247 Hong Kong jammers joined other 632 sites for Global Game Jam 2016

Over 36 thousand jammers in 632 jam sites located in more than 93 countries participated in Global Game Jam 2016. Hong Kong was 9th biggest among these locations with 247 jammers, both students and professional game designers, creating 40 games at Cyberport over the past weekend. During the 48-hour jam, a global theme was announced, teams formed and full game development cycle completed from ideation to testing including art design, programming, game design, sound design, user interface design and testing. This year's theme was the word “Ritual”.

The event lead to a two-hour award ceremony where the best teams in seven different categories was awarded. The award for best theme integration went to the team behind the game “Ouija Sequence”. In the game the four players use their smartphones and 1 tablet to follow a sequence they must recall from memory. The award for best gameplay was “Happy R.I.P Friends” where four players use the same tablet to work together to help the boss reaper become healthy by performing an ancient ritual. The audience award went to the team behind the game “Go! Go! Totem God!” a game for five players where each must complete an action in the real world using their smartphone. “Conscription” a colourful game about winning the affections of a girl won most ”kawaii” game. The board game “Final Ritual” won the award for best board game. In the game the players compete against each other using cards playing the role of priests who must complete their rituals first to win. Finally a there were two special awards for outstanding games that did not fit into any of the above categories. The special awards went to village warfare game “The Altar Rampage” and the mixed AR game “Zhong Kui The Demon Killer”.

Globally, the jam has a reputation as a creative platform for professional and beginner game developers to create innovative games in a limited time frame. Many such games are further developed into commercial products or successfully inspire new ideas in the industry. We expect to see some of this year’s games in the app stores later this year. Hong Kong’s 2016 game jam event was a good example of how entirely unique ideas, interfaces, technical implementations and gameplay can be created in a fun event and working with new people.

The event in Hong Kong was organized by The Hong Kong Polytechnic University’s School of Design together with Cyberport. Six other institutions of higher education supported the event. Hong Kong Game Development Association, Chinese DIGRA, Hong Kong Digital Game-based Learning Association, Dimsum Labs and Hong Kong Maker Club were event partners. Grandtech, Unity, Medbirdie and Outblaze were silver partners and Capstone was an award sponsor of the event. Hong Kong Freelancers Network was the Official Photo and Video Partner, with Audio Network as the Official Music Partner and Pro Sound Effects as the Official Sound Effect Partner.

All games created during the GGJHK, together with illustrations, are available at http://globalgamejam.org/2016/jam-sites/hong-kong/games. Photos from the event are available at https://flic.kr/s/aHsktExEmZ as well as some other which are located on our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/ggjhongkong. For more photos or any other inquiries, please contact hanna.wirman@polyu.edu.hk. For details, please visit the event’s official website: http://ggjhongkong.blogspot.hk/