Game Jams: Preparing for the best

With the 2014 Global Game Jam fast approaching I have been asked a few times by new participants what they should take with them, and how they should prepare. Wikipedia defines a game jam as “a gathering of game developers for the purpose of planning, designing, and creating one or more games within a short span of time“, they are a wonderful experience for anyone interested in game development. They are often suited to any level of experience, as participants can form themselves into teams with total strangers of compatible skill-sets. Often people will volunteer to take a role that they know little about, experiencing a new side of the development process or polishing rarely used skills.

The Global Game Jam is a yearly event, taking place simultaneously around the world with a single theme given out to all participants. The event itself lasts for 48 hours, a very long time to be awake and developing, but a very short time to put a project together with a team of people you may have never met before! This makes it quite an exciting challenge that deserves at least a little preparation and planning! To that end I’m going to give you a few ideas and tips from my own experience. Ultimately a game jam is about being yourself, creating something, and having fun. There is no right and wrong, and it’s not a competition! Your experiences will vary, and my suggestions are only a rough guide. (Please note that none of the links in this post are affiliate links!)

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Weaving Wolfram Rule 90

 

I’ve been interested for a while in cellular automata, pattern generating mathematical formulae such as Rule 90

There are many of these rules, each generating different behaviour. Each rule generates the content of cells in a column based on the cells in the preceding column, and are each based upon given starting conditions. 

These are the rules for Rule 90:

current pattern

111

110

101

100

011

010

001

000

new state for center cell

0

1

0

1

1

0

1

0

 

Craft Night – Wednesday 21st August

The August Craft Open night is this Wednesday (21st August) from 7:30pm. Come along [directions] if you have craft projects to work on/discuss or your just curious. The June craft night saw Madiline from Botanica Mathematica dropping by with some wonderful knitted/crocheted goodies, made by herself and others. These included several binary trees and other highly[…]

Workshop: Candle Making Basics

Following on from the previous Candle Making workshops, we are happy to announce the 3rd running of the workshop. Covering the basics of candle making participants should leave with enough knowledge to try some candle-making of their own. No previous experience is required just come along and have fun. Areas covered will include: Different types[…]