Becoming a jammer

Is GGJ an online jam / Can I take part from home?

Normally you can not take part in GGJ online but for 2021 we are moving to a fully online event due to the circumstances surrounding the ongoing global pandemic. You need to sign up at one of the many, many local sites around the world in over 108 countries and participate online together with the other registered participants at your site. Each site will be required to use an online community platform (Slack, Discord, Facebook, etc) where you will form teams and create a game over the weekend. If you don’t see any sites registered near you, consider becoming a Site Organiser!

If you would like to try participating in an online jam before GGJ there are many online game jams you can take part in. for jams going on right now, or consider taking part in .

Part of that makes the GGJ event different and special from other jams is the need to attend a site in person and we are hoping to replicate that experience with GGJ online to the best of our abilities. This is why we are keeping the local site format for GGJ Online to help keep communities together who have jammed together in prior years and help bring new ones together for this experience so they can establish connections that will flourish once we can return to in person jams and events. 

We are asking site organizers to commit to an online only format this year for the health and safety of our jammers, organizers and volunteers. If you have any questions or concerns about this please get in touch with us and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Is GGJ a competition?

No, Global Game Jam encourages innovation, collaboration and creativity. We find competition often diminishes collaboration and sense of community at a jam. 

Do I need to come to the event with a team already formed?

There is no need to come to the Jam with a team. Ideally everyone forms teams on the opening day of the jam and you will get the chance to work with new people. You will have some time to think and pitch an idea. Make new friends or jam with peers you admire.

Do I need special skills to participate in the GGJ?

Experience is not necessary. Designers, developers, artists, musicians, knitters, gardeners, architects and anyone is welcome to try their hand at making a game during the GGJ. You can lean many new skills and support your team by contributing ideas, playtesting, and giving moral support. You could work on a non-digital game, and then there's no need for code!

DO I HAVE TO USE ENGINE/TOOL/SOFTWARE XYZ?

No! At GGJ you can use any engine, tool, piece of software, person or physical object to make your game. We encourage diversity and are platform agnostic! We do however sometimes have free tools and offers from our sponsors, as well as recommendations from the community. See our jammer resource page!

Do I need to register on the Global Game Jam website?

Yes, everyone taking part in Global Game Jam must register on the website. Many sites will have a local site registration requirement, and so make sure you check to see if you need to sign up there too. You will also need your global registration to join your site online and upload your game.

How do I create an account on the website?

Registration for jammers will open in early December, you won’t be able to register for a new account until then. Once sign ups are active, you will see a button on the home page of the website which says ‘Register as a Jammer’ become active. Click this button and fill in the form to create an account. Sometimes sites won't allow you to join their page on the website yet. If this is the case, contact the site organiser to find out how you sign up.

How do I edit my account information?

General information

To edit your general site information, log into your GGJ website account, click the 'My Profile' eyeball in the top right of the page, and then click the edit tab. Much of the information assocaited with your account will be editable here. 

Name/email

If you want to change your account username, real name or email address associated with your account, you will need to contact us at [email protected] from the email address associated with your GGJ account, sending a URL to your user account, and your request. We will action this request within 30 days.

How do I delete my account information?

Please email [email protected] with your request, and we will action it within 30 days. If you have previously created a game with your account, we will need to anonymise all the information instead, so your game will still be preserved. 

Who owns the intellectual property of games made during GGJ?

The team/makers of the game hold all IP rights. However, the Global Game Jam® may use the games for demonstration as it sees fit. All games must be posted in the condition they are in as of the close of the GGJ event (Sunday), including both executable and source code (or equivalent). All participants and all games entered for GGJ must agree to a . Third party tools and software may be used in the projects and must not be uploaded or shared. Clear instructions must be provided as to how to obtain and install any third party software that is necessary for further development.

Please note that creative commons license has been updated to a version 4 since this page was made, so you can either choose the above v3 license or go with this version.

See also: the Content Policy. 

To check when jammer registration opens, check the important dates page

Liability

The Global Game Jam® is supposed to be fun and collaborative, with a goal to keep things very simple. We provide structure, guidance and help for all locations participating in the GGJ. As a rule, we expect that no team/makers of a game will illegally exploit others' IP, and that in turn, everything created becomes part of the public domain. All participants agree that their participation in the Global Game Jam® will hold no one liable for any loss or damage.

The Global Game Jam® reserves the right to refuse to allow anyone or any jam location to participate at any time for any reason or no reason at all. This includes after the game jam has already started.

What software should I use to make a game?

You can develop using any tools for any platform that you want. If you don't know where to start, check here for a list of Jammer Resources. The list contains some special deals such as free software downloads for all GGJ participants, and community-made lists of other resources, and is definitely worth checking out!  

Can I make a board game, card game or other physical game instead of a videogame?

Yes! Global Game Jam® supporst the making of non-digital games. Talk to your local site organizer. Some hints for how to create and upload board games an be found here.

How can I make my game accessible to gamers with disabilities?

Over 20% of gamers have some kind of impairment that may affect their ability to play a game. Avoiding the barriers they face not only means more players, it also makes a real difference to people's quality of life. Independent access to recreation, culture and socialising may not be easily available, and games can help to provide that.

There are four main types of impairment: visual, motor, hearing and cognitive. Considerations for them range in complexity and not all are appropriate to all game mechanics. But whichever one/s you choose to design for, there's a huge opportunity for innovation, new approaches that haven't been tried before. Check out the  to help guide your consideration as to how you can make the games you create more accessible to all.