Seven Summits wins Gaming Category at 12th Microsoft Imagine Cup’s India National Finals

Seven Summits Studio, founded and spearheaded by Asar Dhandala and Prithvi Raj Pawar have emerged winners at Microsoft Imagine Cup 2014, the world’s premiere student technology competition, by winning the Gaming Category for ‘Petite’. Defined as the Olympics of Technology, Microsoft Imagine Cup is more than just a competition, but a platform for young entrepreneurs, developers and innovators to develop and showcase their technology-based new business ideas, create products, put together business plans and even take their products to market, often catapulting them to global fame and fortune. The results of this competition that was divided into Games, Innovation and World Citizenship categories, was  declared yesterday by Microsoft India at the grand finale of the event held at Noida. 60,000 student innovators from 25 Indian states battled it out for the top three spots in the India-leg of the 12th annual Microsoft Imagine Cup 2014. While the World Citizenship category is focused on solving global problems in areas such as health, environment, and human rights, projects in the Innovation category need to have a strong consumer appeal and a gee-whiz quality that will surprise and delight a broad audience, and the Games category raises the ante on the global game revolution. Other winners were Shanu, Ajay Kumar Saini, Shubham Goel, Roshit Gopinath- Team Dexters, who won the Innovation category and Divyani Dubey, Garima Purohit, Jai Sharma, Jitendra Khasdevunder from Team Untraceable0208 won the World Citizenship category. This studio and winners from other respective categories now qualify for the World Semi-Finals where they would pitch their game to a panel of jury online. Following which, one or more teams would head to Seattle to the Microsoft Headquarters for the finals, depending on their credibility and project proposal. Describing the winning moment exclusively to AnimationXpress.com, Asar, says, “It was immensely joyful. I remember that when I won gold, I had never been in that situation before. Everyone was congratulating me on being the Imagine Cup winner but I was saying to me, ‘Well, what are you going to do next?’.” Petite, is an ambient game by the studio, which is centered exclusively on the life of a woman beginning from infancy to adulthood.  “Players lead the protagonist of the game through her life, following her memories based on the emotions associated with them,” Asar adds. Presently in development stages, the programming and art of Petite is being created by Asar, Prithvi Raj is composing the music and Vishesh Chopra is working on the storyline of the game. And Interestingly, Shailesh Prabhu, Founder of Yellow Monkey Studios and Nawaz Dhandala are mentoring the team to create the game. The beta version of the game is already out for Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8. Informing more on the plans for the game, Asar, shares, “We’re showcasing the game in Casual Connect (Asia) which is being held in Singapore, following which the full version of the game would be released on the Windows platform. It is also set to release on iOS and Android a few weeks later.” Sharing more on the experience at this competition, Asar, highlights “Getting the 25 top CEO’s of the country and some of the brilliant teams from all over India, to play your game and get feedback was overwhelming.  We realized that innovation is important as it is one of the primary ways to differentiate your product from the competition and to stand out from the crowd.” “The Imagine Cup facilitates a culture of innovation where teams from across India are given an opportunity to take the first steps towards becoming successful tech entrepreneurs,” said Joseph Landes, General Manager – Developer & Platform Evangelism (DPE), Microsoft India. He further added, “Through the course of this year’s competition, it’s been amazing to see the passion and creativity among young Indian technologists and their enthusiasm to make a tangible change through their ideas. I congratulate the winning teams today, as well as all the students who participated in Imagine Cup 2014. I am really rooting for the India team to win big at this year’s global finals.” “Microsoft Imagine Cup is a great platform for budding innovators to be recognized as well as for them to get access to the right tools, support and mentorship that are so critical in their entrepreneurial journey. The entries we saw this year really showcased young India’s technology prowess and I feel very positive about the new breed of entrepreneurs in the making,” says NASSCOM Foundation CEO Rita Soni. This award is part of Microsoft’s larger objective to transform education; nurturing young talent and helping them grow into tomorrow’s leaders. With the growing influence of technology on our daily lives, many students are exploring careers as developers and game designers before they even graduate from high school or college.  With that in mind, Microsoft has expanded its annual student technology competition, Imagine Cup, to inspire more students and encourage a wider variety of aspiring “Mobile first, Cloud first” innovators to participate. “I completely loved the Microsoft Imagine Cup experience, meeting the smartest of the smartest teams of students, from all over India and these memories will stay with me forever,” Asar concludes. connect@animationxpress.com