Exile Game Jam
Exile Game Jam Spring 2014 was yet another success last week at Vallekilde Højskole. With over 60 participants from parts of all over the world, the coziest game jam in the world provided fun times and a great jamming experience to all the participants.
The extended game jam took place from April 30th until May 4th 2014, days in which we were lucky to have such an amazing weather that allowed us to have meals outside, have bonfires at night over some beers and relax over the lawn on Sunday morning after brunch.
As usual, Exile is a more relaxed type of experience when compared to other events such as Nordic Game Jam or Global Game Jam. It always starts with games prepared to get to know each other and mini-challenges and workshops over the first day before the proper game jam begins.
The theme: Make something that has never been done before, and do something that YOU have never done before (so if you are a programmer, try making art, if you are a sound designer, give coding a go and so on). So with that in mind, all the participants, including the Game Academy students at Vallekilde Højskole, set out to make teams, many of them with new people they have never worked with before, and try their hands on something unique.
So what were the standouts of the game jam?
First of all, we have the audience vote award, which happened to be shared between two different games! First, we have Nicklas Nygren’s Super Air Flyers, and with the exact same amount of votes, Martin Fasterholdt’s Javelin.
In Super Air Flyers, you control a plane with no thrust whatsoever in a psychedelic 3D landscape with a series of rings you have to maneuver your plane through before you make it to the portal in the end.
And in Javelin, you fight a series of enemies through several levels where enemies will attack you with javelins. However, if you dodge them, you’ll be able to pick them up (even from a dead body) and prepare your counter-attack.
But we like to have more than just a winner at Exile. Which is why we had a jury that selected even more games for different categories.
Most emotional game: Old Man Wants to Exile, where you explore the sad, boring house of an old man who will very slowly try to sneak around his annoying children trying to keep him indoors so that he can make it to the Exile Game Jam.
Best to watch: Baking Simulator, a fun combination of the Oculus Rift and Kinect technologies where the player will have to bake a virtual cake with the help of an assistant providing the hands. Though the poor Matthias fell off the stage while presenting with the Oculus Rift on him. The dangers of virtual reality games!
Best meta-game: King of Colors, a funny tribute to the Danish artist Per Arnoldi, uses his three favorite colors, red, blue and yellow and his three favorite shapes, square, circle and cone, in a card guessing game to become the King of Colors.
Better than I thought: Hidden in plain text, an ASCII two-player competitive game where one player will have to hide himself in a mess of ASCII characters spread all over the screen, with barely a hint of where the player is moving (based on the speed of his movement) and in the next turn the other player will have to locate his position and make it as close as possible.
Most commercial game: WeStory, a smartphone experience where several participants can build together a story out of pictures, text and audio as they create a new part of the story to pass along to the next player. As players pass the story to the next person, a full story starts taking place, though usually in a very chaotic and crazy way.
Least/Most Feministic game: Cunt Touch This, inspired by the cunt colouring book by Tee A. Corinne, the game is a meditative drawing activity accompanied by sounds the user creates while painting. But the player has to be careful when painting on the sensitive areas, since too much paint there will cause the image to pulsate in slow motion. The award was given to the game best suited to contribute to the discussion of feminism and games.
Most Newtonian Gravitation Game: Newtonian Gravitation, which as the name implies, has the player using gravity to his advantage to jump from planet to planet to make it to the goal. The planets are small in size, with the player being able to walk around the entire planet to gain speed and then jump to escape the pull of the planet’s gravity and as such make it to the next planet.
Tech award: Super Air Flyers, Nicklas Nygren’s game got yet another award for his polished technology behind the game.
Knowledge +1001 award: Boredom Simulator, this award goes to the best game made by Vallekilde students, and in this case it went to a game where you travel in a tourist bus alongside your annoying girlfriend, all of it experienced in marvellous 3D through the Oculus Rift to make the boredom immersion as close to reality as possible.
As you can see, the selection of winning games is varied quite varied, full of exciting stuff, curiosities and technical achievements.
And this time IGDA Denmark sponsored the final party after the game jam on Saturday night, which we’re sure everyone enjoyed! As usual, the final party includes a music jam at night, a visit to the nearby graveyard and, of course, the sauna.
We’ve taken quite a few pictures during the event, but here’s a collection of some that will give you an idea of the overall mood of the event.
We look forward to having Exile again next semester for Fall 2014!
It’s getting close to that time of the year once again. The Coziest Game Jam Ever ™ is back for another round of games, chilling, making more games, sauna, fireplaces, playing other people’s games, chilling with all the new friends you’ve made and even graveyard hunting.
It’s Exile Game Jam Fall 2013, taking place from October 30th to November 3rd 2013!
Once again the beautiful Vallekilde Højskole becomes the host for Exile, so you know what that means: great meals included, beds for everyone, a nice cozy fireplace, a sauna and more.
For those who don’t know yet, Exile Game Jam is a relaxed, social gathering where creative people get together for workshops, games and, of course creating new and fun game ideas. Unlike Nordic Game Jam, Exile is much more informal, allowing participants to work together in a chill atmosphere, with outdoor activities also planned in the schedule. The extended period of time during which Exile takes place allows to work on more than one game and make space for a final party at the end of the event. More info and photos about Exile Game Jam can be found here.
Prices are 850 kr. per person, with a special price of 600 kr. for students. But as usual this includes accommodation in the building in shared rooms of two people and access to showers. Also included are all meals (Vallekilde is famous for its excellent food), internet access and even a sauna, a cinema, exercise facilities, a fireplace, a music/audio room and painting and sculpting facilities among others.
