The LSU Digital Media Center hosted the Global Game Jam from Jan. 31 to Feb. 2. This is the sixth time that this event was being hosted by the University.
At Global Game Jam, participants form teams and work for 48 hours to create a video game. Everyone has their own skill that they bring to the table, such as Talia Teplilitzky who oversaw functions of the game.
“I am working on the functionality of how things interact,” Teplilitzky said. “I’ve been working on the dialogue functionality, and now I’m working on being able to rebind keys.”
Some teams came into the game jam knowing each other and who they wanted to work with, while others were added to a team of completely new people.
Global Game Jam began as a small event with several hundred people participating and has now grown to over 35,000 people participating around the world in about 500 locations, according to Digital Media Arts and Engineering Director Marc Aubanel.
Game jams started off in the industry while developers were testing their software. Developers would have to sit and wait for hours to see if any bugs would come up in their games.
“Instead of reading a magazine or a book, we would jam,” Aubanel said. “We made games that were usually the complete opposite of the game we were making. It’s only recently spun outside into an event that a lot of colleges do.”
The idea of Global Game Jam is that people are able to come together in a very short amount of time and create something, Aubanel said.
“It’s like a sprint or a marathon,” Aubanel said. “You are rushing to get something done where there is clearly not enough time to do something well. It’s that pressure and that intensity that creates creative breakthroughs.”
Computer science freshman Kha Le said the event is a very collaborative experience. Without everyone working together and communicating, nothing would get done, especially with the short deadline.
“Working the game out with other people,” Le said. “It’s so cool to have everyone collaborate on something, talk out details, figure out problems.”
Some participants had never created a game before but wanted to give it a try because of their love for video games or desire to try something new.
“We all have a passion for video games, and we always wanted to dabble,” Taylor Waterman said. “This is our first time creating a game.”
Just like in the past, participants, both new and returning, all said they would like to come back to participate in next year’s Global Game Jam.
Click here to learn more about Global Game Jam.