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The Official GMC Jam #2 Discussion Topic


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#1 Nocturne

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 04:53 PM

Okay everybody, I think we can all agree that the first GMC Jam has been a rip-roaring success. Thanks to all who participated with their games, and thanks to all who participated with their support and feedback!!! You have all made the event a worthwhile occaision and as such it should be repeated! But when? In what form? With what rules? Thatīs what this topic is for...

Now, to try and keep some order in this topic, I think that we should make a list of things that we should discuss and try to deal with each of them one at a time and only move on when the issue has been resolved. A few members have already PMīd me their suggestions and Iīve also seen a few things mentioned in other topics so thatīs where we will start. If there is anything that isnīt on the list (below) then please PM me and I will add it in so it can be discussed too. So...


1) Theme
Should we have one? Should it be obligatory? Should the winner decide outright, or pick one from a community made list? Should games that donīt follow the theme be allowed and if so can they win the Jam?

DECIDED:

  • Each Jam will have a theme, and participants are encouraged to use it.
  • Using the theme is NOT obligatory, but will be valued when voting.
  • To encourage use of theme, the highest-voted theme-based game gets to choose the theme for next Jam.



2)Voting
Should we have Polls? Or post in topic? Should we vote for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place or just 1st? Should we have other votes for graphics, sound design etc? Should non-theme games get a vote for an "Honourable Mention" category, or no votes at all?
Addendum: Should people be allowed to vote for themselves?

DECIDED:
  • 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners will be chosen using the SSE method. Voters may rank the games in order of their preference. Voters may rank as few, or as many, games as they wish.
  • All games are eligible (themed and non-themed), but voters should take "use of theme" into account. (Remember: non-theme games can win, but they CANNOT pick the next Jam's theme. see above.)
  • Voters may give an "Honourable Mention" vote for a game whose features they liked, but wasn't good enough to win. These can be graphics, sound, gameplay, idea, etc.
  • (Optional) When voting, leave feedback about WHY you voted for the game(s) you chose.
  • Participants may not vote for their own game.


3) Frequency
How often should we have the Jam? Every 1, 2 or 3 months? Should we have "special" Jams for christmas or other holiday periods?

DECIDED:
  • The Jam will be held every 3 months. So the next one will be on the 29th of April (a Friday).
  • If the Jam coincides with an official competition it will be postponed.


4) Time
Is 72 hours too much? To little? Should timezones be taken into account?

DECIDED:
  • 72 hours long from 12:01 AM GMT Saturday ...to... 11:59 PM GMT Monday


5) Outside Help
The chatroom was a nice touch and good fun, and I think that it worked well... the count-down timer was good too, but those things were OUTSIDE the GMC. So, maybe we should have a site to hold these things (and more) in one place? A chat room with "lounges" for teams, a countdown page, games pages etc... and just have the GMC for the actual main Jam topic? Or does this defeat the purpose of the GMCommunity Jam?

DECIDED:
  • Games must be posted in the WIP/Games forums before the finish deadline for the Jam. Hosting is up to the individual user.
  • A link to your game and a short description must be posted in the official Jam topic.
  • People are welcome to use any outside sites, and are also welcome to promote such sites, but the posting of topics and the voting will be done on the GMC.


6) Follow Up
Should we have a "follow up" section at the beginning of each new Jam where we review the previous games that were made and see if they were ever finished/polished? Or how about a yearly "Best of" competition where the community votes on the best Jam game of the year?

DECIDED:
  • A week or two before each Jam a follow up topic will be posted where previous competitors/participants will have the chance to showcase the developement of their Jam game.
  • Participation is NOT obligatory and the aim of the topic is to show what became of previous Jam entrants and give a bit of "pre-jam hype" to encourage new members to join in.


7) Prizes
What about prizes? Anyone think of anything else that can be a prize other than bragging rights, choosing the theme and a Dadio banner/cup?

DECIDED:
  • Prizes will be as before... A special graphic/banner, bragging rights and (if your game is a themed game) the possibility of choosing the next Jam theme.
  • Community prizes will also be offered as members of the community contribute whatever the feel appropriate. EG: Coverage on their web site, custom graphics for the game, a video of the gameplay for YouTube... Whatever
  • There will be ABSOLUTELY NO MONETARY PRIZE. This is forbidden by the forum admins.


