Global Game Jam: create a game in 48 hours

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15th of February 2017 – “2 hours left until the deadline!”, I (Friso Roolvink) shout through the prison halls. A few panicked faces, some undisturbed focused looks and a cry of desperation. Some people are arguing about what should be cut from the game. But everybody is working hard to put the last finishing touch on their game. Or desperately try to scrape together what they have, in order to create something that is somewhat playable. I rush back to my workstation to perform the final gameplay balancing. I have a good feeling about the game we created this year. Can we finish it before the deadline of the Global Game Jam?

Over 36,000 jammers in 702 sites across 95 countries have created over 7,000 games, meaning that the Global Game Jam 2017 has broken all of last year’s records and become the newly-crowned biggest Game Jam ever. Each year the Global Game Jam brings out the best and the worst in people. 48 hours is not a lot of time to create a fully functional game. But each year I am amazed by the things that people come up with. It is impressive to see thousands of people from around the world come together virtually to create thousands of games in such a short time span. It is an event that connects us and challenges us. That is why each year we are very excited to co-organize and participate in this wonderful event.

During the jam you see students, professionals, freelancers, companies, a varied crowd. Some participants come with preformed teams, others find a team on the spot. This is a perfect event to get to know your fellow developers or future employees. During the jam, everybody is equal and nobody is safe for the incoming deadline. This creates an open atmosphere and brings people together. And each team finishes a game, regardless of their professional background.

So what did we make? We had 7 Grendel monsters participating in the jam, scattered across 3 different teams. One team made a multiplayer air hockey battle arena. Another team made a tense and atmospheric submarine game. Me and my team made a fast paced arcade flyer game with a lot of brightly shining neon. Here, let me show you:

Global Game Jam
Depth Perception
Global Game Jam
Hypertime Disruptor
Global Game Jam
Shuffle Shock

I’m very happy with the results of this jam. Both as an organizer and as a participant. We got a lot of positive responses from the participants and there were no major issues. My team and I are currently working on setting up a few channels to distribute our game for free as a demo version. Just to gather feedback and see if it catches on with a bigger crowd. So let me end this post by inviting you all to watch and try out the games we made. And if you like, drop some feedback. It’s about learning and improving after all.

Tim Laning

Business developer

Do you want to know more about the possibilities of serious games? Let’s discuss what serious games can do for you.

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