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Mind Candy's Game Jam

By Ian Dransfield

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Date Added: 16th July 2014

Moshi Monsters creators, Mind Candy, team up with creative industry members and amateur developers for Game Jam. The goal? To make games in just 2 days!


Getting into game development has never been easier, apparently. But rather than just rely on that tired phrase, we decided to attend a game jam hosted by Moshi Monsters' Mind Candy to see what the real deal was.

Partnered with the likes of Autodesk, Marmalade, Simplygon, AMD, and 3dtotal, the event was a chance for indie developers – in teams or alone – to come together under one roof and tinker, prototype, make games, chat and learn. And, truth be told, it was really good fun – even for a novice spectator

"They were eager, full of enthusiasm and showing frankly shocking levels of creativity"

They'd been given just 2 days to create a game in its entirety with the theme of British summertime, but the 13 teams (some made up of just one person) at Mind Candy's Great British Summer Game Jam weren't perturbed. Actually, they were eager, full of enthusiasm and showing frankly shocking levels of creativity.

There was no animosity, no negative feeling - everyone was keen to help each other and learn from other projects.
Photography by Ian Dransfield

All part of the plan, according to Autodesk's sales development manager, Kevin Booth: "I've been so excited by the response we've had – it was probably our first game jam on this scale at least," he told us, "Where we've worked with a customer and other tech partners to provide a very easy way for participants to get involved with our technology, working in nice surroundings, in comfort, and let the creativity flow. It's certainly something we'd want to roll out again and again."

The comfort of Mind Candy's office, located around the Shoreditch area of London, isn't something a lot of beginner or upcoming developers have access to. You can tell just by looking at those beavering away at their Maya LT, Marmalade, Playcanvas or whatever other creations – one even a physical mystery-based card game – that it matters.

Teams like this one, which finished early, were even able to take part in a spot of posing. Though it's not exactly Vogue.
Photography by Ian Dransfield

Bringing the indies together like this isn't a new concept – game jams have been big news on the scene for a number of years now, with many projects coming from game jam backgrounds into the world of full releases–- one of the most famous examples being Mike Bithell's excellent Thomas Was Alone.

"The major players are paying attention and providing the tools and encouragement necessary to cultivate the next generation of game developers"

But to see companies like Autodesk and Mind Candy involved is big news – the major players are paying attention and providing the tools and encouragement necessary to cultivate the next generation of game developers. As Booth explains: "The idea of the game jam is to give people the awareness that Maya LT is something that they could easily bring in and also to find a way of finding that indie consumer in the first place.

Mind Candy encouraged a sense of fun in the games being made, though a fair few managed to make fun of our changeable British summer time.
Photography by Ian Dransfield

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