GMC Jam Discussion GMC Jam 31 / XXXI / Discussion

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HayManMarc

Member
Wait a minute... Didn't I read somewhere that anyone using GameMaker could partake in the jam (whether they're a hard-core, professional game developer or a 2-month newbie or a spare-time hobbyist) and that the theme was optional?

I always considered the GMC Jam to be more about fun and community, giving and getting feedback, resulting in growth as a programmer and designer. Most importantly, it was about having a good time programming and designing with GameMaker. If the Jam becomes nothing but a set of overly strict rules dictated by dour demeanors, you might as well go get a job rather than join the jam. At least you'd be getting paid for your misery.

Rating a game lower for not following the theme is one thing (and perfectly fine, it's what I do), but scolding the entire group like a father feeling shame over his slightly absent-minded children is quite another, and quite frankly, I find it a bit concerning.
 

Toque

Member
Wait a minute... Didn't I read somewhere that anyone using GameMaker could partake in the jam (whether they're a hard-core, professional game developer or a 2-month newbie or a spare-time hobbyist) and that the theme was optional?

I always considered the GMC Jam to be more about fun and community, giving and getting feedback, resulting in growth as a programmer and designer. Most importantly, it was about having a good time programming and designing with GameMaker. If the Jam becomes nothing but a set of overly strict rules dictated by dour demeanors, you might as well go get a job rather than join the jam. At least you'd be getting paid for your misery.

Rating a game lower for not following the theme is one thing (and perfectly fine, it's what I do), but scolding the entire group like a father feeling shame over his slightly absent-minded children is quite another, and quite frankly, I find it a bit concerning.

Yes. Keep it fun. Open to all. Themes are optional. Respect all entries.
 

Smiechu

Member
I see the themes as a safety measure. Game which is not following the theme and is "to good" could be probably prepared earlier and simply taken out of the drawer.

The main part of the fun is to see what other peaople are capable of doing with given themes. Where the creativity can lead them?
The theme is optional but it's a big (bigest) part of the jam idea itself. The problem with this jam was that one of the themes was so broad that any game could be pinned up to it and people overused this.

I also see that "fun" has different meaning for some peaple. For some "fun" means "I can do what I want, screw you all" and for other "I try follow the rules, prove my limits and possibilites and see where my creativity can lead me".
 

Relic

Member
I also see that "fun" has different meaning for some peaple. For some "fun" means "I can do what I want, screw you all" and for other "I try follow the rules, prove my limits and possibilites and see where my creativity can lead me".
That’s true. A game like Minecraft (apart from a generation gap) holds little interest for me because there is no aim, no final destination. “But you can do what you like!?” just leaves me thinking, “I’d like to do nothing then”. I’m very goal orientated and like challenge with clear constraints.

But does the “other” type of fun where rules are for chumps and my creativity/passion is all I care about need a Jam to do their thing? Maybe if they still want feedback I suppose.
 

GameDevDan

The Jam Host
Moderator
GMC Elder
Thanks for the vote @Micah_DS - but more importantly thanks for the video review! It was really fun to watch. It was interesting to see how luck (or lack of it in some cases) affected your playthrough. Those Cyan bugs certainly caused people a lot of problems, and if I improve the game at all that'll be the first thing I change :p

The boss also could have done with a health gauge or something, but I'd kinda locked myself into a limited screen-space situation. He originally had even more health and I recognised that once you learned the pattern it got a bit stale so I reduced it. I reckon I should have perhaps added a different mechanic once he was down to half health or something, so it still felt like a tough final boss fight but didn't feel too repetitive. Great feedback which I'll keep in mind for next time!
 
Oh I forgot @Micah_DS that you mentioned experiencing some lag in my game. Are you just talking about the slowdown when somebody gets hit? Because that was intentional. Happens when blocking attacks too and is most noticable when the blobs launch through you when you are blocking(since that has a long hit box).
Also, I used Dragonbones to animate which is like Spine but without the GM support so it's exported frames(soooooo many frames).
 

Alice

Toolmaker of Bucuresti
Forum Staff
Moderator
Now that I think about it, the problem with the theme isn't because someone didn't care about the theme at all - that wouldn't have been so bad.

