NI Game Dev Digest – May 2021

Hello everyone! Welcome to our brand new monthly blog!

Right here at the start of every month, we will include updates for the wonderful NI Game Dev community as well as details of any events we have planned for the month ahead. We are also aiming to shine a Community Spotlight on a different person each month!

We will do our best to include all other relevant local gaming industry news, events and job openings here too! You can let us know about any news or job listings, or request to be featured in our Community Spotlight by emailing

To be notified about new blog posts, or if you’d like to receive a condensed summary of our blog in your inbox each month, sign up for our newsletter here.

May Community Spotlight – Mal Duffin, Out of Tune Games

Like everyone in the industry Mal Duffin is a game designer, with loads of good and bad ideas. As well as co-founding Out Of Tune Games, he’s acted as a producer, technical artist and as a programmer.

Check out our first Community Spotlight on the NI Game Dev Network Blog to learn all about Mal and his work at Out of Tune!

NIGDN Community Events

Here are the NIGDN events we currently have scheduled for this month:

NIGDN Showcase Saturday – 22 May

A platform for anyone to take the stage and present something online to the community. Perhaps you’ve been working on a cool game you want to show to the world? Perhaps you just want to gush about the design of a game you love? Or maybe you want to teach people different shading styles? As long as it’s not inappropriate, nothing is too strange to help show off the breadth of talent and passion in the NI Games Industry. Fill out the form with your email, name, a topic, and a rough time estimate, and we’ll find you a stage!

NI Game Devs Lean Coffee – TBC

Lean Coffee is a structured, but agenda-less meeting. Participants gather, build an agenda, and begin talking. Conversations are directed and productive because the agenda for the meeting was democratically generated. Hosted by Leela from Run.Design, NIGD Lean Coffee is a weekly hour-long opportunity to meet new people, ask questions, and discuss all aspects of game development and the industry in a safe space. More details in the discord.

Hypixel Studios Launches Relocation Initiative

Hypixel Studios has announced a set of relocation packages, with support from Northern Ireland Screen, to provide assistance and financial support to candidates relocating to Derry/Londonderry for a role in Hypixel Studios’ headquarters. Two further packages titled “Mon’ Home” and “Mon’ Up” provide additional support to former NI residents and residents of Ireland who are looking to relocate.

The package covers all costs for any required work permits or visas, as well as support of up to £8,000 to cover relocation costs including transit for partners and dependents, airport pickup, and accommodation for up to six weeks. Hypixel Studios will also provide home search assistance and help with National Insurance, banking and health care registration.

The optional “Mon’ Home” is aimed at ex-NI residents living internationally, and provides a £3,000 signing-on bonus in addition to the support provided by the international relocation package. “Mon’ Up” is aimed at residents of Ireland relocating to Derry~Londonderry and provides a £1,500 signing-on bonus in addition to the support provided by the international relocation package.

‘Buildings Have Feelings Too’ Out Now!

Imagine a city where buildings can walk and talk to one other. Each one has its own aspirations, hopes and fears. Most of the time they are just trying to get along with each other and make it through the day. Players must grow their city whilst making sure the individual buildings thrive, or risk them being demolished forever.

‘Buildings Have Feelings Too!’ is a city management game made by local Northern Irish games studio, Blackstaff Games, and it’s available to download now!

Minding Creative Minds

The Minding Creative Minds Wellbeing & Support programme (in association with Spectrum Life) offers the following wellbeing services to the entire Irish & NI Creative Sector for free including the Games sector.

  • 24/7 Dedicated Phone Line (Phone 0800 0903677) (Calling from ROI – 1800 814 244)
  • Counselling Service (Short term intervention / Up to 6 Sessions)
  • Telephone Counselling
  • Secure Video Counselling
  • Extensive Web Portal & App enabling live chat function with a counsellor

In addition to the mental health support system offered, Minding Creative Minds looks at the whole individual resulting in the programme also offering access to additional services structured to help users with various issues they may face such as: Advice on practical day-to-day issues that cause anxiety and stress, Legal Assistance for a range of issues, Financial Assistance & Consumer Advice, Career Guidance & Life Coaching, Mediation for conflict resolution.

For more information on Minding Creative Minds, please visit their website:

GDC Vault Access

The Pixel Mill have renewed their subscription to GDC Vault, a trove of in-depth design, technical and inspirational talks and slides from the influencers of the game development industry, taken from over 20 years of the worldwide Game Developers Conferences. If you’d like to get access to the GDC Vault, email!

10-14 May: Beyond Games Conference

A new five-day conference focused on the future of games, transmedia, digital entertainment and the creative industries, organised by the team behind Pocket Gamer Connects.

12-14 May: DevGAMM Spring

DevGAMM Spring conference, held on the PINE tool platform, includes professional speakers, reviews on game design, art, marketing, as well as rount tables and workshops. Devs can take part in the Public Pitch, Virtual Showcase, and Streaming Showcase! Registration is open and free or Pro tickets are currently available.

26-28 May: Nordic Game Conference

Nordic Game is the leading games conference in Europe, and 2021 marks its nineteenth and twentieth editions. Gathering thousands of industry professionals in Malmö annually. Nordic Game doubles up again with NG21 on 26-28 May and in November, following last year’s digital debut at NG20 and twice the knowledge, emotion and business at NG20+.

Ulster University

Ulster University is currently hiring a Full-time Lecturer in Game Design to contribute to teaching, research, enterprise and business engagement for the recently introduced undergraduate and postgraduate programmes in Games Design. More Info

Hypixel Studios

Hypixel Studios consists of a team that contribute and collaborate remotely from around the world, with members ranging from games industry newcomers to 15+ year veterans. They’re currently hiring across a range of remote roles, including: Associate Animator (3D), Game Artist (2D/3D), VFX Artists, UI Artist, Senior Sound Designer, Technical Designer, UX Designer, Anti-Cheat Engineer, Game Physics Engineer, Networking Engineers, Website Engineers, and others.

For more info, check out

Rocketflair Studios

Rocketflair are a game development studio based in Belfast, currently hiring for a number of roles. They have a passion for building unique games, and the whole team is hard at work on a number of exciting projects. Applicants would need to be able to work from Rocket Flair’s office in Belfast at least a couple of days per week.

Roles currently being hired include Game Designer, Producer, Software Developer (Unity 3D), 3D Generalist (Animation for Games).

For more info, visit

Enter Yes

Enter Yes is a premium award winning Visual Effects and Animation studio specialising in animation and visual effects for high end feature film and documentary. They’re currently in search of a 3D Generalist and a 3D Animator to join their growing team.

To get in contact, email your reel, LinkedIn, IMDb and/or any other supporting material, plus your availability for 2021 to

That’s all for now. Remember to follow us on Twitter and Facebook Don’t forget to sign up for our newsletter so you never miss an update! Sign up here.

See you next month!


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