A weekend of intense game making

Manila Game Jam 2014 512x768On January 24 to 26, the International Game Developers Association – Manila Chapter (IGDA Manila) presents Manila Game Jam 2014 (MGJ2014), the biggest annual game-making event in the country. As part of the worldwide Global Game Jam, students, professional and hobbyist game developers will create games in just 48 hours conforming to a given theme.

MGJ2014 is the 5th game jam organized by IGDA Manila. Last year’s game jam had more than 100 participants forming teams and producing more than 30 games.

This year, IGDA Manila partners with Globe Labs and Developers Connect (DevCon). The jam will be held on Globe Labs Showroom in Telepark Valero, Makati.

We are also proud to announce that two other institutions have taken the initiative to host their own Global Game Jam locations: De La Salle – College of St. Benilde and Central Luzon State University. For attendees that will be unable to attend the jam at Globe Labs, either of the locations are also open to the public and will surely provide a great game jam experience.

For those who are just getting started in making games, a one-day game-making seminar will be conducted on January 18 at Globe Labs Showroom. Talks will be given by previous jam participants, discussing their game-making experience with tips and tricks on how to churn out a game in 48 hours. This seminar is open to all aspiring game developers, and will also serve as an orientation for this year’s participants.

With each game getting better and better each year, we can’t be excited enough to see what the participants will come up with in the next few days.

Cheers and we hope to see everyone at MGJ 2014! For more information, please check out the MGJ website at https://manilagamejam.wordpress.com, and stay tuned to our Facebook group at http://www.facebook.com/groups/igdamanila/ for immediate updates.

Two weeks to go before MGJ 2014! As we gear up and prepare ourselves for the challenge, we have a few reminders for those who are planning to join MGJ 2014 @ Globelabs Jam Site.

To those new to the event, we highly encourage you to read our General FAQ to know more about the event and get most of your questions answered.

Make sure to register to the Global Game Jam Site and the Eventbrite Page.

We need to keep track of the participants as the venue can only hold up to 70 participants. Make sure that you are registered on both pages to qualify as a participant on Globelabs jam site. Please register [here] for the Global Game Jam Account and [here] for our Eventbrite page.

Once the venue is full, you may try going to other sites such as the CSB Jam Site or the Central Luzon Jam Site. You can still join the game jam on your own house/preferred location by simply registering to the Global Game Jam website.

We’re looking for possible shower rooms / bathrooms.

To those who will spend the night on site, please take note that tentatively, there are no available showers/bathrooms for you to freshen up. we are still in the process of looking for a nearby hotel that jammers can use during the event. We’re doing all we can to solve this. We’ll keep you guys posted!

Bring your own workstations/laptops.

Unfortunately, the Globelabs jam site cannot provide workstations. Participants are expected to bring their own laptops/working devices to be used or shared between team members. Make sure to keep close watch of your belongings upon going in an out of the jam area.

Bring reusable utensils!

To lessen plastic cups and disposable eating utensils, we also advise that you bring your own. Your coffee mug will be your best friend. 🙂

 

If you have any other questions, please hit us up in the comments or post them on our Facebook Group Page. See you soon!

The 5th iteration of the most anticipated game development event is finally here! We would like everyone to participate in the IGDA Manila Game Jam 2014 this January 24-26, 2014!

This year, we strike up a partnership with Globe Labs and DevCon. The upcoming jam will be held at Globe Labs Showroom in Valero Telepark, Makati. Here’s a map to the area.

In a  nutshell, a Game Jam is a challenge for you and your team to come up with a game prototype that conforms to a given theme within a constrained time of 48 hours. To keep things fair for everyone, the theme is kept secret until the first day of the event. Participants then pitch their ideas, form teams and start making their games on the spot.

Sounds hard? Don’t worry! We’ve got an orientation seminar to give you a heads up on what to expect, tips and tricks to conquer this challenge! This year, the orientation seminar will be held on the same place at January 18, 2014. You can also read up on other featured games on this site to learn more about the experience making their games and of the event itself.

If you’re interested to join, you can register now by following these instructions!

We’re proud to continue this tradition for five years! Newbies are very much welcome to join, Veteran jammers, welcome back! Invite your friends and spread the word!

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KEYBOL GAMES made waves a few months ago when it bagged the Director’s Choice Award at Indie Prize San Francisco 2013 for Pretentious Game, a funny take on love, loss, and the labels often thrown at contemporary indie platformers. Read on and get to know Bari Silvestre, the man behind it all.

CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT YOU/YOUR TEAM?

