Belfast hub for Global Games Jam

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NORTHERN Ireland’s fast-growing tech community is once again proving its ability to compete on the world stage, with the announcement that Farset Labs will play host to the Global Game Jam.

The world-breaking event will take place for the first time ever in Belfast, and will bring people together across the globe to explore new technology tools, try on new roles in development and test their skills to do something that requires them to design, develop create, test and make a new game in the time span of 48 hours.

Farset Labs, which is a hackerspace that provides a hub of creativity, technological innovation and entrepreneurship and is located in Weavers Court Business Park, Belfast, will be open for the full 48-hour period, from 25-27 January as each participant team competes to build a game in a weekend.

Andrew Bolster, Farset Labs, said, “This is the biggest event of its kind in the world and we are calling on Northern Ireland’s brightest and best creative and technical people to take part. So whether you are a writer, artist, coder, character designer or even a production manager, and are interested in meeting like-minded people to express yourself through video games, join us on the 25th January. The weekend is about exploring the process of development, programming, iterative design, narrative exploration or artistic expression and while the focus is on programming there any many other ways people who don’t code can contribute to a game.”

The event is being hosted in conjunction with the University of Ulster Office of Innovation, who will be providing refreshments. Entry will be free.

Global Game Jam is essentially a hackathon, focused on games of all sorts, from full-scale console productions to mobile, web-based and embedded games, as well as non-digital productions like board and card games. Last January, the Global Games Jam saw 242 locations in 47 countries create over 2,000 games in one weekend to become a Guinness World Record.

Farset’s Andrew Bolster is the official organiser for the event in Belfast and has been collaborating with other organisations to make it a special occasion. More information can be found at farsetlabs.org.uk