Besides the games, the program includes activities such as talks, music jams, outdoor games and a final party on Saturday night (sometimes with Spanish sangría too!)
The last Exile Game Jam Spring 2013 was a total success, with participants leaving looking forward to this next Exile, lots of great games, and even mentions on popular gaming websites such as Gamespot, Kotaku and Rock, Paper, Shotgun for the surprising Oculus Rift-based Disunion. Let’s make this next one even better!
You can check out the full program (which is susceptible to changes) and sign up for Exile Game Jam at Exile.dk.
Sun. Lying down on the grass. Bagpipes. Getting your head chopped off. Being shot. Singing songs on the piano. Sauna. Oculus Rift. Leap Motion. Non-euclidean boats. Particle fields. Dreaming goats. The president of the United States. Swings. Beer. Dreaming fish. Playing games.
All these random things have one thing in common: they all happened during Exile Game Jam Spring 2013.
When we announced it, we insisted on Exile being a very cozy game jam and we meant it. It was not only a great chance to escape from the daily stress and into the beautiful building of Vallekilde Højskole, but also an opportunity to take your chances at making something fun and unique, and Exile provided.
As per usual, Exile started with outdoor games and time to mingle and meet each other. This allows participants to get together and work on a small challenge before the actual game jam started on Thursday. Everyone wrote a short idea for a game in a small piece of paper and put it in a box, and then these were distributed randomly to everyone, given time to talk to other participants about it and then pitch it to the crowd to gather anyone interested in joining to work on it.
Over the following 48 hours people had time to both make some cool games and relax outdoors, play music or even go to the sauna. Mealtimes are always something to look forward to: the food at Vallekilde is amazing.
The result of all this? Lots of crazy, interesting and fun games that were later presented to everyone, with three winners chosen afterwards by a committee:
On second place was “The Quincy Incident“, a non-euclidean first person experience where players have to find their way through a boat in a psychological horror setting:
And on third place was “Demonic Shotgun 2010: The House Warming“, a minimalistic top-down shooter that takes place on an architect’s blueprint:
A special mention goes to an impressive media success: “Disunion” caught the attention of several media outlets shortly after the game jam ended, with mentions in several sites such as Kotaku, Gamespot, Penny Arcade and more. Also made for the Oculus Rift, the game offers a most unique experience: having your head cut off by a guillotine:
But it’s still worth mentioning that there were many more games worth checking out presented at the end of Exile. You can try out more of them by visiting Unicorn7.
Afterwards the jam concluded with a party and a final hangout the following morning.
We would like to thank all the participants for being there, making the experience as great as it was. Just seeing Twitter full of messages like this shows how much everyone enjoyed it:
— Thomas Joris Papa (@thomasjpapa) May 6, 2013
— Bram Michielsen (@brammichielsen) May 6, 2013
We’re very much looking forward to the next Exile Game Jam in Autumn 2013! Don’t forget that you can stay updated on more Exile news by joining our Facebook group!
Some more photos:
EDIT: We are really happy with the amount of participation we are getting! Since we would love for everyone to be able to come, we are extending the offer by making more tickets available! You can still apply for the tickets until SATURDAY, MAY 11TH, so hurry up if you still haven’t applied through this form HERE.
Unite conferences have always been the biggest, most important Unity developer events worldwide, and the May 21-22nd Unite Nordic conference is shaping up to be packed full of talks and inspirational breaks from the likes of Rovio, Mojang, Nintendo and more, all with a focus on making great interesting games using the Unity game engine.
The programme will kick off with a keynote from Unity CEO and co-founder David Helgason and will continue with talks focused on taking your game development and business skills to the next level on subjects like sound design, publishing in the Chinese market, starting up your own company and more.
If you have been to any of the events we organize at IGDA Denmark such as Nordic Game Jam and Exile, you will have probably noticed that Unity is a big supporter of game jams.
True to form, we’ve teamed up with Unicorn7.org to give away 15 free tickets to Unite Nordic to lucky Nordic Game Jam and Exile participants.
How do you apply for this scholarship? Easy: you just have to fill in your details in this form and we will choose the 15 people who will be attending Unite Nordic free of charge!
Still not convinced? You can check more information about the event at Unite Nordic’s website, such as the full program schedule, venue and more.
And as a bonus, just by attending you will enter a draw for a giveaway of 10 Unity Pro licenses and 2 Unity Pro bundles which include iOS Pro, Android Pro, and the upcoming Windows Store Pro add-on.
So what are you waiting for? Apply now for a chance to go to Unite Nordic now!
Exile Game Jam is a relaxed, social gathering where creative people get together for workshops, games and, of course, create new and fun ideas.
Unlike Nordic Game Jam, Exile is much more informal, allowing participants to work together in a cozy atmosphere, with outdoor activities also planned in the schedule.
The admission fee also includes accommodation in the building in shared rooms of two people and access to showers, with the possibility of getting private rooms and bathrooms for an extra fee. Also included are all meals (Vallekilde Højskole is known to provide excellent food), Internet access and even a sauna, a cinema, exercise facilities, a fireplace, a music/audio room and painting and sculpting facilities.
The program is always full of activities such as talks, games, music jams and a final party on Saturday.
Prices are 850 kr. per person, with a special price of 600 kr. for students.
You can check out the full program (which is susceptible to changes) and sign up for Exile Game Jam at Exile.dk.