GGJ Archives 2009-2012

Venue: Software

The GGJ is hardware and software agnostic. Meaning we do not demand that you use any particular to make the games for GGJ.

If you are providing computers, you also need to provide the software for the game development. People who bring their own computers have to take on the responsibility of keeping them safe, adhering to all copyright and licensing laws. We do not expect you to give everyone who walks in the door the software that you carry on your computers. When people sign up, use the welcome-mail to ask them what kind of software they'd like for the jam, we might be able to tell you where to get it for free. And most importantly: You have to inform the participants about the available software before the event. They'll need the information to insure that they have what they need to make games. For some of the GGJ sponsors, we will provide access to some GGJ specific tutorials.

Operating Systems (OS)
Many people take the operating system for granted; - we're all running Windows, right? However the operating systems is important; some applications won't run in some OS and if you're using another OS (e.g. Linux), you need to inform people. If you are running Windows, you need to inform people of what version you're using (XP, XP SP1, XP SP2, Vista); some applications won't run on Windows Vista. It's also very important that you have administrator rights for the OS, so that people can install the software that they would like to have.

Some teams will need game editors for the development. If the venue-computers already have editors installed, find out what they are and provide participants with a list. You can download a lot of different free editors; either as trial-versions or freeware. Examples we suggest you explore:

Gamemaker: http://www.yoyogames.com/make
Gamemaker is a very simple, but flexible editor developed by Mark Overmars. It's 2d, but you can make fake 3d games in it. We highly recommend that you make Gamemaker available.

Microsoft XNA: http://creators.xna.com/en-US/downloads
XNA is the indie-developer tool for Xbox Live Arcade. It's free. Please read the installation-instructions on the page; it requires Microsoft Visual C# 2008 support.

Iphone: http://developer.apple.com/iphone/
Apples been very focused about getting developers to make games for the Iphone and the Iphone SDK is available on the net. It lends itself well to the type of small, experimental games that are made at gamejams.

GameSalad: http://gamesalad.com/
GameSalad allow game creators to visually create games by composing actors and behaviors in to scenes. It's available for Intel based Macs. You can make 2d games and there is a build in physics engine. During the Global Game Jam, users will be able to create Mac executables for free. Users can also create iPhone games with a paid subscription ($99).

Unity 3d: http://unity3d.com/unity/download
Unity is commercial 3d editor & engine for Mac and PC. It's a medium sized editor that can function with most file-formats and can export to PC, Mac OS X, Windows 2000/XP/Vista, Apple Iphone, Nintendo Wii & webbrowsers. They offer their software for free.

SDKs (for programmers):
Corona SDK (www.anscamobile.com)
Corona SDK allows developers to build games for iOS and Android. Development speed is very fast because of easy setup and APIs and development with the Lua language. Corona includes features like a built-in physics engine (Box2d) and Facebook/Openfeint/Gamecenter integration. You can download Corona and use it in an unlimited trial, building your game to your own device. It's available on Mac and Windows.

Graphics artists require graphics programs.
For 2d:
Adobe Photoshop C4:
Photoshop is the program for image-manipulation. There's a trial available on the website.

GIMP (Gnu Image Manipulation Program): http://www.gimp.org/
GIMP is a opensource, freeware program for image manipulation.

For 3D:
Autodesk 3d Studio Max: http://www.softpedia.com/get/Multimedia/Graphic/Graphic-Editors/3D-Studi...
One of the most commen ones are 3D Studio Max. There's a trial-version available on the site.

Autodesk Maya 2009:
Maya is another of the widely used 3d programmer.

Audacity is opensource, freeware audio-record & -editor.

Experience from NGJ:
The computer-labs that we use at the IT-University is used for teaching computer games and computer game design, so they are full of software. We have CryEd, UnrealEd, GameMaker, Photoshop, 3d Max and a host of other programs on them.

However, this doesn't mean that we haven't had issues with software. People sometimes have some eclectic preferences in software, so we've had to install different programs during the gamejam. This gave some issues with admin-rights which luckily was solved quickly.

All the machines are Windows PCs, so in 2006 Unity3d persuaded Apple to lend NGJ a set of Macs for development with the Unity-engine/editor..

Have you:
Examined what software is available on the computers at the venue?
Gotten administrator rights to the computers?
Installed a good variety of editors and game development software on them?
Made a list for the “Thanks for registering”-mail with the software?
Made a call for software-suggestions for the “Thanks for Registrering”-mail?


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