Monthly Archives

January 2012

All You Ever Wanted To Know About Jam (But Were Afraid To Ask)

By | Events, Local News | No Comments

This is what happens to the human body when deprived of Jam. Frightening!

With the Global Game Jam rapidly approaching (this Friday, people!) I thought that I would share a couple things that you might find useful. First up is this slick trailer for the event itself:


Next we have a couple articles with useful tips from independent game studio Convict Interactive all the way from Wollongong, Australia:

Tips for a game jam pt 1 – Before you arrive.

Tips for a game jam pt 2 – The first day

And check out this game for an example of what cool stuff can come out of Game Jams: Justin Smith’s Realistic Summer Sports Simulator. It was initially developed during OrcaJam 2011 right here in Victoria not 4 months ago.

If you haven’t already, you can register at the official Victoria site page of the Global Game Jam website. And sign up on the Global Game Jam 2012 / UVic GameDev presents… Minecraft! Facebook event page for up to the minute news.

See you all there!

Are Video Games Art? The Smithsonian Thinks So.

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Sure video games are pretty, but they aren't no "Dude, Where's My Car?"

There was a bit of a kerfuffle a short while ago when Roger Ebert, film critic for the Chicago Sun-Times declared that video games can never be art. Now, Roger Ebert makes an intelligent and well-thought out argument to support his views, but ultimately arguing whether or not something is art is a futile endeavour. The art world gave up on the idea ages ago. In light of the works of Marcel Duchamp and Andy Warhol and their kin, everyone has pretty much agreed that if an artist declares their work to be art, then so be it. A urinal installed in a gallery? Sure. A stack of Brillo boxes? Okay. Video games? Why not?

With this premise in mind,  a cool new exhibition opens this Spring at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, DC. Running from March 16th – September 30, The Art of Video Games examines video games as an artistic medium through it’s forty year history. 80 games spanning the entire history of video games will be featured and were chosen with the help of the public from a list of hundreds. The exhibition includes all sorts of fun events including talks with industry legends Ken Levine and Nolan Bushnell, and performances by ComputeHer, 8 Bit Weapon, Triforce Quartet, and University of Maryland’s Gamer Symphony Orchestra. And the best thing? It’s travelling to the EMP Museum in Seattle next spring, so we’ll be able to check it out here from the comfort of the West-coast.

This Game Jam Just Got Global

By | Events, General, Local News | No Comments

It's a choose your own adventure where every choice is a winner!

You may recall some recent posts here extolling the virtues of Game Jams. Perhaps you heard about Orca Jam 2011 happening here in Victoria but it was too late – you’d already signed up your cat for Yoga classes and couldn’t make it out. Now here’s your chance to redeem yourself. Sign up for the Global Game Jam and participate in a worldwide jamtastic phenomena from right here in cozy little Victoria!

Three points of interest from the official site:

  • The Global Game Jam (GGJ) is the world’s largest game jam event, so if you were waiting for the biggest wait no longer.
  • GGJ brings together thousands of game enthusiasts participating through many local jams around the world which makes for excellent networking opportunities.
  • GGJ is an official project of the International Game Developers Association (IGDA) which means that I am contractually obligated to be enthusiastic about it.

Now that you’re stoked to participate, you should head over to the local jam site page (this year it’s being held at UVic) and register. More information will be released as the time gets closer, so keep an eye out here for updates. And remember, if you don’t want to participate in the GGJ, you can always show up for the Minecraft LAN Party instead. Or you could remain home, eat corn chips, and dream of what might have been.