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Global Game Jam, Indie Gaming Orlando, Indie Gaming, Blacksea Odyssey

Global Game Jam returns January 29-31st for 48 hours of game-making adventure. Last year, the program took place simultaneously in 78 countries at 583 locations resulting in 5,439 free, open source, games.

Last year’s Game jam in January, attracted 135 participants at the Melrose Center and created 23 unique games. This year the festivities have moved across town to Gods & Monsters at the Artegon Marketplace, but the goal remains the same: make great games.

One team from last year’s Orlando chapter of Game Jam is still going strong. Blacksea Odyssey, a team comprised of three UCF game development and design grads, is now Blacksea Odyssey Studio, an independent studio based out of Tampa.

“Having been past participants [at Global Game Jam], we wanted to be as prepared as possible for the jam, so we brainstormed several simple concepts that might pertain to the rumored theme and formed a team before the event,” said Blacksea Odyssey producer Percy Legendre IV of last year’s event.

“We had planned to go all out on this game because being recent (and upcoming) graduates at the time, we chased the idea of taking the idea beyond the game jam if all went well. Thankfully, it did,” Legendre went on to say.

“While some of us had worked with one another, we had yet to test our combined chemistry. Fortunately, we had awesome chemistry. And of course this led us to work together to create an awesome game jam game that everyone loved and would eventually evolve into so much more.”

Blacksea Odyssey has been a fulltime project since May of 2015, though it is not without its struggles. The team originally signed with Mastertonic, an independent games publisher. Soon after Mastersonic went under administration and Blacksea Odyssey was forced to pivot. Blacksea Odyssey decided to self-publish instead, and launched a Kickstarter campaign.

The studio successfully raised $12,300 through Kickstarter from November 11 to December 12, 2015. Now the game is on track to be published for PC in May 2016, and for console in June 2016.

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