Our Activities and Articles
Philip and Andrew are keen to share their knowledge with the next generation of Game Developers and have agreed to write many useful articles for aspiring game developers, indie game developers, brand holders and investors. Also a list of places they appear as speakers at conferences and universities. As they occur they will be collated here.
The announcement below means that we are no longer taking on new clients.
MCV / Develop
Comment: Evolution of games – Are you ready for what’s coming next?
17th June 2021
The evolution of video games technology has continually foreshadowed evolution of mass media and we’re now on the cusp of another leap forward – except this time change will be driven by software and creators, rather than hardware…
Silicon Spa: The Warwickshire town with a booming gaming industry
12th March 2021
Very pleased to play our part in this.
There are calls for more government investment to be put into the UK gaming industry, which has one of its largest hubs in Leamington Spa.
The town is the base for dozens of developers and it is predicted another 500 could be created over the next two years.
More people have been using video games during the pandemic as they've been forced to stay at home.
Loveshark's investment story: How to impress angel investors : Part 2
29th April 2020
In this second part, the studio's CEO Tara Reddy offers advice on securing those crucial first supporters.
When we started Loveshark 18 months ago, we were completely new to games. We would walk into games events and know no one. Since then things have changed a bit; we have made many friends and connections, and raised over £750,000 from amazing angel and venture capital (VC) investors, and grant funding
Loveshark's investment story: How the AR developer impressed the Oliver Twins : Part 1
27th April 2020
In the first of two parts, Philip Oliver shares how developers should approach investors.
Since selling our studio, my brother Andrew and I have been advising game developers and investors under our Game Dragons business, as well as investing in games developer businesses ourselves.
Launching the Transfuzer competition at Staffordshire University
Launched the compeition and gave a presentation on hints and tips to help win the Transfuzer competition.
'Roots' Presentation by The Oliver Twins
Jan 31st 2020
Our monthly theme is ROOTS - “Courageous, creative work begins below the ground.”
Here in Leamington, we’re off to flyer - teaming up with the amazing Interactive Futures Conference to bring you a talk from The Oliver Twins.
Continuing to work with universities
We delivered our presentations from the lessons we've learnt in the games industy.
Feedback : 'Best Lecture we ever had'
'Very interesting and inspiring'
Royal Mail Stamp
Great to see one of our games on a stamp!
Royal Mail has announced a set of stamps which feature classic British-designed gaming icons - including Lara Croft, Lemmings and Dizzy the egg.
Andrew Oliver becomes Visiting Professor
at BCU (Birmingham City University)
Following the recommendation of Senior Games Lecturer Carlo Harvey. Andrew was invited to become a Visiting Professor at Birmingham City University. by EPA Rachel Warr on behalf of the Pro Vice Chancellor & Exective Dean Professor Hanifa Shah.
Colin McDonalds Scottish Devs Meet ups
We spoke at each of the developer meet ups, in Glasgow, Edinbugh & Dundee and delivered presentations at each of the universities.
Seeking a job in the games industry - part two: The interview process
8th July 2019
Interviews are really important for your career and you only get one chance to make a first impression.
We’ve interviewed hundreds of candidates over the years, so here’s our advice on making the best possible first impression and giving yourself the best chance of landing the job.
Writing a business plan -- advice for indie game developers
8th July 2019
Game Dragons' Philip Oliver on an essential but often overlooked tool for building success in indie development
A business plan is a concept that many startups think is either unnecessary or just a nice-to-have. It's often seen as an annoying extra bit of admin that's simply keeping you away from the fun of making games. The reality is.......
Seeking a job in the games industry - part one: The application process
1st July 2019
We have been lucky enough to have worked in the games industry for our entire working lives. We don’t take that for granted – we know how fortunate we are to have been able to do that.
Whilst it wasn’t something other people wanted to do, or even understood, in the early days, as every year goes by it becomes a more aspirational career choice.
Seven years on from Oculus Rift's launch, how far have we come? | Opinion
20th June 2019
Game Dragons' Andrew Oliver ponders the current state of virtual reality, and how it might benefit from 5G and streaming
Video games are about immersion, and virtual reality is the embodiment of total immersion in new and exciting worlds.
My first experience -- Battlezone in 1980 -- felt incredible, although in reality it just showed two identical views into a simple 3D vector world.
VR had a few revivals.....
The talent game - part three: Making the most of your team
In this last part of The Talent Game I’ll share advice on how I think you should lead your team, as a group and individually, to ensure you have a great and productive studio that thrives. We’ll also tackle the thorny issue of team members leaving.
