Reversing Game Jam Proposal

Edit on Github | Updated: 12th May 2020

What exactly is a “Reversing Game Jam”?

Exactly what it sounds like, its the reverse of a game jam, you start with the game and end up with source code 24 hours later.

Unlike a Game Jam however the cleanliness and readability of the code is a huge part of the judging process.

Which part of the game to reverse engineer depends on the teams preference, and will be judges at the end based on the complexity and the results the team produces.


Team sizes can be as small as 1 and as large as 6. There is no penalty for having large teams but beware larger teams can also have larger problems.


At the start of the day a random console game is announced (e.g Goldeneye for N64) and teams will be given the physical cartridge or CD and the hardware to dump the rom/iso.

If working remotely the team must live stream the whole process and provide all the recoded footage at the end of the event.

Use of existing software and code

Existing software and source code found on the internet may be used but it must be declared in a public forum and not be passed as own work. Any work of your own done before the start of the Jam is considered the same.

Recomended software

Some software that would be helpful for teams participating include:

  • Ghidra
  • Radare2
  • IDA Pro
  • Console emulators with debug support


The projects are not intended to be a full decompilation in as little as 24 hours, so the criteria that will be judged against are:

  • Number of assets extracted - bonus points for assets saved in standard formats such as .OBJ, .WAV, .PNG etc
  • Amount of code decompiled into a high level language (more points for readable code)
  • Quality of any tools created for modding (such as decompressors, asset modifiers, simple level editor etc)
  • Extra points for any additional features added to the game (widescreen hack, 60 fps, pc port etc)

Quantity doesn’t always win as a project that has a much higher quality codebase and/or has created awesome tools is more likely to win.

The result

One of the advantages of everyone reversing the same game is that the end results from each team can eventually be merged. The best source code and tools from all the projects could be merged to make a definitive source.