Monday, January 13, 2014

ur chance to create the next Bioshock: gaming hackathon @ SJSU

If you know me, you're not surprised to hear I'm completely out of it in terms of gaming. The only gaming-related thing I do is constantly nag at my addicted teenager to do something more constructive with his life. But there's no denying it's big business and when I glimpse what these things are like now, I'm fairly astonishing, having grown up with Pong & Space Invaders, etc. (Yeah...don't say it.)

Anyway, despite my reservations, I wanted to post this up because it looks like it might be a great opportunity to apply some tech skills, some business savvy and some creativity and maybe make a run at creating a salable startup product. Yeah--it's called the Global Game Jam and it's like a gaming hackathon being held at a bunch of college campuses, including SJSU, where you spend the weekend in a team trying to come up with something cool that will really launch. Apparently, one of the games from last year's jam ("Starwhal", from a Canadian university) is now confirmed to be released on PS4, Wii U and Steam this year. Ok, I gotta admit–that's impressive, gaming or not.

So think about signing up. They say "You do not need to be on a team to register (we will do some team forming on site)" and "Although having computer skills is helpful, code experience is not necessary. Designers, developers, artists and anyone is welcome to try their hand at making a game during the GGJ." Web skills, marketing skills, testing skills production management and many other things are necessary to successfully create a game.

It's good timing - the first weekend after classes start (Jan 24-26), so pretty much zero homework to get in the way. And, rather wasting the weekend playing Bioshock, or partying at the bars, etc. this would be investing in yourself and your future. It's the kind of resume item that catches the eyes of hiring managers and tells them that you're someone who is into the technology and the tech biz and has the intellectual curiosity and motivation that is often thought lacking in "Millennials." Plus it seems like it would just be fun. Just saying. 

Looks like you can sign up on the site and they say you can email this guy on campus: for more info.

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