It's that most Jam entries this time were overshadowed by OVERCOME ALL ODDS theme in a way. It's so broad that one will often end up making a matching game while not even attempting to do so. It's got to the point where an entry intended to match some other theme (especially ADAPTATION) will not be immediately recognised as such, because it has overcoming some odds in some form. As far as I can tell, this happened to Au Début Ça Va - it was meant to be ADAPTATION with all these changing movement schemes, but ended up mistaken for OVERCOME ALL ODDS because of various obstacles and enemies trying to take the player down.

Also, I guess the reason why various reviewers (myself included) weren't quite satisfied with OVERCOME ALL ODDS isn't because people weren't following the theme, but rather because the theme was pretty easy to use in a way that didn't spark creativity. Of course, there were some good uses, too, but the majority boiled down to generic "here are obstacles fite them".
5 people of 25 not using theme at all is one thing, as long as remaining 20 at least show some effort at making the game theme-specific. 15 people of 25 using a theme in a dull way that could apply to a majority of completely unrelated games is quite disappointing and makes one question the point of the theme. And then there's that overshadowing, when it's easy for reviewer to mistake the intended theme altogether.

(an additional factor for me is that a few people seem to have made their entry overly difficult to make even larger odds to overcome; I've found that more exhausting than entertaining)

Hopefully for the next Jam we will have a more inspiring set of themes (I speak of a set as a whole, because two challenging themes are of no use if the third comes by effortlessly) and, consequently, have more memorable entries.
 

Relic

Member
While a Jam winner has the pleasure of choosing a theme, perhaps a little guidance from Jam host(s)? We have the privelage of hindsight now. I don’t think I looked at “overcome all odds” as “every game” at the start of the Jam - just as something that did not spark any unique ideas in me. I’m also sure the member who chose the theme did not intend it to be so generic either- probably had one of the better themed entries in mind.

But if the question is asked, “could this be loosely tied to most games?” And the answer is “yes”, perhaps host and previous winner could discuss?
 

Micah_DS

Member
Oh I forgot @Micah_DS that you mentioned experiencing some lag in my game. Are you just talking about the slowdown when somebody gets hit? Because that was intentional. Happens when blocking attacks too and is most noticable when the blobs launch through you when you are blocking(since that has a long hit box).
Also, I used Dragonbones to animate which is like Spine but without the GM support so it's exported frames(soooooo many frames).
Oooohh, yeah, just watched some of the video again and realized it was that. As I was playing, I somehow missed that it was a sort of hit freezing effect for emphasizing the impact. I'm not sure if that's just me, or maybe you could've done something a bit better? I have noticed that in other games that use the hit freeze effect, they have big flashy hits, like in BotW (first one that came to mind). Also, maybe your freezes are too smooth, so it just feels like it had some lag issue? I've only noticed games doing a very quick hard freeze. That's all I got. In any case, even though I thought it was lag, it didn't feel intrusive or bad like lag usually does, so now I know why, lol.
 
Yeah it was my first time attempting to do something like that and I probably did it in the worst way possible, but without it it just felt too flat. For a day I had the screen flash as well, but that felt like too much at the time.
 

FrostyCat

Member
So I have written and video reviews in progress. They will be done probably just before the deadline tomorrow...

I have 10 games left to do, which won't be a problem to play them (I have many hours), but the editing and uploading of video reviews will take longer than that. If I can't get the videos done before the voting ends tomorrow I will post the written reviews and final rankings/awards and then update the next day (or that night) with all the videos.
 
@Misty Theme was mostly Overcome all Odds. There are literal odds in the game, it couldn't have been more obvious. To a lesser extent you could also argue that Adaptation was used in the sense that with the random selection of enemies and enemy numbers, you have to adapt to the situation, but I know that's a stretch.
I feel like I maybe deserve a little more points for sound. There weren't many sound effects, so that part of the criticism is fair, but there is music, three tracks for each section of the game even, three tracks I created from scratch so I figured that should be worth something...
Did you get actual lag, or are you talking about the hit slowdown? My art is a bit higher resolution and there are a *lot* of animation frames. I tried to optimise as much as I could and I kept the texture swaps down quite low.
 

