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Paying tribute to Dundee’s gaming success

Games companies like DMA Design (now Rockstar North) and 4J Studios paved the way for a new breed of start-ups in Dundee in the early 1990s, and games like Grand Theft Auto, Minecraft and Lemmings soon emerged. In 1997, Abertay University began offering degrees in computer games design, and Dundee now has one of the biggest clusters of computer games companies in the UK.

Gaming cartoon

1. Sinclair ZX Spectrum

The Timex watch factories in Milton and Camperdown were a huge employer in Dundee in the 1960s and 1970s. And as digital watches became popular, Timex diversified and developed the ZX Spectrum alongside entrepreneur Sir Clive Sinclair in the early 1980s.


2. Minecraft

Minecraft was created as a PC game by a Swedish programmer called Markus Persson. However, the game really took off when Dundee company 4J Studios adapted it for consoles and handheld platforms from 2012 onwards. 4J Studios was established in 2005 by Chris van der Kuyl, Paddy Burns and Frank Arnot.


3. Minecraft weapons

Minecraft weapons include swords and tridents made from materials such as netherite (the strongest), diamond, and iron. Tools like axes and shovels can also be used as weapons.


4. Grand Theft Auto

Grand Theft Auto was originally conceived by Dundee company, DMA Design, and the first edition of this driving action-adventure game was released in 1997. DMA Design was founded in 1987 by David Jones who then hired fellow students Mike Dailly, Russell Kay and Steve Hammond. The latest edition of the game, Grand Theft Auto VI, will be released in 2025.

5. Lemmings

Another game developed by DMA Design, Lemmings was created in 1991. It was designed as a puzzle-strategy game for the Amiga gaming platform and was later ported onto other platforms, including Commodore 64, Nintendo and Sega Mega Drive. Modern versions were also developed for Sony Playstation.


6. Lemmings entrance

Each level in Lemmings typically starts when the trapdoors open at the Entrance portal and, one by one, the lemmings start to fall through.


7. Lemmings exit

Reaching the Exit portal is the end goal for all lemmings in every level.

This panel was stitched by

Maggie Ballantyne

Aileen Scoular

Jeanette Smeaton

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