17th September 2019
Over September 6-8, I participated in the GameDevHQ September Game Jam. I was in the process of recovering from surgery, and hadn’t been on my PC – let alone done any game development – for the two weeks prior to the jam. That being said, I find game jams to be a great motivation to actually get a game made and out there, as otherwise projects just sit unfinished and unreleased.
Because my health wasn’t the best, I was keen to go with a simple concept, and also stick with making the game in Unity, despite the fact that I’ve been doing a lot of work in Unreal lately. The theme for the jam was Teleport, and the jam started at 11PM Friday local time, meaning that I could check out the theme and then sleep on it, which I actually found incredibly helpful, as it meant that by the time I woke up on Saturday morning I already knew what I wanted to make, whereas normally I’d spend most of Saturday morning trying to come up with a game concept.
I also finished and submitted early with plenty of time to spare, which is a first for me, as I tend to be rather last minute with my submissions. Still, I was adamant that I was going to get a good night’s sleep on Sunday, as opposed to staying up half the night adding additional features, etc. Plus, I originally thought the game jam was 48 hours, but it ended up being 54 hours, so I stuck to the original 48 hours regardless.
My entry is called Test Chambers, and is an isometric puzzle game where your goal is to use teleports to navigate the various chambers, collecting keys to unlock doors and reach the end portal. I’m pretty happy with how it turned out, and I was able to demonstrate a few new programming patterns and techniques that I’ve been learning over the previous few months. My only slight disappointment was that I was unable to create a soundtrack for the game, although there are sound effects.
Currently, I have plans to expand and improve upon the game, adding a soundtrack, extra levels, and perhaps new game mechanics. However, due to my current transition from Unity to Unreal, I’m intending to first rebuild the game in Unreal, and then add to it. So keep a look out for a extended version of Test Chambers, hopefully coming soon!