The talent game - part two: Selecting and hiring new talent
23rd May 2019
Expanding your team is exciting but risky. Getting the right people means you’ll be able to make better games faster, but get the wrong people and you’re heading for costly issues that will put a strain on you and the studio
The talent game - part one: Attracting new talent
16th May 2019
When you’re making games, your greatest asset is your team – the talent! In this series of articles, I discuss how to find, hire, integrate, nurture and hold on to your best people, whilst also dealing with difficult situations with those who aren’t adding to your dream team.
Following your dreams: Pursuing a career making games | Opinion
13th May 2019
Young people often need advice and support from parents, teachers and careers advisors to follow their dreams into their career, but how many of those advisors would recommend a career making games?
Talk to Game Design Students at Local College
We took time out to give a talk to very enthusiastic game students at our local college
7th May 2019
Royal Leamington Spa College hosts games event to inspire the next generation of #Talent
Students across the region interested in developing a career in the Games sector got to hear from leading players in the industry at an interactive seminar at Royal Leamington Spa College on April 29-30.
Financing your indie games development studio - Part Four: Due diligence
1st May 2019
Preparing for the due diligence
This is the final article in raising finance for your indie studio. If you’ve got your game and studio to this point - congratulations! You’re almost there.
Your investor or publisher just needs to double check everything before committing ink to the contract, after which you’ll receive the money that you negotiated for your game development.
Financing your indie games development studio - Part Three: Structuring an investment deal
26th April 2019
Let’s play fair
It’s really important in any negotiation that both sides respect the position of the other. You’re going to have to work together for a long time and if either side lets the other down it’s all going to end badly.
Branded for success | Opinion
18th April 2019
Andrew and I have been making games for over 35 years, and over a third of the games we've made have been based on popular brands.
Through our first company Blitz Games, we produced games based on Mickey Mouse, Action Man, Puss In Boots, Chicken Run, Pac-Man, Burger King, Frogger, SpongeBob, Bratz, Barbie, The Mummy Returns, War Games, and many more.
Financing your indie games development studio - part two: The killer pitch
10th April 2019
When you finally get to pitch to a potential investor or publisher, you’ll get one shot and you need to make it the best pitch possible in a short space of time – often just 15 minutes.
An experienced audience will have a pretty good idea if they are interested within five minutes or less so you’ll need to sell the big vision quickly.
Make it fast, powerful, interesting and exciting.
Games Finance Market
Game Dragons at Londons Games Finance Market
3rd April 2019
We attended the Games Finance Market, part of the London Games Festival - backed by the Major of London, who recognises the financial & cultural importance of video games and is keen to support the industry. GFM is a ‘speed dating’ type event where developers, advisors, publishers and investors sign up with a small profile and say who they are looking to meet. The organisers then create a time table over the 2 days where everyone gets 20 minutes to pitch their games or services to prospective clients & investors.
We met with many skilled and passionate game developers and some potential investors.
As advisors it was really interesting to see developers pitches, which ranged from poor through to awesome. We look forward to following up with a few and hope to work closer with them.
We meet with several investors, who are keen on the games market. Whilst they see it as an exciting and interesting market full of potential they also recognise the high risks and are keen to engage advisors to recommend opportunities, assess risk and maximise their potential investments.
Overall it was a really interesting experience and we hope that some of those developers get the deals they are looking for and that GFM is pivotal in their company’s history and careers.
GI.Biz Careers @ London Games Week
The Romeros, an Oliver twin and Creative Assembly lead GamesIndustry.biz Career Bar
1st April 2019
The GamesIndustry.biz Career Fair returns this week at EGX Rezzed 2019, and we have some of the most experienced industry veterans on hand to inspire the next generation of games professionals.
Wireframe Issue 10
With a Dizzying array of games behind them, Codemasters veterans Andrew and Philip Oliver now hope to share their wisdom with other British developers.
PC Games Insider : Insight
How to finance your indie games development studio - Part One
29 March 2019
Looking for finance
Running a small games studio has many challenges, with money usually being one of the most pressing. As Blackadder so brilliantly put it: “Some days I feel like a pelican, every way I turn there’s a great big bill in front of me.”
Games Industry.Biz : Working with academia
The next generation starts with you
27 March 2019
Game Dragons' Philip Oliver offers advice on how to better work with academia to improve the quality of graduates.