I am an indie game developer since 2008. I have worked and collaborated with artists here and abroad to make flash games. I also do solo games most of the time.

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CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT WHERE THE NAME CAME FROM?

Keybol is the tagalog slang for Cable. Back then when I was an OFW in South Korea, my hobby and sideline was to compile all online live streaming Filipino channels and I made keybolchannel.com. After I started learning how to make games, I submitted my first game to a blog using my Google Account as Keybol still and I stuck with it till now.

CAN YOU TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT THE YOUR FIRST GAME?

It’s an obscure one screen room escape game. First time I learned how to code in my entire life. Go look it up, it’s Kowloon’s Room Escape.

HOW MANY GAMES HAVE YOU LAUNCHED?

Probably about 50 now.

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Keybol’s Pretentious Game, Casual Connect San Francisco 2013

STARTING A PROJECT IS, MORE OFTEN THAN NOT, EASIER THAN COMPLETING IT. SO HOW DO YOU GUYS DO IT?

Sometimes I put projects on hold, I don’t want to be bored or feel forced to work on a project. It will show in the game and it will feel uninspired.

ANY ADVICE FOR NEW DEVELOPERS?

Time is the key. Don’t overspend in time when you make games. Do a quick prototype, see if it’s fun then try to finish it as fast as you can. Come up of ways to automate the process. Be sure to check the market for what works and what doesn’t.

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HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH THE CONCEPT FOR ‘PRETENTIOUS GAME’?

Pretentious Game is a Ludum Dare entry. It’s an online global game jam. I made the game to mock another art game which was popular at that time.

HOW LONG DID IT TAKE YOU TO DEVELOP THE GAME?

The jam is actually 48 hours but I had to attend a personal event. When I came back I noticed I only have a few time left before the deadline. It took me 4 hours in all.

WHY DO YOU THINK YOUR GAME IS WORTH PLAYING AND WHO WILL YOU RECOMMEND IT TO?

The game has been viral and it struck many in their heart. It also was featured in Casual Connect Seattle 2012 and San Francisco 2013. I was there this year and it won Director’s Choice and was also nominated in Best in Storytelling.

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DO YOU CONSIDER RELEASING THE GAME ON OTHER PLATFORMS IN THE FUTURE?

I have released games in mobile last year and I am releasing mobile games this year. Pretentious Game mobile is still on hold by the publisher so I made a little app for Magic players like me. Please do check it out: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=air.mtgmagicquiz

USUALLY HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE YOU TO DESIGN A GAME FROM START TO FINISH?

I’ve made games from 4 hours to 2 weeks. As I have said, I don’t spend much time in creating my games. A reason why I can do that is because I have a bunch of engines I can pull out anytime to make any game I want.

CAN YOU TELL US ONE THING ABOUT THE GAME THAT NOBODY KNOWS, WELL, UNTIL NOW?

I made the game on Newgrounds called Bus Hostage by Policeman. Do you remember that incident in Manila?

ARE THERE ANY UPCOMING PROJECTS THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO SHARE WITH US?

Watch out for Pretentious Game and please like the FB page. https://www.facebook.com/pretentiousgame

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And that’s it from Keybol Games and Bari Silvestre! He’s got more games available via Keybol’s website at http://www.keybolgames.com/  See you next time!

If you like to us feature you or someone you know in future Spotlight posts, just email Jay at [jay.gavarra@gmail.com]. 

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This week on Spotlight we are featuring a Pinoy Newgrounds regular, Philip Mark Roxas! He’s done almost a dozen flash games already and he’s n ot stopping anytime soon.  

CAN YOU TELL US A BIT ABOUT YOU?

I’m Philip Mark Roxas, self-taught aspiring indie game developer. I am also a graphic artist. I mostly make flash games during my free time and consider it as my hobby. I wasn’t originally a programmer, I actually started out as a graphic artist. However, I really enjoyed programming when I was studying it.

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WHERE DOES THE NAME ‘TRUE BLUE CREATURE’ COME FROM?

Simple, I was fan big of Sonic the Hedgehog since I was a child and I love cool and adorable creatures like Pokemons and Digimons. That’s why I use “True Blue Creature” as the developer name for my games.

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Philip’s Messed Up

WHAT OTHER GAMES DO YOU OFTEN FIND YOURSELF PLAYING NOWADAYS, JUST FOR FUN?

I find mobile games a lot more enjoyable compared to current generation console games. Mobile games are dynamic and inexpensive. Achievement-driven games can really build up your skills.