Misty

Member
HayManMarc said:
Holy cow! Mouse aiming movement was so sensitive it almost gave me vertigo. Level 'easy' was not easy. It was a massive onslaught from a huge herd of zombies. Sure, the game is a 3D FPS, but “3D FPS” doesn't magically make a game good. Lighting was too dark also, but I think the camera movement was what really killed the experience for me. Sorry. Better luck next time.
Review doesn't count, since you can just go into Windows control panel and change mouse sensitivity...

@Misty Theme was mostly Overcome all Odds. There are literal odds in the game, it couldn't have been more obvious. To a lesser extent you could also argue that Adaptation was used in the sense that with the random selection of enemies and enemy numbers, you have to adapt to the situation, but I know that's a stretch.
I feel like I maybe deserve a little more points for sound. There weren't many sound effects, so that part of the criticism is fair, but there is music, three tracks for each section of the game even, three tracks I created from scratch so I figured that should be worth something...
Did you get actual lag, or are you talking about the hit slowdown? My art is a bit higher resolution and there are a *lot* of animation frames. I tried to optimise as much as I could and I kept the texture swaps down quite low.
Rolling the dice doesn't count as overcome all odds...I guess I will give you one extra point since at least it has the word odds in it.

The sound was ok, but boring.

I've created music from scratch too, doesn't mean it's ever been used in a jam. I got my music as copyright free audio by the way, no attribution CC or whatever it's called. The gun wasn't from counterstrike, but was a copyright free model.

The gameplay just seemed sluggish. I will run FRAPS and see what the actual framerate is.

Yeah so I opened FRAPS, the game is 60 fps but looks visually laggy. However, when someone is punched the framerate drops to 30, as some kind of slow mo effect. Overall the game just seems laggy and sluggish.
 
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NAL

ʕ ᓀ ᴥ ᓂ ʔ
GMC Elder
There will be a few hours' leeway on voting closing, I'll do it towards the start of tomorrow UK time and hopefully have the results calculated by the end of the week. Please make sure you have your votes in your post ready as soon as possible, and preferrably readable in the dark GMC theme!
 

Ralucipe

Member
GMCJam Champ
Review doesn't count, since you can just go into Windows control panel and change mouse sensitivity..
Is this sarcasm? I sure hope so, because expecting reviewers to make changes to their operating system settings in order to enjoy your game is a bit ridiculous.

Rolling the dice doesn't count as overcome all odds...I guess I will give you one extra point since at least it has the word odds in it.
I have to agree with @Siolfor the Jackal here - there's a pretty obvious theme connection in Gambrawl. The game actually creates odds of you winning a fight, and you have to bet on those odds.
 

Relic

Member
@The M thanks for the feedback in your reviews. In regards to lock and key, the changes to temp and pH are predictable, not random- this is not explained in the tutorial. (had to see the pattern or get lucky with a tip on the high scores screen at end of the level). Also, there are ways to “do better”. Knowing the pattern of changes allows you to minimise the time spent adjusting those changes. Also temperature has a bigger effect that just needing to be within a good range. High temps decrease time required to break the substrates. So keeping temp high, but within acceptable ranges is a good strat. Again, this wasn’t in core tutorial, just as a hint on a level screen.

Not sure about the balance between presenting every nuance of the game and leaving players to learn and improve on their own/find tactics that suit them- I guess for a Jam very few people will spend more than a single run through, if that, to learn. I certainly didn’t.
 

Misty

Member
Is this sarcasm? I sure hope so, because expecting reviewers to make changes to their operating system settings in order to enjoy your game is a bit ridiculous.


I have to agree with @Siolfor the Jackal here - there's a pretty obvious theme connection in Gambrawl. The game actually creates odds of you winning a fight, and you have to bet on those odds.
My partner bailed on me then came back the last day and got sick, so I had to do everything on my own in one day. Cut me some slack for not adding mouse sensitivity settings...please... its just a few clicks away in Control Panel.

Is this sarcasm? I sure hope so, because expecting reviewers to make changes to their operating system settings in order to enjoy your game is a bit ridiculous.


