Global Game Jam 2019 Round Up
This past weekend, 30+ of the Coatsink team gathered in the idyllic Northumbrian countryside to participate in Global Game Jam 2019. We were not only ambitious to create games within a fairly short time frame but also spend some time with each other outside of work. In case you don’t know what a game jam is, let me explain it to you: Once a year developers meet in different locations all over the world for two days to create a game that represents a specific theme. This year’s theme was ‘What does home mean to you’. Home is a place that offers shelter and security but does it mean anything else?
What makes it so difficult is turning your ideas into a finished (or at least slightly finished) product after 48 hours. The goal of a game jam is not to create a perfect game. This is clearly impossible. Global Game Jam 2019 is all about collaboration – different people come together to create something new and possibly even learn a thing or two.
We decided to split into several groups each creating games we were interested in making – from card games to side-scrollers. By the end of these two days, we managed to create six unique games that could not be more different.
Coatsink Global Game Jam 2019 Submissions
The Pukes of Hazzard
We all know this feeling: You spend the night out and you’re having a blast but the time always comes when you just want to go home. That is when the fun begins in our first game: You are a drunken party animal who tries to navigate the taxi driver with the help of your vague and slowly vanishing memories. Trouble is sure to follow.
Shovel Killer CD
You are involved in a car accident and don’t know where to go. You decide to seek shelter in the nearest cottage. Only when it’s too late, you find out that you walked into the lair of the infamous Shovel Killer. Be quick with your decisions, each move could be your last!
Pigeon the Pigeon
Funnily enough, this is one of two pigeon games that were created during the game jam. Pigeon the Pigeon is set in World War 1. You are a messenger pigeon trying to deliver messages to your allied forces. Try to avoid the havoc and destruction happening around you. The odds are clearly against you.
House Fillers is our one and only card game. The game is about placing furniture and trying to please your clients in doing so. Your clients favour different shapes of furniture more than others. Your goal is to furnish their homes according to their wishes and trying to avoid shapes and forms they might disapprove of.
The game board consists of 4 squares each representing a room in the house. There is a bedroom, kitchen, living room and bathroom. Each player now gets a specific character card that each has their own set of likes and a single dislike. Then there are furniture cards that you have to use to furnish the flat and room cards that tell you what room you have to furnish. It is a fairly short game – there are only 5 turns and it can be played with up to 8 players. Try to furnish your home in the best way possible and find out what other player’s dislikes might be to outplay them.
A Sequence of Unfortunate Parodies
Unlike our other games that all depict home in a positive way, A Sequence of Unfortunate Parodies does the opposite. Your home is not a comfortable or welcoming place in this game. You can find all sorts of references from horror films or games. One of our programmers Alex describes it as “Gone Home with more physics in it”.
Here is our second pigeon game. In Homing Pigeon you have to “move or be aimed towards with great accuracy”. In contrast to our other games, our game designer Trent and programmer Lukas decided to use the definition of the verb rather than the noun. This led to a completely different interpretation of ‘home’. In Homing Pigeon, you have to avoid all kinds of obstacles – from wind turbines to flying UFOs. There’s even a speed runner mode in the game. By pressing T, you can make the game five times faster. Does that sound like a challenge to you?
We really enjoyed coming together and working on our projects over the weekend. Something we really struggled with compared to previous years was to gather ideas that fit the overall theme. In comparison to previous years where we had themes like wave or transmission, this year’s theme was more specific which meant that we had to put more thought into the games we wanted to create.
What do you think about our games?
We are already counting down the days until our next game jam! If you are interested in playing one (or more) of these games, don’t hesitate to download them and tell us what you think. Tell us on our social media channels or simply join our ever so growing Discord server.
Ray Willmott - Senior Social Media & Community Manager
Ray has worked across a number of globally recognised franchises. He adores a good curry, loves RPGs, and specialises at building friendly and welcoming communities.