WHAT IS THE TOUGHEST ASPECT OF BEING A DEVELOPER OUTSIDE OF CREATING THE GAME ITSELF?

The main problem for me is having a tight schedule. I can be moody as well. I also freak out when I encounter miserable and messy code that can eat up precious hours when you try to understand it.

HOW MANY GAMES HAVE YOU LAUNCHED?

So far, almost 10 games have been published via web distribution and portals. This includes my Global Game Jam Entry.

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Deep Beat and Mini Creature

IF YOU COULD MAKE ONE GAME GENRE DISAPPEAR FOREVER, WHAT WOULD IT BE?

I do miss Platform Adventure Games that focus on instantaneity and exploration. I like games that especially have unique abilities and features like Tomba 2, Ristar, Klonoa, Crash Bandicoot, and Cave Story. I would make these kind of games someday & somehow in my dreams (^_^).

STARTING A PROJECT IS, MORE OFTEN THAN NOT, EASIER THAN COMPLETING IT. SO HOW DID YOU DO IT?

I would recommend exploring the inspirations around you and keep them burning inside you. Most importantly, start by making prototypes that can save you a lot of time by saving you from errors or problems during production.

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Dare Baiting and Home Run Bros.

ANY ADVICE FOR NEW DEVELOPERS?

Don’t mind criticisms that you’re not moving forward. You can improve yourself as long as you keep your desire to learn and advance your craft.

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And that’s it from Philip Mark Roxas! You can visit his Newgrounds profile page and play his games here. See you next time!

If you like to us feature you or someone you know in future Spotlight posts, just email Jay at [jay.gavarra@gmail.com]. 

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This July we are featuring one of the rising stars of the local game industry: Kuyi Mobile! If the name sounds familiar to you, then you probably know their hit game, Streetfood Tycoon and its sequel, Streetfood Tycoon: World Tour available now on App Store and Google Play. We are honored to have them as our first Spotlight developer.

CAN YOU TELL US A BIT ABOUT KUYI MOBILE?

Kuyi Mobile has been pretty much a one-man team since I started about 4 years ago and that’s me.  I’ve been doing everything from design to programming to marketing and even operations.  Last year though, I started forming my own team and hired one more artist and programmer to help me with in-house projects and updates.

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Erick Garayblas of Kuyi Mobile

WHERE DOES THE NAME ‘KUYI’ COME FROM?

Most people think that Kuyi Mobile is a Japanese-owned company but the truth is, “Kuyi” is the name of my pet cat. I just love cats. iOS game development began as a hobby for me and I never imagined it would someday grow into something huge which is why I named it after my pet.  I would’ve named it differently if I only knew–maybe something weirder or geekier. 🙂

WHAT OTHER GAMES DO YOU OFTEN FIND YOURSELF PLAYING NOWADAYS, JUST FOR FUN?

I play a lot of games, mostly mobile. I’m currently hooked on Animal Crossing: New Leaf (add me up if you wanna play!) and I play a few rounds of Magic: The Gathering on my iPad everyday. Part of my job (and routine) is to try new games for iOS and Android everyday so that I can update myself on what’s current out there.

WHAT IS THE TOUGHEST ASPECT OF BEING A DEVELOPER OUTSIDE OF CREATING THE GAME ITSELF?

In my experience, the business side of things is a lot tougher than creating fun games.  It’s a tough competition out there and having a good product is only half the battle if you want to be successful.  Coming up with launch strategies, marketing gimmicks, promotions and partnering with the right people can be more stressful and time consuming.

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CAN YOU TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT THE FIRST GAME YOU DEVELOPED?

My first game (and still my favorite) is a simple card/solitaire game called “Card Drop“.  I call it “solitaire on steroids” because it’s a fast paced solitaire game.  I developed Card Drop for about 4 months to test the waters on iOS app development.  Little did I know that this small game will pave the way for me to create more and even bigger games.  It was featured by Apple upon release and raked in a lot of revenue that I thought I really hit a gold mine! It “encouraged” me to develop another game only to realize that getting featured was a once in a lifetime opportunity and doesn’t happen every time I would release something. 🙂 

WHEN DID YOU START RELEASING GAMES UNDER KUYI MOBILE?

I put up Kuyi Mobile on July 2009 and have done a number of iOS and Android games ever since.

HOW MANY GAMES HAVE YOU LAUNCHED?

