Dublin GameCraft 3 comes to Engine Yard on 18 May

25 Apr 2013

Hard at work at Dublin GameCraft 2 (photo by Adam Renardson)

Dublin GameCraft returns for a third round this summer, challenging developers to cobble together a complete and playable game in just 12 hours.

Dublin GameCraft 3 will take place on Saturday 18 May in Engine Yard on Dublin’s Barrow Street and anyone interested in games development, regardless of their level of experience, is encouraged to come along.

“Participants can range from inexperienced to experienced professionals. We welcome all levels,” said Vicky Lee, PyCon Ireland co-chair and a co-founder and co-organiser of the event. “I took part in the first [Dublin GameCraft] with no prior knowledge of making games. I went outside my comfort zone as a coder and stayed away from it and decided to create art assets. I really learnt a lot that day.”

At the 12-hour game jam event, attendees are asked to create a small game in a limited amount of time, working alone or as part of team, and using whatever platforms and tools they like. A panel of judges will then test and review the games produced in order to select the prize-winners, while participants will be able to vote on a ‘People’s Choice’ award.

It’s advised to arrive before 9am, as when the hour strikes the theme will be announced and 12 hours of solid (and frantic) game developing will commence. But there’s also plenty of time to socialise and network with fellow game enthusiasts, plus a few beers courtesy of Engine Yard.

Fun and games

Hobbyists, students, graduates and anyone enthusiastic about developing games, learning new skills, making new acquaintances and having a bit of fun are all welcome at GameCraft events. Two have already taken place this year: one in Belfast at Farset Labs and one at the Games Fleadh in Thurles. After the Dublin even this summer, GameCraft is coming to Derry in September as part of CultureTECH.

“We are quite lucky in Ireland to have so many companies starting up and starting to release more and more games,” says Lee’s fellow founder and organiser Andrea Magnorsky of BatCat Games. “We are also starting to get noticed by the rest of the world,” she notes, as she emails me from Berlin where she and representatives from bitSmith Games and Digit Game Studios have been invited to speak. 

Lee and Magnorsky have been organising tech-related events for many years, but Magnorsky tells me GameCraft is one of the most popular and most fun. Ambitions for the future include international expansion and plans to get more people to come to Ireland for these events.

Tickets for Dublin GameCraft 3 are available now for a budget-friendly €5 each, with all money to be donated towards pizza for the hungry developers in the evening.

Elaine Burke is the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. She was previously the editor of Silicon Republic.