So, what is a game jam?
A game jam is an event in which teams are given specific constraints in order to make a game.
The constraints are different for every game jam. They may be on platform, theme, genre, or a specific design element.
Why participate in a game jam?
A game jam isn’t about making the next best game, it’s about finding a new spin on something.
But it can be a springboard into the next best game. It probably won't be though.
A game jam is about seeing what you can push yourself to achieve when you aren’t given a year to perfect every detail. It will probably be better than No Man's Sky though, so you have that going for you, which is nice.
Game jams require you to be creative as a team. That means compromise. Team dynamics are tricky. Everyone works a little differently, so choose your mates carefully or you might lose a friend or two.
Who should participate in this?
We haven't done one of these before, so your guess is as good as ours?
Also, you might meet some cool people. Where else are you going to find people that want to make games? The internet?
What are some popular/successful game jams?
Ya know, Google exists, maybe try that? But for those of you who are lazy, here are a few.
Nordic Game Jam : Started in 2006 with only 40 participants, 8 games were created in 48 hours. In 2017, there were 700 participants. With a theme of “not there” the winning game was Baba is you.
LudumDare : Hosts 3 Game Jams a year online. Search “Ludum Dare” on Youtube. There are too many awesome games to list, and the creators often post time lapses of their creations!
Global Game Jam : Just wrapped up the 2018 event! People gathered at 700 locations spanning 95 countries. Over 7000 games were created.
What can you expect from the NEPA Game Jam?
A prize for your team
Atlantic Divide Games will be awarding an Oculus Rift to the winning team! That way you can all fight over who gets to play with it, instead of making games with it. Additional prizes may be awarded, but we are still working out the details (it's complicated). We will update the page here when we have more info. (If we have more info.)
Oculus is in no way sponsoring or affiliated with this prize.
A weekend of fun, food and exhaustion
Game jams are super fun and insanely challenging. When the weekend is over you will have game with weird bugs, weird(er) art and function names that don't make any sense... I am looking at you myFunction_Test_UseThis();
Learn (and maybe even teach)
We know it’s technically a competition, but we will have “experts” around that can help you get through any “jams” you may run into. Feel free to help others and ask others to help you. They may be on another team, but collaboration is awesome!
Teams will be limited to no more than 5, but you can work on your own if you want to.
Team members must be 18+
No previous personal work (code, art, music, etc.) can be used in the jam.
Any downloaded assets need to be disclosed in your submission file, so keep a record of the sources of anything you use!
You can demonstrate a playable version of your game if you wish.
Be awesome, not a jerk
Yes, you are being graded. No there isn't any extra credit.
Adherence to theme
Cohesion of mood/tone
More directions and explanation will be given the day of the jam. Don't worry though, you will do great. We believe in you.
Other guidelines / what to bring
You'll need a computer! We will not be providing computers to participants, and they are kind of essential for this type of event. So please remember to bring one as well as any accessories and software you'll need to make your game. There will be room to set up a desktop or laptop, so you can bring either.
We know it’s a game jam, but you need to sleep! Bring a sleeping bag and pillow to make yourself comfy for a few hours. Coffee and Red Bull isn’t enough to keep you alive.
We strongly encourage you to bring basic hygiene products, we will be together for 48+ hours and want to keep things pleasant.
We will provide drinks and food, but have money for anything extra you may want. There's a Dunkin' Donuts and Starbucks within walking distance. They close early, but we will see if we can change that.