Ok, so first off. I'm trying to use Twitter a bit more this year.... I know, I know I've got my finger on the pulse of the internet jumping on this bandwagon about 6 years late... but hey I'm an old fart.
Follow me and I will lead you home. Twittah Linky
Moving on. BearBound has been a good success! I'm glad that some of you liked it, some of you played it and thought it was to easy, and some of you accidentally clicked on it while trying to get to some mature content.
It was made in just a few days with TurkeyOnAStick and just in case you didn't know already it was his first game! So BRAVO to him. Also to ChartsOverHearts for the swell music. It really gave the game a good feeling and set the tone we were going for with the game.
I recommend game jams to anyone who is stuck in the middle of a huge project, take a break and work your ass off. It's not nearly as big a commitment as the big game you are working on and you might end up in the featured box apparently. (Way to surprise us with the featured box Tom... nearly wet myself giggling about it.)
Tom is getting on the Game Jam bandwagon in a big way, and the Global Game Jam is at the end of this month. So Game Jams are going to be huge this year. Don't be a puss, try one you will like it.
A few bits of advice though... I've done a couple of them now.
Keep your scope small yet expandable. I can sit down for 30 seconds and come up with a brand new game design that would take me years to complete. It took us 3 hours of diliberation to narrow down our scope to what BearBound finally became.
Remember an hour of planning saves 3 hours of development. Every team is different, when you get your team don't just rush in. Your first objective is to assess your teams strengths and weaknesses. And come up with a game design you are all confident you can complete.
If a team leader doesn't just happen naturally someone needs to step up. This will usually be the main designer or the programmer, sometimes that's the same person. This doesn't mean they shouldn't listen to any ideas, their job is to listen to the best ideas and work to make sure everyone is making progress toward making those ideas functional.
DON'T PANIC! Try to get some sleep. You will actually accomplish more and it will be better work. If the game doesn't get completed it's not a problem, you learned from the process. Just don't make yourself sick. You should work every waking moment you are able to but rest is an important part of working.
A member or two of your team doesn't show up sometimes. Ya it happens. Both of my NG Jams have had this trouble. We still made a good game each time, it just took a bit more creativity and adjustments to the scope of the game to accommodate the amount of man hours we had available.
Just remembering those pieces of advice should get you through a Game Jam unscathed.\
In other news, my Dad is doing very well, they are going to keep an eye on him to make sure the cancer doesn't come back but things look very good for him. So if your parents are over 50 and you give a rat's ass about them make sure they get a colonoscopy as often as their doctor recommends. It saved my Dad's life.
ALSO to anyone down in the San Franscisco area, I'm wanting to come out to FGS and possibly GDC this year but I'm awfully strapped for cash. If anyone has some space I could crash on or would like to donate to my "Go to that frickin' hilly place that gave me blisters the size of watermelons" fund I'm accepting your pity, I mean donations.
I'm already planning on heading out and working on a Habitat for Humanity house the weekend before FGS to save money on the ticket and do a little good. So I just need to fund the rest of the trip somehow, hopefully someone famous saw BearBound and loves my games and wants to give me some dough or something. Heck I don't care.
For new years, I was eating a leftover dry tasteless ham sandwich while my wife danced exuberantly to the second time she watched the New kids/Backstreet boys concert that aired that night... Exuberantly isn't a good thing sadly, she looked kinda well... yeah, I don't like the backstreet boys or new kids so I guess I'm jaded.
Jacksmack.com is now incorporated! That's big news, just got the letters in the mail this week. Jacksmack Inc. is official. Woo hoo!
Oh, also mortgage companies are dicks... remember that. Get that tattooed on your body somewhere, like that freak in Memento. On your thumb or something so you see it when you sign any papers they give you.
Oh and check out this lady who eats toilet paper. She wants to stop her odd addiction... well national celebrity for eating toilet paper has gotta do it I think.
Anyway I love you guys and please remember... It's dangerous to go alone, follow me... on twittah!