Game designers, enthusiasts take part in Jam

The Global Game Jam, held last weekend, turned out to be an exciting and encouraging event for most of the senior simulation, animation and gaming majors here at EMU. This opportunity will greatly impact their future and life after graduation.

The Global Game Jam is held throughout 65 countries and 400 different locations with over 20,000 participants. Every year, it is held in the last weekend of January. Eric Cordier, the current president, teaches at EMU. For over 20 years, he has been in the film production and music video industry. “My goal is to expose students more to the game industry,” Cordier said.

Employers like to know that the game creators have participated at Global Game Jams or something similar to it. This is the very reason is why seniors at EMU are excited to participate, because of the opportunities that it brings for their future.

When walking into the room, you could instantly tell that these future game creators were ready and anxious to start.

Senior Mark Binkowski is a SAG Major here at EMU, and it is his first time participating at the Global Game Jam. Binkowski says that game design and creation has been a passion for him since he was a kid. Instead of dreaming of becoming a rock star or an astronaut, he has always wanted to become a game creator. The greatest experience for Binkowski with game creation is when he started working with game engines at the age of twelve.

“If I didn’t start working with game engines, then I wouldn’t be the person I am today,” Binkowski said.

Adam Selburn, a senior, is also a SAG major here at EMU. “I first heard about the Global Game Jam in Cordier’s lecture,” Selburn said. Apparently, Cordier raves about the Global Game Jam and the opportunities it brings a lot to his students so, when the event finally comes, they are overly prepared for it.

“The idea is basically to reveal the theme, and make up a game concept,” said Cordier. When the game creators make up a game concept, they are put into teams, and then they create a game concept with technology or even something as simple as a board game.

At 5 p.m., an introduction video for the event started to play. At the very end of the video, the theme was shown, leaving the students confused at first. Soon the confusion gave way to excitement. The theme read, “We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.”

After the theme was revealed, they went to work for 48 hours straight, non-stop and overnight.
Their projects will soon get posted online.

Cordier said that in the past, the theme has been a picture, or just one simple word. This year was very different and original compared to the last but he is very, “interested in seeing what they come up with.”

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