Now in year two, JAMCHESTER is an annual, weekend-long video game creation competition. It will take place at The Studio event space in the heart of Manchester, UK. 

This year’s sponsors include Google Cloud Platform, Unity, Amiqus, and The Studio. Supporters include TIGA, Ukie, and All4Games, while our charity partner is Special Effect.

Teams from major companies and indie devs will compete on a level playing field with the jam’s theme only revealed at the start of the competition.

We will also have a limited number of student teams to give them the opportunity to mix with industry professionals. Participants will have the opportunity to network with other developers, learn new skills and have fun! Think of it as a chance to recharge your creative batteries in a friendly environment.

The jam will be judged continuously with Judges walking round throughout the entire competition, looking at and playing what people are making right from the start to the end. There will be no final presentation necessary as the judges will be following the games through development.

Prize categories will include - Best Game, Best Audio, Best Design & Gameplay, Best Tech Achievement, Best Art & Visual Presentation, Innovation & Creativity Award, Best Company Game, Best Student Game.

Our lead judge is Gary Napper is a Game Designer with 16 Years experience working on such franchises as Burnout, Harry Potter, Family Game Night, Spare Parts and Halo Wars 2 at studios including EA UK, Criterion, Sony, EA BrightLight and Creative Assembly. Gary is most recently is known as the Lead Designer on the Bafta Award winning and industry acclaimed Alien: Isolation. After working with Sony on PlayStation VR. He is currently working as a Game Director at SupermassiveGames (Creators of Until Dawn, TumbleVR and Rush Of Blood) on some new and exciting things with the recently expanded VR team. Follow him on twitter @xopsx and Supermassive games @SuperMGames.  Gary will lead a team of industry professional judges and expert jammers to choose the best games of the competition.

Event Schedule  The total jam time is 40 hours

Friday 23rd June

19:00 - 19:30 - Registration and Manchester Games Showcase.

19:30 - 20:00 - Theme announcement and Jam begins (starting this late will help people travelling from out of town).

00:00 - Midnight pizza delivery

Saturday 24th June

24hrs - Jam continues onsite. Judges visit teams all day and follow progress of the games

07:00 - 08:30 - Breakfast

10:30 - Mid-morning snacks

13:00 - 14:00 - Lunch

16:00 - Afternoon Tea

18:30 - 20:30 - BBQ

Sunday 25th June

07:00 - 08:30 - Breakfast

10:30 - Mid-morning snacks

12:00 - Jam time ends

12:00 - Lunch

12:00 - 15:30 - Judges/attendees play all games created 

15:45 - 16:00 - Judges deliberation

16:00 - 17:00 - Awards ceremony

13:30 - 18:00 - Closing party including Awards ceremony. (As this is a national event, finishing mid-afternoon helps people who are travelling from out of town)



We have discounted rates at our nearest main car park The Northern Quarter NCP on Church Street. The postcode for this is M4 1LX. 



To obtain discounted parking at the Northern Quarter Church Street car park simply ask for an NCP validation ticket at thestudio reception. When you are ready to exit the car park, simply insert your original parking ticket into the payment machines along with the validation ticket to activate the discount.

Watch this video to see how to get from Manchester Piccadilly Train Station to the venue.


You must be aged 18 or over.

Teams can be made up of one to four people.



Games must be based on the theme annouced at the start of the event. Only games created during in the 40 hour jam will be considered for judging.

Your submission must include the following;

1) Team Name

2) Name of the Game

3) Team Members

4) Description

5) Link to where the game can be played e.g. Github, Dropbox,

Hackathon Sponsors


Art & Visual Presentation

Trophy & kudos

Design & Gameplay

Trophy & kudos

Audio Design

Trophy & kudos

Technical Achievement

Trophy & kudos

Innovation & Creativity

Trophy & kudos

Best Student Team

Trophy & kudos

Best Company Team

Trophy & kudos

Best Game

Trophy & kudos

Devpost Achievements

Submitting to this hackathon could earn you:

How to enter

1) All attendees must register on Devpost (If you aren't already).

2) Select one team member to create a project on Devpost. This is where you will submit your final game. Once the project is created, add your team mates to it.

3) You can include a detailed description and each team member can describe how and what they contributed to the game.

4) You can add technology tags, screenshots and links.


Gary Napper

Gary Napper
Games Director at Supermassive Games Ltd

Jon McKellan

Jon McKellan
Creative Director & Founder at No Code

Liz Mercuri

Liz Mercuri
Educational Evangelist at Unity Technologies

Sam Hughes

Sam Hughes
Lead Editor at The Sound Architect

Des Gayle

Des Gayle
Founder of Altered Gene & Freelance Producer for Square Enix Collective

Claire Bromley

Claire Bromley
Associate Producer at XDev Studios Europe

Jordan Webber

Jordan Webber
Freelance Journalist at The Guardian

Si Lumb

Si Lumb
Senior Product Manager (AR/VR/Interactive) at BBC (R&D)

Judging Criteria

  • Art & Visual Presentation
    How your game looks, how well it uses colour and composition, how well the visuals blend together and represent the essence of the idea.
  • Design & Gameplay
    How well thought out and structured your game is. How mechanically fun it is to play. How well it solves gameplay issues and how each part of the game integrates with the whole.
  • Audio Design
    Not just music and sound effects. How well your game uses audio to complement and enhance the design and art. How does your game feel as a result of the audio.
  • Technical Achievement
    Not just complexity or detail but how impressive a creation you have made. Have you created new systems and technology? How would others benefit from the advancement?
  • Innovation & Creativity
    Big, new, inspiring and intriguing ideas. Have you done something no one else has? Have you developed something to a new level? How creative have you been with the theme?
  • Best Student Team
    At college or university? This is your chance to compete alongside professionals and show what you can do. All team members must still be in full time Education to qualify.
  • Best Company Team
    Team - Already working for a company? Let's see how impressive your group can be outside of your regular studio or office environment.
  • Best Game
    The best overall game experience. Must be the best overall game, something outstanding and impressive. How complete, rounded and strong is the game as a whole.

Questions? Email the hackathon manager

Tell your friends

Hackathon sponsors

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.