I think thatīs about it for now... I will add more things as they come up! Now, lets get the discussion rolling with SHOULD WE POSTPONE THE NEXT JAM UNTIL AFTER 8.1 COMES OUT?



Mark



PS: Please try to contribute as best you can to this (ie. no trolling!) and help make the GMC Jam a lasting community event that the GMC can be proud of!

Edited by Nocturne, 10 April 2011 - 07:33 PM.

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#2 Nocturne

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 04:58 PM

Okay, to start the ball rolling, hereīs my opinion on themes...

It should be obligatory. If you want to participate in the Jam without the Theme then you can, but your game cannot get votes for 1st (or 2nd or 3rd?) place, but (if we allow it) it can get votes for design, graphic, sound etc... The winner should decide outright the theme for the next Jam as it makes a nicer prize for actually winning I think!
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#3 thatshelby

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 05:03 PM

Theme.


We definitely should have one, but only as a tool to generate ideas if you have none. That seems pretty straight-forward to me.. The theme should be fairly tight if this is it's intended purpose, but I guess that's in the control of the previous Jam winner.

The Jam winner should choose the theme bluntly, as it is totally up to them.



Perhaps the winner could choose this? As in, if it is a tight theme, it should be optional, but if it is a loose theme (IE: Discovery, Invention, Technology), it should be mandatory. Just another idea, as the prizes are fairly skimp.


A game must follow the theme if it is to be entered to win, granted the theme is loose. If it is tight, all submissions should be accepted for the winner.

Spoiler

Edited by Theophilus, 08 February 2011 - 05:06 PM.

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#4 commander of games

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 05:08 PM

I think Theo's idea would be best. Personally though, I think a loose theme would be better. The reason my game in Jam#1 didn't fallow the theme was because it was too tight, and I found that making a game out of it might be hard to do. So the looser the theme, the better in my opinion.
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#5 Dark Matter

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 05:08 PM

1) The theme should not be optional. The winner should choose the next theme.
2) Just have a vote for best game. Polls might be better...
3) 3 months is a good frequency.
4) Time-zones should be taken into account. It should be longer too, maybe a couple of days longer than before.
5) The chat was good fun, I think we should just keep it as it was before...
6) It might be nice to take a look at how jam games have progressed.
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#6 thatshelby

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 05:10 PM

Dark Matter, thanks for the input, however, we're only discussing Themes, the first point, so as to not get the topic on an unorganized tangent.

COG ~ What do you think about the winner choosing whether the theme should be tight or loose, and to adjust accepted submissions accordingly?
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#7 Dark Matter

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 05:12 PM

Oh, I thought we were answering each one :P
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#8 commander of games

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 05:14 PM

COG ~ What do you think about the winner choosing whether the theme should be tight or loose, and to adjust accepted submissions accordingly?


I think it's a nice idea, but there should be a limit to how tight a theme can be. You shouldn't be able to choose things like "Pickles with Jetpacks"(Though that would be awesome), for example.
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#9 Dark Matter

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 05:15 PM

Yeah, a loose theme is best. Pancakes was too small a category.
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#10 TerraFriedSheep

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 05:16 PM

My feelings towards the theme are as simple as:

  • The theme should be chosen outright by the winner of the previous jam.
  • All entries should follow the theme.

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#11 Uniquebum

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 05:33 PM

I think having a theme is good but it shouldn't set too strict boundaries. For example "strategy game" theme doesn't set too strict boundaries but "pillow fight strategy game" just narrows too much down the amount people can use their imagination and creativity.


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#12 Dark Matter

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 05:34 PM

It shouldn't be anything like "Strategy game". That tells you what type of game to make - you should have complete freedom with that.
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#13 makerofthegames

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 05:38 PM

I was one that PMed Mark a suggestion about the themes, I'll quote that here:

Speaking of Jam Themes, I think we should create that list now, for the creator to choose a theme from if he wants to.

I would assume you just take the previous list, remove pancakes, add another joke theme, then add whatever you can think of.

So basically, it would be a list and he wouldn't have absolute freedom to pick whatever, to avoid controversial themes. That's my suggestion. :P

EDIT: Ah yes, the previous Jam winner would be picking. I forgot to state that.

Edited by makerofthegames, 08 February 2011 - 05:40 PM.

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#14 Zeddy

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 05:45 PM

I can only think that the idea behind these jams/competitions with short time limits is for the participants to work under constraints. Having a set theme gives the entrant something to focus on. What does this theme make you think? How would you make this theme an integral element of your game? It's interesting, I find, to see how vastly different the outcomes of this can be.

