A COMPUTER arts student will fly halfway round the world as part of a three-person team taking part in the finals of an international Microsoft competition.

A games development team, made up of students from Abertay University, will take on the best in the world at the Microsoft Imagine Cup in Seattle.

The competition – dubbed the Olympics of Tech – seeks out the most innovative and potentially world-changing software solutions and comes with a first prize of $100,000.

Among those representing the Dundee university is Emily Peterson, from Dunbar.

She said: “They are sending the first and second place teams out to Seattle for the competition, which is in the last week in July.

“It is quite exciting, I’m just the artist on the team.

“I do the models and particular effects and textures.”

The team, who make up Blacklight Games, created Firepoint – a first-person mixed reality simulator which aims to bring a new level of realism to firefighter training.

Using HoloLens and Windows Mixed Reality technology, the game allows trainees to see through the eyes of a firefighter as they make their way through a multi-storey training ground tackling a variety of different issues.

It is hoped the simulator can eventually be used at open days or recruitment fairs.

The former Dunbar Grammar School pupil told the Courier the idea had evolved over time before resulting in the final product.

Originally, proposals looked at creating a game involving a maze.

However, a discussion with a firefighter saw the focus of the project, which is the work of eight third year students, change.

Emily said: “Matthew McAuley, from our team, had a friend who worked for the fire service.

“I think he got the initial from there and said why don’t we come up with that.

“We had been making the initial concept like a maze and it is something you can still see in the final build of the game.”

In April, the team from Abertay University took part in the UK finals of the Microsoft Imagine Cup in London.

A team from Manchester University was crowned the overall UK winner with Abertay finishing as the runner-up.

Now, both universities will send teams to the final.

The Abertay team are focusing on making the simulator better before they head to Washington.

Twenty-year-old Emily’s involvement in the project is the latest step as she attempts to land her dream job.

She added: “I’ve wanted to work in computer games from like primary school.

“My end goal is to try to get a job doing 3D somewhere, which is doable.”