Global Game Jam Community Spotlight: Juan Lam

Juan Lam: "What I loved about participating in Global Game Jam the most was learning what our little team is capable of under the pressure of time, and the exciting and innovative ideas we could come up with on the fly."

Juan Lam took part in GGJ23, and made a VR game. This is his story and greetings to the Global Game Jam community.

"My name is Juan and I'm a XR Developer who just graduated from the Digital Worlds Institute. What I love to do is tell great stories and make fun experiences, and my favorite way to do that is to make games!

I participated in the Global Game Jam this year with a team of four other pals at the University of Florida (my first game jam!!) and it was an incredible amount of fun. We were up late (as expected) cranking out a hand-tracking-based, gnome-themed VR game, and as challenging as it was to figure things out, it was also super fun. Our team spent the first few hours just brainstorming and throwing ideas onto a board with little loyalty to a particular outcome. We ended up picking something we thought was fun and plausible, and from then on the flow of development actually went really smoothly! We didn't have any massive hurdles because we all work together well, though we did end up submitting it only one minute before the deadline."

Juan and team created a a TikTok video about the development of the project, and you can check it out here.

"The theme was roots this year, and for our game we settled on concerning ourselves with gnomes. Here's the pitch: There's a gnome planet with roots trying to reach down to the Cosmic Pool (no further questions on why, please), and it is your job to make sure that happens. Sounds easy, right? Wrong! Because Gnome Planet is infested with giant purple root-killing weeds. You'll have to pluck them away in order to help the tree make it to the Cosmic Pool, and thus save gnome society. (The stakes are clearly low). It's silly and fun, and we loved making it."

About participating in Global Game Jam Juan loved the most learning what their little team was capable of under the pressure of time, and the exciting and innovative ideas they could come up with on the fly.

"It was a pleasure working with a team that had such a great sense of humor, synergy, and a deep love for the process of making games. In that sense, what I've gained is a deeper appreciation for what I already have: an incredible team of people.

And, it was a pleasure participating in the Global Game Jam this year, and for my friends throughout the Global Game Jam community: it's been nice to introduce myself to you, and I can't wait to jam with you all again soon. Cheers!"

The jam game's page: Gnome Place Like Home by spencer.henry, aChallengr, Logan Kemper, juanlam

Juan Lam:
Logan Kemper: Logan Kemper | LinkedIn
Justin Gast: Justin Gast | LinkedIn
Kalli Melilli: Kalli Melilli | LinkedIn
Spencer Henry: SPENCER HENRY