Even though most of the games I liked best in the previous jam didn't follow the theme, I think it should be mandatory for getting voting points, though there'd be no reason to stop someone from submitting something outside of the theme if they just want in it for the fun. Fun is welcome and encouraged, I'd say.

Now, let me address this bit from the jam-topic:

Caverns - Platformers that take place under ground. Time - Platformers with clocks everywhere. Elements - Platformers where you attack enemies using fire and water. War - Platformers where you shoot at people.

Yes, the particular themes mentioned aren't original, and yes, you can just paint a generic game with it. The difference is that these would allow the creator to do something cool. It would allow a game where you dug through mountains. It would allow a game where you travel through time or operate under a time limit (time limits are underrated). It would allow for a game where you combine chemicals for awesome effects or set stuff on fire. It would allow for a kickass platformer where you shoot at aliens or an atmospheric, subtle strategy game during the cold war.

You could make this with a pancake game, obviously you could, but the theme would encourage and inspire this.

Edit: While "Strategy game" would tell you what kind of genre to make, "Strategy" would make a pretty fine theme.

Edited by zeddidragon, 08 February 2011 - 05:50 PM.

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#15 Dark Matter

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 05:49 PM

Yeah, I agree. I think those kind of themes that even have a definition could work well, as long as they're not too restricting. It'd make it easier to vote for them too, I think.
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#16 thatshelby

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 05:54 PM

I think we should allow the winner to choose whether the theme is required. What do you guys think?
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#17 commander of games

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:01 PM

I think we should allow the winner to choose whether the theme is required. What do you guys think?


I don't really see a reason to. The winner picks the theme, and chooses wether it's loose or tight. It could get confusing if the rules varied too much from jam to jam.
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#18 Dark Matter

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:03 PM

I think we should allow the winner to choose whether the theme is required. What do you guys think?

No. That's stupid, there's no point to having the theme that way, and it just gets confusing. The theme should always be obligatory.
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#19 thatshelby

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:05 PM

I think we should allow the winner to choose whether the theme is required. What do you guys think?


I don't really see a reason to. The winner picks the theme, and chooses wether it's loose or tight. It could get confusing if the rules varied too much from jam to jam.


Well, what does the tightness and looseness effect? If we keep that phrase in the rules, it will just be overcomplicating it.
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#20 orange08

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:06 PM

If you're going to make a game for the Jam it should definitely be based around the announced theme :l Games that aren't made based on the theme should be disqualified from winning.

Jam winners should get their reward: a banner from Dadio and bragging rights and some reviews for their game... I don't think they should solely get to pick the next theme though. The theme should be announced as soon as the competition starts to avoid cheating :l
The way the first theme was picked was perfectly fine.

Edited by orange08, 08 February 2011 - 06:13 PM.

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#21 Dark Matter

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:11 PM

That's one of the prizes you get for being a winner though...
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#22 Greenblizzard

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:12 PM

I think we should allow the winner to choose whether the theme is required. What do you guys think?

I'd like it to be required, but I don't think the winner's opinion on this should matter more than others.
If the winner picks the theme, it should be from a list made by the community.
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#23 Erik Leppen

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:18 PM

Optional themes are stupid. You can then just as well have no theme at all and get your ideas from elsewhere. If there's a theme, all games should follow it. If not, it's of no use and every discussion about who will choose it, is superfluous.

I mean, of what use it is to say that the winner may choose a theme, yet everyone is free to just make something else. Seems wasted effort to me.
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#24 FredFredrickson

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:20 PM

Jams should only be once every 2-3+ months. TOO EARLY! :angry:
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#25 Dark Matter

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:22 PM

James should only be once every 2-3+ months. TOO EARLY! :angry:

Who's James? :P
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#26 commander of games

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:25 PM

I think we should allow the winner to choose whether the theme is required. What do you guys think?


I don't really see a reason to. The winner picks the theme, and chooses wether it's loose or tight. It could get confusing if the rules varied too much from jam to jam.


Well, what does the tightness and looseness effect? If we keep that phrase in the rules, it will just be overcomplicating it.


Point taken. Either way, it's fine with me.

Optional themes are stupid. You can then just as well have no theme at all and get your ideas from elsewhere. If there's a theme, all games should follow it. If not, it's of no use and every discussion about who will choose it, is superfluous.