I have to agree with @Siolfor the Jackal here - there's a pretty obvious theme connection in Gambrawl. The game actually creates odds of you winning a fight, and you have to bet on those odds.
Fine, you've convinced me, I'll give him 3/5 stars for the theme. 3/5 is what I give for standard adherence.
 
Okay my written reviews are up. I have videos for them all, but I will post those later tonight when they are done uploading. I'll link a playlist for those here when I'm done, and change the link in the voting post if the topic is still open.
 
@Cloaked Games Nice videos, man.
Yeah, the combat wasn't great, it was harder to make that kind of game than I imagined.
Whoa! I hadn't seen that bug that knocks you out of the screen like that! Usually that only happened when you were stuck in a corner and got hit sometimes. Glad you caught it on video, I'll have to go through and see why!
The trick with the Giglatinous is to come at them from above or below, so they don't have time to leap at you(I noticed you mostly walked right at them which makes them annoying). The other thing is if you can time it perfectly, you can punch them mid leap, or even counter them(easier if you start facing away from them). I was a little bit worried about their hitboxes because of their odd shape, seeing you struggle at first with them confirmed I should have fixed that.
Sorry you didn't get to see my final enemy(odds of fighting him and the Shadow men are a bit lower than the other two), they are quite annoying though.

Everything you said at the end was pretty fair, the combat is a bit slow and there isn't much to it, and the balance of the odds and the enemies is a bit all over the place. Glad you liked the music too.

It's really great seeing videos of people playing your games, I realise whilst watching them that I made a lot of assumptions about what players would do that were completely wrong haha.
I've gotten mostly pretty good feedback in general this jam, which is great. I think I know exactly what I'd do differently and how to do it now, maybe it's time I start making a proper beat em up engine.
 

Relic

Member
Super happy! Thanks for hosting Nal. Thanks to reviewers and thanks to all involved with submissions - was a pleasure to see the talented entries.
 

HayManMarc

Member
I'm pretty happy, too, but still beating myself up for messing up the leveling system at the last minute in Wizzy Gizzard. However, getting a "best presentation" award soothes the sting nicely since presentation was my focus this jam. Receiving "best story" was a surprise, and some nice icing on the cake. Thanks for the votes and reviews by everyone, especially the video reviews! Those are great fun to watch. I'm happy to see that most people enjoyed the dumb jokes in our game, even with the lacking gameplay.

Congratulations to Liquid Bacon, Lock and Key, and Phage! Deserving wins for deserving games!

See ya next jam, and happy holidays!!
 

Toque

Member
Congratulations on the results. Very deserving winners. My first Jam and it was a blast. Thanks Nal and the community for all their efforts.

Will contact the winner for providing my prize.

Thanks again to Dan at https://www.danieldocherty.net for his help or if you want to check out his amazing work.
 
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Alice

Toolmaker of Bucuresti
Forum Staff
Moderator
Huh, I scored higher than I expected. Must be because of the delayed entry (i.e. the entry which was originally not available in the ZIP, because the page wasn't made public at the time of gathering ZIP). Either way, I don't mind the position; I've ranked lower at times* and people who played the post-Jam version seem to appreciate the concept and presentation, so overall I'm pretty satisfied with the outcome. ^^'

Either way, congratulations to the winners**. With top 3 spots occupied by people who didn't particularly enjoy the broad OVERCOME ALL ODDS theme, the next Jam set of themes will hopefully spark more creativity. ^^'

@Cloaked Games Thanks for the video review, especially the one of the post-Jam version. Just for the record, that maze at the beginning wasn't as much meant to be particularly challenging puzzle on its own, but rather to give some sort of reward for finding the jump spots when the jump is available. ^^'
(for a moment there I was worried you wouldn't figure out that you can pull blocks, but thankfully, it wasn't the case)

*in terms of absolute numbers
**everyone is a winner
 

Acr515

Member
GMCJam Champ
Wow! I definitely didn't expect Ralucipe and I would get 1st place, especially for personally my first GMC Jam. Thanks so much for all your votes and feedback, everyone! Congratulations everyone on your games, I had a lot of fun playing and ranking them all!
 

Ralucipe

Member
GMCJam Champ
Echoing my teammate: thank you everyone for your feedback! I'm glad so many people enjoyed our game.

I'm excited at the prospect of picking a theme for the next jam...

