Next MJT sketch jam event happens Aug 25. Jam with us on Discord!

Read about all our previous game jams, or by event: GGJ19, GGJ18, GGJ17, GGJ16, MJT15, GGJ15, GGJ14

The GGJ20 post jam writeup

Whew! That concludes our seventh Global Game Jam event as organizers. Thanks and thanks again to our sponsor Tarsier Studios for sponsoring us and to Game Habitat for the hosting of the event!

Visit https://globalgamejam.org/2020/jam-sites/malmojamstoo to see the games submitted this year.
The next GGJ happens 29–31 January 2021!

You can jump straight to the statistics and awards below.

Preparations and our sponsor

We were out really early with an approved venue and the announcement of the event on Facebook. We got approved on the 18th October, and the Facebook event went out shortly after. Was able to announce through Game Habitat’s (and our own) Discord on the 12th of November…which is also earlier than our usual. Tarsier Studios were superheros to our food budget and came on-board early January! Woo!

Did two runs for the poster, this happens to be on the second run at Orkanen during January.

I held off with the posters until about early December though. It was mostly because it took about a month to get it drawn due to a work situation that I had to deal with. December was especially hard to get any further preparations done because of that same reason. I did visit a class in Malmö University and gave them feedback on their game projects for about 3 hours. I believe quite a few of the students, even if their course ended, were participants (I should ask about where participants heard about us from in the registration form in future to get a better idea…).

We were also really grateful that Tarsier Studios could support us (again!) for this run. We got in contact with them early January. Embracer Group recently acquired Tarsier Studios and it was announced two weeks prior, but as luck would have it, they allocated budget for this jam from last year. Which suddenly covered any food budget we needed. Both Game Habitat and Tarsier were super supportive and it really helped make the event possible for us to plan without accommodation worries.

The game jam event

This year we only had me as the site organizer present for the planning and the event. Thankfully Eliana from Game Habitat was in touch and made sure I kept on track at times. We also got two Game Habitat volunteers to join in on the jam which, by presence alone, assured me that things will go smoothly with the venue. In particular, Lewis helped with ordering for our pizza night and Yeliz helped out a lot with the cleaning. Martin helped manage the reception during my sleepy hours and Jaime with his advice and management were both invaluable in keeping my sanity in check overall. My partner Becky was also present for a lot of the daytime jam to keep me cool and collected. I may still have needed a week to recoup properly but without a lot of this support I would have supremely struggled with getting such a smooth experience during the jam. So if you happen to be reading this, thank you!

I uhh…probably didn’t need the extra bag or two. Or three.

On a sidenote, I had my hands and bags full and maybe brought a bit too much. I did not need to bring it all on the day in any case, and could have sent it in a day or two in advance next time. It would have also helped if I had a set itinerary as I was running back-and-forth in the apartment trying to bring all I could. Notable things I will not forget for next time include wet wipes, and a luggage case to avoid having so many little things to carry. Although having carabiners helped me out in “linking” some of it together making it somewhat more manageable.

This year we had no tickets or indication of being a participant, so our reception work suffered some overhead and involved having to remember the faces of those we checked in. As we usually do we checked people in through the Google Form responses on Google Sheets. Unfortunately it’s not very efficient when I manually verify all registrations against them being on Discord, if they have a GGJ profile and if it’s part of our jam site and eventually if they made a game submission. It took me the rest of Friday evening and about 3 hours Saturday morning to verify most of it. At the spur of the moment I also created a group formation Google Form which helped a bit with solidifying check-ins. It was also a way to prevent any weird behaviors like check-ins made without any intentions of staying. We will need tickets or similar in future though, mostly as a security measure for the reception. I was thinking of lanyards for volunteers and separate ones for those who do not wish to be photographed as well, so that they are easily spotted.

When it came to reception duty I mostly got help from both Becky and Martin for whenever I could not answer the door. Though I feel like we should simply close the reception and have set hours when participants can freely come in. Then if they truly need to be let in they will have to get the volunteers or myself notified before they leave and to open up for them later, either through Discord or through their teammates if not on Discord. For the hours I think the earliest we got people in was about 8:00 in the morning until about 11:00, then a slight stream came in later on in the afternoons. The latest could might as well be set to midnight or 1:00 on Friday and Saturday to allow for sleep.

