Boston GGJ @ Northeastern University

Jam Site Owner: 
Log in to contact casperharteveld
Entrance Fee: 
Open for entire 48 hours
Jam Site Description: 

The Playable Innovative Technologies (PLAIT) Lab will host together with the Digital Media Commons (DMC) and the Northeastern Center for the Arts at Northeastern University the Boston Global Game Jam (GGJ). 

We Want You to Innovate!

We encourage participants at this GGJ site to innovate. Teams can innovate by thinking of new game mechanisms or by using themes or topics that haven’t been used in games. In our opinion the GGJ offers a great opportunity to experiment and to deliver short but wonderful game experiences. You want to capture players with something new and revealing in the short amount of gameplay time. That happens with something innovative. To help facilitate this innovation, we will brainstorm about possible innovative approaches on Friday evening. In addition, PLAIT faculty will be available to brainstorm with you.

Where Will the Magic Happen?

The magic will happen at the Digital Media Commons (DMC), a state-of-the-art facility that opened her doors in Fall 2012. It is a collaborative learning facility made up of a number of group work areas, high-power computer workstations and expert support. The Digital Media Commons provides new access to professional-grade hardware and software previously only available to members in specialized programs. New capabilities in animation, GIS, CAD, high-quality printing, video & audio production are available to all. Dual-monitor Apple and PC workstations provide high-power computing to deliver seamless media production, modeling, data analysis, and more. A number of new collaboration areas also bring groups together to facilitate easy sharing with plug-in monitors for laptops, mobile whiteboards, flexible seating and movable tables, all based on a grid of power so users are never far from an outlet to power their devices.

More information:

Software can be found here: 

What Should I Bring?

Although the DMC has computers available, we highly encourage participants to bring their own laptop. This is because some of the group spaces don’t have computers and you may decide with your group to work there. In addition, it is impossible to download software on DMC computers and so if you are need of dedicated game software (e.g., Unity or UDK), you need to rely on your own laptop. 

Who Can Attend?

Anyone with an interest in designing games can attend. All participants must be 18 years or older. You don’t need to have experience in designing a game before and you don’t need to have programming skills. In designing a game various assets and skills are needed other than programming: writing, art, sound, and game design. Teams need a mix of people with various backgrounds and while forming the teams we will make sure teams are balanced 

The site has a maximum of 100 participants. 

We Will Award You (Possibly)!

In addition to our encouragement to make you innovate, we will have a jury who will judge the games at the end of the weekend. The jury will consist of PLAIT faculty members and local game industry people. We will award two prizes: most innovative design and best overall design. The team members of the award winning designs will receive each an individual prize.


The event will run from Friday, January 24th at 5pm until Sunday, January 26th at 5 pm. Participants will need to attend the entire duration of this event. The complete schedule is as follows:

Friday January 24th

  • 4-5 pm: Check in and jam registration
  • 5 pm: Theme reveal and presentations
  • 6 pm: Group Forming and Social “Get to Know Each Other” exercises and dinner
  • 8 pm: Brainstorming
  • 9 pm: Pitching and critique

Saturday January 25th

  • 9 am: Breakfast
  • 11 am: Deadline to create user profile and game page
  • 1 pm: Lunch
  • 7 pm: Dinner

Sunday January 27th

  • 9 am: Breakfast
  • 1 pm: Lunch
  • 3 pm: Deadline for handing in the games
  • 5 pm: Presentations and awards

Food & Drinks

We will provide food and drinks during the event as indicated in the schedule and make sure a vegetarian option is available. In the vicinity of the location many varied options are available for food/coffee and other needs.


We encourage participants to take public transportation. Parking information at Northeastern University is available here:

Contact Information

Casper Harteveld, Assistant Professor at the College of Arts, Media and Design and member of the Playable Innovative Technologies Lab, is the organizer of this event. You can contact him with questions by e-mail ([email protected]) or phone (617-373-4027).

You can contact Casper with questions regarding cancellations or any other concerns you may have about the event.

About Playable Innovative Technologies Lab

Playable Innovative Technology: PlayIT or PLAIT, also means Braid, intertwined strands of, in our case, disciplines and activities. PLAIT is a group of faculty who teach and do research on topics related to game design and interactive media. We see this new emerging discipline as an interdisciplinary topic that infuses the arts (performative and visual), sciences (psychology, social science), and technology (computer science and engineering). We believe that the strength of our team is the strong cross disciplinary collaboration and representation. The core faculty represent the interactive arts, the computer science, and the social science, with members that often cross between these disciplines and publish in the different disciplines. Thus, we advocate a multi- and inter-disciplinary approach to game design and interactive media teaching and research, which we feel is unique within the game and interactive media programs and departments.

More information:

Food Options: 
Access to food in close vicinity. Drinks and snacks provided on site.
Who Can Participate: 
Age Restrictions: 
18+ only

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