For the past few years we’ve been building Core™, a digital playground and community designed to unleash imagination and explore new play experiences.
One of Core’s north stars is to allow anyone to make high quality games. We believe Core will help bring a new generation of creators to gaming. We knew through our internal testing – and many game jams – that the platform was a delight for experienced developers. But what about everyone else?
It was time to put Core to the test. And so the Manticore Summer 2019 Internship Program was born. The idea was simple: bring in talented aspiring game creators, hand them Core, and watch what they create.
Thanks to employees and friends putting the word out to their network, we found ourselves working through 250 (!) qualified applicants, which we narrowed down to 12. Those 12 included a wide mix of ages, experience levels, and backgrounds, from high schoolers to masters students. In just its first year, the program already had gender parity and representation from five different countries.
Over the next 11 weeks the interns made hundreds of individual game components, along with various solo experiences that spanned multiple genres. They collaborated in game jams ranging from a few days to three weeks to make full games, all of which resulted in playable, polished, and – most importantly – fun games.
"[Core] makes game making seem accessible in a way I haven't seen before."
Their creations varied in type as much as art style, from a dusty saloon at sunset to a cityscape gleaming with glass and chrome to an abandoned carnival shrouded in mist and darkness. As they became more familiar with the collaboration tools, advances made by one intern could propel the whole group forward. Those with more experience quickly developed tools that anyone could apply, which in turn raised the floor on quality exponentially.
In addition to using Core, we wanted the interns to gain experience with all areas of professional game development. We rounded out the program with workshops on topics such as art, animation, VFX, game design, engineering, production, and even resume and portfolio building. Interns had the opportunity to work directly with Manticore employees, completing projects specific to their disciplines.
All of this funneled back into their creations in Core, which had made huge leaps by the end of the summer. The interns capped the program with a final game jam, this time breaking into two teams and spending three weeks utilizing everything they had learned. While we can’t share the results with you quite yet, suffice it to say that the day they presented was filled with cheers, gasps, and moments of awe.
Our goal had been to bring in a small group of creators to act as a pre-alpha test group for Core, then use their feedback to improve the product. Along the way, by stripping away the barrier to game creation, we saw a new generation of creators emerge, ones who could stand proudly behind their work. This future, where anyone can make amazing games, is one we hope to share with you all soon; we can't wait to show you what’s possible!