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Avatar image for zandravandra
#1 Edited by ZandraVandra (322 posts) -


Hey hi hello folks! Time for the first 2016 installment of the Giant Bomb game jam! Apologies for starting this one so late in the year; life kicked my butt really hard, but now I'm back in business (I hope). Let's make some wonderful, silly games together again!


The theme is set! E3 PRESENTATION (Thanks Drew!)

And as a special farewell, bonus theme! BLEAK CYBERPUNK DYSTOPIAS (Thanks Austin!)

Pick either one, or both! It's up to you! As long as you include it in some way, that's okay!


  • START: August 6th (I will announce the theme live as the 5th turns to the 6th!)
  • END: August 14th (be sure to submit your game before that day is over!)
  • There will be a special theme picked from those given by the GB staff list!
  • The game should also be somehow related to Giant Bomb.
  • Do what you want, but please try not to be too crude or offensive -
    be a Giant Bomber, not a Giant Bummer!

So that's August 6th to August 14th - 9 days total, which includes two weekends. Hopefully that's enough to let as many people as possible make some really cool, really silly games... again!

The Themes

The list started being put together when I asked GB folks to submit themes during the 2015 PAX Prime panel, and I've since tracked down everyone else to get a complete set. Here are the themes; only one will be chosen! (SURPRISE! Two were chosen! Pick either one, or both!)

  • The Community: Johnny V
  • Jeff: East VS West
  • Dan: (sitting this one out since his theme was chosen last time)
  • Vinny: Italian Pac-Man
  • Austin: Bleak Cyberpunk Dystopias << SELECTED THEME
  • Jason: Babies
  • Alex: FMV
  • Brad: Dave Lang's Ideal Game
  • Drew: E3 Presentation << SELECTED THEME
  • Rorie: One Big Chomp


Check out the Giant ROM Boot Camp! Resources are listed there, both in terms of programs and free assets you can use! If you have any suggestions, post 'em and I'll update accordingly.

Also, I've made a Team-Up Sheet if you want to find fellow jammers! Any questions? Post 'em here and we'll help!

You can also totally submit a game by yourself if you want! :D No pressure to make a masterpiece or anything - we're all making silly things out of love and inspiration. <3 Every game counts!


Like the last time, I'll be hosting the jam on itch.io, which has a terrific game jam feature! Everybody will be able to post their creations there, add them to the jam, and enter their team's details at the same time. There's even an integrated ranking system that I will fill with arbitrary and silly parameters!

Are There Fabulous Prizes?


Probably Steam codes for games. But maybe Something More for the games that stand out in some way! Who knows?


Put your team together if you don't already have one, and get to developing a ridiculous game!

Happy jamming! :D

Avatar image for mooseymcman
#2 Edited by MooseyMcMan (12625 posts) -

Gosh is it that time of year already??? Gasp!

Best of luck to everyone involved!

Also, did Austin actually say "bleak cyberpunk dystopias?" That seems just a little TOO on the nose. ;)

Avatar image for sparky_buzzsaw
#3 Posted by sparky_buzzsaw (8776 posts) -

Awesome! Good luck to everyone involved!

Avatar image for audiobusting
#4 Posted by audioBusting (2558 posts) -

Cool! I think I'll finally get to join in this year. How does the theme get picked again, is it random?

Avatar image for mrflibble
#5 Posted by mrflibble (132 posts) -

Looking forward to seeing what games people make this year. I've gotten better since the last one so I'm hoping to make something really good this time.

Avatar image for chronologist
#6 Posted by Chronologist (314 posts) -

Oh! Awesome :D

Will try to participate in this one. Think I've got the time. Might not be able to do all days, but I'll try my damndest to actually submit something.

Fantastic job @havochq for setting it up again :D

Avatar image for gundogan
#7 Posted by gundogan (769 posts) -

Woot! Shame it's in a period where I can't really do any game making. :(

GL to those who are going to participate!

Avatar image for zandravandra
#8 Posted by ZandraVandra (322 posts) -

@audiobusting said:

Cool! I think I'll finally get to join in this year. How does the theme get picked again, is it random?

Wonderful, I look forward to seeing what you make! :D I announce the theme live on my stream; I'm still experimenting with methods, but last time I went to random.org and let a virtual die roll determine the theme.

Avatar image for mandude
#9 Posted by mandude (2833 posts) -

How is this the first I'm hearing of this thing?

