Oh game jams how do I love thee let me count the ways: you inspire people to think creatively, you teach people to start developing, and you force people to accept scaling design. As far as I can tell game jams are only good. Maybe even too good: there are more jams happening than ever before. If you have a limited amount of time, it’s hard to know which jam is right for you. We’ve got an awesome page full of timelines for you to peruse, but if you want a more guided experience, here are a handful of our favorite jams that are set to launch over the next few months.
Let’s get meta for a moment. Why bother making a thing when you could make a thing that makes a thing. That’s the logic behind the upcoming Procjam. Named after procedural generation, the umbrella term for randomly generated elements of game design.
If you’re looking for flexibility, Procjam doesn’t have a theme outside of its core conceit. There isn’t even the requirement that you make a game. The organizers say you could even make a program for guided meditation and that would be within the rules. How freeing is that?
I didn’t know Desert Bus for Hope had a game jam until I started researching this post. Now it’s my most anticipated jam of the year. If you are out of the loop, Desert Bus for Hope is a charity drive/ public suffering exhibition. Each year a dedicated team from LoadingReadyRun play the famously horrible game Desert Bus nonstop for upwards of a week.
In recent years the event has spun out to include multiple elements like the the craft along. If you’re interested in taking part in the jam, you’ve got plenty of time to get prepared. There isn’t an official theme announced yet, but the organizers are saying it’ll be optional so you’re totally able to bust out the idea that’s been stewing in the back of your head.
Continuing our theme of charity game jams we have the Help: War Child jam. Eagle-eyed readers will notice that we’ve talked about the jam here in the past, but it’s still going on. That’s right if you slept on our last post you’ve still got nearly a month to get your act together for charity.
Beyond helping out some of the most vulnerable children on the planet, there’s also the possibility of seeing your submission featured as a part of a compilation at the end. This is the second year that War Child has run the HELP game jam, and I’m optimistic that it can affect real change.
Of course these aren’t the only jams in the world. Which jams are you looking forward to?
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