Board Game and Arcade Machine Creation Vision for Global Game Jam 2017

Chris Woodworth

Chris Woodworth

New ideas for board games and arcade machines are expected to diversify a North Wales edition of the world’s largest game creation event this weekend.

Wrexham Glyndwr University is hosting Global Game Jam (GGJ) for the seventh consecutive year from Friday 20 January to Sunday 22 January 2017.

The annual event uses technology to connect people across the world and develop video games from scratch within 48 hours.

But organiser of the Wrexham event, Richard Hebblewhite, senior lecturer in computing at Wrexham Glyndwr University, said the event was beginning to broaden beyond simple, computer-based games.

“I’m hoping for a diverse group of participants this year so we can have people working on everything from board games to physical arcade machines and traditional digital products,” he said.

“The GGJ event has expanded greatly since starting in 2009 with just 1600 participants in 23 countries. In 2016, 6866 games were created in one weekend at 600 locations in 93 countries.

“Wrexham Glyndwr University remains the oldest and largest Welsh representatives in GGJ.”

Last year’s event in Wrexham saw a team of 58 participants design and develop 18 individual games within the 48 hour period.

Guest speaker for the 2017 Wrexham GGJ will be Chris Woodworth, character animator at TT Games.

The UK-based company is responsible for producing the popular LEGO franchise of video games, for brands such as Star Wars, Harry Potter and Marvel Super Heroes.

Chris will provide some advice and tips for participants, who will be based at the university’s Centre for the Creative Industries.

Rich added: “Attendees under the age of 18 need to be accompanied by an adult but other than this there are no restrictions. We are open to all and no experience is necessary.

“Our Jam is supported by a team of experienced developers from both academia and the games industry. As always, we will be hosting a live feed, Q&A and a number of activities over the weekend.

“Basic training can be provided on site, along with access to art and craft materials for those wishing to engage in non-digital game projects.”

The event starts at 5pm on Friday 20 January and is free to attend. Register online at

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