This jam is now over. It ran from 2019-12-14 02:00:00 to 2020-01-02 02:00:00. View results

The #ToyBoxJam Results are in!

TL;DR: Overall winner & Most Fun: LAVA JOE

Best Use of Assets: Myrtle Takes the City

Silliest, Nuttiest Game: Spaghetti Forever

Best Implementation of An Optional Theme: Toy Box Pipe

Most Novel Idea: Max

Thanks for jamming folks!

Anyone who didn't figure out the mystery or didn't see the secret message added to the bottom of this jam description:

Go check out: for a little surprise!

If you want to use the music from the jam, please credit Gruber Music! Thanks!

On December 13th, 2019, I released the Toy Box Jam "start cart" for Pico-8.  Code a game with JUST THOSE ASSETS.

Contained within the START CART:

  • a full sprite sheet of  various and sundry game graphics, including an optional sprite font
  • random sound effects to use
  • a set of music tracks to play FROM THE PICO-8 LEGEND GRUBER!
  • some optional support code: sprite font print function, big print function, simple collision, window drawing, and more....
  • A fully animated platforming character!

OPTIONAL: A MYSTERY TO SOLVE -- "The Case of the Disappearing Developer" who made these assets long ago....

  • A ridiculous backstory to justify the concept! (It's a mystery with little bonuses for people that solve all or part of it!) Start with the _READ_ME_FIRST description, but the mystery is totally optional!


Play the games here:

RULES: Short version

  • Use the assets provided on December 13th in the STARTCART to make a cool game by January 1st. Have fun!
  • Please use the hashtags " #TOYBOXJAM " and  " #Pico8 " when posting about your game! (And if you want, jauntily add " #TBJ2019 ") Use these on and social media, especially Twitter.
  • You may augment your cart with any code in the DEMO CART (there are a FEW well-coded routines -- stars, scroll tile, collision, printing, but most are really bad code just to show you sprite numbers or how to flip the explosion animation)! 
  • There may be more MYSTERIOUS information as the JAM goes on...
    • If you are having trouble with the mystery:
      • All "keys" to troubling "doors" are lowercase.  
      • And apart from lowercasing them, type them as is -- letters, spaces, numbers, punctuation... whatever....
      • The JOURNAL was mistakenly uploaded as a .PAGES file -- check again, it is a .PDF.


Go here and READ the _READ_ME_FIRST file. Just start with the STARTCART and have fun.  Look at the DEMOCART to see how to use some of the tricker graphics (and to hear the music selections).  The Case of the Disappearing Developer is optional.  There are little bonuses for solving the mystery that will help you have a few more options, but it is completely optional.

RULES: Long version (for the curious)

