HackHW hosts Game Jam


Printed with permission of Natalie Lim

Eric Yoon ’23 leads a unity workshop during HackHW’s annual Game Jam.

Kriste An and Nathalie Leung

HackHW hosted its annual Game Jam on March 5-6, inviting students to develop video games with peers, attend workshops and network with alumni.

Participants gathered in Mudd Library overnight, where they acquired gaming and coding skills through a variety of activities. Senior Vice President of Camera and Platform at Snap Inc. Eitan Pilipski hosted a workshop on developing augmented reality (AR) filters. At the end of the event, students presented their own games to each other and a panel of judges. No coding experience was required to participate.

Last year, Game Jam was held online due to COVID-19. HackHW Leader Rohan Madhogarhia ’22 said he felt overjoyed to host the Game Jam in person this year, though the transition from the online format posed a difficult process.

“It was amazing to be able to host [the Game Jam] in-person,” Madhogarhia said. “While we were happy to be able to host the Game Jam last year, a large part of the experience was lost due [to its online setting]. Being in person, there were a lot of logistical items that we had to work around, but I think we did a great job, and I’m so glad [about] the outcome.”

Participant Caroline Reimer ’24 said she initially hesitated to join due to her lack of coding experience, but ultimately had a fun and fulfilling experience.

“The Game Jam was great,” Reimer said. “Initially, when my friends were signing up for the Game Jam, I was a bit hesitant to join [given my minimal experience with coding]. But, I am so glad that I did because it was an amazing way to bond with students, including juniors, seniors and freshmen whom I had never met before.”

Participant Ryan Cheng ’24 said he was impressed with his fellow peers’ enthusiasm for coding and appreciated the inclusion of inexperienced coders.

“It was great to work with other students who shared my passion for coding,” Cheng said. “My favorite part of the event was when students went around, showcasing what they had worked on throughout the event. Some presentations were particularly impressive because they were created by students who had little to no experience with coding. This was a great example of how the Game Jam was not only a contest for coders, but also a place for interested beginners.”