Game profile pages and management

As there was a change in how GGJ handles game profile creations, we had to wait until Saturday morning for groups to start creating them. This wasn’t really an issue, as I almost literally sped through our practical presentations and conveniently glossed over that we want groups to create game profiles as soon as they form groups. I was super-nervous doing it alone and really did not get a chance to rehearse it well enough. It was received pretty well for the amount of information they had to absorb right before a 25min keynote and theme reveal though. In future I think I would like to place a lot of it on the website, or a portal, or some kind of quickstart guide we somehow give out digitally and can remind participants to look at on Discord.

One thing I would like as a GGJ Site Organizer though, is the ability to manage game profile pages. Sometimes no matter how many times you state that a group should, for example, upload their source to the GGJ website—the jam event is a messy experience already to begin with and some groups may not always be on top of the reminders and such. A lot of participants want to enjoy and have fun. Since the presentations and Discord announcements are a lot of information to take in and process at times, I do not fault a couple of groups for being inattentive to certain details.

Submissions went smoothly overall though, seeing 20 games this year with one group doing two games and two participants floating between two other groups.

Food

Imagine, we ate and drank all this up over the weekend.

About half of the food budget was dedicated to bread and wraps with toppings, along with the drinks. They lasted until Sunday because of the pizza we had, so the amount ordered was enough. We experienced someone taking a package of wraps unfortunately, so I believe during Sunday afternoon we need to be wary and portion out the rest of the food to avoid that behavior. Self-made wraps was a great thing to make during the mornings and throughout the day, and I believe we should keep it so in future.

Now the pizza. We ordered a lot. And this run will probably be the only run where we allowed a lot of freedom, as we allowed participants to order what they would like from Dominos. We found this immediately became an issue as it “ate” the rest of our budget rapidly. Thankfully we were able to manage, as we had some leftover budget from last GGJ to cover the extra cost. I think most people were happy. There was an order or two to get a large sized pizza, and we had to disappoint them as we’ll blow the budget on just that. One thing we didn’t think through was how small the gluten-free pizzas were. Dominos simply didn’t have medium sized gluten-free pizzas available to order. We should (next time) just double those orders as they were unacceptably small. On a funnier note, the pizza delivery’s car was full and was full with only our orders.

Next time we will just order Margherita, gluten-free and any no cheese pizzas by request and then either ask everyone to bring their own premade toppings from home or to be happy with free pizza. We applied a discount from Dominos but otherwise they request that we contact them much earlier beforehand to sort out a 20% discount on single orders, which is not really what we were going for in a food sponsor. In total I believe we had an order of about 40 pizzas…we’re not sure who shared halves.

Events in the event

“Hej från Malmö Sverige, WOOOO!”

We got the Hello video shot on Saturday, right before pizza. Since we have it at the same venue, a similar shot was used where we went up the stairs and shot below. We got coordinated with a “hej från Malmö Sverige”, a clap and a cheer by a countdown of my fingers. And this time we made sure the shot wasn’t cut too early as in previous years. Also new was the #media channel for our volunteers to upload photos to, which worked out pretty nicely as it was the jam team and the volunteers that were tasked with taking photos.

We did not get to do the mini-tournament event thing this round, as I forgot to bring enough batteries and there’s the issue of brackets/matchup for the participants. A silly prize or certificate wasn’t thought through either but wasn’t as important. As we planned pizza time over the same time frame it simply took over what was planned as the tournament. Reflecting back, it would be nice to have something that automates the matchup on-the-fly and that we have the tournament a little bit earlier.

Some other final thoughts

We did not manage sleeping as we would have liked. It apparently was very Swedish and some felt like they were intruding into the sleeping areas. During the first night we were also notified that the women’s sleeping area was larger than the general sleeping area. We later switched the rooms around though there weren’t issues to begin with because of how Swedish everyone slept.

If I organize next year again it would be nice to also set up regular runs around the bathrooms and trash for regular checks and eventual cleanup. The reception was only notified twice the whole run for these things and it was not easy keeping track of usage without purposefully checking at intervals.

The game show had a small amendment which also helped jammers clean up a little bit beforehand. We set it up in a large U format so that people may mingle in the middle of the room and visit the outer edges to play the games. I think we should continue with this as it clears up most of the mess and it formalizes the game show part as well.

Our contact at Malmö University was very willing to collaborate with us before the jam event, though at such short notice it was hard to fix any workshop days or anything else in general. So in preparation for next year we should look into some kind of collaboration where we both can benefit in terms of knowledge sharing and more engagement from potential participants. It should happen many months in advance.

