FREQUENTLY ANSWERED QUESTIONS
Update at the top because of its importance:
What about copyright? / Is it legal to use these covers as inspiration? / Can I use parts of the graphic in my game? / Can I turn this into a commercial project?
(IANAL) First of all, you always should try to look up and contact the original designer of the Famicase cart you've picked. We know that isn't always easy or might even be impossible, but you should make an effort anyway, because it's the Right Thing To Do.
Copyright unfortunately is A Thing and there is something called Fair Use (at least in the US) but, if a famicase designer should ask you not to turn their design into a game, please respect their wishes and choose another cart. This jam is all about a relaxed atmosphere and there's nothing chill about legal issues.
This is obviously a grey area, like fanart. At the end of the day, you are definitely working off of someone else's work, but if it doesn't develop into a commercial project that just straight-up uses their assets, you should be ok.
Can I start early?
Yes! Feel free to start early if you like. This is supposed to be a very relaxed jam with very few restrictions.
Can work in a team?
Yes! You can also work solo of course.
Wait, what's Famicase anyway?
It's the annual My Famicase Exhibition, organized and hosted by Super Meteor in Japan. They accept submissions for fictional famicom-style game cartridge designs and descriptions every year and then display them in their shop and on their website. This jam is meant to a) bring attention to this amazing little thing and b) to turn these fictional cartridge designs into real little videogames!
Does my game have to follow the Famicase entry's description?
No! You're free to adhere to the provided description, but you don't have to.
Do I have to name my game after its inspirational Famicase entry?
Do I have to pick a cart from 2017?
No, you're free to pick any Famicase design regardless of year. There's a couple of ways to browse the entire collection. If you're having trouble picking one, try this handy randomizer.
Can I call dibs on a design?
No reservations. And yes, there can be multiple games based on the same cart. There have been some in the past, and it was always super interesting to see different interpretations of the same theme.
What's this Winnitron stuff about?
Will there be voting/judging/ranking/prizes?
None of the sort. Just people making games and stuff :)