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Game Jam Talk


Game jam Talk 2017-04-10 English

I had a short talk in a local gaming class to highlight a upcoming game jam.

Here are the slides:

English Slides (pdf)

Swedish Slides (pdf)


The goal of the talk was to present game jams in general and a upcoming local meet-up of ludum dare in particularity. So the plan was to talk about game jams and summaries a couple of game jams I have attended in the past. I also planned to make a summary of my own game development experience and why I ended up liking game jams so much, but scope turned out to be key also in writing talks, like in game development.

About a couple of game jams…? – I initially wanted the talk to cover multiple game jams, but I quickly realized that I would take way to much time just to cover one game jam. And the one I eventually covered got very summarized in the end as well. I have a lot of a lot of notes from all the game jams I have attended and most of them have no post-mortem, but a lot of informal thoughts unstructured scribed down along and at the end of the event. The game jam I eventually decided to cover was the one with most material because we worked on it online. It was quite a ride to read the comments from the facebook group. The plans, and mid project updates.

Process and anecdotes – But the question is, how interesting is it really to hear about all of the details. What we planned, what turned out to not work out etc. I like it, because I was there, its like talking about the old war stories, returning, and people want to know what happened, but you just drag on forever, and the crowd slowly scatter. So I tried to focus on two things, the process and anecdotes connected to game design. Process is one of the things I like the most of game jams, because the event is so short you still have the earlier steps fresh in memory at the end of the event. So I think that its possible to hopefully learn about your mistakes. Which can get really hard if the project gets 6 months plus. I am a big fan of double fines amnesia fortnight (documentary 2014), a internal “game jam” for 2 working weeks with 5-10 people a team. The interesting thing about it is that they document the whole process, which makes it possible to learn a lot of their process and game development in general. I would like to do the same, because I think that we all make the same mistakes, and if we would know more about the process that games got developed, maybe the common mistakes gets repeated less frequently.

Is game jams a thing for you? – I am a very big fan of game jams, but I started to question whenever it actually would be a good fit for the people that listened to the talk. Because it took a long time for me to get where I am with game development, art, programming and game design. I read a lot about game design, know basic programming and minimum art. I have no problems coming up with game ideas, but I have trouble completing the games. So game jams made one thing for me, I made games, and it was fun. But I had the basic experience and really like experimental games and don’t get hung up on the details of content creation. But I think other people have different problems struggling to make games, and game jams only deal with a subset of them, aka, deadlines, time management, over scoping, focusing on early playability, short game play experiences. Anyway, I think theres a reason why a lot of people that what to make games don’t show up to game jams, but I don’t know exactly why. But it would be interesting to find out.


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