Portfolios are paramount to a budding game development student. Want to land that dream role? It’s essential to show off your skill and talents.
But a portfolio can be a steep ask of emerging developers. That’s why the team at Ubisoft Toronto created the NEXT initiative: an exclusive opportunity — one that our senior level talents would have loved to have at the outset of their careers — to expose students to production pipelines, constraints, and relevant challenges, while also giving them something to showcase to employers.
The Ubisoft Toronto NEXT challenge is created collaboratively by our studio experts, highlighting seven different disciplines. There are seven apprenticeship slots for students and recent graduates at our studio, where the winners receive valuable hands-on industry experience – in fact, since launching this initiative seven years ago, 73% of past winners hired through NEXT are still employees at Ubisoft Toronto.
The Seven Disciplines
1. 3D Art
In the 3D Art challenge (previously the modelling challenge), applicants will create a 3D video game environment diorama of a scene from an outlined story. The challenge is to incorporate details and complexity that support an interpretation of the scene, and ultimately bring it to life.
In the Animation challenge, applicants will create a 3D CG animation that demonstrates their animation skills. Submissions should highlight attention to detail, use of believable body mechanics, and, of course, creativity.
3. Concept Art
Bring a story to life! In the Concept Art challenge, applicants will create a submission that pays close attention to broad descriptions and important details that will support an interpretation of key visuals.
4. Level Design
Apply design sensibilities across the two-part Level Design challenge, one that represents the production journey a game mission takes — from its earliest “on paper” pitch to its very first appearance “on screen.”
Through this technical gameplay challenge, applicants will create and submit a game made entirely in C++ using a provided API.
6. Technical Art
This challenge is about creating a technical interpretation of an artistic challenge. Technical Art is a unique melding of art and technical knowledge, so applicants will construct the scene described in the 3D Art challenge, and subsequently choose a technical area of focus to further realize the idea.
7. User Interface
This challenge will test an applicant’s grasp of menu and gameplay UI, and is, at its core, a graphic design challenge. We want to see creative and engaging designs that are also universally understandable in a game user interface.
Are you NEXT? Find the full challenge briefs and deadlines at https://toronto.ubisoft.com/next/