Game Competitions

Game Competitions

UMBC will once again be a host site for the 2013 Global Game Jam. This is a weekend-long game development event with hundreds of host sites across the world. Participants at each site form teams and work all weekend long to build games on a common theme, announced at the event. The 2013 Global Game Jam will be held from 5pm Friday, January 25th to 5pm Sunday, January 27th.

For Maryland/DC area participants, this year there are sites at UMBC, College Park, the Universities at Shady Grove, and George Mason. Some sites charge entrance fees, but thanks to generous support by NextCentury Corporation, the UMBC site is free and open to anyone 18+ years of age. Space is limited, so participants should register in advance for the UMBC site on globalgamejam.org.

For those of you with an AI programming bent, there’s AiGameDev.com is running a game AI contest, details at AISandbox.com. The contest started November 7th, but you can build and submit your entries through December 10th. You (or a team) creates an AI commander to direct your bots in a game of capture the flag in a complex world. If you like AI and have some time, give it a shot!

Participants at Global Game Jam 2012 at UMBC listening to the keynote presentations…

Microsoft is offering a great incentive for Global Game Jam teams at UMBC who make a Windows Phone game this weekend: a Windows Phone. Come early Friday (at 4pm) to UMBC ENG 005 to see a pre-jam demo on developing Windows Phone games. There will be a Microsoft representative on site this weekend to help you out if you have problems, and any team that makes a Windows Phone game gets a free phone!

Or sign up online and come at 5pm for any of the other ways of developing game jam games: Microsoft XNA Game Studio, Flash, Unity (free Pro trial available for game jammers), GameMaker (free HTML 5 version for game jammers), or any other freely available game development tools.

To help everyone get ready for Global Game Jam 2012 this weekend, here’s a shout-out video from around the world. UMBC is at about the 4:36 mark.

 

Want to see what you can do in 48 hours? Game portfolio feeling a little thin? Have a feeling you’ll need a break by the time you’re two days into the Spring semester? Well, the Global Game Jam is entering its 4th year, and for the 4th year, UMBC will be one of the world-wide host sites January 27th-29th.

This is a 48 hour event, where teams from around the globe work to each develop a complete game over one weekend. The first year had 54 sites in 23 countries. The second year had 124 sites in 34 countries. Last year was up to 169 sites. The UMBC site is open to participants at all skill levels, and it is not necessary to be a UMBC student to register. Just go to <http://globalgamejam.org/> and register for “United States – Maryland – Baltimore – UMBC”. Participation will be limited to the first 40 registrants.

The jam will start at 5PM on Friday, January 27th in the UMBC GAIM lab, room 005 in the ITE building. At that time, the theme for this year’s games will be announced, and we’ll brainstorm game ideas and form into teams. There is no need to come as a team: each individual has an equal chance to pitch their game ideas, and you can join the team whose game you like best. Teams will have until 3pm on Sunday, January 29th to develop their games. We’ll have demos of each game and selection of local awards, wrapping up by 5pm Sunday. Thanks once again to generous support by Next Century, there is no registration fee for the this site, but you must register for the UMBC site in advance at www.globalgamejam.org.

Hope to see many of you there!

Last weekend, 35 people were working madly in the UMBC GAIM lab as part of the 3rd annual Global Game Jam. At 5pm on Friday, in the midst of a campus-wide power outage, they watched they keynote video from a laptop held over my head in a dark lab, then learned the theme for this year’s jam: all games had to express somehow the theme “Extinction”. By about 7:00, the power was back on, and they’d formed into five teams, each trying to complete a game by Sunday. One short second power outage later(!), they were on their way.

All five games are online (along with 1475 other games from the 168 other sites world wide). The Global Game Jam is not a competition, but many sites do have some local awards, ours included. We had four awards, Best Game, Best Expression of the Theme, Best Art, and the an award judged by representatives from our site sponsor, NextCentury Corporation.

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The 2011 Global Game Jam starts this Friday at 5pm! If you want to participate, sign up on www.globalgamejam.org. More details at gaim.umbc.edu/global-game-jam.

Note that the total site capacity is limited. If you sign up and your jammer number is larger than 32, you are officially on the wait list. Since we don’t have an admissions fee, there will probably be some no-shows, but we won’t know how many until Friday night. Show up at 5pm, and if there are openings we will take you in jammer number order.

Want to see what you can do in 48 hours? Game portfolio feeling a little thin? Have a feeling you’ll need a break by the time you’re two days into the Spring semester? Well, the Global Game Jam is entering its 3rd year, and for the 3rd year, UMBC will be the Baltimore host site January 28th-30th.

This is a 48 hour event, where teams from around the globe work to each develop a complete game over one weekend. The first year had 54 sites in 23 countries. Last year, there were 124 sites in 34 countries. The Baltimore site is open to participants at all skill levels, and it is not necessary to be a UMBC student to register. Just go to <http://globalgamejam.org/sites/2011/umbc> and register. Participation will be limited to the first 40 registrants.

The jam will start at 5PM on Friday, January 28th in the UMBC GAIM lab, room 005a in the ITE building. At that time, the theme for this year’s games will be announced, and we’ll brainstorm game ideas and form into teams. There is no need to come as a team: each individual has an equal chance to pitch their game ideas, and you can join the team whose game you like best. Teams will have until 3pm on Sunday, January 30th to develop their games. We’ll have demos of each game and selection of local awards, wrapping up by 5pm Sunday. Thanks to generous support by Next Century, there is no registration fee for the this site, but you must register for the UMBC site in advance at www.globalgamejam.org.

Hope to see many of you there!

The White House announced the National STEM Video Game Challenge yesterday. This is a mobile game development contest, with a $50,000 grand prize and $25,000 prize for the best undergraduate or graduate student developed game, and a $25,000 prize for the best game reaching an underserved population.

Games should emphasize some specific (but fairly broad) Science, Technology, Engineering and Math skills. Submissions are due January 5th.