FGJ Scholarship: Lyst Game Jam 2017 (DK) to Elie Abraham and Ludwig Sandbacka!

Finnish Game Jam’s fifth scholarship is for the Lyst Game Jam in Denmark. This time we decided to select two candidates to receive the scholarship. We are proud to send Elie Abraham and Ludwig Sandbacka to represent our jamming scene! Have a blast, both of you, and bring back the lessons learnt! Here are Elie’s and Ludwig’s feelings before the exciting trip:

Elie

Elie Abraham

After reading the same old “We had many strong applications this year…” e-mail intro, I was absolutely not expecting the sentence to end in congratulations. My reputation in the game dev community is probably most heavily centered around game jams and even my friends outside of the scene know how much I love to jam! So, it’s no secret that I am beyond excited to hear the news that I’ll be receiving the support to travel for another jam.

But Lyst isn’t just any jam. When you open the site for the Lyst Summit, you see *Romance, Love and Sex in Games *loud and clear staring right at you. With talks from “Queering the Controller” to “Playing with Pride,” one can imagine how enthusiastic I am to be sent as a queer game developer to interact, work, and share good times with others at this kind of symposium.

As with any game jam I go to, I hope to be a part of as many games as I can possibly make myself stay awake to work on, but more importantly: I look forward to making new friends, as connecting to others is truly what I want most out of any jam.

Feel free to keep updated on my journey and game happenings via my twitter (@elieabraham64) and thank you SO much, FGJ, for making this possible for me!

Elie Abraham

Ludwig

Ludwig Sandbacka

I’m quite new to the game jam scene. I went to my first game jam two years ago. It was an eyeopening experience to say the least. The creativity, the pressure, the people – it is insane to try to make a game in 48 hours and still after 20 cups of coffee and no sleep you stand there with a game and a shared experience of having pushed through, having made something that others can hopefully enjoy. Something that didn’t exist 2 days before.

I’ve been wanting to go to Lyst since I fist heard about it. Romance, sex and sexuality are rather provocative subjects in our society as a whole and even more so in games. In an interactive medium such as games, the player is both the audience and the performer. It allows us to have experiences and take actions that would otherwise be far removed from our everyday life and possibly our comfort zone. That in itself is exciting and mixing in some lust, desire and things that are perhaps a bit taboo… well it’s a new frontier.

At the most, I’m hoping to see some boundaries being pushed at Lyst and possibly some really weird ideas being realised. At the least, there will be good people, interesting conversations and lots of coffee.

Thank you FGJ for this opportunity! I’m going on an adventure.

Ludwig Sandbacka

The #JamBike 2017 is on!

Our two crazy jamtivists, Samuli Jääskeläinen and Jonne Harja are attempting an an unprecedented challenge titled JamBike. This game development journey takes them from Helsinki to Malmö, 12th – 17th May, creating a game while they cycle. The duo travels with a tandem bike creating as green game as possible. The game jam happens on the saddle: one codes, the other one steers and solar panels produce electricity. Final destination of the team is Nordic Game Conference where the game will be displayed for fellow game developers around the world. The trip is accompanied with a custom made computer attached to the bike and lots of Finnish game developer insanity.

The idea for the JamBike 2017 was originally conceived at Indie Beer meetup at Helsinki as joke about making a game on a bike. A year later, the gag is turning into a challenge with a serious intent. The goal of the insane experiment is producing a game 100% with renewable energies and encouraging healthy living habits – and of course like all other crazy game jams out there:  creating a game under interesting development constraints testing the limits of the game creators.

The experiment is supported by us and sponsored by a handful of courageous game companies including Fingersoft, Mindfield Games, Frogmind, Yousician and Two Men and A Dog. The Nordic Game Conference is hosting the first view of the jam game.