I already have 8 titles under Kuyi Mobile but I’ve done several more for “friends” and “partners” when I was starting.  I will be releasing my 9th game on August, if things go as planned. I partnered with Ryan Sumo on this one and it’s been a blast working with him and finally having someone to work with for a change. 🙂

Kuyi Mobile’s hit series, Streetfood Tycoon

Read the rest of this entry »

The Manila Game Jam is over and now is the time to look back and start thanking everyone involved.

Before the lovefest begins I would like to take this opportunity to say how proud I am, and how proud you all should be, of how far the gamejam has come.  We started with one location in the country with about 40 or so participants. This year we had three locations (with one outside Manila, how awesome is that?) and about 300 participants all in.  The game development community has grown tremendously, and I am sure it will pay dividends in the near future.  I know of at least 3 teams from this year’s Gamejam that want to turn their games into commercial products, and I couldn’t be more excited for them.

With every Manila Game Jam there’s also been at least one game that’s caught international attention.  In year 1 it was Crease, in year 2 it was Speck, and last year’s winner Enclosure was featured by Kotaku (the Australian version, but hey, it counts!).  Every Game Jam we’ve held has shown the world that we have a vibrant game development community here, and that they need to pay attention to us.

This is our shared achievement, so you should all take immense pride in it.  But of course this event happened because of the hard work of many individuals and organizations, so I would like to thank them in the following paragraphs.

First I’d like to thank Paul Gadi, our current chapter head, for giving me the privilege of composing this thank you post.  Though secretly I believe that Paul is even more frightened than me of public speaking and writing, so he’s happy I volunteered.  Paul has worked his butt off these past few weeks, and was even doing some real (read:paid) work right after the jam was finished, even though he was probably exhausted.  The rest of the board : Kristian Mitra, Jay Gavarra, Mark Cabrera, Marnielle Estrada, Julius Cebreros, and also Alvin Chan (though he left to pursue other opportunities before the Jam) worked really hard to make the Game Jam happen so feel free to stalk them on Facebook and thank them for all their hard work.

Our partner iAcademy graciously provided the venue and provided snacks and drinks for the participants, and even provided a shower bus to bring participants to the iAcademy building to freshen up.  Their hardworking staff, including Jem, Dorothy, Chris, Kooky, Jean, Leo, Vlad, Fe, and so many others whose names I’ve forgotten worked hard to do PR and to prepare the facilities and to make sure that everything went as smoothly as it could for our jammers.  My only regret is we forgot to use Mondragon’s disco ball.  We would of course like to thank Vanessa L. Tanco and Chiqui Morales, the President and COO of iAcademy respectively, for greenlighting this partnership.

We’d like to thank longtime partners Boomzap Games for supporting the Jam from the very beginning and believing in our commitment to growing the game development community.  Chris Natsuume and Allan Simonsen of Boomzap not only provided us with a generous sponsorship, but they also had Gabby Dizon and Luna Cruz onsite to be a Judge and a Mentor, respectively. We’d also like to extend our gratitude to our community partners as well, DevCon, and C-Cup Challenge. We’d also like to thank all our other sponsors, including Microsoft, Co.Lab, Jollibee, KFC, Chowking, Pao Pao, McDonalds, BinalotRobot With a Smile, Globe,  for helping us make this gamejam possible.

At the same time, we would like to thank the media for spreading the word, especially Magic 89.9, 99.5 RT, Jam 88.3Hero TV, Net25, ANCAlerts, GMA Online, and  Yahoo! Philippines.

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Last but not least we’d like to thank you, the gamejammers, for giving us your time, sweat, blood and tears and once again making some awesome games.  We provided you with the means to make some terrific games and you paid us back a hundredfold with your enthusiasm and grit.  None of this would have been possible without you.  We hope you all had fun, and that we’ll see you all again next year!


Ryan Sumo,
Manila Game Jam 2013 Organizer and previous IGDA-Manila Chapter Head

We would like to announce that we are now holding off registration of participants for iAcademy site.

We had an overwhelming number of registered participants this year that we had reached our cap. As much as we would want to accomodate everyone, the jam site and preparations that we had can only accomodate a certain number of people. To those who would still like to join, we highly recommend other official Game Jam sites such as DLS-CSB and CLSU on Central Luzon.

Thank you for everyone’s enthusiasm to join!

One more day before the intense game-making commences! Before we get started on jamming, we’d like to give you guys last minute reminders to prepare you for the event.

Where will I go?

If you haven’t chosen your jam site yet, be reminded that there are three locations available for you. DLS-CSB, Mondragon House c/o iAcademy and CLSU, in the Science City of Munoz Nueva Ecija. Register at once at your favorable location to secure your slot!

