Bradley University’s Game Design Program Wins Another National Award

May 21, 2021

Four Bradley students recently took 1st place in the 2021 Computer Simulation & Gaming Conference. Parker DeVenney, Will Bennington, Ryan Springer and Alex Talbot earned awards in the "Physical Games, College" category of the competition for their game Mighty Minotaur.

In Mighty Minotaur, players engage in a cat-and-mouse game in which one player, taking the role of the minotaur, tries to stop the other players from either escaping the labyrinth or assembling a weapon to defend themselves. The students were challenged to collaborate virtually in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic to create this game; some of the students have never met in person.

Tim Hutchings, the student's mentor and a talented game developer in his own right, considers this competitive and challenging experience an important part of a student's education. "I always require my students to submit the games they've designed for class to various competitions," said Hutchings. "This gets them exposure to the industry and gives them the opportunity to actually deliver a project."

Students typically accumulate a great deal of experience by their senior year in Bradley's game design program. For example, each student participates in the program's annual FUSE exhibition, a display open to the public that includes student-created animations, games and unique user experience designs. Some students have even had the opportunity to complete work for NASA.

This type of engagement has earned Bradley increasing recognition for its game design program. This year, the Princeton Review ranked Bradley's new, accelerated one-year master's program in game design and development among the top 25 in the world. The Princeton Review also ranked Bradley's undergraduate program 9th in the nation and the highest-ranked school in Illinois.

"We have good students working through a demanding set of classes," said Hutchings. "We'll win more design challenges in the future."