The jam is recorded on the road with a help of a small media team following the developer duo with a camper van producing tweets, posts and most importantly videos at:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jambike17/ (also live videos!)
Twitter: https://twitter.com/JamBike17
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jambike17/
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCl9mzxz_QTqmPuGf_OZ2kKA

Official hashtag: #jambike

SamuliAndJonneInBoatToSweden

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FGJ Scholarship: Lyst Game Jam 2017 (DK)

Finnish Game Jam ry is proud to announce our fifth jam scholarship! In collaboration with Lyst Summit we are sending TWO jammers to Copenhagen to the wonderful Lyst Game Jam (http://lyst-summit.org/game-jam/). The jam will take place in connection to Lyst Summit in 9th-11th June 2017.

To make the trip easy, we are awarding two jammers a ticket and a 300 eur for travel expenses. We are looking for prominent jammers willing to represent Finnish game jamming scene and bring back the lessons learned to the community. The candidates for the scholarship is selected based on the applications sent prior to Monday 8th May 2017 16:00 (GMT +3)Apply now!

Finnish Game Jam Scholarship Program is founded to improve the mobility of the Finnish jammers and further enhance the international collaboration of the global jamming scene.

See all the details and apply for the scholarship from here.

Read more about the wonderful Lyst Summit here: http://lyst-summit.org/

Here are the Finnish Game Jam Awards 2017!

Each year, Finnish Game Jam ry wants to give recognition to games for their unique ways to stand from the crowd. The awarded games come from different jams organized by FGJ, including of course our biggest game jam, #FGJ17. Out of over 250 games from the 2016-2017 season, we selected eight games for their creativity, exploration, and diversity.

Social Skills Edugame Award
Hi, or not, FGJ Otaniemi
Joakim Isaksson, Henri Niva, Xiaoxiao Ma, Athina Giokarini, Marie Kumpulainen, Harri Dammert, Mikko Kolehmainen

This game manages to provide a true depiction of Finnish social interaction, focusing on a central aspect of our everyday life. Hi or Not touches the struggle of the social pressure experienced by many unfortunate lives – and does it with staggering relentlessness. Playing this game may expose you to excessive social situations and should be played in a controlled environment. A deep and reflective learning experience is guaranteed.

Battle of the Body Award
HeatWaves, FGJ Helsinki Analog
Henna Tuunainen, Iiris Sumu, Virpi Sumu

Even though the female body is often visible in media, its functions remain as a mystified taboo. Therefore, we are glad to see a game about one of the processes most women go through: the menopause. The issue has been transformed into a clever board game where the two sides of the battle – the forever young maiden and the inevitably aging hag – fight of the ownership of the body. Kudos for the brave initiative on a less explored yet important topic!

Pixel Sport Award
Waveout! FGJ Oulu
Tatu Meriläinen, Tuukka Lehtonen, Robin ten Wolde, Aki Latvamäki, Sampo Närhi, Sami Nyyssölä

Paying homage to the beauty of a pixel, this game portrays the future of sports entertainment game shows. As the premier game show of tomorrow, it features exhilarating athletic performances and addictive gameplay, while spot-on hosts and sound effects create a truly immersive experience. Waveout’s graphical style brings the whole together in glorious fashion, showing that only a few pixels are required to set the stage for a truly gladiatorial battle of the waves.

WINRAR Tanks it All Award
3D Wave Tank, FGJ Oulu
Ilpo Alatalo, Risto Ihalainen, Tuukka Lampela, Sampo Jumisko

This tribute to oldskool action reveals a crazy twist in the core game mechanics. The wavy duel simulation of 3D Wave Tank is sure to cause confusion, chaos and hilarious moments between the players. While the circular waves from the ammunition serve as a clever way to bring complexity into an otherwise simple game, it is an interesting mechanic that could have its uses in other types of games as well. Tanks have never changed the world like this before.

