A few weeks ago Vungle hosted the first-annual Beta Breakers Game Jam. Game developers flocked from all over the Bay to meet and compete with a group of like-minded game enthusiasts.
Fueled by an endless supply of snacks and energy drinks, they spent the next 24 hours creating some truly amazing games. There were whales made of butter and awkward hugging monsters — every game was seriously awesome. In the end (and after MUCH deliberation) the judges deemed Basejump, developed by William Bratt and Zach Mahl, the grand prize winner!
So, what kind of game is Basejump and who are these creative masterminds? “Basejump is a Player vs. Player arena game where
two players balance on tall pillars while attempting to knock each other to the ground. We wanted to make a simple arcade styled arena game using a 3D engine” described Bratt.
Who are the guys behind the game? William and Zach met through an online subcommunity William created to work on Tremulus modification projects. Zach joined the community and the two became fast friends. They’ve been working on online projects together for the past eight years, but the two had never met face-to-face. Bratt drove in from Arizona and met Zach Mahl in person for the first time at Beta Breakers.
William states, “Zach was sort of reluctant to the whole video game thing. I want to be an entertainer, to make video games, or to produce music — anything that makes someone feel something. We decided we would try a game jam just to see how we liked it, which is how we ended up at Beta Breakers…
The atmosphere was so great. We both live in places where there aren’t a lot of people interested in tech. It was such a great change to be in at the Vungle office in San Francisco with a group of people that shared and wanted to talk about our interests: games and technology.”
Zach and William never expected to win the competition. They were simply there to learn and have fun, but it seems working on projects together all these years truly paid off. William states, “We were surrounded by an infinite amount of talent, but Zach and I are really good at executing on our ideas and learning along the way. We take the approach where you just point at what you want and keep walking towards it no matter what.”
It’s clear this team’s members have immense respect for one another. Together they dream up ideas, Zach codes it into reality and William brings it to life with his artistic talent. They will definitely be competing in more game jams and are now working on creating Basejump as a mobile app where you challenge your friends online.
Congratulations to William and Zach for winning Beta Breakers 2014 and thank you to everyone who participated — the experience was unforgettable!