Swiss to online gaming

Swiss to online gaming

In a unique collaboration between India and Switzerland, Swissnex India recently conducted a ‘Game Jam’ where Indian and Switzerland gamers, engineers and designers came together to create games based cultural and social contexts. 

A Swiss government initiative,a long with ‘Pro Helvetia – Swiss Arts Council’, the event saw indigenous students from National Institute for Design, National Institute of Technology and Swiss students from reputed universities like Zurich University of the Arts and University of Art and Design Lausanne.

The event saw about 25 registrations which were shortlisted to 17. With the theme as ‘market’, students were taken to three kinds of markets  in the City ­­- a happening mall, the bustling Malleswaram market and the online social media market. Students designed games based on their themes and pitched them to their mentors.

Working in teams of around four each in a heated atmosphere students were busy designing, coding and thinking of the final product.

Philomina, one of the participants, said that her game is based on an everyday market where a banana seller is the protagonist.

“Each player has to scream on their smartphone and the player controls the shopkeeper. The louder the player screams, the more customers the shopkeeper can attract and the one who can attract the maximum number of customers wins. I am developing the graphics while the Indian students are into coding.”

Aryanth, a participant from the same team added that during gaming, while Indians give more importance to how difficult the product is the Swiss see the interaction that takes place during teamwork.

The entire process of the joint effort took place over two days but the mentors weren’t stressed at all and were waiting to see the final outcome.

Prateek Khare, the head of Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Swissnex India, said that the City is a hub for games and builds cognition as it incorporates multiple facets like design, art, graphics and technology.

One of the mentors said that while gaming is a huge process where one has to develop codes, programme and write the code based on some rules, Prateek added, “We carefully chose themes that are closer to reality and solutions that enable one to
deal with everyday life problems constructively. Market was chosen mainly to tap into a solution, locally, for a global problem and our aim is to see how games can help bring change in a society.”

International mentors, Makie Thies, Allan Bellet, Florian Faller and Andreas Gysin said that they loved the experience in India and was excited to collaborate with Indian students as both the countries’ approach to gaming was similar. 

“We are amazed by the diverse options thrown at us by the Indian culture - the diversity in colours, products, people, buying patterns and customer experiences”, said Maike and Allan.

The mentors hope that the event will inspire students to spread the awareness and importance of gaming forward.

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