du Québec à Chicoutimi

Audience Award
Zorya // Polytechnique Montréal in collaboration with École des arts numériques, de l’animation et du design (NAD)

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