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Introducing Sam Oz

News

With 20 years of experience in original music composition — inclusive of which has been work on Valiant Hearts, Child of Light, Assassins Creed & more recently, The Division — French composer Sam Oz is now a part of Higher Eclectic’s indie music fraternity.

Proficient in playing the Drums, Piano, Guitar, Ukulele, Djembe and Xylophone among the more modern Computer-based music software, Oz will now be seen bringing the indie Game community herein his original music work from projects past & forthcoming with exclusive insight into their formation, in an attempt to appeal to its Game Developers, Artists, YouTubers & other game talent present.

It’s been over two years since Oz parted ways with Ubisoft, he states, choosing not to go into his reasons solely in respect of his agreement with the Game Development giant. In the months that ensued, Oz turned indie — working on numerous, as yet unreleased independent games & animated shorts that have spanned genres such as action-adventure, horror, futuristic, retro & even a personal tribute to Studio Ghibli.. His latest project, Gadan Games’ My Last Friday is set to launch a Kickstarter campaign soon.

‘The indie scene offers a lot more freedom and artistic expression — and free expression is what I’m constantly seeking. A large number of quality projects are created by the indie community alone and at this point of my life, I have a deep-rooted desire to be amidst it’, he confides. His relationship with music began by learning the Drums, which soon progressed to the Guitar, Ukulele and eventually, Computer Aided Music. ‘It has been  a whole 20 years playing music in a multitude of styles. Despite being particularly fond of classical music, I also create pop-rock, metal, ethnic & electro music to name a few.’

As is customary of every artist here, Oz will now be seen building a presence within the community — opting to kick things off with a tune that couldn’t be more apt for this time of the year. Unnamed, this little number was composed by the maestro himself for one of The Division’s first trailers to hit the Internet back in 2014 after its E3 2013 debut.

Oz’s thoughts about the piece though, are surprising. ‘It was not my best project because I was leaving shortly after I started working on it. I still wanted to do more, add more to it so that it could match The Division’s universe — but sadly, I never got to finish it to my liking. Moreover, this track music is not in the final OST despite it being in one of Ubisoft’s first trailers for the game.’

Fascinating isn’t it? Expect a lot more insight into his work as he blends into the community here. ‘I’m comfortable with a variety of genres and look forward to collaborating with some of the other exceptional indie game musicians & game developers here’, he admits. Meanwhile, Oz now has his own Higher Eclectic Spacewhich contains an elaborate summary of his work & capabilities while also serving to document his posts on the community henceforth.

Of course, all of this is so that he can contribute to your own creations — Games, YouTube channels, you name it — at rates that he states are more than flexible and that vary on the basis of budget & size of the indie game entity hiring him. Be sure you get down there and give him a shout via the member forums, The Bulletin, now.

AlienPixel & Their Polandball Trip To Space

News

Bucharest, Romania based indie game developers, AlienPixel & their single player expansion of the Polandball universe are the latest in a lineup of new additions to Higher Eclectic Ground’s Indie Game community.

Co-founded by Andrei Jifcovici & Sergiu Craitoiu at a local McDonald’s back in June, 2015 — the team constituent of ex-Electronic Arts Romania employee Andrei Simion, veteran music composer Lex Dumitru and freelancing graphic designer Ingrid Juncanariu, debuted here on the 3rd of February with the trailer that accompanied their game’s Play Store release on the 5th of January from earlier this year.

Based on the Polandball internet meme turned comic series — that constitutes spherical balls representative of the world’s various countries mocking each other’s stereotypes, history & doings in broken English — Polandball: Can Into Space features Poland’s own country ball on its quest to reach the moon, despite the constant mockery of other countries. Players of course, must pilot said quest while in control of a near-defunct rocketship — navigating other countries, mid-air junk, collecting money & parts along the way.

