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IGDA hails Global Game Jam a success

Developer association records 360 games built by 1650 people in 48 hours

Susan Gold, director of Game Program Review and chair of the Education Special Interest Group of the International Game Developers Association, has hailed the inaugural Global Game Jam a "runaway success."

The event, in which teams of gamers across 14 different time zones spent 48 hours designing and creating videogames, included 1650 participants and resulted in 360 games being uploaded to the GGL servers.

"Collaboration is an extraordinary thing, and I am so amazed at what people were able to accomplish in 48 hours," said Gold, founder of GGJ. "There was an energy in the room and you could feel the charge of excitement in what people were doing all over GGJ.

"For me, the highlight has been all of the stories about the experience people had with statements like 'life-changing' or the 'best thing I have done in years.' Once people realised what they are capable of doing when they worked together, they became more creative, more innovative and drove themselves to do things they did not know they could do."

But the event wasn't without its difficulties, as participants in Ottawa had to contend with severe rainstorms and a bus strike, people in Pittsburgh battled broken fire alarm noise and those based in Charlotte, North Carolina worked around a radioactive fire which broke out in a nearby biology lab.

"Jammers were evacuated into the freezing cold where they proceeded to make their design pitches," said Ian Schreiber, co-organiser of the event. "By the time the last pitch was made, they were relocated to a new building. So they survived the threat of death by fire, cold and radiation."

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