Thursday 5 July 2012

Live Jam - Checklist!

I've had a few questions about specific requirements for the Maker Faire gamejam, so here's a rundown of info in handy checklist format. The original post is here, and you can find out more info on the Maker Faire itself here.

In short: we have space for a load of developers at the event itself, and we're also collecting games to play in advance, so if you can't make it your game will still be played!

Game Specifics
  • Your game should run full-screen at 1024 x 768, or as close as you can get
  • Any language/engine/technology is fine, as long as it'll run on a reasonably decent PC
  • The entire game must be operable using the 1-6 keys on a keyboard, including the menus
  • Ideally, the game shouldn't require manually restarting: when it's Game Over the players should be able to start a new game themselves using the buttons
  • There should be an indication of how the giant buttons need to be laid out, there's no guarantee that the person manning the screen will know what to do with your game!
  • Your game can use sound, but don't rely on it: we don't know how loud the environment will be
  • There's no theme or anything, the sky is the limit, but....
  •'s a family event, so keep it clean!
  • Feel free to put your name and URL/details on the game somewhere
  • Most importantly: everyone, regardless of skill level, is encouraged to submit a game. Whether it's your first ever videogame or your're an old hand, we will do our best to play every single game we receive. No game is too small for our giant controller!
The buttons will also be colour-coded, in case you want to make elements coloured to match the buttons:

For game jammers submitting a game in advance:
  • Email your finished game to
  • Include a clear description of any dependencies your game has (AIR, XNA, and so on)
  • Having a nice clearly-marked executable will be advantageous!
  • If you want to update your game after submission, email us updates at any time.

For jammers who would like to attend on the day and make games live:
  • If you're sure you're coming, drop us an email or tweet us so we can save you a spot
  • We'll have table space, power, and WiFi
  • You'll need to bring your own laptop, and remember if you're developing on a none-PC platform you'll still need to make sure your game will play on our setup
  • Be prepared to have Maker Faire attendees ask you questions about what you're up to: this isn't a good event for the antisocial, but that's half the fun!

I've never made a game before, can I take part?
Of course: software like Scratch or Game Maker will let you get stuck right into designing your game without writing any code. If you're feeling a little braver, there are lots of beginner-friendly programming environments to choose from: Flash is easy to use, and is very well documented for all things gamedev. Unity is also free and is very powerful, and will let you get up and running pretty quickly. And of course, you don't need to go it alone: beginners are welcome on the day too! If you have a great game idea, why not bring it along and see if we can help make it happen.

Did we miss anything? Drop us an email: or tweet us!

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