For teh Science Award
HeatBox, Quantum Game Jam 2016
Paavo Happonen, Samuli Jääskeläinen, Boris Sokolov, Aleksis Karme

What would be more exciting than the pursuit of true scientific advancement and the entrapment of ordinary people, with games, in VR? HeatBox, Created at Quantum Game Jam 2016, has a great potential as a gamification of a highly important nontrivial research problem for quantum physics and, specifically, for developing quantum computers. This prominent game prototype utilizes VR gameplay for outsourcing algorithmic exploration through people playing games. Using game design and quantum physics theories together is a new and exciting field which is rapidly growing and where citizen science is starting to play a major role. HeatBox will be among the great pioneers in that.

Kahen Kilon Award
Siikasaurus, ASM Game Jam ’16
Samuli Jääskeläinen, Sofi Kurtti, Joonas Mäkinen, Meri Rekiranta

This game honors two important milestones in our time: Playstation 1 and the creation of one of the most memorable memes in Finland. Appropriately created at the Assembly Computer Festival, this game is a throwback to the innocent and good times of the internets and video games – with a modern flavor. With a fitting cover art and psychedelic graphics Siikasaurus induces a unique state of madness and focus for the player.

Suomi 100 Award
Alvar Aalto – The Experience, FGJ Turku
Emma Louhivuori, Sonja Yrjölä, Frida Lindholm

Finland has a great design history to be proud of! Thanks to Global Game Jam 2017, we now have thousands of games honoring one of the greatest designers of all times: Our very own Alvar Aalto, THE Mr. Wave. Alvar Aalto – The Experience tops all other aalto-games with an accurate recreation of our design superstar’s struggle to turn pieces of furniture into timeless classics.

Et Sinä Minua Aalto Saa Award
Jack the Skipper, FGJ Joensuu
Arhi Makkonen, Miikka Vihersaari, Antti Vikman, Joonas Rauha, Roope Timonen, Patrik Eronen, Ville Lapakko, Kristian Syyslehto, Roope Timonen

Audio design and the game writing bring the final touches to this overall aesthetic game experience. Jack the Skipper is a beautiful and stylistic puzzle game that excels in its voice acting and sound design. The dynamic audiotrack portrays a seasoned sailor trying to keep the cargo intact while the storm rages on. This linguistic masterpiece with polished everything brings the world alive, keeping the player both entertained and in suspense.

In addition to the game awards, Finnish Game Jam awarded Henri Sarasvirta as the Superjammer of the Year 2016 for exemplary and courageous jamming, Neogames as the Jamtivist of the Year 2016 for their remarkable and continuous support for the Finnish Game Jam, FGJ AV Team for their outstanding contribution for the game jam organizing, and Futureplay Games, Grand Cru, and Rovio for their outstanding support as the sponsors of the #FGJ17 event.

Finnish Game Jam Awards 2017

The Finnish Game Jam Awards will be held on April 26, 2017 at Steam Hellsinki and broadcasted for the whole world! The FGJ Awards is about celebrating Finnish jamming and giving recognition for creativity and the courage to stand out from the crowd.

Join us at Steam by registering through Eventbrite – everyone is invited! The event starts at 18:00, and the official program starts at 19:00. If you can’t make it, follow the broadcast on Twitch.tv/finnishgamejam.

The event Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/events/123358441542993/

#jambike: Creating a game in the saddle

Can you create a video game while cycling?

The question will be answered by two game developers, Samuli Jääskeläinen and Jonne Harja. In May 2017, they will take a journey from Helsinki to Malmö, generating power and creating a game while they cycle. The duo travels with a tandem bike creating as clean and green game as possible. All happens in the saddle: one codes, the other one steers, while a dynamo and solar panels produce electricity.

The final destination for the team is the Nordic Game Conference where the game will be available to play. Follow the developments of the crazy ride from the official #jambike17 Facebook page or on Twitter with the hashtag #jambike. For any questions, contact jonne.harja@finnishgamejam.com.

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Jonne and Samuli testing one of the tandem bike candidates in 30.3.2017.

Jonne and Samuli testing one of the tandem bike candidates on 30.3.2017.

