In the early evening of Friday, July 5, they began to assemble in Oakland. More than a dozen Bay Area video game developers—as well as hundreds of others around the world—gathered at more than 30 sites such as the Museum of Art and Digital Entertainment (opens in new tab) video game museum for "Molydeux Deux," the second annual game jam developer event in which participants chose from 60 inspirational quotes (opens in new tab) from legendary game designer Peter Molyneux and began a 48-hour process of making functional (and usually ridiculous) video games (opens in new tab) based on them.(opens in new tab)
By 7 PM, the developers had formed into groups, assigned duties and begun coding. Some pulled out sketch pads, others, audio equipment or drawing tablets, and started downloading resources as needed and requesting art, music and code from team members collaborating from home.
By Sunday night, hundreds of new games had been completed. Many of them were showcased in a staggered, city-by-city webcast and were later posted for download at www.molyjam.com/games (opens in new tab) . The entries included:
• A first date simulator in which a man and a woman both used a time machine to travel back in time and improve their first date,
• A multiplayer sex simulator with supports for up to five simultaneous players,
• A dog walking simulator in which the dog is given a rocket- propelled grenade launcher,
• A flight simulator in which you fly an only semi-functional plane with various broken dials and readouts
• A game where you play as a Catholic school girl who must continuously adjust the length of her skirt to win the approval of her classmates.(opens in new tab)
"It's a great way to get quick ideas out, and prototype things, and work with different people," said Brandon Sheffield, one of the organizers of the MolyJam event. "When you've got other people to talk to about stuff, it sort of expands your brain in terms of how you think about problems, and what angles to attack them from."
Sheffield, who stated that he'd initially only intended to stick around "for about 15 minutes," wound up forming a group known as "Team Boring" with attendees James Hoffman and Scott Looney. The trio worked to create a game known called "Freedom Isn't Free," which modeled itself after the Molyneux quote that "Freedom can actually be boring, you've got to realize that." Team Boring sought to intentionally make a game in which the player had absolute freedom to do anything they wanted but no constraints to make the game's rewards challenging or worthwhile.
"It's still inviting and intriguing,” said McCoy. “You meet interesting people and hear interesting stories. And the workflow is cool," said McCoy when asked how she and Madanes felt about attending the MolyJam event. She then added that she was trying to pick up as many audio techniques as she could from the other developers around her. "I'm in sponge mode right now," she said, laughing.(opens in new tab)
If you'd like to get involved in upcoming game jam events and dive into video game development, the resources are out there. Global Game Jam (opens in new tab) generally takes place in January at assorted remote sites. Like MolyJam (opens in new tab) , it offers gives developers 48 hours to design and complete a game. Ludum Dare (opens in new tab) , the second-largest development event, follows a similar 48-hour development model, but runs completely online. Roguelike (opens in new tab) offers developers a full week to create a complete game and other game development events can be found over at www.compuhub.net (opens in new tab) .(opens in new tab) (opens in new tab) (opens in new tab) (opens in new tab) (opens in new tab)