CBBC competiton gives children opportunity to design app-based game

Children are amazingly creative and imaginative and we're excited and curious to see what the Appsolute Genius audience invent for us. This is a thrilling opportunity for someone to grow the germ of an idea into a full blown game that their friends, family and the rest of the UK will be able to download and play. We're expecting to unearth the next big games designers of the future.Cheryl Taylor, Controller, CBBC
Date: 07.10.2014     Last updated: 07.10.2014 at 10.15
Category: CBBC
  • HRH Prince Andrew, Duke of York KG, to chair panel of judges

CBBC is giving the next generation of digital content creators an amazing opportunity to design a game that will be turned into a free app and released across the UK for all kids to play.

Award-winning CBBC stars Richard McCourt and Dominic Wood (Dick & Dom) will kick off the competition on Tuesday today during the first episode of their new CBBC series, Appsolute Genius.

The competition - which forms part of the BBC's Make it Digital initiative to inspire a new generation to get creative with coding, programming and digital technology - will run alongside this new factual series from CBBC Productions where McCourt and Wood discover the geniuses whose ideas, creations and discoveries have shaped the world of coding, computer programming and gaming.

The competition is open to 6-12 year olds and the winning idea will be chosen by an panel chaired by The Duke of York, who is involved in a number of initiatives to support young people developing digital skills, including iDEA and Code Club.

Other judges include Cheryl Taylor, Controller of CBBC; Alice Taylor, Founder/CEO of MakieLab and Digital Games expert; Divinia Knowles COO/CFO of Mind Candy, creators of Moshi Monsters; Jake Manion Creative Director at Aardman Animations; Joseph Garrett, AKA Stampy, Minecraft commentator and YouTube sensation; and Peter Vesterbacka, game developer and the former Chief Marketing Officer of Rovio, who played a central role in creating the Angry Birds phenomenon.

They will be looking for ideas that are unique and original, have humour, are fantastical and out of this world and which are exciting – the idea should get people excited about playing the game.

The competition – which forms part of the BBC’s Make it Digital initiative to inspire a new generation to get creative with coding, programming and digital technology - opens on Tuesday 7 October and closes on Thursday 23 October.

All entries must be received by CBBC by 6pm on this date or will not be considered. Full terms and conditions and an entry pack can be found on the CBBC website from 7 October at bbc.co.uk/cbbc

The winning entry will be announced in the week beginning 18 November and the winner and the process of developing their idea from paper into an actual app, will be filmed for a special Appsolute Genius programme to be shown in March 2015. Together with the winner, Dick and Dom will travel to Aardman Animations to see how the winning game idea is developed and made into a gaming app.

Controller of CBBC, Cheryl Taylor, says: “Children are amazingly creative and imaginative and we're excited and curious to see what the Appsolute Genius audience invent for us. This is a thrilling opportunity for someone to grow the germ of an idea into a full blown game that their friends, family and the rest of the UK will be able to download and play. We're expecting to unearth the next big games designers of the future.”

Also coming up in the Appsolute Genius series, Dick & Dom will meet, examine or explore three different geniuses each week who have influenced the gaming landscape. From Walt Disney and Sonic the Hedgehog’s Yuji Naka, to JRR Tolkein and Jim Henson, they learn the facts and science behind the work and take up practical challenges that demonstrate how the genius has helped to shape the world of gaming. The series will also feature Toru Iwatani, creator of Pacman; Allan Alcorn, creator of Pong; Brian Henson and the Henson Creature Workshop and Stampy, Minecraft commentator and YouTube sensation.

Stampy says: “I am amazed every day by the imagination of children and what they can do in the game of Minecraft. I can't wait to see what they have come up with when designing an entire game from scratch."

The executive producer of Appsolute Genius is Dympna Jackson, with Jennifer Morrison Series Producing and CBBC Production’s Interactive Manager Dominic Atherton overseeing the competition. The series was developed by CBBC Production’s in house development team and co-commissioned by BBC Learning based at Salford’s MediaCityUK.

Watch Stampylonghead launch CBBC Appsolute Genius competition on YouTube

JC4