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Jam report: Train Jam (2017)

As a part of our scholarship program, Finnish Game Jam sent Miikka Harjuntausta to the Train Jam (US) to represent the Finnish jamming scene. Miikka traveled to Chicago from where over 300 jammers boarded a train to create games during the trip all the way to San Francisco. Miikka shares his experiences and tips in this report.

Hey hey,

This is my report from Train Jam 2017. I will be writing this for you that might be participating Train Jam in the future. I made my trip with with an awesome artist called Krista Erkkilä.miikkakrista

Train Jam is a game jam event that takes place in a train ride from Chicago to Emeryville, eventually ending up in San Francisco. This was the 4th time it was organized, and the first year when Amtrak was involved and the whole train was reserved just for us developers. There were over 300 game developers taking part in the train jam this year, with very different background varying from students to industry veterans. Continue reading

FGJ Scholarship: Train Jam 2017 (US) to Miikka Harjuntausta

Finnish Game Jam’s fourth scholarship is for the legendary Train Jam, as was our very first scholarship a year ago. This time we received a record-breaking number of applications, and with many excellent candidates the selection process was especially hard.

Miikka Harjuntausta was selected with the vast experience of over 20 game jams, including every Global Game Jam since the first Finnish Game Jam in 2010. We proudly send Miikka to the Train Jam to represent the Finnish jamming scene, and are looking forward to hear from his experiences! Miikka shared his feelings before the trip:

This is huge!toTrainJam

I’ve been participating in different game jams ever since FGJ crew has been organising them. To me game jams are about community, good times, bad times, stress, challenge, inspiration and growth.

Game jam can be a tool to prototype new idea/concept with freedom of failure. It can be a time to learn something new, or it can be about meeting people.

It can be so many things!

I am immensely grateful that there are people who keep organising these events, and that I’ve been given this opportunity to participate in one of the most interesting jams in the world. I am happy, exited and terrified.

Thank you FGJ! Thank you Finnish Game Dev Community!

FGJ Train Jam (US) 2017 Scholarship

Finnish Game Jam ry is proud to announce our fourth jam scholarship! For the second time around FGJ is supporting one jammer’s participation to the Train Jam 2017 (United States).

Finnish Game Jam organization is awarding a ticket to the legendary Train Jam (http://trainjam.com/) and a 1000 Eur travel aid to a prominent jammer willing to represent Finnish game jamming scene in the United States and bringing back the lessons learned to the community. The candidate for the scholarship is selected based on the applications sent prior to Monday 30th January 2017 16:00 (GMT +2). A great applicant has participated to at least one FGJ game jam between 2010-2017 and has a broad experience on game jams in Finland (and/or elsewhere) as well as an interesting portfolio of game jam projects.

Train Jam is a great opportunity to network with international game jam community and to spend an amazing trip from Chicago to San Francisco right before the GDC (http://gdconf.com) week. Train Jam 2017 is the 4th organized annual event of 52h (or in case of the train being early on final destination, only 51h) game jam taking place in a moving train. The jam is organized by Adriel Wallick, independent from Finnish Game Jam organization.

Finnish Game Jam Scholarship Program is founded to improve the mobility of the Finnish jammers and further enhance the international collaboration of the global jamming scene.

See all the details and apply for the scholarship from here.

Jam Jam 2017

Finnish Game Jam ry organizes the annual jam organizer get together, Jam Jam, at the Sappee ski resort during June 30th – July 2nd 2017. This year we invite all the organizers around the world to join us!

If you are a jam organizer, would like to organize your own jam or join a team: we would love to see you at Jam Jam 2017! #FGJ18 details will be put together at Jam Jam among other game jam planning. You can also come and plan your own jam with us! Even more important, we need to chill and chat about the jamtastic world – create new ideas, share thoughts, learn from other organizers – join our forces.

Mark your calendars and stay tuned for the registration! Hope to see lots of organizers and organizers-to-be next summer!