This jam is now over. It ran from 2023-02-01 07:00:00 to 2023-03-01 07:00:00. View results
🔞 Adults only, please! Sexual content ahoy. 🔞
Let's make some horny games!
Strawberry Jam is a game jam about horny games, and the only one where you get to decide what you think that means! You have the whole month of February to make a game, and then we all have the next two weeks to play and rate each other's games. Ratings come in a bunch of categories, which increases the chance that you'll win! And if you don't win, that's fine too, because there are no prizes!
You can also mingle in the jam community or on Discord, where you can share your progress, ask for help, or fret about how you are definitely not going to finish on time but then feel relieved when you see everyone else is doing that too.
There's no fixed theme; instead, Strawberry Jam is my invitation for you to expand the genre. "Video game with sex-adjacent themes" is a pretty broad and fertile (wink) category, but I feel it's under-explored — both due to ambient stigma about things with sex in them, and ambient expectations about what things with sex in them are "supposed" to look like. Here, then, is an excuse to try something new, something distinct, something personal. You even get an audience of other devs to try your game out!
Take something that tickles your fancy, something that lights your fire, something that you feel very strongly about — and figure out how to put it in a game so we can all play it.
I maintain a collection of every game that's ever placed top 3 in any category, but for a few examples:
This isn't to say that you have to push the bounds of what is conceptually horny and/or a game! It's to emphasize that if you do have an idea that feels kind of out there, you should absolutely run with it and show all of us. If you want to just make some smut, that's fine too! Hell, I've done it myself. Twice, even. Just remember: the best smut is still personal!
Entries are judged. But not, like, harshly. The point of the judging isn't to compete, really — it's to get everyone to play each other's games, and to recognize each other's strengths.
Only what you did in February counts. Not that the judging is super serious, but most entries are new games made in four weeks. If you're finishing up something you'd already started, please let us know — there's an "i started early" field when submitting to the jam — so you're not putting up a year's effort against four weekends.
Bugfixing during judging is OK. Especially if it's a bug that prevents people from playing your game. But please hold off on major updates until judging is over, so we all see generally the same game.
Teams are okay! Just remember to add all your teammates as collaborators, so we can all see that your game was made by six people and not feel super inadequate. And bear in mind you'll have to split the prize, which is, again, nothing.
Any kind of game is okay! It doesn't even have to be a video game — I would say that as long as it's baseline interactive, that's fine. That said, no matter what kind of game you make, keep in mind that people can't judge it if they can't play it! Even a Windows-only game might exclude a few potential judges.
Mark your game as NSFW! If it is so, anyway. This lets people filter NSFW games out when browsing itch, if they so choose. (Or filter to only NSFW games.) There's a checkbox for this on the Metadata tab when you upload or edit a game.
Try to be accessible! Horny games are often played by folks who are looking for the very specific thing it does, but here, your audience is an assorted group with widely varying interests — which may or may not overlap with yours. Consider thinking about what you, specifically, find appealing about what you're making, and trying to show that through the game.
Voting lasts for two weeks after the end of the jam, i.e. the first half of March. Anyone who submits a game, or collaborated on a submitted game, can vote.
(If you worked in a group, then whoever uploads the game can add the rest of you on the "edit game" page — click More > Admins at the top, add them as admins, and click the checkbox to show them as collaborators. This also lets them list the game on their own Itch profiles.)
Please reserve some time to play the other entries, vote on them, and let the authors know what you think!
The voting categories are deliberately given as single words, to encourage personal interpretation, but they are roughly:
You don't have to aim for every category, or even aim for any category! There's a lot of them because I want to recognize as many different kinds of impressive effort as possible.
Sounds like you're motivated, which means you're halfway there already! You've got a whole month, so don't be scared to try making a prototype!
If you're completely new to this scene, you might try one of these game-makin' tools, which all ⓐ work on any computer, ⓑ don't require programming experience, ⓒ don't focus too much on custom artwork, ⓓ are well-known enough that you can easily get help with them, and ⓔ produce things that can be played in a browser. They're all a bit quirky and not quite suited for making e.g. an FPS, but that's probably not why you're here anyway!
bitsy is a teeny tiny game editor for making little stories with a very-low-res pixel art aesthetic. It's best at exploration and conversation. No programming required. Actually, programming it is nearly impossible, so there's a challenge if you want one.
Twine makes choose-your-own-adventures with simple links between pages, and often has no artwork at all — though you can certainly add some, and do all manner of other shenanigans if you're dedicated enough. It's ultimately just HTML. Heck, you could skip Twine altogether and make a story out of separate HTML documents.
Inform 7 is an English-like programming language for making those old-school text adventures where you GO NORTH and GO SOUTH and then give up and buy the hint manual. It is programming, but the code reads like English text, and making a small world with some simple interactions is shockingly straightforward. The documentation is written in a friendly narrative style that assumes no programming experience whatsoever.
If you're an artist and have a very strong aversion to computers (rightly so!), you could try Flick, a sort of art-based simple alternative to Twine where the player makes choices by clicking on particular colors in an image.
If you are a programmer (especially if you're also an artist, or have an artist friend on call) and have just never tried making a game, you could try LÖVE (an unopinionated 2D Lua engine that I like a lot), the PICO-8 (a retro-styled "fantasy console" with built-in tools for making art, sounds, music, and levels... but you're on your own with physics), Godot (an integrated Unity-style editor, totally open source), or of course Unity which some people like I guess. The Discord has folks with experience with all of these and probably some suggestions for more!
Other lists of possible game-making tools for beginners:
Keep in mind that I've been copy-pasting this list across jam pages for like seven years now, so there might be newfangled things I haven't even heard of! Ask around, search itch for tools, see what you can find! Try stuff out! That's what Strawberry Jam is about!
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