Gamers Go Global
30 January 2019
Falmouth's gaming community got creative this weekend (25-27 Jan) when they took part in the 2019 Global Game Jam® - the world's largest game creation event taking place around the world at physical locations.
Senior Lecturer Brian McDonald explained: "This is a truly connected event with sites in 113 countries around the world; a chance for game developers to come together and make games just for fun. For us, it's so important to get involved, not just to support our students but also to grow the game development community in Cornwall."
The Jam kicked off on Friday afternoon when this year's theme was revealed - what home means to you - those taking part then got into teams and had until Sunday to complete their games.
At Falmouth, 67 people took part, including undergraduate and postgraduate students and staff, as well as independent game developers including Triangular Pixels.
Brian added: "We ended up with 17 teams in our Games Academy who made a diverse set of games from a farming simulator set in Cornwall, where you have to manage a farm to earn enough money to buy pasties, to a game where you play as a polar bear who is trying to survive its rapidly shrinking home environment.
"The Global Game Jam is such great experience; it allows students to work with new people and challenge themselves to make a game based on an interesting theme, gives them the chance to make a small game from beginning to end and helps them develop their own professional practice."
Second year Computing for Games student Sam Auber worked on a minimalist game concept, he said: "It was a lot of fun watching people play and react to the different challenges and secrets in my game, I was surprised by how many people actually enjoyed it.
"The GGJ was great, I had a lot of fun participating and jamming along with friends, Brian and the rest of staff that hosted the event did an excellent job and I'll definitely be participating in next year's GGJ!"
Second year Game Development student Eric Eggert, who's team created an Oregon Road meets March of the Penguins style game, added: "The restricted time span was very motivating and gave us a sense of achievement upon completion. The event provided a collaborative environment where everyone could have a try at something."
Fellow Game Development student Maddie Riley said: "We made a survival game called Make It, where you upgrade your home at the expense of the environment around you, causing pollution and de-forestation as you improve your own standard of living.
"The event gave me a chance to develop a game with no worries about marks or grades, just enjoying the creative process and getting the opportunity to work with people I may not have otherwise. The sense of community in the academy is what drew me to take part and it was a super exciting atmosphere."
This year 46,996 jammers in 860 jam sites located in 113 countries made over 8,000 games! All the games created can be downloaded and played on the Global Game Jam website.