These parts & money come in handy considering that making it to the moon in a single go is impossible; players will run out of fuel, crash & burn several hundreds of times — returning to their little garages to tweak and buy new parts for their rockets each time before trying again. However as Alien Pixel themselves state, not all of the 25, visually intricate country balls are present to harm the player — meaning users will have to learn to use the friendly ones to their advantage. Moreover the customization itself is rather layered, with the rocket comprising of 9 tiers of tech that can be upgraded with several of the available 56 items and ‘attributes.’

Can Into Space was the direct result of an idea to create a Countryball inspired game, as harboured by music composer Dumitru whom Jifcovici had convinced Craitoiu into meeting back in June last year. Before they knew it, a team was being formed — one that went through two different artists until Ingrid Juncanariu came their way and designed the game’s core art style in but a couple of weeks.

It was here however, Craitoiu admits, where the team made their biggest mistake — opting to wait until game completion to market their game, for fear of their Intellectual Property being stolen or criticised before it even came to fruition. This fear carried on well into Ubisoft’s November Game Jam last year, wherein the team kept to themselves to develop on their Can Into Space’s mechanics & art without interacting or marketing it to any of the industry specialists present there.

Craitoiu and the rest of the team’s eyes would open only post stumbling upon a chance article on the internet after the event, one that advised indie developers on marketing their games. It was here that the game started to not only develop for itself a full-fledged website, but merchandise, a social media presence and eventually a video trailer — before debuting on Steam Greenlight along with a Google Play release on the 6th of January this year. Greenlight approval arrived in less than a month. with Craitoui going on to document the team’s experiences with botched marketing for others to learn from via an article on Gamasutra.

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READ: Marketing Ideas For Your Indie Game By Sergiu Craitoiu

Now, post applying for an Apple App Store release last weekend pending approval, the team intend to move into the game’s Steam release phase — in preparation for its Early Access release sometime by the end of February or early March. This Early Access release of course, stems out of the team’s desire to add more to the gameplay in terms of both missions and achievements — the progress of which will be shared by means of screenshots, video snippets and more on the Community here.

Additionally, they will also be on the lookout for both YouTubers & Writers both within and outside the community — in the hopes of them streaming, covering and providing honest feedback on Can Into Space. To follow all of that and learn more about the game’s history, development and features then — be sure to tune in to their newly created Higher Eclectic Space here. Those willing to get in touch with them can do so by dropping them an e-mail or via our member forums, the Bulletin.

Polandball: Can Into Space is now available as a free download on the Android Store. Be sure to give it a whirl and leave the team your thoughts on the game in the comments below.

 

The 2016 BSRTC PRO Series’ Video Game Teams Sponsorship Plan

BSRTC PRO Series, Other

 

2016/03/16 22:59:59
To Season Launch

Team Sponsors Onboard

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1.      Introduction

 

Following the success of its biggest season yet – Season Nine that spanned 35 weeks from 19th March, 2015 to 3rd December 2015, featured 50 Drivers, 11 teams, a $10,000 prize fund and a MotorsTV broadcast – the BSRTC PRO Series is already looking to outdo itself this year.

Having recently received IRacing’s support & sponsorship that brings with it 130 hours worth of Motors TV International broadcasts over Season 10, as announced here, the British Sim Racers are now looking to increase its prize fund in keeping with the increasingly large number of drivers entering their names for the season. It hopes to facilitate this via a more rigid Team Sponsorship structure as opposed to the previous year.

In observance of the response Higher Eclectic Ground has received from its independent video game community over the final month of the season – wherein its members were granted the opportunity to sponsor a driver for a race for a small fee and advertise their games during the races’ livestreams and televisions broadcasts – it proposes to create a stronger sim-racing based platform for independent developers to market and showcase their games over 2016.

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READ: A quick overview of the coverage received by our Community’s Independent Game creators during last season’s race broadcasts.