I mean, of what use it is to say that the winner may choose a theme, yet everyone is free to just make something else. Seems wasted effort to me.


The reason that the theme is optional is because sometimes people just can't think of an idea for a particular theme. An example is the last theme, 'Pancakes'. It was restrictive, so people can have a harder time finding an idea that works. At least thats one of the reasons. I'm pretty sure... I think.
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#27 Zeddy

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:26 PM

You don't see admins do jokeposts often. I think that's cool.

Spontaneous suggestion time:
How about the winner picks a bunch of themes and then we vote for one of them?
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#28 Dark Matter

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:27 PM

The reason that the theme is optional is because sometimes people just can't think of an idea for a particular theme. An example is the last theme, 'Pancakes'. It was restrictive, so people can have a harder time finding an idea that works. At least thats one of the reasons. I'm pretty sure... I think.

Well, that's their problem. They should be more creative.
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#29 commander of games

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:32 PM

The reason that the theme is optional is because sometimes people just can't think of an idea for a particular theme. An example is the last theme, 'Pancakes'. It was restrictive, so people can have a harder time finding an idea that works. At least thats one of the reasons. I'm pretty sure... I think.

Well, that's their problem. They should be more creative.


Blaming the fact that people find it hard to make games for a restrictive theme on them is just... Stupid. Even the most creative people can have trouble working with a restrictive theme.

It's not fair to blame it on the people. It's not their fault.

Edited by commander of games, 08 February 2011 - 06:33 PM.

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#30 FredFredrickson

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:32 PM

Jams should only be once every 2-3+ months. TOO EARLY! :angry:

Who's James? :P

Who said James? :whistle:
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#31 thatshelby

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:34 PM

Curse you and your administrative witchcraft, Fred!

I'm open to any theme ruleset. If anyone has a suggestion, please say so!
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#32 Dark Matter

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:34 PM

The reason that the theme is optional is because sometimes people just can't think of an idea for a particular theme. An example is the last theme, 'Pancakes'. It was restrictive, so people can have a harder time finding an idea that works. At least thats one of the reasons. I'm pretty sure... I think.

Well, that's their problem. They should be more creative.


Blaming the fact that people find it hard to make games for a restrictive theme on them is just... Stupid. Even the most creative people can have trouble working with a restrictive theme.

It's not fair to blame it on the people. It's not their fault.

The GMC Jam is supposed to encourage creativity. If they're not creative enough to think up an idea, then there's not much point. I don't think anyone cannot come up with an idea (even a simple one) for any theme.
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#33 thatshelby

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:35 PM

Keep in mind that with an optional theme, we have more of a Jam, and with a required theme, we have more of a competition, which was not the reason the Jam was proposed.

Edited by Theophilus, 08 February 2011 - 06:35 PM.

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#34 commander of games

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:37 PM

The reason that the theme is optional is because sometimes people just can't think of an idea for a particular theme. An example is the last theme, 'Pancakes'. It was restrictive, so people can have a harder time finding an idea that works. At least thats one of the reasons. I'm pretty sure... I think.

Well, that's their problem. They should be more creative.


Blaming the fact that people find it hard to make games for a restrictive theme on them is just... Stupid. Even the most creative people can have trouble working with a restrictive theme.

It's not fair to blame it on the people. It's not their fault.

The GMC Jam is supposed to encourage creativity. If they're not creative enough to think up an idea, then there's not much point. I don't think anyone cannot come up with an idea (even a simple one) for any theme.


The problem is with finding an idea that works and you can actually do in 72 hours. It's not that easy with a restrictive theme.
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#35 Dark Matter

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:38 PM

@Theo - Competition is good. It encourages creativity to beat everyone else.
@COG - That's why the time should be extended too :D
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#36 makerofthegames

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:40 PM

The Jam is supposed to be short. Didn't Fred already drop the hammer on an actual GMC Comp?
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#37 thatshelby

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:40 PM

Dark Matter ~ If it's a competition, people won't be as focused on community activity as they are winning a raster image.
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#38 Dark Matter

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:45 PM

What community activity was there except for between teams, and chatting?
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#39 makerofthegames

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:46 PM

You just named it all. What exactly did you expect? Personally, teams and chatting is about the most community-oriented thing we can do here.
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#40 Zeddy

