Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Global Game Jam '09 - Team Albuquerque

Superbowl Sunday. Where were you? My guess is comfortable with friends eating lots of food and watching the game (or like us advertising folks, watching the commercials). A core group of gamers weren't so lucky, as they had just stayed up for thirty-six hours straight developing Chromogeist, their submission to the Global Game Jam '09.

On January 30 - February 2 over 1,600 participants competed world-wide in a video game development and design challenge. Albuquerque's team was led by Eric Renz-Whitmore, UNM Arts Lab professor. The group included Luke Nihlen, Elaine Raybourn, Eric Geusz, Ben Pogge, Peter Hague, Jonathan Whetzel, John Nipper, Chase Palmer, Ryan Knudsen, Jim Evilsizer, and Mark Smith.

The team was presented with the challenge of developing a game in 48 hours that could be played for five minutes. The team chose to focus on the concept of 'blindness' and developed a game, Chromogeist, that takes place at night. Through cooperative gaming techniques, players utilize their flashlights to 'zap' creatures of the night with the hope of surviving until the sun comes up.

Watch YouTube video on Chromogeist team:

What blew me away about this group was the raw talent it took to pull together a well designed, fully functioning game is such a short amount of time. Even the feet on the characters in the game moved! And the attention to detail - they recorded several tracks of grunts that at random rotate as the game goes on. And for background music, a team member had his friend write a song and come into the studio and record it for the game. Amazing!

To young graphic designers, programmers and game enthusiasts, these competitions are an eye-opener that gaming is here to stay and will continue to become mainstream as time goes on.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

My boyfriend is working on that game.
What a great group of people!
Most excellent!