12 Nov 2014 16:13
Congratulations to Jonathan Burk, Randall Dolifka, Kumar Sridharamurthy, and Joy Hauser for having the Best Overall submitted game for the Game Jam last weekend, and congratulations to Marcos Alfonso and Joshua Strunk for winning the People's Choice award! And furthermore, a special thanks to all the participants for making this pilot Game Jam a truly excellent experience!
The Game Jam, hosted by the LIVE Lab and Dr. Andre Thomas, took place from 7pm Friday, 07 November, to 4pm Sunday the 9th. During that 45 hour block, teams of no greater than 4 develop fully functional video games completely from scratch based around a particular theme. The theme for this Jam was water, inspired by the increasing environmental concerns and the need for water in developing countries.
We saw all kinds of games, ranging from a plumber fixing broken waterworks, to controlling storm clouds to provide water to towns. Overall, there were over 40 participants divided into over 10 teams.
Jonathan, Randall, Kumar, and Joy created a sidescrolling game in which you help a fish, affectionately named Lord Swimmington, escape toxic waste. Meanwhile, the poor fish must dodge incoming fish, sharks, and barrels. The game seems deceptively simple, yet the mechanics were very natural, and the water theme was incorporated very well. For winning, each member of the team has received a full license for Unity3D. Congratulations!
Marcos and Joshua created a two-player game called Puny Pirates. In it, each player controls a pirate, and the goal is simply to knock the other into the deep ocean. You do this by firing cannon balls, which spawn from the pirates themselves mind you, atop very rickety boats. Joshua and Marcos did a very good job ensuring the gameplay was simple but competitive, and for their efforts, the other participants voted their game as the popular favorite.
A special thanks goes to SIGGRAPH and our industry liason, William Bracho-Blok, for helping organizing this hefty event. We also thank all our sponsors and Kansas State University.