Brains Eden festival is going global in 2014

Published: 27 June 2014 at 16:06

Canadian team gives truly international flavour to Anglia Ruskin games event

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Over 100 talented young games designers will be descending on Cambridge on 4 July to compete in a 48-hour Games Jam, one of the highlights of the Brains Eden Gaming Festival at Anglia Ruskin University.

And this year the competition has a truly international flavour, with teams flying in from Belgium, Sweden, Spain, the Netherlands and even as far afield as Canada.  The 27 teams will be battling it out to produce the most exciting and innovative computer game in just 48 hours, with the awards ceremony taking place in the Ruskin Gallery on 7 July.

A group of industry experts will judge the games and award prizes – which include tablets, licences for specialist programming software and valuable internships at ARM and PlayStation First – to the winners. 

Andy Sandham, Design Lecturer at Breda University of Applied Sciences in the Netherlands, is returning to Cambridge with another team of students.  He said:

“The comprehensive organisation allows the students to focus on the games, and the festival fosters a ‘team vibe’ where everyone helps out.  
“Also, I cannot overstate the benefits of Brains Eden in promoting and fostering relationships between the attending UK companies and our students.  In a word, Brains Eden is invaluable!”

This year will also see 2013’s winning team ‘Breathing Bits’ return to mentor students while they create their games.  Since winning last year, two team members have secured full-time employment in the games industry with Guerrilla Cambridge and DICE.  

Nils Ruisch said:

“Since last Brains Eden I have been busy graduating from my study at the NHTV [in the Netherlands] where I studied International Game Architecture and Design.  During the internship I won at Brains Eden I did an art test for an environment art position and got the job!  These days I’m happily working as an artist at Guerrilla Cambridge.”  

This year’s event also features a BAFTA-supported Brains Symposium, which will include keynote talks delivered by industry veteran Andy Payne, and Mike Bithell, creator of the hugely successful and BAFTA Award-winning indie game, ‘Thomas Was Alone’, as well as networking and workshops hosted by ARM, UKIE and Guerrilla Cambridge. Places are limited for this event, and to book a ticket, please visit

Brains Eden is now six years old and is run by Games Eden, the computer games developer network for the East of England and Creative Front Cambridgeshire, which is part of Anglia Ruskin. 

The event is backed by key industry leaders including ARM, Guerrilla Cambridge, Playstation First, Frontier Developments, Jagex and national support from BAFTA and Ukie.  For more information, please visit