As the new year starts, literally every indie game developer in Egypt, and primarily the rest of the world, turn their heads and attention to a yearly event in January, and that’s the Global Game Jam! If you have never heard of it, then this is for you! Do stick around for the tour!

What’s the Global Game Jam?

The Global Game Jam (GGJ for short) is an event organized by the non-profit International Game Developers Association (IGDA), that takes place throughout the last weekend in January concurrently on several sites around the globe. This year, it’s taking place from January 25th till the 28th.

Organized in Egypt by the Egyptian Gaming Community and the ITI, the jam in Cairo holds special extras than being just a normal game jam, with a lineup of local indie studios showcasing their games, sessions by experts and entrepreneurs of the industry in Egypt, and sometimes foreign games experts are even invited. With a theme announced at the beginning of the jam, Indies and teams need to make a game related to that theme in the next 48 hours.

Photo rights goes to the Egyptian Gaming Community. Photo taken for jammers attending the GGJ 2017 at the ITI Smart Village

48 hours?? How am I going to finish the game?

Well, you won’t. The idea is not getting an actual product done, but forcing your creativity out, and juicing the prototype during those hours. Lots of people decide to build on what they have created during that time, and end up publishing those games on stores!

What happens if I don’t finish it on time? Am I disqualified?

While widely misunderstood as a competition, the GGJ is not a competition. The jam’s goals are for indies to get together, meet and work, and to break work’s and life’s routine with doing something challenging such a short period of time. The deadline is merely there to highlight a finish line, because otherwise people will keep on developing forever! (Trust me, I know!)

Do I have attend the GGJ to participate?

Actually no, it’s not required. You can work anywhere you’d like, and as long as you post your game on their website, you don’t even need to attend on-site any of those 3 days.

Post? As in ‘Upload’ the game?

Yup! You can create a page for your game on the official Global Game Jam website and add either your source code or executable for other jammers to try! That’s all, of course, provided you have register for the jam online.

I am in! Now what do I do?

Great! All what you need to do is to register on the official Global Game Jam website and join the Egyptian site at the Information Technology Institute here. You will also need to check the GGJ and the ITI’s policies for participants under the age of 16 and for sleepovers through the Facebook event.

If you still have some questions that haven’t been answered, you can leave a comment, send us your questions or contact the Egyptian Gaming Community through their Facebook event page. See you guys on 25th!

Happy jammin’!