For Immediate Release:

Vacancy Puzzle Game Named Best in Georgia

SCAD-Savannah Team Earns First Place in “Best in Georgia” Competition for Dimension-Hopping Gameplay

ATLANTA (Feb. 21, 2018) — The Georgia Game Developers Association today announced that, despite stiff competition, Vacancy won its 2018 Best in Georgia game development competition. The competition welcomed regional winners from this year’s Global Game Jam to polish their original incarnations into more finished works. The regional winners, each from one of five Jam sites around Georgia, originally developed their games in just 48 hours.

After being nominated by their respective Game Jams, each team was given an additional two weeks with a professional mentor to complete their vision. Judges then reviewed the games for originality, gameplay, visuals, music/sound, and technical complexity.

“We decided to build the game around one strong core mechanic ... tuning your radio to switch between dimensions,” said Vacancy artist Monica Benya. Programmer and designer Nick Barber added, “Vacancy stands apart from the other games due to its unique concept and visual style.”

Before beginning the Jam, Barber and the team “had no idea what kind of game we would make, what the theme would be, or what our final product would end up looking like. However, that being said, we took every proactive measure we could beforehand.”

The award-winning game uses an interdimensional radio as its main mechanic, honing in on Global Game Jam’s theme for this year: Transmission. Players must use the radio to solve puzzles that require them to travel between parallel dimensions within an eerily vacant hotel so they can ultimately escape.

Winning Best in Georgia comes with more than a shiny new title. Along with first place, Vacancy’s team also secured professional and legal consulting services to help the game through its final stages. In addition, they will also be granted passes to the Southern Interactive Entertainment and Game Expo (SIEGE), the South’s largest professional game-development conference. There they will be given the opportunity to showcase and demo their game.

“This was the hardest BiG competition for our judges to date,” said Andrew Greenberg, executive director of the GGDA. “We had games submitted from all the Global Game Jam sites in the state. While our mentors are working with the Vacancy team, we hope all the teams will keep working on their games.”

Links to Vacancy and the other Best in Georgia candidates can be found at https://ggda.org/blog/best-in-georgia-competition-returns-for-2018/

The Georgia Game Developers Association is a nonprofit trade association that recognizes and supports game developers through numerous professional opportunities in the state of Georgia. Founded in 2005, it is known for its annual Best in Georgia Competition and SIEGE, which highlights local excellence in the game-development business.

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