As I mentioned in my previous post, I was planning to take part in Global Game Jam… and I did! I didn’t submit a game but I totally participated.
The theme was What do we do now? and I was a big fan. It immediately filled my imagination with post-disaster scenarios (of all shapes and sizes) as well as rule changes and cooperation/competition in a multiplayer environment. Love it.
My game was basically Tenya Wanya Teens on a regular controller, for 4 people.
It differed from TWT in that your un-needed actions could generally affect the arena helping you to perform the necessary actions. The actions themselves were supposed to be a little more complex than those in TWT. My ‘Fart’ action involved you farting outside the radius of other players to avoid being discovered, it would also leave a little gas cloud that would disable other players that ran into it. The ‘Collect’ action involved picking up Gold from Mines that spawned in the arena and depositing them in the bank. The ‘Destroy’ action involves using dynamite to blow up Aliens in Nodes that spawned in the arena. As you can see, the interaction between actions even when the arena is not explicitly asking for them is the dynamic play in my game.
Unfortunately the game became massive very quickly. I rapidly built all the interactions, which were working great, but hit a large snag when it came to integrating animations and art assets. I’ve never used animation in Game Maker before, so it took a lot of effort and hitting my head against a wall to figure out.
I could have done it. But I didn’t.
After three Ludum Dares, Asylum Jam, and my own development over the last 6-8 months… I’m just jammed out! I definitely didn’t come into the GGJ with the right mentality, choosing to work alone so I could make something I wanted to make, rather than work with others in a more collaborative way. It’s the pain of being a Game Designer at a Game Jam. Your usual role on teams is to make work for others, which is ok if you’re solo or in a company. At a Game Jam though, no-one is there to be a tool that a designer can use… everyone is a designer in a Game Jam.
Combining the massive workload, lack of motivation, and a general preference for Ludum Dare’s more underground, peer reviewed, and less flashy format, I just decided “You know what? I don’t want to kill myself to finish this game”. So I didn’t.
Above is basically the only thing worth sharing from the jam, apart from the idea itself which I think was fun. I made my first ever Pixel Art! It’s an awkward little dude who is supposed to run around punching people, farting, dancing, dying, being caught in a net, being farted on etc. I only got 3 of them done.
Next time I’ll have an update for you on Bard Life, as I’ve got 2 whole days to work on it coming up!