This platform will have the BSRTC PRO Series’ quality racing at its core while involving established mainstream Video Game entities such as publishers and news outlets as sponsors of racing teams within the Series. The purpose behind this is to attract a larger more varied Video Gaming audience that is not confined to the sim-racing population of IRacing alone.

A larger, varied Video Gaming audience will in turn facilitate the metamorphosis of the BSRTC PRO Series into a widely recognized video gaming event – allowing greater exposure and incentive for the indie game community to debut its creations and avail of exposure like never before.

In accordance with this vision, the BSRTC PRO Series has laid out a format for its 2016 season through the course of this document – detailing sponsorship fees and subsequent splitting of the prize fund.

 

2.      General Season Structure.

 

Season 10 of the BSRTC PRO Series will span 35 weeks from the 17th of March, 2016 to the 8th of December, 2016.

Competing, will be 13 teams of 3 drivers and 2 reserves each. These reserve drivers will be utilized in the absence of either of the primary 3 drivers, in the event of a team race or a race grid that allows for more than 3 drivers per team in general.

Over 40 Drivers have already specified their interest in racing over the next season, by making an initial entry payment of $30. These drivers will now be classified as PRO(Professionals) or AM(Amateurs) by the BSRTC’s administration based on past seasons’ qualification and race performances.

The drivers will now be segregated into 13 teams – each of which can be either a PRO team or an AM team. A PRO team will consist of no AM drivers while an AM team may consist of one PRO driver.

Each of these teams will be competing for their respective shares of a $20,000 prize fund – twice as that of the BSRTC PRO Series’ previous season. Just as last time, this prize fund will be split among the season’s various winners as per a pre-determined structure listed below –


PRO Team Championship Winners.

1st place – $6,000

2nd place – $3,000

3rd place – $1,500

AM Team Championship Winners.

1st place – $3,000

2nd place – $2,00022923874426_c24625e570_h

PRO Drivers’ Championship Winners.

1st place – $2,000

2nd place – $700

3rd place – $300

AM Drivers’ Championship Winner.

1st place – $1, 000

Safest Driver Award.

$500

Total = $20,000

This prize money will be accumulated from –

  • The Drivers’ fees of $8 per race meet.
  • Team Sponsors.

While the event will be commentated and broadcast by ApexRacing TV on YouTube and IRacing Live as the previous season, highlights of the races will also be featured on MotorsTV International over 45 episodes with 2 repeats each that comes with the series’ IRacing title sponsorship.

 

3.      Sponsorship Structure.

 

Sponsorship opportunities have been made flexible to allow for ventures of varying budgets to gain coverage in the best way possible.12510245_1539013593078409_8334005933808583871_n

 

3.1    The BSRTC PRO Series Championship Title Sponsor.

 

The title sponsorship package has been picked up by IRacing themselves, granting them the privilege of having their name associated with Season 10 of the BSRTC PRO Series in all media and communications namely –

  1. TV, Youtube and IRacing broadcasts where their name and logo will be displayed on the race overlay at all times.
  2. Mentions by the commentary team each time the Championship is introduced during the broadcast.
  3. Social media posts that will be made by both the BSRTC and the Higher Eclectic Ground community in relation to the PRO Series’ tenth season.
  4. Subsequent magazine articles in relation to the PRO Series’ 10th season including the Season 9 review that is scheduled to be written for Sim Racer magazine by Higher Eclectic Ground.

 

 

3.2    Full Team Sponsorships – Intended for mainstream video game entities (Established Gaming News websites, Publishers, Gaming Hardware companies).

 

Every team sponsor will be granted the opportunity to sponsor either a PRO/AM team alone or a PRO and AM team together for a full season. Due to the competitive nature of the series, every team is likely to have at least one high profile driver ensuring all sponsors obtain adequate and equal coverage.

Sponsors attain naming as well as vehicle livery rights over their respective teams although the degree to which they can control their teams’ liveries will be dependent on the sponsor packages they opt for. The available packages and their provisions are listed below.


