Educational Spotlight: Staffordshire University

By Luis Cataldi

Staffordshire University

Department: Games Design 
Program Description: Staffordshire University
Staffordshire University is a university based in the midlands in the United Kingdom, it has been offering games development courses now for ten years, we have a range of successful awards including:
BSc (Hons) Computer Games Design
BA (Hons) Games Art
BSc (Hons) Computer Gameplay Design and Production
BSc (Hons) Computer Games Design and Programming
Staffordshire University has created many successful graduates that have worked all over the world in indie through to AAA studio including: Naughty Dog, Rare, Creative Assembly, Rockstar, CCP and Ubisoft more can be found on our Honour Roll:



The University is home to the Epic Games Centre a partnership between Epic Games and Staffordshire University offering a 75 seat games development centre offering world leading Unreal Engine teaching and learning.


For more information please visit:




Staffordshire University


Instructor Spotlight:

Educator #1 JAMES BUTCHER (SENIOR LECTURER) – James Butcher is a senior lecturer and module leader of multiple game art modules, his skills are primarily focused in environment art production. He is responsible for creation of the Epic Games Centre at Staffordshire University and managing the partnership with Epic games, he also leads industry outreach for the department. James also works as an environment artist for Teotle Studios on their game Solus in Unreal Engine 4.
Educator #2 GREG PENNINCK (SENIOR LECTURER) – Greg Penninck is a Senior Lecturer and Award Leader for Computer Games Design. Greg has over ten years of games development experience working for multiple studios. Greg has been involved with the evolution of Staffordshire Universities courses and fundamental to the direction of the 3D and Unreal Engine curriculums. Outside of term Greg leads teams of students through Staffordshire Universities Annual Boot Camp, producing Mini games using the Unreal Engine.

Student Spotlight:

Alexey Zemskov – Alex had worked on his final year project “Cathedral Island” for 24 weeks using Unreal engine 4. He created a strong technical foundation to work easily with materials and lighting within the engine. His vision was to create a large open world environment that could be navigated in real time. Unreal Engine acted as the perfect tool for realizing such an ambitious project.

Cathedral Island 1

Cathedral Island 2

Created with Unreal Engine 4, 3D Studio Max, Zbrush, Photoshop  
“The project wouldn’t see the light of day without fantastic support from lecturers at Staffordshire University and utilization of such incredible and robust tool that is Unreal Engine 4. It was an incredible challenge to develop an entire environment within a specific timeframe, but with all feedback that was received over an entire production process, it appeared that with proper planning and decent technical knowledge it is all about being creative and having fun whether you are modelling, texturing or implementing assets into the engine.” 

Group Student Work:


Hot Cross Bunnies

Hot Cross Bunnies

Hot Cross Bunnies is a fast paced, local-multiplayer party game for up to 4 players of all ages. The goal is to survive the most brutal chilli-eating contest to date.
After choosing from a large selection of characters, players must dash through the levels to gather cooling items to reduce the effect of the brutal chili. With a barrage of power ups at their disposal, players can jump, bump, freeze and air-strike their enemies and outlive the competition in a variety of intricate and dynamic level environments.
The stylized game brings the power of Unreal Engine to gamers of all ages and abilities.
Get ‘em while they’re hot!
Created as part of the Junior / Senior Collaborative Games Development and Testing Module.  The game was created using Unreal Engine 4, 3ds Max, Photoshop and Zbrush.
Core Team members:
Brian Buckley, Matthew Tonks, Nichal Aracchande, Andrew Barlow, Thomas Bartholomew, Samuel Beal, Jack Bennett, Thomas Brannan, Thomas Brittain, Luke Cleaver-Dowsett, Andrew Crake, Jonathan Edward D'elia, Matthew Dilworth, Thomas Edwards, Alexander Francis, Joshua Johnson, Lukas Jurco, Christopher Mooney, Nicholas Morrey, Adam Poulton, Curtis Reantus, William Reid, Amy Sancaster, Grant Smith, Matthew Smith, Anshal Waheed, Rebecca Willis, Thomas Woodworth.


UK Unreal Engine Educational Summit 2015

Empower your students with Unreal Engine 4, the professional game development tool created by developers, for developers.
Join Epic Games, Staffordshire University and fellow educators in computer science and animation, interactive design and game development to learn more about integrating Unreal Engine 4 into academic curriculum.
Come hear from front line developers working to make Unreal Engine not only the most scalable game technology for entertainment, visualization and non-linear communication, but also easier to teach and learn.  


Listen to success stories from your peers, including:
  • Mike Gamble, Epic Games
  • Greg Penninck, Senior Lecturer, Staffordshire University
  • John Tearle, CEO,Flix Interactive
  • Pete Bottomley, White Paper Games
  • Dave Edwards, Senior Lecturer Staffordshire University
  • Dominic Nash, Lecturer, Staffordshire University
  • Adrian Gurney, Lecturer, Staffordshire University
  • Nader Alikhani, CEO, Pixel Hero Games
We will be showcasing a series of academic projects in the Epic Games Centre during the day, showcasing execllent student work from multiple institutions. If you are interested in showing off work from your college / University then please contact: j.butcher@staffs.ac.uk
It's an eventful day not to be missed. To register or learn more about the speaking sessions, please ensure that you register for a ticket. We hope to see you there!


Date: 29th June 2015
Time: 8:30-17:00 p.m.
Staffordshire University
If you are an educator from a UK College or University you can grab a ticket from:


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