Art And Culture

Iran Partakes in Global Game Jam 2015

Iran Partakes in  Global Game Jam 2015
Iran Partakes in  Global Game Jam 2015

Iranian game developers participated in the Global Game Jam - the world’s largest game jam event - which was held on January 23-24 simultaneously in 480 locations in 63 countries. The mechanism of the event included organizing several game jams all over the world at the same time.

Usually arranged over the last weekend of January, the event lasts 48 hours, starting on Friday at 17:00 in New Zealand and 5pm local time in each time zone and ending at 5pm two days later. All GGJ sites have the same theme, which is revealed just before the jamming begins, Mehr news agency reported.

The managing director of Iran Game Development Institute, Taha Rasouli, said that by nature, the event is not actually an international competition; rather it is a collective occasion for accompaniment and partnership of game developers from all around the world.

“The occasion provides an opportunity for game developers worldwide to take part in a collective intellectual activity,” he said.

Iranian gamers reportedly took part in the event from eleven sites in Tehran and other cities, the biggest one being at the Iran Game Development Institute with 12 participating teams of gamers.

Of the 12 teams, four teams managed to reach the finals, which according to Rasouli “is a good record for Iran.”

About the mechanism for joining the event, he said the groups announced their presence as independent entities, and the institute - regardless of its legal and public nature - just served as a location for the gamers.


Although the GGJ does not provide an opportunity for gamers to meet their counterparts and establish direct relations, but it does create synchrony among participants. Also, the games that are developed by participants, due to the limited time devoted to the process, “are not usually worth being commercialized and sold,” according to Rasouli.

Nevertheless, it is worth participating in the event, he noted, as it provides an opportunity for Iranian developers to challenge their capabilities and experience on a global scale, as “starting a project from zero and completing it in 48 hours is an extraordinary experience for game makers.”

 Developing Ideas

The Global Game Jam (GGJ) is an annual distributed game jam. Inspired by the Nordic Game Jam, it was originally developed under the International Game Developers Association Education to bring together the elements of creativity, collaboration and experimentation. At each site, participants gather to develop ideas, form small groups, create new, creative, innovative games, and present them to their peers and the global community, all in a limited time span.

Participants in the GGJ are of all skill levels and in various fields. Everyone from professional game developers to educators to artists and designers is welcome to participate. Once the jam begins, participants come up with game ideas, before pitching those ideas to each other and forming teams to work together on a project.

The first game jam event was held in 2009 with 1650 participants in 23 countries, producing 370 games. The event has grown each year and in January 2014, GGJ generated teams in 485 sites in 73 countries, who over the course of one weekend created 4,289 games. The GGJ carries a registered trademark.