There’s no better way to finish the year than with a game jam, more specifically, the Ludum Dare Game Jam. As recent graduates of the Game Design program at VFS, Patrick Palulis and myself, Erich Kohlweg, along with current Programming student, Hugo Moraleida did just that. We created Baulders, a 3D top down local multiplayer pinball game for the 72 hour jam.
For those who are unfamiliar with Ludum Dare, it is an online community best know for “Ludum Dare”, the Accelerated Game Development Event of the same name (also called a “Game Jam”). During a Ludum Dare, developers from around the world spend a weekend creating games based on a theme suggested by the community. Ludum Dare events take place every April, August, and December.
Starting with the theme, “Entire Game on One Screen”, we three students created the concept during a quick brainstorming session. This allowed us to get right into making the game. Hugo took on the role of programming, Patrick did the audio, UI, and particles while I worked on environment art.
Recently several VFS students including Anna Prein, Alberto Mastretta, Michelangelo Huezo, Marcus Lembi and myself attended a local game jam hosted by iamagamerand supported by a myriad of local companies including East Side Games, Silicon Sisters, Radial Games, Indie House, and many others. Several VFS grads, many now working in the industry, also attended including Mario Gonz, Jess Garcia, Kramer Solinsky, Carl Graves, and TJ McLain.
All the teams got 48 hours to reach the same goal, to create a game with a strong female protagonist. The Centre for Digital Media was kind enough to provide the gymnasium where teams set up not just laptops and tablets, but computer towers, doubled monitors, speakers, and recording equipment. Across the table from Marcus and I, another team had a cello and a ukulele. The passion that the teams brought to this event was just as inspiring as the weight of the props they carried.