I am an interaction designer and illustrator interested in technology and playfulness. See the CV

The game jam checklist and troubleshooting tips

It’s been awhile but I am thinking about game jams again. I have been part of over 10 game jams (I think I lost count, but it’s around that number). This weekend made me feel more up to it seeing Ludum Dare 36 kick off. It’s always been a bit intimidating to participate in that particular game jam, as the community feels a bit too technical, and for some reason that (imaginary) bar is set a bit higher than other jams. The amount of cool games that come from the event is probably what made me stop each time in awe and struck me as a jam to be amazing at. This is all in my head of course, as the game jam experience is what you make them out to be as a participant. I’ll probably see if I can do an LD entry in October. The October jam only has one objective which lasts the month: publish the game and make at least $1. I think I would like to try that as my initiation into Ludum Dare, unless I miraculously do something tiny for LD36.

Anyways, I wanted to share the game jam checklist with troubleshooting tips that I recently re-updated, which I would copy into the post below. I also have it as a downloadable PDF file to keep or print out.

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Tiny Tower Spreadsheet Frenzy

I found out that about 4 months ago, Tiny Tower turned 5 years old. And that they are releasing it back into the app stores. The release promises a lot of new floors, better graphics, better management and best of all, the ability to save your tower into the cloud and share bitizens with friends. This made me remember my experience playing it back around 2012 (I’m unable to verify when I started playing, but this is a good guess) until the game stopped running around this time last year late August 2015. So after a few weeks or months when I started playing, I was starting to run into a problem with my tower: it was getting pretty tall and finding bitizens was getting harder. Around this time I was also interested in knowing how to work with Google Spreadsheets. I had this awesome idea. What if I combined them together?

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Instagram magic

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After more than five years of having the same mobile phone, I finally bought a new one that’s more up to speed with technology. It’s decent and has a decent camera, which means I can now play around with a lot of apps and take photos that don’t suffer with photo grain (from 3MP to 12MP, it definitely makes a difference). Anyways! I wanted to demystify the world of Instagram. And then add an Instagram feed to my Illustrations section. I thought since I wanted a setup that was simple and easy to repeat, there were a few things I needed to find out.

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Of cheatsheets and infographics

I recently updated my Illustration portfolio with infographics which I made that reference shortcuts that help get you familiar with certain software. It started after I had a course using 3D Studio MAX. After a month or so of not using the software, I forgot a lot of the shortcuts which helped make it easier to model what I want. I had some notes written somewhere and I did pick it up again, but it bothered me that I could not find some kind of reference sheet that helped a user get back up to speed without flooding them with too much information.  (Read More)

Logging and Documentation

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It is really important to make documentation and to log what has been done. It requires very little effort and helps everyone out in the long run. In this post I will discuss the benefits of documentation and what to look for in creating good documentation. This may be a little wordy but is worth the effort to read and consider in future projects. (Read More)

Experience crafting: Ideas and evaluations

Anyone can have an idea, though ideas do not make a game or player’s experience of one. Ideas are distillations of an experience and may not even be good without considering and including all the other parts that are needed for the idea to work out. This calls for having evaluation periods. Everyone involved should be aware that this is a process, and that it is good to iterate the process efficiently and effectively for a better outcome and delivery. In this post we will talk very briefly about process.

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Experience crafting: Mechanics first

If you have been following this series of posts I have put a lot of time into describing the physical creation of paper prototypes. In the next few posts I will now focus on ways to go about thinking on designing the game experience and the process you may go through when doing so. (Read More)