Digital development has long been embedded in Beeline's strategy which always reflects in the company's activities such as sponsorship of hackathons, support of technological conferences, collaboration with startups and many more.
Beeline has been actively involved in the development of Georgian digital ecosystem even during the face of pandemics, while time Beeline organising a hackathon - Beeline Game Jam.
The FINANCIAL reached out to the Digital Products Manager of Beeline - Jaba Shavishvili and members of the winning team – AbsoluteZero to discuss the results of the event and the future plans.
Q. How did the idea for the hackathon come about, and what was the aim?
A. Jaba Shavishvili: After the company initiated the promotion of games in at the beginning of the year and started implementing them in the telecom services, we decided to find Georgian partners in the direction. Hackathon was one of the ways to meet with the right people and highlight the role of BEELINE as an innovator in Georgian mobile gaming industry.
The Game Jam had two major goals: The first, to help find a long-term partner and the second – to support the community of local developers as such events help to generate lot’s of valuable ideas, encourage start-ups and most importantly, bring together teams working in the field.
What results did you get and how well did the expectations come true?
Considering that the event was held online, we are very satisfied with the results. We decided not to put any limits on the teams participating in the hackathon so newcomers would also be given an opportunity to participate.
It should be noted that up to 26 teams and more than 70 people participated in the Beeline Game Jam online event. We had 10 mentors with various competencies who helped the teams to create the right prototypes for the games. We also had presentations shown from speakers on five unique and specific topics whose tips proved important to the teams.
In the end, we got prototypes of very appealing games that showed tremendous potential for development. Beeline has selected 3 teams for the collaboration this year. The business partnership includes a revenue-sharing model, which means that the winners will not only receive incentive prizes, but the product created on the hackathon will become a source of their long-term income.
What are the future plans Beeline has for the games and will there be new hackathons coming up?
Based on the results of Beeline Game Jam, we want to turn the event into an annual tradition and cooperate more actively with the community of the local game developers. We hope that in the next year we will be able to hold the event already in the physical space and on a much larger scale.
We will soon add games that allow users to win not only Internet packages but also voice packages, in addition, we will soon be waiting for customers on our updated portal, which will include a list of leaders, blogs and much other interesting information.
We plan to hold more competitions of such, which I think will further increase the engagement. The goal is to get both consumers and game developers interested in our offerings and to create exciting products with them for the future digital ecosystem.
Team Absolute Zero
Q. Why did you decide to participate in Beeline Game Jam and what was your main motivation?
A. Beka Tsintsadze: We really enjoy the hackathon-type events and as soon as we saw that Beeline was hosting Beeline Gam Jam with interesting prizes and mentors, we immediately decided to participate.
Q. What obstacles did you encounter while working on the idea?
A. Beka Darjania: Due to the fact that programmers were only allowed to use HTML5 programming language, we quite were limited in resources and had to give up some of the more sophisticated technologies, which led us to the creation of an Arcade / Runner style game. In the end, it turned out to be quite a catchy idea which we gladly followed.
Q. How long did it take for you to create a prototype of the game and how did you redistribute the roles?
A. Rati Alania: It took us about 8-10 hours to create a prototype of the game. We redistributed the roles and started working in sync. Due to the harmonic teamwork, we gained quite a time, which we then used to fix the flaws.
Q. How well did the Hackathon live up to your expectations and what was experience gained besides winning?
A. Saba Sakvarelidze: It definitely exceeded our expectations. The competition was quite strong and therefore we spent more to make the final product special. As for the experience, we enhanced the ability to work in a team, we listened to each other, agreeing on every detail from the schedule to the audio effects. We all shared a screen, which made us feel as if we were sitting next to each other, which was quite a fun experience.
Q. What do you think contributed to your victory and what would you recommend to the newcomers on the hackathons?
A. AbsoluteZero: We would advise them to work on planning and coming up with an idea, establish their vision, redistribute responsibilities among team members, and create a prototype as soon as possible to see if it's worth continuing. We followed this path which probably led to our victory.