Green Game Jam for Youth, a global online competition hosted by Tencent, through TiMi Studio Group (TiMi) and Tencent Institute of Games saw submissions from more than 200 university students and teams internationally.
Inspired by the broader Green Game Jam, which was organised by the United Nations (UN) – facilitated initiative, the Playing for the Planet Alliance (P4P). Green Game Jam for Youth is aimed at university students, challenging them to create games
with environment-focused elements or themes.
From Left: Lee Zhen Wei (CS, Year 4), Ahkshara Sankar (CS, Year 4) and their FYP supervisor Professor Seah Hock Soon.
Out of the 11 winning teams - Team Traveller represented by Lee Zhen Wei (CS, Year 4) from the School of Computer Science and Engineering (SCSE) of Nanyang Technological University (NTU) was awarded the Honorary Award.
Ahkshara Sankar (CS, Year 4), an individual participant from SCSE-NTU was also announced to be part of the Top 16. Her project was called Forest Warrior, a game that addresses the issue of deforestation.
Proposals underwent a stringent review process at global standards. The 11 winning teams share a prize pool of USD21,500 in total and each team member will be presented with a certificate. Team Traveller takes home USD500 for its Honorary Award.
Team Traveller has created a game that aims to inspire and create awareness on urgent climate change issues. The game is targeted at the youth of today to inspire them to take action.
“I’ve decided to use Virtual Reality (VR) technology for my original game, Traveller VR, to transport players into virtual worlds. In these immersive worlds, they are able to travel to places suffering from climate catastrophes and witness
the effects of climate change authentically,” said lead developer Lee Zhen Wei (CS, Year 4). “I believe we all have a part in promoting climate awareness and encourage climate action,” adds Zhen Wei.
Ahkshara developed a Virtual Reality (VR) Game named Forest Warrior to educate users on paper consumption and deforestation. Due to the stringent criteria of the review process, Ahkshara could only harbour hopes that she can passed through the first round
of submission.Therefore, the announcement of being one of the Top 16, out of over 200 entries that TiMi had received came as a huge surprise to her.
Sharing on her individual experience, she recalls spending the whole week leading to the first submission deadline debugging, creating a demo video, and a presentation. Despite the various setbacks encountered, she is pleased to have persevered and completed
all of the submissions on time.
Prof Seah Hock Soon, her FYP professor, has been a pillar of support throughout the period of this challenge. From urging her to participate in the competition to calmly handling stress-induced panicking emails and reviewing the submission materials.
Prof Seah never once gave up on Ahkshara.
Through this competition, she was also able to interact with officials from United Nation Environment Programme (UNEP) and collect feedback pertaining to her game and its conceptualisation. One particular feedback that stood out was when an official commented
that the game that Ahkshara has developed has great potential to be explored and developed further.
Overall, Green Game Jam for Youth has piqued her interest in a variety of areas, from climate change to virtual reality to game design, and she is deeply thankful for the experience.
For more about Green Game Jam for Youth, visit TiMi Studios’ official website at https://www.timistudios.com/green-game-jam-for-youth/.