Global Game Jam '09

The Nordic Game Jam 09 was the fourth annual game jam at the IT-University in Copenhagen. The event was organized by the IT-University and International Game Developers Association (IGDA)'s danish chapter and followed the same format as the previous year. The game jam is an event where a group of game developers meet up for a limited time to develop prototypes of games. It's all for fun with a little bit of friendly competition.

This year the Nordic Game Jam was the flagship for the Global Game Jam- initiative under IGDA Education Sig. The chairman of the IGDA Education Special Interest Group Susan Gold organized an initiative to have game jams around the globe in the same way as the Nordic Game Jam and with Nordic Game Jam as flagship, inspiration & model. All together there was 53 game jams in 42 different countries with more then 1600 participants which made more then 300 games.

Nordic Game Jam '09 started out Friday afternoon with presentations about game related topics. The talks were divided into two tracks, - one about Art & one about Technological Topics ,- all related to game development.

At 17:30 keynote speaker Heather Kelly – directly imported from the USA – took center stage and held a very interesting keynote and then the event was officially opened, - just in time for industry pros to get of from work and make it here.

The next 2 hours was spent on socializing exercises, concept-development, pitching of game concepts and forming of teams. By 21:00 the participants had a team, a concept and started working focused on making it happen, - on creating the best game ever made at a game jam.

Saturday was all hard work and no play. Well, it was a lot of gameplay. The only interruptions was a delicious breakfast, lunch and dinner with a focus on lots of good, healthy food. No pizzas or junk food here, thanks.

Deadline for the games was Sunday at 15:00, so crunch time set in at around 9 am, when the participants came to the IT-University. As the deadline grew closer, panic started to spread and everybody was working frantically to make it. Skill & luck insured that all succeeded and at 15:00 hours 29 games was developed.

The game jam is also about friendly competition and the game jam had two competitions: A Bring-From-Home-Track where participants could bring stuff they'd already developed, and a Global Game Jam track where everything was developed during the game jam. Each track was judged by a jury of industry professionals and while they were shown the games, the groups prepared to present the games to each other, - on the big screen and in front of more then 200 people.

The presentations was very varied and one of them even included dialog been read live, while the game was presented. The resulting games was also very varied and can be downloaded from this website and played.

Nordic Game Jam '09 was an amazing, inspiring & hectic experience as always. We had 157 participants, made around 29 games and also managed to support the Global Game Jam initiative while we did it. We, - the organizers of Nordic Game Jam – would like to thank our sponsors, helpers, co-organizers, the participants and the Global Gam Jam-organizers for making Nordic Game Jam '09 what it is.

We'll be back next year, - we're looking forward to seeing you too :)

2009 Global Game Jam Keynote