Coming back to Game Jamming?


I hadn't been to a Game Jam in.. 4-6 years? At least not as participant. For the last 3 years I helped organising Nordic Game Jam (web) and the 3 years before that I helped organising Level One Jam (web), which had been amazing! But it is very hard for me to game jam while also hosting. And the last 2 years I already had a massive urge to get a little bit back into it. I missed it!

I really missed just having a space for me to freely work on something. Be goofy, to explore something with a friend or on my one, to meet some new people, to experiment with a new technology (web) or just to feel the creative energy flow. Those kinds of events really just have an amazing energy to them. They are so fun and people always makes amazing things.

Between 22-28 January 2024 I participated in Global Game Jam 2024 at LEGO Group's site (web). The week before I had been through some education through work, so I was rather smashed. I accepted that I didn't really have a lot to give, so I just went there to see if I could maybe open the editor and just explore the space a little. I ended up staying there the whole weekend which was nice.

I brainstormed a little bit around the theme, "Make me laugh", and somehow got to think of those "Chattering Teeth". And seeing those I got pretty excited about making them in Unity in a nicely physics-based way, just to see what could come out from that. And that sort of spawned this idea of sorta creepy looking toys being in a kind of physics battle on a stage. Sort of like Battle Bots -- Which got me to the name "Tickle Toys". Moodboard showing various Fisher Price looking toys

There wasn't really a deeper game design, simple just physics-based toys that were fighting in some way. With lack of energy and a proper design. It just wasn't enough up for the task. I did a little bit and here is what I ended up with:

I had this by saturday midday, it felt alright, but my motivation was very low. But I really enjoyed the LEGO space. So, I ended up actually just working on this very site. At that day it came from being a few HTML/CSS mockups to actually fully functional article templates that worked with tags and all that I needed. And it made me very comfortable with publishing the website at that point. That was pretty amazing outcome to be honest! I went home and had a nice sleep, ready to work the next week.

Yesterday (9th February 2024), I went to SpilBar 57, which was one of the greatest ones in quite a while. Amazing showcases and insights into the development of 3 very different games. And there was just a massive amount of participants which was really great. But more important I meet with musician, developer of an obscure VR drunk simulator game and, old friend Horatiu Roman.

We got to talk a little bit about my experience with Global Game Jam, and that I didn't really finish anything "proper". And we talked a little bit about how sometimes we work on things and they just never really get to see the light. And you know, sometimes, these things deserve to see the light. Even if they are not big or small, but simple for being -- And then that's what brought me here today. To write this little article, and ensure my idea found its own little place.

Otherwise it might just had been a post on mastodon (mastodon), never to be seen again!

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