  • TWO WEEKS(ish): You have two and a half weeks to make a game using ONLY THOSE ASSETS in the startcart, democart or any Pico-8 assets you find investigating the small little mystery.
  • REARRANGE: You can rearrange the sprites with RESPRITER if you want (for instance, to use some sprites, font, and map).
  • SCROLLING TILES: You CAN use the included routines to scroll the sprite data up, down, left, or right within itself in runtime. And feel free to write more efficient ones, but only to SCROLL (move and wrap the sprite data a pixel at a time up, down, left, or right) within the sprite within itself.
  • MULTIPLE COPIES / ROTATIONS OKAY: You CAN make multiple copies of the same sprite to place in the sprite sheet (say if you want, when rearranging, to treat global sprites differently). But these copies must remain the same, unmodified until draw commands and PAL commands modify them in runtime. Your copies can be 90-degree Pico-8 rotations or pixels shifts of the original sprites if you don't want to use the rotation routines/scrolling routines.
  • LIMITED SPRITE RE-COLORING: You cannot CHANGE the sprites, other than colorizing them with live PAL and changing transparency with PALT, or colorizing them in the editor as IF they were changed with PAL and PALT (you cannot essentially add detail). That includes drawing in, POKEing in them, and other techniques. (You can set flags on the sprites and of course, flip them all you want.)
  • NO OTHER ASSETS: You cannot use sprites, sound effects, and music not in the startcart and demo cart. (Or from solving any part of the mystery....)
  • JUST THE ASSETS YOU NEED: You don't, obviously, have to use ALL the assets to make your game!  It would probably be a mess if you did.
  • SOUNDS: You can change the speed and general volume of sound effects (if they are too loud), but not the data.
  • USE OF INCLUDED ROUTINES: You CAN use Pico-8 functions to render the TOY BOX FONT font sprites yourself, changing colors and transparency with PAL and PALT. You don't need to use any of the provided code at all.
  • BUILT-IN DRAWING FUNCTIONS OKAY: Feel free to use the built in drawing functions of Pico-8 (LINE, RECTFILL, CIRCFILL, PSET, etc.), but not so much as to avoid the intent of the jam (using the assets provided).  Do not make sprites with these, nor store them as string data, nor load them from another cart, or any other tricksy maneuvers -- please try to make magic with the tools and toys given. Otherwise, why not just do a different jam?
  • "HIDDEN PALETTE" OKAY: Yes, you can use all the fun new colors if you want . There is a routine for setting and keeping your new Palette.  (BTW If you need to reset the palette to edit code, type PAL() at the command line.)
  • NOTHING CONTROVERSIAL PLEASE: Please, no political or religious or inflammatory content. This is fun playground that divisive and mean stuff have no place in.  Abusive games will be removed. Let's just have FUN!
  • USE THE MAP IF YOU WANT. Just make sure the tiles you want available are in the unshared sprite tabs!
  • SAFE FOR WORK: This is a PG jam. Please do not put adult content in it. There is plenty of other Internet for that, heh.
  • LINK TO LAUNCHER: EVERYONE that submits a game (that follows these rules) will be linked to a TOY BOX JAM 2019 launcher! (And if that is in Pico-8, it will be given a way to relaunch the Launcher from your game's menu.) Please link to the launcher when it is set up! YOUR GAME WILL BE JUDGED FROM THE LAUNCHER, SO LINK IT UP! (Linking can occur after the jam, but some judges may miss your game...)


To be announced at start of the Jam. Many of them will be abstract and interpretable.  This list may be added to but:

  • Set
  • Ends
  • Arrival
  • Flow
  • Two Slots
  • Protect Center
  • Alike
  • Everything in its Right Place
  • Friendly Monsters
  • Get Rid of Your Tools
  • Build the Monstrosity
  • Win That Trophy!
  • Epic, One-Screen Adventure
  • Sliding
  • Connect the Living Places
  • Overflow

Or you can use Game Idea Guru!


The Launcher is finished.  Run it here:

To get IN the launcher, submit your cart to on Your cart should be on Lexaloffle with the tag "toyboxjam" and please provide:

  • Cart  Full Name
  • Alias on it was submitted under
  • Cart Name on Lexaloffle

The Launcher:

A) lists the carts and launch them

B) provides a pause menu entry to go "Back to Launcher"

I would also recommend making your submission playable on by exporting to HTML, changing gamename.html to index.html, then zipping the two files for upload. You have to check the box that says HTML - playable in browser.  If I don't see your cart, comment on your Submission to the Jam, and that messages me.


Everyone can vote on the submitted entries!  The categories:

  • Most Fun
  • Best Use of Assets
  • Most Novel Idea
  • Best Implementation of an Optional Theme
  • Silliest, Nuttiest Game

What do you win? Nothing!  But I will probably make digital Award Certificates suitable for Social Media Posting. Print and frame it if you want!  I wonder if anyone could win the Pentafecta -- all five  awards! 


Are you here and have no idea what Pico-8 is? It is a "fantasy console". Imagine that someone made an emulator for a console similar to the NES... but it never existed!  You code in Lua (a scripting language that is easy to learn), and ALL THE TOOLS ARE BUILT IN -- code editor, sprite editor, map editor, sound effects editor, and music editor! It makes it really, really easy to make a game! I've made a tiny one in less than an hour!  It costs $15 and is available from here:  Totally worth it for hundreds of hours of enjoyment! CHEAPEST CONSOLE / DEV ENVIRONMENT EVER!