Be on the location early! We would be showing you keynotes, and game related videos as we wait for people to come. It would be a great time for you to meet other people and maybe start forming teams!

What do I need to bring?

We are doing our best to prepare everything for you so you can just get started and focus on making your games. However, we can’t provide you with everything so it would be great if you can bring the following for you and your team:

  • Extra clothes and toiletries for 2 days ( preferably comfortable ones 🙂 )
  • Jacket / warmers to counter the aircon
  • Internet dongles ( in case there are connection issues )
  • Sleeping bag
  • Extra water, food and snacks for you and your team
  • Extension cords / chargers / adapters for your devices.
  • Extra money for emergency

When does the event start?

The event starts at 5pm, but it would be great if you can be there earlier. You can check out the schedule for iAcademy and CSB participants here [link]. There would be an on-site registration so being there earlier avoids the rush.

Anything else?

  • Prepare your tools / machines if you would be bringing them. Although most sites provide you with workstations, these are limited in number and there is no guarantee that you could get one.
  • Make a list of the devices/gadgets that you would want to bring so it would be easier to register them.
  • Read tips / advices online! There are a lot of posts, presentations and resources that gives you a heads up on what to expect.

That’s it! If you have any more concerns, you can check out the FAQ page or comment on this post below and we will try to address them.

We can’t wait to see what you guys will come up with this weekend. Let’s make this the best game jam ever! See you tomorrow!

If you are already familiar with game development, then taking the challenge a little further by doing a jam on your own might be of interest to you. A few of last year’s participants prefer the road not taken and face the Game Jam challenge solo. This can bring about different results as you can simply be self-managed, but on the downside, your time would be divided on focusing on art, design and code. Do you have what it takes?

Meet one of our veteran participants, Roan Contreras as he shares with us the experience of creating a game on his own!

Tell us something about yourselves and your team.

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My name is Roan Contreras and my team is just myself as Toadie (my alias on gaming). I went solo not because I don’t really want to have a team, but because I want to do things on my own since I want to be independent on game development as a college student. I have a website which I haven’t updated for months and months (and it’s really incomplete) and if you guys want to check out: http://roancontreras.zxq.net .

Can you explain your game to us?

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My game is Cursed Steps; it’s a short platform game.  What you’ll do in this game is to escape the snake’s cursed vision. This game for me states that, “Every step is a curse…”.

Try the game: http://www.mediafire.com/?81yacsz5eu9spj6

What were the challenges that you faced when making your game?

One challenge I faced on making this game is when the theme was flashed from the projector, which was a picture of a snake eating its tail in circular (for short it’s an Ouroboros). Themes always give me difficulty on how I exhibit the game when it comes to everything I do. Working solo also gave me challenge since I solely manage my own time on working the game.

What are the positive effects that the jam had brought to you?

A positive effect that gave me during the game jam is when I learned to be minimal on the game’s content. Not all games really need to be rich in features, even short and simple ones can do good for game jams. Another positive effect during the game jam is the environment of the venue, I’ve met a lot of new friends and somewhat bond with them during the development of the game since it’s fun socializing with other jammers around (I could say somewhat multitasking, yet no distractions happened during the work of the game…).

Manila Game Jam 2013 is just a couple of months away. What tips can you give to the future participants of the game jam?

For the future participants of the Manila Game Jam 2013, it’s okay to work a game as a one man team but I’m not just saying work in solo right away; there are also risks of working in solo mostly managing the time you work for your game and your  own limitations/skills.  So if you’re really prepared to give yourself a time and taking the risks to work on one game by yourself then go for it. Don’t be overconfident on the event, as I encountered since manila game jam 2012, because it can ruin your momentum until the part when one leads to everything fall apart from working the game then you’ll go back from the start (yet time keeps running). And It doesn’t matter how old you are if you want to participate, the important is if you really want to make a game then let’s JAM!  … Oh yeah, be sociable and friendly too because game jam is not just games, it’s also friends that rocks our world so hard to make the games we make possible (Am I kidding? But as long as you’re not shy at first… I’m not kidding…).


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There you have it! You can also catch Roan on tomorrow’s Game Jam Orientation Seminar on DLS-CSB as he tackles the ins and outs of designing games suitable for a Game Jam. Attend the seminar at 1pm on the Auditorium at DLS-CSB and at Mondragon House along Buendia c/o iAcademy!

This would be the last of the Game Features that we will have that showcases the entries from last year. We can’t wait for the games you will make on MGJ2013! Who knows, you and your team might be the next ones to be featured :). MGJ is exacly one week away! See you there!

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