Game creators 'Clutch' win

November 03, 2008

Microsoft executives presented five awards to Computer Game Development and Animation (CGDA) Program seniors at the Computer and Video Game Pitch meeting Oct. 20 at Washington County Technical High School.

"This was an extremely difficult decision to make. All of the games were excellent," said DP Brightful, Microsoft director. "The points were within three to four for each game."

Fourteen seniors planned, developed, programmed and presented seven new computer and video game ideas. Two weeks prior to the pitch meeting, the executives read and evaluated each team's concept document that included game play, story development and marketing research.

"Clutch" was a game concept driven and copyrighted by Justin Shaw and presented in part with Nathaniel Smith. "Clutch" team members received Xbox 360 Elites for the first-place win.


"Clutch" is a multiplayer online racing game in which players roam freely around the City of De Toro, racing other players for money to buy either used parts from a junkyard or brand-new performance parts from a shop.

The developers hope that "Clutch" will be available for the Xbox 360 and PC.

"I felt that our time with Microsoft executives was a life-changing experience for us, and we are very excited and proud that our game received great praise and was ranked the number-one game in our tech area," Shaw said.

For their second-place win for the "Stream" computer game concept and development, Aaron Wagaman and John Leis received Microsoft Zunes.

"Stream" is based on a future virtual world where people can interact with each other in a friendly environment. In that world, a virus has been released and it is now up to the protagonist, Jeremy Law, to save everyone inside "The Stream" while racing against time to save himself.

Leis said: "The two executives were just like us. They loved video games. When they first arrived, they were so excited and energetic about all of our pitches. When everyone was finished presenting, the executives gave some very good criticism that will help us develop our game to become the best out there."

The concept and development of "Lucid Dreme" by James Horner is based on the psychological process of "lucid dreaming." The story follows characters Alexis and Jake as they form and control the "Dreming World," saving people from "Nightmares." Tech support was provided by Mitchell Windsor.

"This gives me hope that this game has the potential to become more than just a game that stays within the high school," Horner said.

Other games presented to the executives included:

  • "Sugar Run," copyrighted by Heidi White and Saylor Iden

  • "Sprawl," copyrighted by Andrew Fischer and presented with Kodi Pfeiffer

  • "Synical," copyrighted by Steve Kopp and Steve Ingraham

  • "Terraclasm," copyrighted by Jeremiah Edwards and presented with Brandon Smith

    The game pitch was organized by Martin Nikirk, a nationally award-winning CGDA teacher.

    For more information about the program or the school, call 301-766-8050.

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