Gamejam is a week long event where Staff, Students, Alumni and Professionals come along and try to make a game during normal office hours
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Frequently Asked Questions >>
What is Gamejam
Game jams are generally social, collaborative competitions where competitors, usually form into teams, have to make a video game from scratch and in a set period of time.
Unlike other gamejams, our format lasts a week, during normal office hours.
When Is it?
The game jam will take place Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm each day. Judging takes place midday on Friday, followed by an awards ceremony.
Where is it?
Gamejam's organised by University of Portsmouth have taken place in Portsmouth and around the world.
The Portsmouth event in based in Eldon Building, part of the Faculty of Creative and Cultural Industries, at the University of Portsmouth. Use P01 2DJ to find us.
Other events take place (so far in China, France and the US) and a site specific website will be linked from here to tell you specifics relating to these when available.
Who Should Enter?
This year the event is open to anyone 18 or over (unless specific arrangements have been made with us before hand). You can take part as part of a team, or just come on your own. You don't need experience or specific skills, just enthusiasm.
Closer to the event date/s, an application form or other kind of registration will be available from here, or via the location specific sites.
What hardware and software is available?
Each centre has slightly different resources, but will normally try to make everything on site available should you need it. At Portsmouth you will have access to standard university software, including 3D Studio MAX, Maya, ZBrush, Mudbox, Adobe CC and Visual Studio. We also have 20 PS4 Dev kits, although special arraignments need to be in place to use these. There is limited access to Unreal Engine 4, Unity and Gamemaker.
What software can I use to make the game?
Anything you like. You should be aware however that your game will need to be demonstrated to an audience, probably in one of the larger lecture theatres.
If you have software with a valid license and want to install this, then this is at the discretion of the host institute.
How big can a team be?
There is no limit, but given the time-scale, large teams (say above 5) could be unwieldy
Are refreshments provided?
Subject to sponsorship, the Portsmouth event includes a free lunch, normally at a local public house/restaurant from noon until 2pm (Vegetarian option is available, but the options are set in advance and while we try to cater for all there are limits).
You will be required to indicate what you would like for lunch in the morning. Standard facilities rules apply however, meaning that you will not be able to eat or drink in the computer labs/studios.
Gamejam events in other locations/countries may not offer this.
How are the games judged?
We normally have a panel of judges from industry to look at the entries. Failing this, the entries will be judged by the competition organiser.
What are the prize categories?
Can we make any game we like?
No. The theme for your game will be decided on the day. This will be agreed upon, based on three random Wikipedia articles (excluding stubs). You must then base the theme of your game around one (or more) of those three articles.
Can I bring in the assets I have been working on for the last three years?
Yes.. And no. Game jams are meant to be more fun than competition, and we would not want to see almost complete games being brought in with a view to trying to win. We would rather you made your game from scratch. The event is more about meeting new people, learning new techniques and passing on your own profound wisdom to others.
What about additional help?
We hope to continue to have visiting industry professionals who are normally more than happy to offer advice to teams. We actively encourage teams to help each other.
How Many people can enter?
We normally try to have places for around 120 people, which will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis, although this number varies depending on the host.
How much does it cost?
Entrance cost is now £10 for the Portsmouth event. Other hosts will make their own arrangements. Online registration will be linked form this site when it is live.
Why is this event being run?
Initially, we ran this event to trial innovative new ways of learning and teaching at the Portsmouth location. Nowadays, we run the event for fun, learning and networking /recruitment. Judges, often from industry are invited to join us for the awards and post awards drinks and this forms the recruitment part of the event - we plan to expand upon this in the near future.
What if my game is brilliant? Who owns it?
Your team owns the IP of the game, however as all of the work will be created using educational licenses of software which means that it cannot be used for commercial purposes unless you acquire the professional version of the software.
We would, however, seek your approval for us to take photos and/or videos of you and your work in order to promote the event in the future. If you're really, really nice it would be great to have a copy of your game and permission to use it for promotional purposes too. If we asked really nicely, could you include the Game Jam logo in your titles?
The staff (and I'm sure, visiting professionals) will be more than happy to help you in your endeavours.
Portsmouth Gamejam >>
The 2018 event is likely to be in second week of June 11th - 15th -
to be confirmed closer to the date.
2017 T-shirt design is by Rosie Sowerby
Hosted by University of Portsmouth, Eldon Building [PO1 2DJ]
If you are an educational organisation and are interested in running a gamejam or are a professional/organisation interested in being involved, please:
There are opportunities to sponsor us. If you are interested in sponsoring part or all of Gamejam please contact Eliana.Lee-Gibbons@port.ac.uk for more details.