We understand how hard it can be to fill all the roles that a thriving game studio needs, and it's never been more critical to support and encourage the pipeline that brings more people into the industry.
Don't let your first game be your last
Advice for Indies choosing their first project
12 March 2019
Deciding what game to make when you first go into indie development can be tough. If you want a hobby making games then it doesn't really matter what you choose, but if you want your first game to lead to a successful career then you need to think more carefully.
GAME DEVELOPER TWINS WHO INSPIRED THE CREATOR OF MINECRAFT
SAE Speaks to Philip Oliver
5 March 2019
Philip and Andrew Oliver, known in the Games industry as the Oliver twins, are well-known game developers who won the Guiness World Record for ‘Most Prolific 8-bit videogame developers’ in 2018. This accolade reflects their phenomenal success with the Dizzy series, amongst other titles such as Grand Prix Simulator.
Philip Oliver becomes a Visiting Professor
at Staffordshire University
Following the recommendation of Associate Professor Bobbie Fletcher, Philip was invited to become a Visiting Professor at Staffs. Uni. by Professor Liz Barnes, the University’s Vice Chancellor and Chief Executive.
Industry veterans launch video game consultancy
Consultancy.UK - News
26 February 2019
A global entertainment and media outlook by professional services giant PwC recently projected the UK entertainment and media sector will reach £76 billion by 2022, growing at a compounded annual rate of 3.2%, or £8 billion. According to the Big Four firm’s research, the market was due to hit a value of £68 billion by the end of 2018.
Introducing Game Dragons, the Oliver Twins' new consultancy firm
20 February 2019
Following their departure from Rebellion, the Oliver Twins have detailed their new games consultancy business Game Dragons -- and will be sharing some of their insight with GamesIndustry.biz readers.
Introducing Game Dragons, the Oliver Twins' new consultancy firm
PC Games Insider
20 February 2019
UK games industry veterans Philip and Andrew Oliver have opened a new consultation firm called Game Dragons.
The Oliver Twins left Rebellion this January after helping to ensure a smooth transition for their former studio Radiant Worlds which was acquired and renamed Rebellion Warwick starting January 2018.
Ins and Outs - February 2019's industry hires roundup
20 February 2019
Philip Oliver and Andrew Oliver – co-founders of Radiant Worlds, which is now Rebellion Warwick – have departed Rebellion to set up their own video game consultancy business, Game Dragons. Philip Oliver said: “We’re delighted with what the Rebellion Warwick team has achieved over the last year, and we are confident they’ll continue to flourish. But we’re both looking forward to this next chapter and we’re excited to get started.”
PRESS RELEASE – 20th February 2019
Industry veterans Philip and Andrew Oliver launch new games consultancy, Game Dragons
20 February 2019, Leamington Spa, UK. Award-winning industry pioneers Philip and Andrew Oliver today announce the launch of their new games consultancy business Game Dragons. It follows their recent departure as studio heads of Rebellion Warwick.
Game Dragons aims to offer professional, impartial advice across a wide array of games industry business and technical fields, but will be focussed on delivering consultancy services to scale-up developers, investors and brand holders.
The brothers have been a leading part of the UK games industry since its inception in the early 1980s. Over the following 35+ years, they have established and run three companies, employed over 600 people and been responsible for creating over 160 games across all platforms, selling over 45 million units with a retail value in excess of £1.2bn.
They founded and ran the award-winning Blitz Games Studios for 23 years, and went on to sell their next business, Radiant Worlds, to Rebellion in 2017 for a multi-million pound sum. They were founder members of trade association TIGA and BGI, and have been regular long-term high-level advisors to a variety of trade bodies, government agencies and business organisations.
Philip Oliver is excited by the new venture, “We’ve always been happy to informally support and advise other people as they build their businesses, and have been lucky enough to receive some of the same support from others, but it’s not always easy to do that when you’re bound by your own clients’ needs and NDAs. We’re now looking forward to being able to share our experiences in a truly independent way, and help people to succeed.”
Andrew Oliver agrees: “We’ve worked with some of the biggest publishing, technology, entertainment and software companies over our years in business, and we’ve seen a lot of things come and go. We know that this industry can be unpredictable and ever-evolving so we feel we’re perfectly placed to help other companies navigate their futures.”
To find out more and arrange a meeting with Game Dragons at GDC, please contact: , or visit www.GameDragons.com, @GameDragons.
To view the Game Dragons launch video, please visit: https://youtu.be/19WjRIkNfuM