For students

Yaldi Games

Immersive games that combine adventure, education and sustainability

Yaldi Games are building fully immersive games that will combine adventure, education and sustainability with a 360-degree approach that encourages players to use what they learn in the game in real life. Elena chose the name Yaldi, which is Scottish slang for excitement, in tribute to Edinburgh after she moved to the city to complete MSc in Design & Digital Media.

Elena Hödge was supported by the Edinburgh Innovations Startup Accelerator which helps students like Elena get their ideas ready for investors. The delegates receive one-to-one coaching, and benefit from themed peer-to-peer sessions. The programme also offers workshops on pitching and financial forecasting as well as hearing from other entrepreneurs about how they raised investment. At the end of the programme, Elena was able to pitch to investors from the city and won a grant as one of the finalists. With the continued support of Edinburgh Innovations, Yaldi Games has won multiple awards, including the Creative prize in Scotland’s Converge Challenge and an Innovate UK Young Innovators Award.

Elena shares what it was like to be recognised in this way: “It was truly amazing, and such a relief. As a startup, there are a lot of doubts, so getting recognition through grants meant that the potential of my idea didn’t just exist in my own mind. Of course I did not win every grant I applied for – but what I learnt from each rejection improved my other applications.”


Feeling inspired? 

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