August 2015 Berlin Minijam

23 Aug 2015

Yesterday I attended my second gamejam, an eight hour event where teams form to work on small games together around some loose themes, which this time were Black & White, Rockets, and Masks.

I worked with a team of three other programmers, which left me initially doing art, due to my inexperience with Unity. We spent half an hour or so throwing around ideas about interactions between black and white rockets, putting on masks, changing colours, but (thankfully) decided to start small and work on the tech for painting a level.

I worked on creating sprites, or 2D artwork, plus sound effects that never made it into the game. I’d never done either before, which you may be able to tell from my image below.

Tank sprite

Later I worked on the character controller, and enjoyed being able to lean on my more experienced teammates for advice when I got stuck.

We struggled with tech for collaboration - Git and Unity require a little bit of tweaking to work together, and I wish for some kind of Google Docs-like live-synchronized codebase, unwieldy for large projects but useful for gamejams. Still, the final project turned out OK, with about half of the features we’d planned.

The game involves two tanks on a black and white field who fire paint rockets at each other, which spill black and white paint on the landscape. Over the course of a chaotic minute, players try to paint the level as much their own colour as they can. The competitive multiplayer and the short time limit help cover up the lack of depth, I think!

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