Charlottesville Game Developers

nebraskaslowSoftware and s/w Development

Oct 31, 2013 (4 years and 9 days ago)

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Charlottesville Game Developers

January 2012

Tips for Game Jams

Jeff Ward

Global Game Jam!

January 27
th

to January 29
th

Site at the University of Virginia

What’s a Game Jam?


X amount of time to make a “game” based on a theme


GGJ is “48” hours.


Theme (or tech) is revealed at the event


Fun way to just make a game, hone your skills, and learn.


You are forced to just “get it done”

From Experience!


Game Jam Post Mortems!


2009 (Game of Nom)

http://www.jeffongames.com/2009/02/jamming
-
postmortem/


2010 (Quest for Stick)

http://www.jeffongames.com/2010/02/jamming
-
post
-
mortem
-
2010
-
edition/


2010 (Cultural Exchange)

http://www.jeffongames.com/2010/08/immigration
-
jam
-
post
-
mortem/


Use a Tool


Use a tool or framework


Unity


3D Game engine


http
://unity3d.com
/


Angel


C++ prototyping system


(
http://code.google.com/p/angel
-
engine
/
)


AngelXNA


C#, XNA based version of Angel


https
://bitbucket.org/fuzzybinary/angelxna
/


PyGame
, Akihabara, LOVE


Only restriction on GGJ is it must be available for at least x months before
the Jam


My Opinion


Stick with 2D.



The third dimension will !@%$ you.

More Tools


Use Source Control


Recommend mercurial or
git


Have a way to transfer assets


Drop box or a shared drive is easiest


Don’t sweat process


You won’t have time

Know your tool


You should know how to use your tool before coming in
to the jam.


Or, at least someone should


Exception: If you want to learn the tool


Still recommend you get with someone who knows the tool



You will come out of the jam knowing the tool.

Ideas


First go off into small groups….


… then bounce ideas in large
-
ish

groups


Avoid ideas that hinge upon “and at the end…”


Stick to the theme


Keep scope small

Form Your Team


Teams are probably best 3


8 people


Work with someone you know


Work with people you don’t
know


Work on the project that sounds most interesting.

Development


Get working immediately


Have
something

end of day 1


Have something playable mid day 2


No new features, end of day 2



These are… guidelines as opposed to rules.

Larger Teams


Get Organized


Have a way of keeping track of tasks, ideas, what
needs

to be
done.


Have a dedicated “designer”


Get them productive quickly…


… even if it’s on pen and paper

Other Advice


Go home. Get some sleep.


MIT GAMBIT closes it’s lab.


Scope to your team

Other Advice


Utilize free stuff


If you don’t have an artist, get free art


http
://
www.lostgarden.com/search/label/free%20game%20graphics


http://
letsmakegames.org/resources/art
-
assets
-
for
-
game
-
developers/


If you don’t have a coder, get free code


http://www.yoyogames.com/make


http://gamesalad.com
/


If you have neither, make a board game!

Other Advice


Don’t Compete


Take risks. Learn Something!

Have Fun!

That’s really what it’s all about!