Central Texas Global Game Jam 2014

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ATTN: Due to inclement weather, the kickoff event has been relocated to the Skillpoint offices at 201 E. 2nd St. starting at 4:00pm on Friday, January 24th.

Global Game Jam Resources

The University of Texas at Austin’s Game Development Program and Skillpoint Alliance will host the Central Texas Global Game Jam (GGJ) in 2014!

Date: January 24 – 26, 2014
Place: UT Austin Campus & Skillpoint Alliance
Registration: http://central-texas-ggj-2014.eventbrite.com. First 100 participants to RSVP by January 22nd will receive a GGJ swag item. There will also be on-site registration on January 24th.

What is the Global Game Jam:

The GGJ is the world’s largest game jam event taking place around the world at physical locations. Think of it as a hackathon focused on game development. It is the growth of an idea that in today’s heavily connected world, we could come together, be creative, share experiences and express ourselves in a multitude of ways using video games – it is very universal. The weekend stirs a global creative buzz in games, while at the same time exploring the process of development, be it programming, iterative design, narrative exploration or artistic expression. It is all condensed into a 48 hour development cycle. The GGJ encourages people with all kinds of backgrounds to participate and contribute to this global spread of game development and creativity. More information at: http://globalgamejam.org.

Where Will the Event Happen:

The event will happen at the Graduate School of Business (GSB) building on the UT Austin campus and Skillpoint Alliance. The opening and closing ceremonies will be held specifically at the UT Austin GSB 2.124 (http://www.utexas.edu/maps/main/buildings/gsb.html).

After the opening ceremony and before the closing ceremony, teams may work in GSB 2.126 from 6:30am – 10:00pm, Friday – Sunday. Teams may also work at Skillpoint Alliance, which will be available from Friday at 6:30pm – Sunday at 6:30am. Further details about locations will be provided at the opening ceremony.

Who Can Attend:

Anyone with an interest in designing games can attend. All participants must be 18 years or older. You don’t necessarily need to have experience in designing a game before and you don’t need to have programming skills. In designing a game, various assets and skills are hugely important other than programming, such as: writing, art, sound, and game design. Teams need a mix of people with various backgrounds to truly succeed. Register now: http://central-texas-ggj-2014.eventbrite.com.

What Should I Bring:

Because Skillpoint Alliance has only a limited number of computers available at their location, we highly encourage participants to bring their own laptop. Furthermore, it is impossible to download software on Skillpoint Alliance computers, so if you need dedicated game software (e.g. Unity or UDK), you must rely on your own laptop. UT Austin campus computers are only available for UT students and generally have limited hours of availability.

Internet access and power will be provided at Skillpoint Alliance and UT Austin. For non-UT Austin students, only wireless communication will be provided while on the UT campus.

Prizes:

In addition to the thrill of participating in the GGJ, we will have a jury of local industry professionals and UT faculty who will judge the games at the end of the weekend. We will award three prizes: best in show, best use of theme, and best original design. The team members of the award winners will each receive an individual prize (teams cap at 5 members).

Schedule:

The event will run from Friday, January 24th at 5:00pm until Sunday, January 26th at 5:00pm. Participants are free to work outside the event area during the development hours but are required to attend the initial check-in portion and final presentations. Some important timestamps are as follows:

Friday, January 24th:
4:00pm – 5:00pm: Check-in and Registration – Skillpoint Alliance (201 East Second Street)
5:00pm – 6:00pm: Theme Reveal and Presentation

Saturday, January 25th:
6:30am: UT Austin Work Spaces Open
11:00am: Deadline to Create Team Profile and Game Page
3:00pm – 5:00pm: Industry Mentors Available to Provide Advice and Feedback on Progress – UT Austin
10:00pm: UT Austin Work Spaces Close

Sunday, January 26th:
6:30am: Skillpoint Alliance Offices Close
6:30am: UT Austin Work Spaces Open
3:00pm: Deadline for Submitting Games
3:00pm – 5:00pm: Presentations and Awards – UT Austin – Celebration featuring games from industry partners ByteSized Studios and Maestro Interactive Games. There will also be a nineties video game themed photo booth!

Food & Drinks:

We will intermittently provide food and drinks during the event when available. There are also many varied food and drink options available in the vicinity of both locations. See attached document for a list of 24-hour locations around the event: 24 Hour Locations (PDF).

Transportation & Parking:

We encourage participants to take public transportation. Bus routes to campus and the downtown area can be found at: http://www.capmetro.org. Our recommendation is:

From UT Campus/GSB to Skillpoint Alliance
Walk from GSB 0.22 miles east to bus stop
BUS: 7-Duval / Dove Springs-SB
Depart: 2100 SAN JACINTO & 21ST (Stop #1180)
Arrive: 200 CONGRESS & 2ND (Stop #1714)
Walk 0.22 miles east to Skillpoint Alliance

From Skillpoint Alliance to UT Campus/GSB
Walk from Skillpoint Alliance 0.16 miles north to bus stop
BUS: 100-Airport Flyer-INBOUND
Depart: TRINITY & 4TH (Stop #5589)
Arrive: 2031 SAN JACINTO & 21ST (Stop #1253)
Walk 0.22 miles west to UT Campus/GSB

Please be sure to double check http://www.capmetro.org for further schedules.

For commuters, UT Austin campus parking information is available here: http://www.utexas.edu/parking/parking/visitor/. There is also parking available at the Dobie Mall: http://shopdobie.com/page/o198/Parking.html, as well as a limited number of street parking spaces in the area. Street parking is available at Skillpoint Alliance, as well as parking in the 2nd Street Convention Center Garage located at 201 East 2nd Street (http://www.austinconventioncenter.com/directions/directions.htm).

Contact Information:

Cameron M. Weed, Administrative Associate for the Game Development Program, and Chelsea Biggerstaff, Digital Media Program Coordinator for Skillpoint Alliance, are the organizers of this event. You can contact them with questions by e-mail at cweed@austin.utexas.edu and cbiggerstaff@skillpointalliance.org.

Sponsors:
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