The first season of The GAMERella Podcast features interviews with a selection of alternative game jam founders and organizers from around the world. These 60-minute recorded conversations will present listeners with behind-the-scenes, narrative accounts of challenging, inspirational, and ordinary experiences that ensued during the process of game jam organizing. Interviewees will share their paths to innovative game-making and offer practical tips for emerging and experienced organizers. Desirée de Jesus, media scholar and previous GAMERella co-organizer, will conduct the interviews.
GAMERella is the world’s longest running game jam focusing on supporting aspiring and emerging marginalized game creators. Our latest initiative is to find similar, alternative game jams, share knowledge, and build a supportive community for the generous, but sometimes overlooked and undervalued organizers.
Tips for Jam Organizers around the World
This week’s special mini-episode features curated highlights from the season’s interviews. Listen in as Meredith Hall, Meela dos Anjos, Sean Walton, Gina Hara and Courtney Blamey share their inspirational tips and tricks for community building and jam organizing.
Gina Hara & Courtney Blamey - GAMERella, Canada
In this episode Desirée talks with GAMERella game jam co-founder Gina Hara and GAMERella co-organizer Courtney Blamey from Canada, about organizing inclusive and alternative game jams, community building and more.
Meela dos Anjos - Game Jam das Minas, Brazil
In this episode Desirée talks with 2D/UI artist and Game Jam das Minas co-organizer, Meela dos Anjos about organizing the first game jam in Brazil for women-identified folks and building supports for women in Brazil’s gaming industry. You can find this episode’s transcript on the GAMERella website for an easier follow along.
Sean Walton - Climate Jam, Wales
In this episode, educator, game designer, and co-founder of Pill Bug Interactive, Sean Walton discusses the challenges of organising educational game jams, navigating participant dropoffs, offering participation incentives, and using game mechanics to convey the nuances of complex topics.
Sean is a Senior Lecturer in the Computational Foundry at Swansea University, where he runs the introduction to games programming module. He is interested in how we can use games and game design as educational tools. As part of this work, he was nominated in the 8th International Educational Games Competition for the “Love A Maggot” educational game. In 2018 with a team of academics he organised Climate Jam, a game jam where designers were tasked with creating games to communicate the complexities of climate science. Outside of academia he is the founding director of the independent games studio Pill Bug Interactive, who have shipped three titles, one of which was nominated for best video game created in Wales in the 2019 BAFTA Cymru awards.
Meredith Hall - AccessJam, Australia
Meredith Hall is a games industry consultant, advocate, and a co-founder of Accessibility Unlocked: an impactful initiative that connects disabled developers in Australia and New Zealand with resources and community support. In this episode we discuss how AccessJam!, Accessibility Unlocked’s month-long game jam, breaks down barriers, addresses a range of accessibility needs (e.g., emotional, financial, mental, physical, etc.), and challenges those in power to make games and the industry more welcoming.
Meredith is a multi-award winning producer and marketer. She's currently Lead Producer at Aconite and Strange Scaffold, the cofounder of Accessibility Unlocked, was previously at VicScreen in grant funding, and is a frequent public speaker and advocate. She was named one of 50 under 50 in InGames 2019 Gender Equality in Games list, and was named Rising Star at the 2020 Australian Game Developer Awards. As an independent creative, Meredith supports the games industry locally and internationally.