Well, it went alright actually!

Our Discord server has seen a good engagement in presence. We’ll try to also encourage more chatter and activities in the coming months, as long as we can develop a system which can manage these activities better. A lot of it ties to automating a lot of the formalities for such activities, so there’s something to look forward to if one sticks around on the server. We noted that people at the very least enjoyed the giveaways (16 including 1 physical tabletop and 30 keys from a generous jammer), and the pizza and group formation forms were also part of coordinating activities through the server as it’s our main line of communication during the event.

Anyways, enough babbling from me and on to more useful information!

GGJ21 is scheduled for the 29th of January (to the 31st). I look forward to planning and organizing it again at least once more 😀

Here are your games

Below you can find the groups, games and our award titles below.

The only one I could not play again was 2020, because of a lack of Buzz controllers, but I hope my award title is suitable based on what I saw at the game show

Group 18 was awarded “Turn THATS and COOL on, then EXECUTE.” for 20 Seconds to Impact – Christian V., Henrik L., Joschka, Mattias L., Stefan J., Tristan L.
Basket tree was awarded “We’re all in it together, all 20 of us” for 2020 – Andreas S., Benjamin M., Emil L., Harald W., Kristoffer F.
Langoljärerna was awarded “Viscera Visits 2D” for After Credits – André L., Anton L., Arvid O., Daniel L., Magnus N.
PlanetaRypear was awarded “It’s time for pen and breakfast” for Bad Game – Aron T., Martin A., Samantha B.
Lizard Boomers was awarded “Blobamari Damacy pt. 2” for Blobstar – David L., Fernando V., Lewis W., Miriam P., Yeliz S.
Dracula Buttheads was awarded “Unpleased Vlad was amused though” for Captain Dracula – Conny N., Dominic N., Mikkel C., Nina S.
Group 15 was awarded “My basket tastes great!” for Earth’s old timid grace – Gabriel J., Thiago A.
Group 16 was awarded “This is why we can’t have mice things” for Fast and Furry (not a japonese fantasy game) – Patrice P., Petro H.
The Hunkerhives was awarded “Pin the tail Hardcore Anime Edition” for Hunkerhive – Daniel S., Elin H., Fer K., Joseph C., Katja F., Maximilian M., Teodor Z.
Kind regards, was awarded “Here’s my certificase and a typo” for I’ve Attached My CV And Cover Letter – Jaime M.
Group 17 was awarded “the key to a mended heart” for love is the key – Sam S.
Team Grynte was awarded “I’m a little dizzy… :D” for Repair Drone – Eric T.
Tonksten was awarded “tanks it made me tink” for retinker – Torsten H.
The Lizard Factory was awarded “Maybe the controller did help” for Socket Up – Daniel T., Jill P., Jonas H., Nils M.
Group 19 was awarded “Oh yeahhhhhh” for T-Minus Santa – Christian V., Domenico F., Fabian L., Henrik L., Rasmus J.
Slashasarna was awarded “From trash can’t to trash can” for Trash Cat – Felix W., Otto K.
TurtleDuck was awarded “That’s MY hammer!” for UFO Repair! – Fredrik S., Hugo H., Jonas E., Oliver Ö.
PinkMoose was awarded “Whoopsy fires everywhere” for Unit 235 – Nuclear Repair Force – Karin T., Magnus A., Robert T.
PlanetaRypear was awarded “It’s alive!” for Vasilly – Aron T., Emilia L., Gustav J., Martin A., Samantha B.
Brackeys Fan Club was awarded “One robot’s trash is another’s leg” for What The Scrap – Adrian C., Alexander F., Jack S., John H., Kristian T., Simon T.

Recognition also goes to:
SustainGame – Melanie K., Melissa B.

Global Game Jam statistics

YEARSSITESCOUNTRIESPARTICIPANTSGAMES
202093411848754
2019860113470069010
2018803108428008606
201770195364017263
201663293361646866
201551878288005438
201448872231894292
201331963167053248
201224247106842209
20111694465001500+
2010138394300900
200953231650370

Our own statistics

Amount of games made each year

Participation breakdown

From the jammers, here is the breakdown of how often they go to game jams each year

A breakdown of the same data between events

Facebook Events stats

Facebook makes it difficult to compare their numbers to actual signups.
So note these values more like estimates

All the action shots for this event can be found below! Thanks for reading our writeup 😀