Senior Technical Animator - SUMO NEWCASTLE

Full-Time, Permanent
Sumo Digital is one of the UK's most prolific and secure independent game developers with a talented team spread across four UK Studios; Sheffield, Nottingham, Newcastle and The Chinese Room in Brighton, along with our India studio in Pune. It’s an exciting time to be part of Sumo; we are growing across all our studios to support a very bright and busy future.

Sumo Newcastle joined the family in January 2018. This highly experienced team is also looking to grow and add to their high-calibre staff across all disciplines.
We have a host of well known partners that we work with including Microsoft, Sega, Sony, Disney and many more. Working alongside them our previous successes include Forza Horizon 2 (Xbox 360), LittleBigPlanet 3 (PlayStation 4, and PlayStation 3), Disney Infinity 3.0 Toy Box Speedway (multi-platform), and our first self-published title Snake Pass (multi-platform).

Looking down the road we have several exciting but unannounced projects that we are working on (all very hush hush!), but we can share that we are incredibly proud to be working on the highly anticipated Crackdown 3 (Xbox One), Dead Island 2 (multi-platform), Project Nova (PC) and Team Sonic Racing (multi-platform).

Here at Sumo we are planning for big things. Don’t miss out. Join us.

The role @ Sumo

We have an amazing opportunity for a highly creative Senior Technical Animator to join our Newcastle studio where they will have the opportunity to showcase and grow their skills within a seasoned and proven team. This fantastic opportunity to influence, define and manage the character pipeline of large, genre-defining AAA titles is one not to be missed. It will give the successful candidate an opportunity to join the Newcastle team in the early stages of growth allowing them to really make a difference and help forge the future.

You need to have a wealth of experience and impressive track record backed up by a body of work demonstrating your highly creative approach. A strong ability to produce polished rigs, animation and character pipelines that are world class is essential. You will need to clearly demonstrate experience in setting up and managing character behaviour graphs and in working with code and design to achieve solid and engaging player experiences. Strong scripting skills and examples of problem solving are also essential. Experience using Unreal/Unity and Maya is an advantage.

Within this role you will:

    • Develop, manage and maintain a class leading character pipeline.
    • Work closely with animators in providing artist-friendly tools in addition to rig solutions.
    • Exhibit a strong understanding of the fundamental principles of animation as they apply to the animation design.
    • Work with code and design to achieve solid and engaging player experiences.
    • Assist in Lead responsibilities such as mentoring, scheduling and R&D into new features.
    • Contribute to the conceptualisation of character behaviours and abilities.
    • Provide detailed input during the character creation process, from concept to modelling to final rigging, identifying character performance and functionality requirements.
    • Demonstrate an understanding of the pipelines and procedures within the project as a whole.

We will need you to have:

    • Proven industry experience animating characters for console and/or PC games with a minimum of 1 published game.
    • Evidence of previous games completed in a senior technical animation role.
    • A strong demo reel that adequately reflects this experience.
    • Solid knowledge of Maya and/or 3DstudioMax.
    • Scripting vial mel, MaxScript or Python.
    • Thorough understanding of animation fundamentals for human and non-human characters.
    • Understanding of character creation process from concept, to modelling and final rigging.
    • Demonstrable experience in creating animation of a high standard while maintaining visual and functional specifications for game mechanics.
    • Excellent written and oral communication skills.
    • Maintain a keen interest in industry wide developments and advancement in technology to ensure project pipelines stay up to date.
What We Offer:

We offer a super benefits package including generous holidays and flexible working hours. Further perks include our legendary annual Sumo Big Day Out, plus epic Christmas parties, money on your birthday, and free fruit for everyone! Our new, regular studio Game Jams are a highlight - staff spend a full day developing and pitching their own game ideas for possible development by Sumo.
Our environment is relaxed, friendly and built upon the basis of every team member having the opportunity to shine and have a realisable input into the games we create. We are a very happy ship with lots of incredibly nice people that partake in shared interest groups, lunchtime clubs, charity fundraising events and lots of socialising.
We are proud to be located in the North-East in a beautiful renovated blue plaque building next to the River Tyne and just a ten minute walk to Newcastle city centre. Newcastle has everything to offer that any major European city has; culture, heritage, lively bars and fantastic retail. It is an exciting cosmopolitan city with new restaurants, bars and attractions constantly appearing whilst also boasting plenty of beautiful outdoor space including several beaches under an hour drive away. Newcastle was even voted the number one place that travellers should visit in 2018 by Rough Guide!