Guest Post by Sophie on her first GameCraft experience Monday, June 23 2014

When I first heard from a friend about his experience with Gamecraft and his first gamejam I was intrigued. I graduated from games development but had not put those skills to use in quite some time. The thought of sitting down and programming a game for 24 hours with my rusty skills honestly made me nervous. However I was also very curious as my friend spoke at length on what a wonderful and fun experience he had. I decided to look up the website and see when the next one was on. Maybe I would be able to get enough practice in to actually be of use to a team. However when I read the site I found out about the Unplugged category! The aim was to design a non digital game and I knew instantly that this was how I wanted to spend 7 hours of my Saturday. I convinced a group of friends (some of whom were very, very big board games fans), got out all of my art supplies and off we went!

Once we arrived in DIT we all got out our equipment (with some interested looks from the lovely people who were torturing themselves in the name of fun with the 24 digital gamejam) and started planning. The amazing organisers had lots of very tasty food to keep us all fuelled and even a cake! We met our friendly competition, finished our game (with some very crudely drawn artwork as well) and recruited some playtesters. This was a difficult challenge as the digital games people were very hard at work and while wandering around the room trying to find potential victims I got to see some of the amazing work the digital crowd were getting up to. The atmosphere was very friendly and we got a few lovely people willing to give the game a go.

Before getting to playtest the other teams games it was time for some delicious pizza. There was even lots of vegetarian pizza. I was very impressed! The best part of the day was when all the games were finished and we got to playtest the other teams work. The amount of effort that had gone into the games was amazing and it was really wonderful to see how the other teams worked with the theme. Sadly I only got to playtest one of the other teams games rather then both of them. Don’t Say was a really wonderful and fun party game. It have everyone in bits laughing at our terrible drawings and was a really enjoyable game to play. The whole experience was really fun and I made a number of new friends during our day of gamecrafting. I am positive I’ll be attending more in the future (and may even turn my hand at the full 24 hour digital game marathon next time!) and I enjoyed every minute of the day!

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