Avatar image for thebatmobile
#10 Posted by thebatmobile (995 posts) -

Duders! This is perfect timing, since I have time to participate. So if a programmer needs some art, let me know and we'll collab!

Avatar image for thrawn2112
#11 Posted by Thrawn2112 (18 posts) -

Since itch.io will take HTML5 games I totally might participate this year! Would be my first time making a game, but I've been wanting to try out Phaser.io for quite a while so no better time! If anyone has a better JS-based game engine to recommend let me know though.

Avatar image for rememberyhorse
#12 Posted by rememberyhorse (8 posts) -

I have always wanted to do one of these but fear no one needs someone whose strongest programming language is VBA.

Avatar image for bigdaddytool
#13 Edited by BigDaddyTool (108 posts) -

Don't think I'll be able to participate this time since it'll be taking place during my busiest weeks of the year at work. There's also some game coming out on August 9th that I already intend to sacrifice all my free time to immediately.

That being said, I had another really good idea for one of the themes last time that I didn't use so who knows what might happen if that theme gets selected?

Avatar image for audiobusting
#14 Edited by audioBusting (2558 posts) -

Ah dang it, as it turns out I have something during that exact period that probably won't allow me to make a game =( Good luck to everyone else!

@rememberyhorse: There's a lot of free and easy-to-use game making tools out there now, you can do it! And heck, I could never even figure out VBA, so you're probably ahead of many people. You can probably look around something like the Sorthingh.at to find something you can learn to use (read the boot camp thread!)

Avatar image for sinusoidal
#15 Posted by Sinusoidal (3608 posts) -

What are my chances if I happened to make an Android game? I've devoted myself to LibGDX in Android Studio the past year or so and don't care to have to go back to GMS or something. I don't care if I win or anything, but I would hope someone would at least play it.

I have always wanted to do one of these but fear no one needs someone whose strongest programming language is VBA.

There are some decent game IDEs out there that don't even require code anymore. Game Maker Studio is a good place to start. GML (Game Maker Language) is incredibly simple and easy to learn as well if you do want to dig into the code - which is advised as it really does open up a lot of options you're missing otherwise. Also, there's nothing wrong with VBA. The only language I've received any training in at all was Top Speed Modula 2. Ha! Really, coding basics carry into any language.

Avatar image for willza92
#16 Posted by Willza92 (378 posts) -

I promise to make a better game than the pile of gunk I made last time! Can't wait :)

Avatar image for rmanthorp
#17 Posted by rmanthorp (4630 posts) -

Awww yeah! I'm excited to see what comes from this! Good luck ya'll

Avatar image for totsboy
#18 Posted by totsboy (493 posts) -

I'll finally be able to participate this year! Looking forward to it :D

Avatar image for sykosis
#19 Posted by Sykosis (216 posts) -

This time I'm joining for sure. (I reeeeallly hope it's East v.s West ^_^)

Avatar image for hassun
#20 Posted by hassun (9829 posts) -

Johnny RV, fund it, trademark it.

Avatar image for bollard
#21 Edited by Bollard (8131 posts) -

I... can actually take part this time! Well, well, well. This ends the day before I move for my new job and I have 0 commitments in that time. Will have to have a think about how I want to take part! Need to brush up my C++ before I start work but PICO8 is so fun I am tempted to use it again...

EDIT: Also, I've never worked in a team for a game jam before, but if anyone wants a programmer with a small amount of industry experience under their belt I'd be happy to team up. I'm in the UK though, in case time zones matter.

Avatar image for yyninja
#22 Posted by yyninja (104 posts) -

I can actually do this one. I've been wanting to do a game jam for awhile but always felt like my skills weren't adequate enough yet. I know how to work with GameMaker and libGDX.

Avatar image for tigerbot
#23 Posted by Tigerbot (32 posts) -

Just heard about this on UPF. Looking forward to taking part again!

Avatar image for hedgemouse
#24 Edited by Hedgemouse (5 posts) -

Awesome! Haven't really posted on the forums before, but when I heard this was happening again on UPF, I wanted to join in! I didn't get a chance to take part last year, so I'm looking forward to making something this time.

Avatar image for b33
#25 Posted by b33 (452 posts) -

Pretty pumped. Excited to build something with C and OpenGL and have it barely work!

