When a team of students from the NJ Institute of Technology snagged a group of professional game developers to work with them on a project, they knew they were in for a treat. GameCareerGuide.com has a postmortem
of the title produced from this remarkable cooperation, The Forgotten War
, a single-player campaign for Relic’s Company of Heroes
The making of The Forgotten War
was a first-of-its-kind teaching project pioneered by Coray Seifert, adjunct professor at Bloomfield College and The New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) and a game designer at Kaos Studios/THQ.
Seifert helped to recruit a team of advisors from the game industry to work with the students, which took on a life of its own and become a new conglomerate, Creo Ludus Entertainment. Creo Ludus will continue to work with students from the New Jersey-based schools on these joint projects.
Jason Chin, author of the postmortem and now an employee at Creo Ludus, explains how the cooperation worked:
“The Forgotten War was the first game made using this approach. Because we were all experimenting with a new production model, we certainly had our doubts and moments of hesitation. Asking professionals to donate their time to managing a group of students on a one-semester schedule would be (and certainly turned out to be) a big challenge. Even with some setbacks, Seifert’s model may just turn out to be a very effective and rewarding way to teach game design …
Working with the professionals really allowed each student to focus specifically on the part of the game development process that was most aligned with their educational studies. …[T]he advisors directed the project and pushed it out the door, leaving the students able to home in on their skills, like game design and applied programming, rather than be too caught up in scheduling and oversight.
Additionally, we knew this was our chance to work with and learn from real people whom we might work next to one day. The time I spent with this team certainly helped prepare me for the standards, practices, lingo, and attitudes found in a working game studio. (Since graduating, I have become lead technical designer at Creo Ludus and a QA tester at Powerhead Games in New York.)”
To learn more about the making of The Forgotten War
and how students and industry professionals worked together on the project, see the postmortem