Global Game Jam Retrospective

1 02 2010

This past weekend I participated in the Global Game Jam, where small teams of game designers, artists, and programmers participate in a 48-hour marathon game developing session within a set theme and constraints. This year the theme was deception, and for our time zone the constraints were “Rain”, “Plain”, and “Spain”. Rather than make “My Fair Lady 2010”, most people went with other really off-the-wall and quite “indie” feeling ideas.

The group I was in decided to make a game that took a lot of inspiration from A Boy and His Blob, only with the twist that halfway through the very short game the blob turns psychotically evil and tries to destroy everything. Entitled “ConquistaBlob”, the game was about a young Aztec woman and a mysterious blob on a quest to save her village by traveling to a temple and getting some kind of MacGuffin. The blob would transform in one of three ways depending on different corn being fed to it. Upon reaching the temple, the twist that the Blob is actually sent by the Conquistadors reveals itself and stuff goes quickly to pot. We didn’t quite get to that part, though we had all the elements of it. Rather than be disappointed that the game wasn’t quite complete and was a tad buggy, I’m instead more impressed by the work of our programmer being able to solve a majority of the collision detection problems as well as get some actual platforming going by the time we had to submit it. Sure the game wasn’t perfect but we had a beginning and end, and even had created two stages, something not many other games had. We also had some pretty nice chiptune music and sound done by Ken Snyder, who also did music and sound for just about every other game done at WPI’s game jam. Big props to him for working so dilligently.

I was in charge of doing artwork (and in fact, really the only artist), and I feel I did a pretty good job in making an 8-bit styled world with associated characters. I’ll put some animations of them up on the portfolio part of my page at some point later, which will even include stuff that wasn’t able to be included in-game. For now though I’ll just put up this image I made as our “victory” splash screen, and the parody of a NES game box I made really quickly as well just because.

Fight, Aztecs, for everlasting peace!

A winner is you!

I'm sure the BabelFish Translation on the bottom is wrong

Game of the Year in Mexico in 1987!

Also something I learned (besides making games in Java is hard work), is that I should look into the Flixel library for my flash game dev project that I’m still, slowly, trying to complete. So overall I feel this was a weekend well spent in terms of making me feel confident about my abilities to some degree.

Anyway you can attempt to download ConquistaBlob from the Global GameJam site by clicking here. Be warned it seems we had some trouble uploading it and it may not work. Since I don’t have the files necessary that’s something unfortunately out of my hands.

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