Twenty-six Computer Games were Created at Hackathon Hosted by EPIC

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YEREVAN, Armenia On January 25-27, the Entrepreneurship and Product Innovation Center (EPIC) of the American University of Armenia (AUA) and Noor Games, an Armenian game development company, jointly organized the Global Game Jam 2019 at the American University of Armenia. This is the third consecutive year that AUA has hosted the hackathon.

Global Game Jam is an annual international gaming hackathon organized worldwide since 2009. It is the world’s largest gaming (game creation) event that brings together people to explore new technology tools and develop a new game in a span of 48 hours. The jam starts when participants are assembled on late Friday afternoon, watch a short video keynote with advice from leading game developers, and then a secret theme is announced. All sites worldwide are then challenged to make games based on that theme by Sunday afternoon. This year’s theme was “What home means to you.”

After the theme was announced, more than 100 participants gathered for the event formed teams and were successful in creating 26 games. “Some teams were created on the spot. There were many participants from the previous two years come again this year. In 2017, only five games were created, and in 2018, the number increased to 12, and to 26 this year,” remarked Narek Aghekyan from Noor Games.

Seventeen experienced mentors worked with the teams and coached them through the process of creating their games.  Among them were game developers, designers, artists, as well as game enthusiasts.

On January 27, the professional jury announced three prizes. The “Best Game” award went to “The Heaviest Matter of the Universe” game, a puzzle and strategy game. The “Best Art” prize was awarded to “Creepy House” memory game creators, and the “Best Implementation” was awarded to VIM game. The prizes were sponsored by Rockbite Games and Frismos.

The Entrepreneurship and Product Innovation Center (EPIC) is a platform for promoting entrepreneurial education, cross-disciplinary collaboration, and startup venture incubation. EPIC provides an ecosystem for the American University of Armenia’s (AUA) emerging entrepreneurs consisting of first-class facilities and collaborative workspace, programs and events, and a network of mentors, advisors and investors. EPIC fosters the understanding and application of entrepreneurship with students and faculty at AUA to craft high-impact multidisciplinary ventures.