UK students amongst winners at European games jam, Brains Eden 2019

A student from Norwich University of the Arts has picked up Jammer of the Year award at Brains Eden 2019, an event that invites 28 teams of student game developers across UK and Europe to compete in a 48-hour games jam.

The judging panel – which was comprised of “senior representatives from major games development, technology and education companies” such as Frontier Developments, Jagex, Gameware Europe, Supermassive Games, Creative Assembly, Codemasters, Popleaf, and Sumo Digital – said Marshall was awarded the top prize because of her “can-do attitude to take on a technical role in an artist-heavy team”.

The jam – which offers nine awards and ran from June 28th to July 1st – took place at Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge with the surprise theme of “chain reaction”. Other winners included Dangerous Men from South Eastern Finland University of Applied Sciences (XAMK) which scooped up the Best PC Game Award, whilst Toasted Works from the University of Northampton, was awarded Best Mobile Game and New Folder (5) – also of University of Northampton – won the Judges’ Choice Award. 

Winners of the Spirit of the Jam Award were No Glitch from POLE IIID, France, whilst Best Storytelling Award was awarded to Howest University College, Dodos’ Against Extinction. The competition also “recognised artwork and concepting” for the first time with the Best Game Artwork Award and Best Game Concept, which were won by Bacon Pancakes from Breda University of Applied Sciences, The Netherlands, and Dangerous Men from South Eastern Finland University of Applied Sciences (XAMK) respectively. 

“Anglia Ruskin University is delighted to have hosted Brains Eden annually for the last 11 years.” said Dr. Apurba Kundu, acting dean of Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences at Anglia Ruskin University. “Brains Eden is truly an international event with university and industry representatives Holland, Belgium, Finland, France and the UK attending. The games sector is really important in the economy; it is enormous and booming and Brains Eden gives students access to that.”

“In terms of judging the games, it was really hard,” added Jonny Watts, chief creative officer at Frontier Developments, reflecting on how the team awarded The Frontier Innovation Award. “There was so much quality and we saw innovations in all aspects of game play, but it came down to one thing – there was a game with a tutorial that was so slick, sweet and smart and we had to award team Didn’t Argue Enough with the prize.”

About Vikki Blake

It took 15 years of civil service monotony for Vikki to crack and switch to writing about games. She has since become an experienced reporter and critic working with a number of specialist and mainstream outlets in both the UK and beyond, including Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, IGN, MTV, and Variety.

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