Tasmania’s Game Development Pioneer

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By June Ramli

Melbourne, Oct 7: Ian Lewis, the founder, and CEO of Giant Margarita, based in Hobart, Tasmania, shares insights into the journey of his game development studio and the challenges faced while pursuing a passion for creating games alongside their day jobs as a university lecturer.
Giant Margarita, established nine years ago, initially aimed to demonstrate to their game development students that it was possible to create games from anywhere in the world, even in Tasmania, where the gaming industry was relatively nascent at the time.

Meet Ian Lewis: Pioneering Game Developer from Tasmania.
Meet Ian Lewis: a Pioneering Game Developer from Tasmania.

They kicked off the studio with the release of their mobile game, “Save the Teenies.”
The studio’s journey has been marked by several successful titles, including “Party Golf,” their first console release, followed by a sequel, “Party Crashers,” and more recently, “Party Poppers.”
These games have been a blend of in-house development and collaborations with students.
Lewis wears multiple hats within the studio, from being the creative lead and programmer to handling business development.
They primarily use Unity for game development and work with local artists for artwork, using a variety of tools like Blender, Illustrator, Inkscape, GIMP, and Paint. NET.
One notable achievement for the studio was securing a place on PlayStation by having a representative from Sony unexpectedly play their game at an event, showcasing that sometimes, success can be a product of serendipity.
Giant Margarita maintains a close relationship with the University of Tasmania, where they work as lecturers and tutors.
Their connection with the university allows them to blend their academic work with practical game development experience, benefiting both the students and the gaming industry in Tasmania.
While Giant Margarita remains passionate about game development, Lewis acknowledges that they have not yet had a blockbuster game that could replace their day jobs.
The studio continues to work on new projects, with plans to release their games on different platforms.
Their journey is a testament to their dedication to game development and their commitment to nurturing the gaming industry in Tasmania, as they strive to be a beacon of inspiration for aspiring game developers in the region.
Without further ado, let’s dive into the interview with Lewis below.

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