12644733_1559761791014056_2159474836224326746_nThe £500 or $760 package – Sponsor One PRO or One AM Team for a Full Season.
  • To be paid once at the start of the season.
  • Grants sponsors a PRO team or AM team for the full season. The BSRTC’s administration will assign an existing team of 3 full plus 2 reserve drivers to the sponsors unless they wish to sponsor a pre-determined team.
  • Grants sponsors a team livery that will either be designed by the Sponsors themselves as per a template determined by the BSRTC or by the BSRTC itself, as per the Sponsors’ requirements.
  • The liveries of the vehicles however will have to leave space on the roof and sides of the car to allow for Per Race Driver/Team sponsors (Explained in the next section) to advertise their games/products over the course of the season on a driver’s or team’s vehicles.
The £800 or $1,210 package – Sponsor Both a PRO and an AM Team for a Full Season.
  • To be paid once at the start of the season.
  • Grants sponsors both, a PRO team and an AM team for the full
    season
    . The BSRTC’s administration will assign existing teams of 3 full plus 2 reserve drivers to the sponsors unless they wish to sponsor pre-determined teams.
  • Grants sponsors a team livery that will either be designed by the Sponsors themselves as per a template determined by the BSRTC or by the BSRTC itself, as per the Sponsors’ requirements.
  • The liveries of the vehicles however will have to leave space on the roof and sides of the car to allow for Per Race Driver/Team sponsors (Explained in the next section) to advertise their games/products over the course of the season on a driver’s or team’s vehicles.
The £1,000 or $1,520 package – Sponsor One PRO or One AM Team with Full Livery Control for a Full Season.
  • To be paid once at the start of the season.
  • Grants sponsors a PRO team or an AM team for the full season. The BSRTC’s administration will assign an existing team of 3 full plus 2 reserve drivers to the sponsors unless they wish to sponsor a pre-determined team.
  • Grants sponsors a team livery that will either be designed by the Sponsors themselves as per a template determined by the BSRTC or by the BSRTC itself, as per the Sponsors’ requirements.
  • Grants sponsors complete control over the sides and roofs of cars.
The £1,500 or $2,280 package – Sponsor Both a PRO and an AM Team with Full Livery Control for a Full Season.
  • To be paid once at the start of the season.
  • Grants sponsors both, a PRO team and an AM team for the full season. The BSRTC’s administration will assign existing teams of 3 full plus 2 reserve drivers to the sponsors unless they wish to sponsor pre-determined teams.
  • Grants sponsors a team livery that will either be designed by the Sponsors themselves as per a template determined by the BSRTC or by the BSRTC itself, as per the Sponsors’ requirements.
  • Grants sponsors complete control over the sides and roofs of cars.

Note that the BSRTC’s livery template will also specify the amount of space that needs to be left on the sides and roof of a vehicle.

 

 

3.3    Per Race Driver/Team Sponsorships – Intended For Higher Eclectic Ground’s Independent Game Developers & Other Members During The Course Of The Season.

 

The £5 per race package – One Car Roof Spot for One Race:BSRTC-Showdown-Sean

Payable on a per-race meeting basis (one meeting equals three races), this package grants a sponsor a spot on a single driver’s roof for the duration of one race – over which a logo of their game/company can be advertised.

The £12 per race package – Full Team Roof Spot for One Race:

Payable on a per-race basis (one meeting equals three races), this package grants a sponsor a spot on the roofs of each of the vehicles of a team of 3 full time drivers plus 2 reserves for the duration of one race – over which a logo of their game/company can be advertised.

The £10 per race package – One Car Side Panel Spot for One Race:

Payable on a per-race basis (one meeting equals three races), this package grants a sponsor a spot on a single driver’s side panel for the duration of one race – over which a logo of their game/company can be advertised.

