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Spring 2014 Exhibition

The Guildhall at SMU to hold Spring Exhibition

Drew Murray, Game Director at Insomniac Games, to address graduating students

DALLAS (SMU) – The Guildhall at SMU will host its bi-annual graduate Exhibition showcasing video games developed by graduating students on Friday, May 16, 2014. The Exhibition will honor Cohort 19, which is composed of 40 graduate students who specialize in art creation, level design, and software development.

The Exhibition will take place in Building 2 of the SMU-in-Plano campus, which is located at 5232 Tennyson Parkway. All of the following events are open to the public:

  • 2 to 3 p.m. – Students will participate in an Honors Seminar, presenting works that were elected the best of Cohort 19
  • 3 to 5 p.m. – Open play session of 2-D and 3-D games developed by Cohort 21 and 22, who will graduate in 2015
  • 5 to 6 p.m. – Cohort 19 Capstone team games presentations

A reception for students graduating from The Guildhall will conclude the day’s events. This event is by invitation only.

Drew Murray

Drew Murray, Game Director at Insomniac Games, will be the honorary keynote speaker at the Cohort 19 graduation reception. Over the past nine years, Murray has worked on many games, including Resistance: Fall of Man (Designer), Ratchet & Clank: Tools of Destruction (Designer), Resistance 2 (Senior Designer), and Resistance 3 (Lead Designer). He is currently working on Sunset Overdrive, a new IP developed by himself and Creative Director Marcus Smith. Sunset Overdrive will be released in Fall 2014 on Xbox One.

Murray is a Guildhall alumnus, and was a member of one of the first cohorts to graduate from the program. One day, after having aborted careers as an artist, chef and attorney, he heard Jay Leno making fun of The Guildhall in a monologue not long after The Guildhall opened its doors, and he immediately enrolled in the program. After graduating with the second Guildhall class in July 1995, he began working as a Junior Designer at Insomniac Games.

“I was truly honored that I was asked to give a commencement speech at the Guildhall,” Murray said. “The skills I learned at the Guildhall were directly responsible for me getting my job at Insomniac Games, as well as sending my life in a completely different — and better — direction. I’ve given many talks at the Guildhall since then, hoping to share what’s worked for me, both in getting my job and in each of the roles that I’ve had at Insomniac.”

Murray said that with many large game companies shrinking and shuttering, the job market in the video game industry is growing in competitiveness, but Guildhall graduates should have little issue keeping up.

“The quality-level required to get even an entry job in the games industry is definitely on the rise, but from what I’ve seen the Guildhall is continuing to prepare students to reach or exceed that bar,” Murray said. “Every year, the games coming out of the Guildhall get better and better... I don’t think any other school prepares their students with better technical and practical skills to allow them to get a job at a top-flight studio.”

About The Guildhall at SMU

The Guildhall at Southern Methodist University is one of the premier graduate video game education programs in the nation. Many of the school’s founders are industry icons, and classes are taught by industry veterans. Since 2003, the program has graduated over 500 students, who now work at more than 150 video game studios around the world. SMU offers both a Master of Interactive Technology in Digital Game Development degree and a Professional Certificate of Interactive Technology in Digital Game Development, with specializations in art creation, level design, production and software development. For more information, visit guildhall.smu.edu.


For more information about the Spring 2014 Guildhall Exhibition, contact Doug Darby at ddarby@smu.edu, or call 972.473.3545.