What happened to the "Best Reviewer" award?
 
O

Oyakiiv

Guest
Alright, results are in! this is the best I've ever placed (in relation to the bottom), though I feel it is somewhat undeserved.

I would like to apologize for not submitting any votes this time around, my time all got sucked away by a change in work schedule and my wife demanding I start going to bed early... after about a week of that, I almost forgot I even participated in a jam! (one that lasted 10 days even!)

in the end I only played through 7 games and my reviews were short, probably too much so. So I just didn't feel like it was worth putting up, especially with my lack of confidence in my ability to rate them in a way I would find satisfactory.

that being said, I will probably skulk around the forums a bit longer, before I disappear again. I will be back for one or two of next years jams. (especially if we do another 10 day / extended jam, I liked how relaxed it felt and allowed me to work on my time management and project planning).
 
Your game was a bit rough but I enjoyed the idea. I think I vaguely remember you mentioning other game modes you were trying to incorporate, did you ever go into detail as to what they were?
 

GameDevDan

The Jam Host
Moderator
GMC Elder
Nice, congratulations to the winners!

Pretty happy with 5th, that's the best I've done (in terms of raw placing) since GMC Jam 17 (the last time I put HannaH in a game, hmm.... is there a pattern emerging??)

@Ralucipe & @Acr515 you'd best start thinking what you want the next theme to be! :)

P.S. Check out your fancy new banners for being GMC Jam Champions! BUT you only keep them until the next jam when you have to defend your title :p
 
O

Oyakiiv

Guest
now that you say that, I never did mention what they were, other than blackjack and chuck-a-luck (dice).

for chuck-a-luck I was planning on having dice fall from the top of the screen, of various sizes and amounts based on the results. so similar to my fruit grenades, except its avoid the falling blocks and try not to get trapped by the ones that have landed. the code for chuck-a-luck is in the game; it works, but there are no graphics made for it and the skill game never got started.

for blackjack, originally I was thinking about making it a rhythm game were, again, the required inputs would be determined by the results. say a 5 of hearts had been drawn and used in the game, then 5 'downs' would appear during the skill game. But, I eventually scrapped the idea of a rhythm game and was gonna go with a bullet hell to match the other games. unfortunately I never even got started on blackjack, it was the first thing I had to cut out.

if I hadn't wasted so much time (due to my bad mojo) I would have at least had the dice game complete and blackjack started. Or if I had at least started the graphics for it, I would have included the unfinished Chuck-a-Luck as an unlockable game once the player had gotten enough coins.

so yeah, because of the time extension I was able to really plan something out, but I lost a lot of time due to being in a funky head space.
 

dadio

Potato Overlord
Forum Staff
Moderator
*Love* the new GMCJam Champ banners idea! Nice one Dan!
Huge grats to Ralucipe and Arc515!
 

NAL

ʕ ᓀ ᴥ ᓂ ʔ
GMC Elder
One final order of business: Best reviewer accolades! Pretty much everyone did a great job with them, so I've picked one person that did exemplary video reviews and one for written reviews. And they are:


 

Smiechu

Member
Congratulations to all the winners! Nice work!

Retarding my entry: 8th place for my 1day game:p it's much more I've counted on. Thanks!

Oh... and the video reviews were a great experience!
 

Yal

🐧 *penguin noises*
GMC Elder
Derp, apparently voting deadline passed... .-. Busy moving and setting up Christmas stuff, so didn't really have time to do any jamming...

Skimmed through the reviews everyone wrote, though! :) Just wanted to address this thing:
Also, I know Roy is a GMC member, but I do not understand why he keeps popping up in jam games, I don't even know if I've seen him participate or comment during jams at all for a while so this is very confusing.
Roy is one of the most prolific and memetic GMC members, everyone knows who he is. He's surpassed member status and become a legend. Or a meme. Or something in between, not exactly sure.
 

Toque

Member
Roy is one of the most prolific and memetic GMC members, everyone knows who he is. He's surpassed member status and become a legend. Or a meme. Or something in between, not exactly sure.[/QUOTE]

I was confused about the whole "Roy" thing as well. Could they add a "All about Roy" tutorial in the new learn page?
 
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