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:47 PM

Would people stop quoting quotes that quote quotes? It's not hard to delete the text you're not responding to.
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#41 Dark Matter

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:47 PM

And how will being competitive change that? It won't. So competition is fine...
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#42 Nocturne

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:49 PM

Okay, from what I see the situation is pretty split here... some say fixed theme, some say optional theme. At least no-one say NO theme. I do think that Theophilus has hit the nail on the head here though, as this is a JAM and not a COMPETITION... so how about making it like I suggested at first - The 1st, 2nd and third placed games must be based on the choosen theme, but all other games are open for optional prizes, like best graphics, best design, most polished etc... And as for the winner choosing the theme, i think that is a MUST. It gives a nice reason to try and "win"... he doesnīt have to tell anyone before hand and just pmīs it to me or Theo or Robert and weīll keep it a secret until the next Jam. It relies on trust but I think that we can make it work fine...
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#43 Dark Matter

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:50 PM

So basically, you can submit un-themed games, but they won't be able to win?
Sounds fine to me.

Edited by Dark Matter, 08 February 2011 - 06:50 PM.

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#44 thatshelby

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:50 PM

*stares bluntly in disbelief*

That WAS the community activity. I've had more fun on this community in those 10 days of Jam + voting than I have in my almost 2 years of being here. That WAS coming together. We were a community for those days.

Giving feedback on peoples projects and people actually getting to know each other, without labels like "The troll" or "The guy who thinks he knows a lot" or "Ogawd he's from the GMCG" was amazing. (Although motg was still the village idiot. ;))

If that wasn't being a community, I'd like know what your visions are.
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#45 Dark Matter

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:51 PM

Yeah, that's what I thought too. But I don't think having competition between the community will stop that in any way.

Edited by Dark Matter, 08 February 2011 - 06:51 PM.

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#46 Nocturne

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:52 PM

I agree... the whole Jam was a great community event. And the Chat was fun and pretty active, and i donīt think Iīve ever seen so many comments on so many games in one place!
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#47 Rusty

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:53 PM

1) Theme
The Theme was one of the best features. You should only be allowed to win if you follow the theme, but you should be able to submit without following it. It gives the Jam a bit more direction, which is always nice.

2)Voting
Vote for 1st. You don't vote in somebody and their competitor's, voting for 1st, 2nd and 3rd is a unrealistic idea which only makes the votes harder to count. Voting should be done in a separate topic where only voting posts are allowed.

3) Frequency
Holiday period Jams? Don't you think people might be... I don't know... on holiday? :blink: 3 months is perfect development time. The Jam causes major disturbance on other projects, so it would be unfair to host them too often. If people are depressed about missing the Jam, they're more than welcome to come over for the GMCG until the next one.

4) Time
72 hours was a massive success, after it was so successful, why would you want to change it?
Guy 1: "How's your toaster?"
Guy 2: "It's brilliant! It makes perfect toast every time!"
Guy 1: "Cool"
Guy 2: "I want a new one though..."
Guy 1: "Why?"
Guy 2: "Pffft, I don't really know... maybe just to be awkward?"

5) Outside Help
I don't see why having outside help would threaten the credibility of the "GMC Jam". It's hosted and based by the GMC, all the fancy little add ons can be anywhere they like. It's like saying "I hosted my game on Host-A, so shouldn't it be the Host-A Jam?" <_<

6) Follow Up
I, for one, am very interested in seeing how successful the Jam is in the long run. While it has been fantastically successful so far, this is just the beginning. I would like to see if the Jam is a worthwhile event or a short term bust.

7) Prizes
... Why would you need anything more?
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#48 Nocturne

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:55 PM

One at a time Rusty!!! One at a time!!!
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#49 orange08

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 06:59 PM

One at a time Rusty!!! One at a time!!!


You would prefer that he made 7 seperate posts?
Lol, I misunderstood... you want us to discuss one topic at a time. :l

1) Theme
The Theme was one of the best features. You should only be allowed to win if you follow the theme, but you should be able to submit without following it. It gives the Jam a bit more direction, which is always nice.

I agree with this.

Edited by orange08, 08 February 2011 - 07:01 PM.

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#50 Nocturne

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 07:00 PM

Actually, yes! Iīd like to prevent this topic from going off-topic and so would prefer if we could discuss each issue as it comes up... that way itīs a lot easier to come to a decision and read what everyone else thinks about each subject...
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