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

Q: Where the heck are the files?  Well, if you checked this early, good job: they are here! Read the _READ_ME file first!

Q: I've never made a game before, can I enter?  A: Yes.
Q: I'm not very good at making games, should I enter? A: Yeah, why not?
Q: Can I reuse my own code from prior projects? A: Yes. Just no assets from them.
Q: What time zone determines the start and end dates?  A: Pacific Standard Time (PST, GMT - 8).
Q: Can I join the jam after it has already started?  A: Yes, you can join at any time. You just have to submit a game before the deadline. 
Q: Can I work with a team?  A: Yes.
Q: Can I be a member of more than one team?  A: Yes.
Q: Is there a limit to the number of people that can be on the same team?  A: No.
Q: Can I submit more than one game? A: Yes. Q: What happens if I don't submit my game in time?  A: Your game won't be judged. But by all means, finish your game! (I still wanna see it!)
Q: Can I update my game after the end of the jam?  A: Yes but judging will be based on the copy that was submitted by the deadline.

Q: Am I super-disqualified if I bend the rules a little? A: Nah, probably not except the safe for work one. But TRY to follow 'em!

Q: Can I participate without joining A: Yesssss.... I guess.... but it will be a lot harder to track you down and see your work. If you really don't want to, we can try to figure something out. But you will have to post your cart on And joining is WAY WAY WAY PREFERRED. And really, just join with a throwaway email if you have trouble with the idea.

Q: I have a problem with one of the files! What do I do?  Let me know! I will fix it if I can!

Thanks to LCD Jam for the FAQ Idea and most of the questions!

I can't wait to see what you all come up with! Let's have a fun TOY BOX JAM Holiday together!


Pico-Lib Code by That Tom Hall and the Pico-8 Community (credits in "start cart")

Sprite Ideas by That Tom Hall, Lafolie, Liquidream

Art / Animation by Lafolie, Toby Hefflin, That Tom Hall

Sound effects by Lafolie, Gruber, That Tom Hall

Music by Gruber (and one lame one by That Tom Hall)

Jam Advice by Matthias Scherba

Idea of Having a Backstory by Fwip

Interesting Content Discussion by Lafolie




All submissions
Browser playable (20)
Windows (9)
macOS (9)
Linux (9)

No submissions match your filter

Keep climbing to avoid the rising lava. Collect treasure and take down monsters for bonus points.
Play in browser
A Tiny Metroidvania for ToyBoxJam
Play in browser
A tiny pico-8 3D collectathon! #tbj2019
Play in browser
only you can solve the case!
Play in browser
Alfredo's back in this #Pico8 remake, especially for #ToyBoxJam - and has he got a surprise for you!
Play in browser
A small action platformer about throwing discs.
Play in browser
a vacuum robot wants to clean... everything!
Play in browser
Winner "Most Novel Idea" @ToyBoxJam 2019
Play in browser
Grate cheese! Then grate some more! Then things get very cheesy. My entry to the 2019 #ToyBoxJam
Play in browser
A Legend of Zelda inspired, procedural RPG adventure full of monsters and temples and boats!
Role Playing
Play in browser
Fire fighting puzzle
A game concept and prototype for ToyBoxJam 2019
Play in browser
My entry for #ToyBoxJam 2019 - Some monsters are late to the speeddate event! Help them find the best group!
Play in browser
Explore the dungeon! Survive!
Play in browser
Rescue helpless aliens from the dying planet!
Play in browser
Not just any Flappy Boffin game
Play in browser
My entry for #TBJ2019
Play in browser
A mysterious tale and a mighty hero: will you be able to meet the one living up in the hills and gain eternal glory?
Play in browser
An infinite dodge-em-up for the TOYBOXJAM
Play in browser
About one minute of dungeon crawling for the "Toy Box Jam 2019"
Play in browser