term: spring | date: 8th march, 2021

The AGP Detour Bus has received a grant from Oculus Launch Pad and been featured in the latest Oculus Developer Spotlight. It is a casual construction-comedy game, designed to bring accessibility to the VR space. Players build winding highways around themselves to take the Flowers family on a psychedelic road trip across post-infrastructure America. Read the interview to learn about the game’s inspirations, early development process at USC Games, and commitment to accessibility. Detour Bus launches this summer!

Our heartfelt congratulations to the team of Detour Bus! To learn more about Detour Bus and its development, check out their spotlight over at Oculus.

USC Trojan Esports Hearthstone Varsity Team is holding rolling tryouts for both Battlegrounds and Standard Modes!

TES is looking for new players to join. They do not have a minimum MMR or Constructed rank, so feel free to reach out to Jason Jiang on Discord and fill out their interest form!

Interest Form || Jason Jiang: jjxtx#2093

IndieCade is inviting game creators from around the world to make games that explore solutions to address a rapidly changing planet. Together we can make a difference!

We believe this generation of creators cares deeply about the environment and has the power to inspire action through games. The theme of this jam is: Clean Energy solutions.

IndieCade hopes to see games that include:

  • Climate justice
  • Clean energy jobs
  • Capturing the wind
  • Solar panels on every rooftop
  • Transportation
  • Green manufacturing & building
  • Climate policy
  • Solarpunk/speculative design

Join the Jam

Last Week

Announcing the release of LoFi Hip Hop Worlds To Study In: chill 3D worlds full of unique study spots with Lofi Hip Hop music and ASMR sounds. You can explore them to relax while you take a break from studying. When it’s time to study again, you can set a timer and put these worlds in the background. To help you focus, they will continue to provide relaxing sounds and beats with no ads.

This project was designed and developed by Israel Jones and Matthew Hamilton, students at the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts and Rossier School of Education, in Richard Lemarchand’s MFA class. Sound design is by Kaley Markes at the Berklee School of Music. Music curation is by Israel Jones and Noah Brown from Berklee.

The design is based on research about player experiences with mindfulness in Walden, A Game and the Headspace app. Matthew collaborated on this research with Tracy Fullerton from the USC Game Innovation Lab and Betsy DiSalvo from Georgia Tech. Findings will be presented at HCI International ’21.

Congratulations, Israel and Matthew on the release! Be sure to download your copy from itch.io.

The deadline to apply for SCA General Scholarships is Tuesday, March 2nd. Several other scholarship and grant applications are also due on March 2nd. Do not miss out on an opportunity to submit your work for consideration. See the Festivals section for more information on what is due.

On March 2nd, Summer Courses will open for registration. Please note: CTIN 202 Foundations of Game Development is an offering through the SCA Summer Programs office​, and is available for High School students only. If you have a High Schooler in your life who would like to begin their game design journey, please let them know!

Wednesday, March 10th, 7:00PM – 9:00PM

Game Tasting is a weekly event featuring curated tabletop games (in Tabletop Simulator) with USC Games students and faculty. Come, have fun, and learn a new tabletop game every week!

Since we were unable to do so last week, this week we’re going to play Lovecraft Letter, a card management game of small hands and cosmic horrors. If you’re familiar with the 2012 hit Love Letter, you will recognize the basic gameplay here: on your turn, you pick between just two cards and play its effects, while trying to prevent other players from guessing your remaining card. This newer variant adds a sanity mechanic which creates another layer of complexity that makes the game much more interesting. Join us Wednesday at 7:00 PM PST for a glimpse at eldritch forbidden knowledge with 2017’s Lovecraft Letter.

*Students & Faculty, look out for more information in our USC Games Weekly Access Guide

Wednesday, March 10th, 7:00PM – 9:30PM

An alum of our very own IMGD MFA program, Steve Cha knows how to make games. With work showcased at Sundance, IGF, and IndieCade, Steve has brought his design and narrative expertise to studios like Tango and Hidden Variable Studios. According to Squanch Games, his current home, Steve “claims the key to breaking into the industry is showing a lot of passion by begging, pleading and drooling”;  Steve also apparently likes McDonald’s Chicken McNuggets a lot. If that intrigues you, why not meet Steve during CTIN-463 this Wednesday, March 10th at 7pm PST?

*Students & Faculty, look out for more information in our USC Games Weekly Access Guide