Ukie and Alzheimer’s Research UK to host ‘Journo/Dev Swap’ game jam

Tuesday 17th September 2019 - Ukie, in partnership with Alzheimer’s Research UK, is hosting a special game jam that is challenging video game developers and press to swap roles.

In many ways the ‘Journo/Dev Swap’ event is like any other jam. Those involved will be given a theme, and immediately start making a game that explores that topic. They will have to complete their games in a very short amount of time, before a panel of judges play the titles and crown a winner.

In the Journo/Dev Swap, however, game press will be stepping up to make the games, while game developers will cover the event as press, writing up stories to be published on leading game industry website gamesindustry.biz. Our brave press will be supported by game development students and developer mentors. Meanwhile, the game makers trying their hand at journalism will be supported by an on-site press mentor.

Alzheimer’s Research UK are on board to set the theme, and continue to explore how games can be used to engage people with thinking about the reality of dementia, and the opportunity to overcome it through research.

The jam takes places from Friday, September 27th to Sunday, September 29th; some of the closing days of World Alzheimer’s Month. Journo/Dev Swap revisits a jam concept from 2012, which Ukie also hosted. The original was a remarkable event, and the idea of revisiting the concept simply never went away.

“We’re really excited to be involved in the 2019 Journo Dev Swap, and we’re proud to be setting the theme of this year’s jam,” said Tim Parry, Director of Partnerships at Alzheimer’s Research UK. “We hope the theme will prove evocative for the teams; there’s certainly a lot of directions a game could take with the idea we have. For the charity, we’re in the business of protecting the brain, and with dementia now the leading cause of death in the UK, the need to make breakthroughs has never been more acute. The gaming sector has infinite reserves of creativity and innovation, and as an R&D focused organisation, we’re excited to begin to work with the industry to see what’s possible.”

“The original Journo/Dev Swap game jam has always been remembered warmly, and is talked about often,” added Ukie CEO Dr Jo Twist OBE. “We’re delighted to host it again, and we can’t wait to see how our intrepid developers and press do. We’re also delighted to help Alzheimer’s Research UK continue to further their relationship with the millions of people who play games, and the industry itself. We look forward to welcoming some very talent game developers, and press from the gaming media, national radio and beyond.”

Members of the game industry are welcome to drop by the jam at any time. The judging process will take place throughout Sunday afternoon, with winners announced and trophies handed out at around 3.30pm.

The Journo/Dev Swap jam takes place at Ukie’s London headquarters at Black Bull Yard, 24-28 Hatton Wall, London, EC1N 8JH.

Questions can be directed to Ukie at press@ukie.org.uk, or Will Freeman, who is co-organising the jam. Will is available on will.freeman@spadgy.com.