Lost love fires Dale to make first ‘relationship’ computer game


Fri, 18 Mar 2016 10:35:00 GMT

Student’s relationship breakdown inspires first ever ‘meaningful’ computer game, now available globally via the leading digital games distribution platform

Dale Green A VIDEO game, which was created to help with the emotions felt during the breakdown of a relationship, is now going global when it becomes available on Steam, the world-leading digital games distribution platform.

Called Samphi, the game has been created by independent games developer, Dale Green (pictured) of Greeny Games Studios and is set to release on Steam on 18 March as Early Access.  Also known as alpha funding, or paid-alpha, Early Access is a funding model in the video game industry, by which consumers purchase a game in the early stages of development.  The funds raised will allow Dale to dedicate more time to development.

It was a year into the creation of Samphi when a relationship Dale was in ended.  The 21-year-old took a break from programming and when he returned he decided he wanted to address coming to terms with the end of a relationship through the game.

“As far as I know Samphi’s genre doesn't have any games with a meaningful story,” said Dale. “So I took the challenge to make the first!”

“My goal now is to create a truly community driven game,” he added.  “All suggestions will be addressed and any content changes/additions will be polled with the players.  If the players don’t want it, it won’t go in.  If they want to see something new, then I’ll make it happen.”

logo The game is a 2D randomly-generated, survival RPG (role-playing game) and features elements such as skills, world-management and a story mode. 

Gameplay begins where you are a lonesome character equipped with nothing but an axe and a shovel.  In free-play, you are free to roam the terrain and create your own world and live your own story.  In story-mode you will ‘travel through broken memories of a failing relationship to try and salvage what’s left’.

For the last four years, Dale has been developing the game in his spare time as well as studying for his BSc (Hons) Computing Games Programming degree. 

It wasn’t until he heard about the University’s Enterprise Placement Year (EPY) that he decided he would concentrate fully on its development for his placement year.

Throughout the Enterprise Placement Year, Greeny Games Studio has been based in The Duke of York Young Entrepreneur Centre and has had the full support of the University’s Enterprise Team.  The team help business ideas come to fruition, by providing access to funding and offer advice and support to students and recent graduates, who are considering a business start-up, self-employment or freelancing.

Developing Samphi has also led Dale to other opportunities.  Throughout its lifetime, Dale has uploaded video tutorials to his channel on YouTube showing other budding game developers a step-by-step guide of how to create content for a video game.  The UK’s leading provider of technology and coding eBooks, Packt Publishing, were so impressed by Dale’s tutorials they approached him to write a book on the subject.  This book has since been published and is called Procedural content generation for C++ game development.

Dale, who currently lives in Bradford, has his sights set on postgraduate study at the University of Huddersfield, by way of a PhD, after he graduates in 2017.  He also hopes to be able to expand Greeny Games Studio and employ a small team of developers, but insists he would still remain in Huddersfield as he has a real passion for the town.

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