Aspiring Saudi video game developers hope to make it big in Japan

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The initiative aims to boost the exchange of gaming technologies and artistic knowledge, while enhancing the training and development of human resources. (Photos/Supplied)
Updated 13 April 2019

Aspiring Saudi video game developers hope to make it big in Japan

  • Joint technology initiatives to broaden relationship between the two countries
  • The Saudi trainees will visit gaming companies to learn about Japanese games and the creative processes behind them

RIYADH: Saudi video game developers are taking part in a newly launched two-week training program in Japan to learn the latest tricks of the trade.
The special workshop was set up in the wake of the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the Kingdom’s General Commission of Audiovisual Media (GCAM) and the Japanese Cooperation Center for the Middle East (JCCME) to broaden the relationship between the two countries.
The agreement aims to boost the exchange of gaming technologies and artistic knowledge, while enhancing the training and development of human resources.
The training program has been organized by the GCAM in collaboration with the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, as well as Manga Productions, a Saudi digital animation and video game company and subsidiary of the Misk Foundation.
Manga Productions produces creative and positive content through video games, animations, and comics and plans to launch several animation and video game projects in the near future promoting innovative Saudi messages internationally.
The company has also been working on producing globally competitive creative animation movies and short series. It is currently preparing the launch of 2-D and 3-D animation movies, in partnership with established studios, which are expected to be screened on international TV channels and at cinemas in the next few years.
In collaboration with leading gaming developer, SNK, Manga Productions is making its mark in the growing gaming development sector.
The Japanese training workshop includes lectures on game planning and design skills delivered by a group of expert game makers, and presentations on the practical application of skills. The Saudi trainees will also visit gaming companies to learn about Japanese games and the creative processes behind them.
A statement by Manga Productions said: “Since 2017 we have been supporting the development of creative talents, animation programs, video games, and other programs.
“The programs that have been most popular among the aspiring game developers included a training workshop with Toei Animation, one of the most famous and oldest animation companies in the world, in which 11 Saudi students were sent to its studios in Japan, as well as our own Manga Art Lab that was launched earlier in 2019 for two months in Riyadh, where Manga Productions gathered experts in animation and comics (Manga) in collaboration with Misk Academy.”
A GCAM spokesperson said the training program would “teach Saudi innovators how to develop the skills needed to plan and create video games, while learning how to design and ultimately develop games.
“The aspiring Saudi game developers will work with fellow Japanese gaming students to collaborate in creating games using software engines.”
Along with being guided by some of Japan’s most established game developers, the training program will feature lecturers from Tokyo’s Nippon University.
Trainees will visit a number of gaming companies to get an insight into the practical application skills they learn, as well as acquiring techniques into how Japanese games are being developed.
Trainees will also visit television station, TV Tokyo, and the Bandai Namco Amusement VR Zone to learn about the latest virtual reality technology that is being developed in Japan.


Saudi, UAE officials discuss Hajj preparations

Updated 40 min 52 sec ago

Saudi, UAE officials discuss Hajj preparations

  • Mashat stressed the Saudi government’s keenness to serve pilgrims

MAKKAH: Deputy Hajj and Umrah Minister Abdul Fattah Mashat received in his office in Makkah on Tuesday the director general of the General Authority for Islamic Affairs in the UAE and his delegation.

The meeting came within the framework of early preparations for the next Hajj season, including coordinating arrangements for pilgrims and services provided for them.

During the meeting, issues of common interest related to Hajj were discussed, at the forefront of which were the facilities provided to pilgrims and easy completion of their procedures.

Then an official meeting was held to discuss arrangements and early preparations to serve pilgrims from the UAE. Subsequently, Mashat and the director general signed an agreement for Hajj arrangements.

In a press statement after the signing, Mashat stressed the Saudi government’s keenness to serve pilgrims.

The director general thanked the Saudi government and all those in charge of the Hajj system for their great efforts.

“We see excellence and advancement in the Hajj management system and by Saudi human cadres,” he said.

“We wish them all the best, and we in the UAE are part of this system and a partner in the service of pilgrims.”