Blackpool developer's space battle epic takes off

A still from Starfighter
A still from Starfighter
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A Blackpool computer games maker has launched his second foray into outer space after the success of his first creation.

Shaun Williams of MAG Studios has released CDF Starfighter, a battle among the stars combat simulator, designed especially for the latest immersive virtual reality hardware.

Shaun Williams

Shaun Williams

It follows from his initial VR game Ghostship and its sequel, Ghostship Aftermath, which both sold well enough to fund his latest work.

Shaun developed and produced the first games virtually single-handedly at his Blackpool home but has now moved MAG Studios out of his two-bedroom Warley Road property and into offices in Bispham village.

He said: “It has been incredibly hard work, non-stop for the past two years working 100 hours a week.

“The latest game is a first person game with a non-linear storyline and it was inspired by some of the classic 90s games such as Star Wars, Wing Commander and Freespace.

“I am now working on the non-VR version which will be out on PC and Xbox in a few months time. I am also working on an arcade style Starfighter game with a company in China and I am going over to China for two months in the first quarter of next year.

“We have had a very good year. I was out in California for a games convention, the VR and AR world exhibition in London in October and Gamescon in Cologne – the biggest convention in the world.

“With Colonial Defence Force Starfighter, I am expecting it to do quite well as there is not much out there like it at the moment.

“Ghostship was horror-based, but this is suitable for anyone from eight-year-olds upwards.

“It is quite straightforward you can just jump in and fly but there are a few different game modes to keep it interesting.

“Ghostship did quite well and we earned enough to fund the new games, so we have high hopes.”

Shaun has spent ten years honing his coding, level design, cinematics, and 3D modelling skills.

From working on game design and development he progressed to other projects including ‘Mission: Moonbase’ at the Museum of Science and Industry.

The attraction takes guests on a simulated journey to the moon’s surface, where they become part of a team operating a lunar colony in the year 2070.

The interactive exhibition, funded in part by a grant from NASA, aims to teach visitors to the museum about the prospects of life away from Earth by having them monitor resources such as food, water and air quality.

Shaun’s moon base model was proto-typed for display in the exhibit.