|Posted on March 30, 2012 at 11:50 AM|
On the weekend of March 23 to the 25, I participated in a game jam hosted by the Iowa student group AIUI. Six unique games/prototyepes were developed durig this time. I met a lot of really smart, interesting people who are passionate at what they do. I also worked along side others, with the same passion and talent, that I've met from previous events and jams.
A jam is a very interesting event in my opionion. The time constraint alone can cause impresive dedication and work to be done. Also, with an impossed theme to base a game on, new ideas can be explored in a low risk and personal environment. I feel that jams build on one's character and skills. I do have one Idea about jams that I think cause an issue in game development.
I don't want to get too deep into the definition of a game, but my concern is based in exactly what a game is or can be. With games being such a complex grouping of systems, I feel that such a short time limit doesn't allow a designer to have a player's experiance to be fleshed out fully. I experianced this when creating my smuggling based game.
I was able to give players a goal, means to acheive that goal, a conflict (the guard taxing the player), end condition, and even some small feeback on progress. Even with all those componets, I felt that there was something that still needed to be tweaked. I think it could be just the whole presentation, I was missing a few sfx, and some more consistensy with background music and art work.
I did learn a lot of things at this jam towards my progress in becoming a better programmer. I feel gamemaker will continue to be a great tool to stretch my desgin legs, and be able to use the short time frame of a jam effectively.