They Came. They Saw. They Conquered the Challenge! Global Game Jam Chicago Team @PETAL et al.


Global Game Jam Chicago Team @PETAL et al. Kick-off Photo. All participants not shown. See image gallery for more photos.

It’s All in the Game!: Global Game Jam Chicago Participants Create Five New Video Games During First Ever Free Game Jam in Chicago

They came. They learned. They participated. And before Global Game Jam @PETAL et al.’s three-day event was over, participants had conquered the challenge of creating video games – five in all – which are now ready for public viewing and enjoyment.

There were some excellent moments of triumphs and excitement, filled with innovation, collaboration and experimentation during Global Game Jam Chicago @PETAL et al. Five teams and 48 hours later, all teams had posted a game on time. Games created were “Anti-Hero”, “First Glance”, “iCarl”, “Tintalating” and “When Pigs Fly!” Games can be downloaded or played from the Global Game Jam Chicago @PETAL et al. site.

Many braved the arctic cold to show up daily during the weekend to complete their mission of creating a video game with team members.

Global Game Jam Chicago @PETAL et al. set a historical precedent – holding the first all inclusive and free global game jam in the city of Chicago. PETAL et al. hopes other organizations will consider hosting school neutral locations of this event in the city, which would give more people the opportunity to participate.

The three-day event was held January 24 – 26 at Next Door Chi located at 659 W. Diversey Parkway, in Chicago.

PETAL et al. opened the event with a 2-hour game jam strategy workshop.

Pamela McMillan, CEO of PETAL et al., in presenting the Global Game Jam keynote address and theme announcement, told participants: “We don’t see things as they are; we see them as we are.” For a second, there was a look of bewilderment on the faces of people in the audience. Six pitches were made, and four were chosen by the participants. After that, they broke off into teams and immediately started brainstorming…the game was on!

One of PETAL et al.’s main goals is to level the field for everyone interested in the entertainment technology arts field. PETAL et al.’s training program is designed to prepare clients to reach their goals in making video games, mobile apps and interactive media regardless of their educational background.

“It is important to help others no matter what their educational background. We want everyone to enjoy themselves as well; to make a game whether they show up with a team or not. No one will be left out or work alone while creating a game during the jam unless they want to go it alone,” McMillan pointed out.

Clarence McMillan, PETAL et al.’s CTO, said “It’s important that people with the same aspirations and goals in mind not work in a silo.  If the game development community wants to have Chicago stand out, they should work together. There is strength in numbers.”

PETAL et al. held the event in conjunction with support from three local game development groups – CEGD, Chicago Game Developers Commonwealth and the Indie Video Game Developers Association. Ignite Network and Gaming Lounge dropped by and donated three free hours of game play to all participants. Check out more photos and the “Hello Video” from the event.