Game Jam 2015

Just like last year, I participated on the Caracas Game Jam (part of the Global Game Jam).

This year the jam started with three keynotes.

The first one was delivered by Mitu Khandaker-Kokoris (Tiniest Shark) and talked about the importance of games as an art form, why she loves them and the importance of humility, specially when jamming.

The second ones were Pedro Medeiros and Amora Bettany (MiniBoss). They talked about proper representation of women and other genders in videogames.

The last speaker was Reiner Knizia, a famous german board game designer. He talked about thinking outside of the box, using the example of board games that apply electronic or digital technology to enhance the experience.

And then, the theme was unveiled: What Do We Do Now?

For this jam, I worked along with @pctroll. He pushed me to take part on the Game Jams since at least 3 years; unfortunately, last year he couldn’t jam, so I guess this was the year it was meant to be. We both were the programmers and game designers of a game called Jam (which I’ll detail in a future post), but we also received help from another programmer friend of us and a musician we met during the event.

The Core Team

Neither I nor Jorge stayed the whole 48 hours at the site where the Caracas Game Jam took place. On Friday night, each one slept at home; on Saturday night, Jorge stayed to work along with the musician, while I worked at home until 4 in the morning. Furthermore, because we were also helping to shop and bring the drinks and snacks, the total amount of time we spent developing was relatively smaller than other teams.

We also had difficulties coming up with an idea for this year’s theme. After some brainstorming on Friday night and Saturday in the morning, we moved from an overly ambitious idea to a far more simple one. I spent most of Saturday night trying to figure out complex solutions to one of the design decisions of the game and frankly was entering some sort of depression. I was taking the Game Jam too seriously. After resting for about 3 hours, I woke up and decided to KISS the project (as Jorge suggested since  day 0).

The result was a game we are both proud of; it may not be the best one ever, but we did something different and simple by nature. We also had a great time working together and finishing a project from conception to release.

For the complete list of games from this year, check here. For our project site check here and here for the repo. It was designed to be played using an Xbox 360 controller, but keyboards are supported (using the U, I, O, P and Esc keys).

And now, let’s finish that January entry for One Game A Month!

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