GameJam NYC

600_289987682Next weekend, at the Made In NYC Media Center, there will be a two day hackathon called GameJam NYC in which teams will be formed and compete to build the coolest mobile web games.

This hackathon is sponsored by TreSensa which makes mobile web game development tools and our portfolio company Kik which has a great platform for distributing mobile web games to almost a hundred million users.

If you like to build games and enjoy hacking on things with other similarly minded people, you should check this event out. It sounds like a lot of fun.

I am a big fan of the mobile web game concept. Write once, read everywhere. I think its time has come.

I hope to make it over there on Sunday afternoon to see what everyone has come up with. That's always a great time.


Comments (Archived):

  1. William Mougayar

    It’s great to see Kik’s success and growth being so spectacular. How did they get to 90+ million so quickly?

    1. fredwilson

      Nothing more viral than a messenger. It takes two to talk

      1. William Mougayar

        Their apps cards were innovative too.

      2. JimHirshfield

        I use it to text my daughter. I get one word replies. One reply for every 5 I send. 😉

        1. William Mougayar


        2. CJ

          k 🙂

      3. ShanaC

        good point

      4. jason wright

        yep, the medium is the message…again. such an elegant inbuilt marketing engine driving the company and the investment forward. smartness. congrats.

    2. JamesHRH

      The app is also very aggressive – not a complaint, just a fact.If it is open, it is telling you there is someone for you to add to kik.

  2. falicon

    Very cool – I’ve actually been working on a game with my kids (using it to help teach them a little programming, and a lot of critical thinking)…it’s not ‘ready for prime time’ yet (and may never be as it’s more about the art and the education), but you can all check out the work in progress at http://brawl.wsWe've been having a blast doing it in our spare time…maybe in a few years, my oldest will be interested/ready to participate in one of these events 🙂

    1. awaldstein

      Parents writing programs to help their kids learn is the core of sw publishing in the US.Way (way) back when, i worked creating a publishing community where parents with kids with learning disabilities ganged resources and published through the Library of Congress to share the programs.

      1. falicon

        very awesome!

        1. awaldstein

          I thought so…Inspired me really early on about the power of groups and communities, and sw as a shareable game changer. This was ‘free’ before ‘freemium’ though.

          1. falicon

            So many of the things I thought were cool (but that ultimately didn’t work out) continue to shape my work, thinking, and aspirations today…that’s why I think there’s such a big difference between “failure” and “didn’t work”…I’m glad that you had those experiences and influences as I really enjoy your thoughts/opinions around groups and communities…your experience and knowledge, along with your willingness to share it, continues to stretch my own thinking and opinions!

    2. Cam MacRae

      That’s how I learned. My dad would help me debug type-ins — although most listings were BASIC they weren’t always 100% compatible with GW-BASIC 3.20.

      1. fredwilson

        debugging code or modding/forking code is how i learned too. it’s better to start with something that already works than a blank page

        1. Cam MacRae

          Without a doubt. Even today I learn a heck of a lot more from reading code than writing it.

          1. CJ

            So, I’m a novice to code. I’m passable at SQL, basic at JS, decent at command line dos prompt stuff and that about sums it up. A colleague was showing me some hypercomplex Powershell script that I,having never really seen Powershell before, could actually follow due to being immersed in other languages. Made me want to pick it up and start tinkering. Amazing how the skills sometimes translate between languages.

          2. Cam MacRae

            Most languages are variations on a theme (or multiple themes), so once you’ve collected a couple of languages that cover the declarative, functional, imperative, and OO paradigms you’ll be able to follow nearly anything that’s thrown at you.

      2. falicon

        So cool! So far, my kids have been more interested/engaged in the math and the game theory behind how the game should work and what you can do within it than they have the actual ‘programming’…but it’s involved a lot of critical thinking and basic math (they are only 10 and 7) – so I’m still pretty happy about that even.Eventually I’ll get them doing more of the actual code…but for now they are more like (the most demanding ever) project/product managers with grand ideas and visions…still lots of fun (just wrote a bit more about it today as well -> )

        1. Cam MacRae

          Sounds like the perfect foundation to me.

        2. Sebastian Wain

          Kids love real things like robots, cars, etc. I think that’s a good approach to teach programming: controlling and experimenting with real objects.

    3. Matt A. Myers

      Game’s are fun. Programming games is helping learn the behavioural systems – about incentives, rewards, etc..Building and then experiencing is an unbeatable feedback loop for learning, and deepening understanding.It allows someone to reach whatever depths of understanding they can or care to explore – caring based on focus, passion and interest for something.Great base for learning how business models work too, all based on top of human behaviour and psyche.

    4. fredwilson

      Kevin – if you want to turn brawl into a kik card game, that might be fun to do with your kids. Details are here

      1. falicon

        Thanks! I was looking for just that this morning when you posted about it (but didn’t find it)…we are def. going to give it a shot. Will let you know how it turns out!

        1. fredwilson


  3. pointsnfigures

    If they asked Fred to be a judge, he should pass and send his son.

    1. fredwilson


      1. Vineeth Kariappa

        kik vs zynga, wasn’t there a prob with “no funding companies that mayb competitors to existing companies in portfolio” ?

        1. fredwilson

          one is a distribution partner to the otherthey are not even close to competitorsplus we don’t own any zynga stock at this time

        2. fredwilson

          i own a lot of zynga stock personally but USV does not

          1. Vineeth Kariappa

            Please write your opinion on doing something your company did not do. If you have already written something similar, please give the link.

          2. fredwilson

            i don’t understand what you are asking for. could you elaborate?

          3. Vineeth Kariappa

            Major presumption on my part; You as an integral part of USV, USV divests zynga. But, you do not. You did not do as your company did. I have co invested in a friends company, and we have differing opinions. I still dont know how to move on. Obviously, you do and you are comfortable with it. So, have you written anything on the topic?

  4. ShanaC

    what no MBA Monday

    1. Vineeth Kariappa

      Monday MBA Lesson; Get a billionare to fund your company n write about your company, on his blog.

      1. jason wright

        who’s the billionaire, and what currency?

        1. Vineeth Kariappa

          pretty soon, bitcoin.

          1. jason wright

            “I have to work 18 hours a day, no personal life at all n my parents shout at me. Love every moment.”so it’s all been worth while. congratulations.

          2. Vineeth Kariappa

            ahem. I was referring to Fred Wilson !

          3. jason wright

            does this mean he will be investing with bitcoins and not dollars going forward?

          4. Vineeth Kariappa

            he knows.

    2. pointsnfigures

      Monday is Gameday.

  5. panterosa,

    Wow, I would SO love to see Ani-Gram-it go mobile! Not sure how long it would take to build, or who would want to join. Any takers?It would be super mom approved as a game! Check it out on Kickstarter –

  6. ClaraMeyer

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