What is it?
This year Wrecko decided to sponsor and assist in the organization of McGill’s budding game jam, McGame Jam. While at school, I launched the first iteration of this event, and I am very excited to see its growth continuing after my graduation. For those who don’t know, a game jam is essentially a game development marathon – this one ran 48 hours. This year’s event was a massive success, doubling in size and arguably doubling in quality to boot.
From the beginning McGame Jam was created with the intent to bolster McGill’s game development community, and be as accessible as possible for those that have little or no game development experience. Students from all schools were welcomed at the event – there was even a team of high school students. We feel we achieved this this year; approximately a third of the attendees had never made a game before! Speakers, tutorials, judges, and a open repository for participants to learn from each others games, were all ways that the focus on learning was instilled at the event.
The theme of the jam was Interference. This resulted in some very interesting game concepts. I was glad to see many teams focusing on multiplayer games – this is often not the case at game jams. One team even managed to build their own simple engine for their game in the short time we had, very impressive. All in all, the quality of games put out at the jam was very impressive, especially for the first timers learning it all on the fly.
Submission (in every sense of the word)
After a long and intense 40 hour development period, broken up by bouts of coffee, pizza, and falafels (so many falafels), things came to a close. To wind down the event, judges were brought in from various studios around Montreal. Industry veterans from all fields within the games industry spent a couple hours walking from team to team and giving constructive feedback. It was really great seeing everyone take a step back from the projects, take a breath, and play.
McGame Jam 2016 hit every mark it aimed for, and I look forward to seeing its growth in years going forward. It has been a huge amount of fun putting it together, and rewarding to see the interest in game development coming out of McGill. Thanks to the great team, sponsors, and attendees that made this event possible!