Dozens of game developers took part in a special online showcase that was held as part of the Game Developers Berlin event on April 5. Let’s take a look at the contest’s results and its winner, 3D platformer Boti: Byteland Overclocked.
What is GD Berlin Dev Contest?
Game Developers Berlin is a one-day networking event organized by WN Media Group. It was attended by 242 people from 194 companies, with 70% of participants being from Europe.
Sponsored by ByteBrew, the GD Berlin Dev Contest was aimed at helping game developers showcase their projects, share their experience, and gain exposure to industry experts, publishers, and investors.
All participants could choose their favorite game and cast their votes on the WN Hub communication platform. So the winners were determined based on the audience’s choice.
Dev Contest stats and results
- Game creators from 27 countries took part in the online contest. Half of them were from Europe, followed by the CIS (19%) and LATAM (13%) regions.
- Overall, 82 games were showcased at the GD Berlin Dev Contest. 55% of them were made with Unity, followed by Unreal Engine 4 and 5 (41% combined).
- PC was the most popular platform, with 82% of participants making their games for it. 38% and 32% of titles were made for mobile and console, respectively.
- When it comes to genres, Action accounted for 28% of all participating games. The top 5 also includes Platformer (19%%), Arcade (17%), and Adventure (15%).
Meet the winner of the GD Berlin Dev Contest
Based on the participants’ votes, the top three games presented at the showcase are:
- 3rd place — exploration puzzle game The Star Named EOS from Taiwan-based studio Silver Lining;
- 2nd place — fast-paced action roguelike Spiritfall from small indie studio Gentle Giant;
- 1st place — 3D co-op platformer Boti: Byteland Overclocked from Warsaw-based Purple Ray Studio.
We contacted Purple Ray to learn more about the development of Boti and winning the GD Berlin Dev Contest.
Production on Boti, which is the debut project for this aspiring indie studio, started around 15 months ago. Right now, there are 13 people on the team working on the game full time, not to mention some outsource help.
“Our professional backgrounds vary from experienced developers to people who are just starting the gamedev adventure,” Purple Ray said. “Some of the people knew each other from previous projects, especially members of the art team, where most previously worked together on another stylized platformer — Kao The Kangaroo.”
In Boti: Byteland Overclocked, the player controls Boti, a brave data bot who should save the cyberworld of Byteland from bugs and viruses. The team was definitely inspired by classic 3D platformers, saying they are “fans of jumping, collecting stuff, meeting crazy characters, etc. and want to make our mark in this genre.”
“As for the theme of a world inside a computer — as children, we imagine a lot of wonderful things,” Purple Ray said of the inspiration behind the game. “We used that imagination to design a living world inside the computer, filled with cities, bots, and their adventures. And yeah, watching TRON also helped.”
Speaking of designing the game and its mechanics, Purple Ray noted that the most difficult part in preparing a platform game is to keep it both easy in understanding and engaging, not to mention that the visuals should appeal to the target audience. “So if anyone tells you that making colorful, charming 3D platformers is easy, they’re lying!”
Like any other indie developer, Purple Ray Studio has faced some challenges along the way, from getting the team together to preparing production pipelines. “Additionally, there is also a lot of work around the game that doesn’t seem apparent at the start and is usually not planned, contacts with potential partners, preparations for different industry events, etc., pretty much a big part of the ‘marketing stuff’,” the team noted. “Not to mention the ongoing worldwide inflation crisis which has hit the gamedev industry too.”
Currently, Boti has no publisher, but Purple Ray Studio doesn’t rule out the possibility of working with one in the future as the team is still looking for marketing assistance, the game’s launch, and porting it to other platforms. So that developers themselves wouldn’t have to worry about promo activities and other non-development things.
As for their participation in the GD Berlin Dev Contest, Purple Ray said they received a lot of feedback about Boti. “We have not participated in many similar events, but we are sure that this win is first of many more to come,” the team said, hoping for a bright future for their debut project.