The £25 per race package: – Full Team Side Panel Spot for One Race:

Payable on a per-race basis (one meeting equals three races), this package grants a sponsor a spot on the side panels of a team of 3 full time drivers plus 2 reserves for the duration of a race – over which a logo of their game/company can be advertised.

The aim, is to have mainstream Video game establishments sponsor full teams via either of the Full Team packages listed above for an entire season, while Independent game developers & other members from the Higher Eclectic Ground community will advertise their games on car roofs via the Per race driver/team sponsorship packages.

Additionally, the ad slots for independent developers and television pop-ups will return – preserving the sim-racing event’s vision as a platform for video game exposure.

 

4.      Deadline.

 

There is no deadline to announce one’s interest in participating as Racing Team sponsors; Accommodations can be made mid-season as well provided there are sufficient slots available. To do, simply leave us a message via our Contact Form.  The Per Race Driver/Team sponsorships of course, can be availed of at any time during the season.

The BSRTC PRO Series is a long time partner of the Higher Eclectic Ground community, with us even providing the sim-racing community with weekly race reports of the series. To learn more, drop by their Partner’s Page.

Isle of Bass’ January: The Voice of Kathryn MacLean

Features

One of our oldest partnerships is that with the Isle of Bass, an independent music label covering genres spanning DnB, dubstep and electro, with an ideology similar to that of ours – to showcase independent talent in need of appreciation. Founded in 2012 by music enthusiasts Craig Evans and Grant MacDonald, the Isle of Bass has garnered an audience of over 10,000 across social media, and featured almost 500 artists to date.

The collaboration began with this Video Game Community’s best interests in mind – the Isle of Bass would provide the Community’s game developers and game related media creators with access to unique indie music talent, to help with tasks from composing original background scores to simply providing royalty free music for use in YouTube videos and Game trailers.

Over the two months since, the collaboration has brought the community tracks by one EDM musician Ghost With Paranoia and Acid Jazz musician Tanko. This year however, we kicked things off with a vocalist, Kathryn MacLean, as a breath of fresh air and boy, was it a fun month!

Evans put us in touch with MacLean, a Scottish singer-songwriter and definitely no stranger to the underground music scene. She’d already lent her voice to countless tracks prior making selecting her top four tracks to be featured during the month, quite the task. Regardless, as her tenure on the Community as an Isle of Bass featured artist came to an end earlier this week, we thought it best to give you a quick rundown of her showcased creations thus far.

Vendetta
A track by Dead:Lung, a Malvern based dubstep producer, was chosen as her first. An electronic track infused with melodic 8-bit sounds, she also wrote the lyrics on this one.

 

 

Fire
Electro-Light and Ragequit’s ‘Fire’ was the follow-up track; a fast paced tune with a ‘chill’ drop, and some great melodic work by Ragequit.

 

 


What Could Have Been
An energetic electro house collaboration between MacLean and EDM producer Aerodynamic.

 


 

The Edge
An EDM track, again by Electro-Light, that MacLean had recorded vocals for. It was the first track she had a hand in — that reached a million views.

 


 

Kathryn’s vocals give every track a unique twist!’, explains Evans when asked about his experiences working with MacLean under the label. ’I’ve been sent music before, listened to it and immediately thought “I know that voice” and it turns out to be hers. It is just a shame that she isn’t always credited correctly for the work that she does. I hope one day that vocals is something she can do full time as it is something she is excellent at!’

MacLean’s Higher Eclectic Space of course will continue to exist, meaning should any of our members wish to use her voice in any of her creations – a quick overview of her work, social media profiles and contact details can be accessed via said Space.

In the meantime, Evans tells us that he’s hard at work on singling out the Isle of Bass’ next artist to be showcased within the community for February. When asked for a hint of what’s coming up, he teased, ‘Quite possibly House music with lush vocals or the deep dark side of Dubstep!’

As always, to keep in tune with how that develops, learn more of the Isle of Bass, prior artists and even get in touch with them, drop by their Partner’s page.