Congratulations to Mad Scien-tile-ology and Gurgamoth Lives for winning the Judges’ award and the People’s Choice award at this weekend’s Seattle Game Jam. More than 65 developers and designers took part in the 3-day event, which was sponsored by PlayFab and held at Surf Incubator.
Alex Peterson, Brent Rawls, Leo Langinger, and Tristan MacDonald (seen above, with the judges) had never worked together before the Game Jam and were shocked when their game, Mad Scien-tile-ology, won the Judges award. The goal of the Match-3 style game is to prevent an expanding blob from getting more powerful and taking over the board. The judges were unanimous in their praise for the game, particularly the innovative art style using stop-motion-animation.
“It just checked all the boxes,” said judge Lisa Weeks. “So many of the games here had one great aspect — art or design or good project management — but Mad Scien-tile-ology had it all.”
The winning team were full of praise for their fellow competitors. “I’m overwhelmed by the quality of all the submissions,” said Laninger.
The judges agreed. “We were blown away by the quality of the entries,” said PlayFab CEO James Gwertzman, “There was an incredible level of polish for three days.”
In addition to Gwertzman and Weeks, a marketing expert who organizes the Seattle Game Developers Meetup, the judging panel included Spry Fox Chief Creative Officer Daniel Cook, PlayFab CTO Matt Augustine, and Innervate CEO Adam Lieb.
Thirteen games were presented to the judges and then voted on by the participants as well. All games were loosely based on the weekend’s theme of “It’s Alive!”
The People’s Choice award went to Gurgamoth Lives, created by Galvanic Games: Taylor Beeghly, Patrick Morgan, Royce McLean, Chad Jenkins, and CJ Kimberlin. The 4-person local multiplayer pits flying cult monkeys against each other, each trying to kill each other to appease the elder gods.
Galvanic is a small game studio currently working on The Rust Belt, due out in 2016. They joined the game jam as a way of taking a break from their main game. “It was amazing,” said McLean. “This was the funnest thing I’ve done this year.”
Each winning team received $500 to share among their members. A special networking award sponsored by Photon gave three months of service to St. Conrad, a game about scavenging raccoons. In addition, door prizes of an Oculus Rift DK2 and a GeForce GTX 970 were awarded to Richard Saville and Pinktreeleaf, respectively. Many PlayFab t-shirts were distributed as well, inspiring St. Conrad’s Diana Pham to draw her “trash panda” raccoon in one.
Event organizers and participants were full of praise for Surf Incubator, which hosted the Game Jam. Its spacious layout and abundance of small conference rooms made it very easy for groups to come together and build their games. Live tweets from the event can be read at Storify.
In addition to Mad Scien-tile-ology, _Gurgamoth Live_s, and St. Conrad, the other games created during the Seattle Game Jam were: Frank, GraveFighter, Hazardous HazMat, High on Life, Organs, Papercut, Roll for your life, Sentient Sandwich, Size Matters, and Teddy Faith.