(Or I will use PICO-8 again)

Avatar image for fish_face_mcgee
#26 Posted by Fish_Face_McGee (516 posts) -

I think I'm going to try to take part this time. Hoping to see if I can learn PhaserJS enough in the next few days to be able to build something when this thing kicks off.

Avatar image for hacktavist
#27 Posted by hacktavist (1 posts) -

I would like to do this, but these things make me nervous/anxious.

Avatar image for mandude
#28 Posted by mandude (2833 posts) -

@hacktavist: It's not like you have to commit or anything.

Avatar image for coltondaniels45
#29 Posted by coltondaniels45 (37 posts) -

glad to help to volunteer testing or anything, please hit me up on twitter @coltonrdaniels

Avatar image for adam2marsh
#30 Posted by Adam2Marsh (21 posts) -

Hey All! Seen this a couple of times but the time hasn't worked out. Good news though the sun and moon have aligned and I can! :) Will add myself to the Team Up!

Avatar image for variant3
#31 Posted by Variant3 (8 posts) -

Looking forward to making something dumb with you all!

Avatar image for frump
#32 Posted by frump (52 posts) -

Considering that I haven't gotten anything done by myself in previous Giant ROMs I'm going to just focus on doing some art. If anyone wants to team up, I primarily do 3d art and can hack it with pixel art/animation.

Here's a sampling of some old work: https://www.artstation.com/artist/frump

Avatar image for generic_username
#33 Posted by generic_username (943 posts) -

I might be doing this. Having never made a game or done anything in my life that would make me know how to make one. I have some dumb ideas and I'm kinda interested. It kinda depends on the theme, though, I'm not super confident in my ability to do much outside of... like, Twine or something.

I'm going to be as noncommittal as it gets until the day it happens, then I'll decide for real if I'm going to do it or not and stick with my decision.

Avatar image for flameboy84
#34 Posted by flameboy84 (888 posts) -

OK....I have no experience of making games not even the slightest....but I'm going to for this...somehow.

Avatar image for gerbilsinspace
#35 Posted by GerbilsInSpace (132 posts) -

I'm really glad there was some time in between this jam and the Idle Thumbs Wizard Jam, means I can feasibly be involved in both. I'm a web dev by trade, and a friend is a professional illustrator, so of course we will be switching roles for the jam.

Avatar image for big_denim
#36 Posted by Big_Denim (821 posts) -

Dopestopia: a dope dystopian metroidvania about a world that's not so dope.

Why make it? Because Ausitin is dope...Also because he says 'dope' all the time.

I can't make games, but I encourage someone else to make this. XD

Avatar image for crispy
#37 Posted by Crispy (250 posts) -

Aww, unfortunately gonna be at TI6 this year and can't participate. Good luck to all participants!

Avatar image for meepasaurus
#38 Posted by Meepasaurus (265 posts) -
@hassun said:

Johnny RV, fund it, trademark it.

This is a very good idea and I wish I had the time to make it. :(

Avatar image for engineno9
#39 Posted by EngineNo9 (223 posts) -

Kinda crappy that the second weekend coincides with Bit Bash in Chicago. But so it goes. I probably wouldn't have gotten anything decent done anyway.

Avatar image for magnetphonics
#40 Posted by MagnetPhonics (76 posts) -

A good excuse to mess around with pico-8 again

Avatar image for boatorious
#41 Posted by boatorious (191 posts) -

I almost missed this. That's a good week, the boys will be away. (Though I'm still a little bummed the crew never played DSVPT. Would've been rad.)

Anyway, if anyone with any artistic ability wants to work with me, let me know. I plan to make an equally dumb game as last time, but more accessible. Turns out making a game that's deliberately hard to understand is not the best game jam strategy.

Avatar image for thurbleton
#42 Posted by Thurbleton (185 posts) -

So excited for this jam, will do my best to make something fun and cool : )

Avatar image for althox
#43 Posted by Althox (322 posts) -

I will sure try to make something this time! Last time I just got the engine done (total noob to game dev)...

Avatar image for maccoy
#44 Posted by Maccoy (44 posts) -

i think ive figured out unity enough to make something for a gamejam. hopefully i can contribute with something.

Avatar image for df_salem
#45 Edited by DF_salem (4 posts) -

if anyone wants to do something 3d i'd be up for a collaboration. I can do models and animate.

Avatar image for zandravandra
#46 Edited by ZandraVandra (322 posts) -

Time to announce the themes! Hop into my stream and let's find out what we'll be making! :D


Edit: Surprise! Giant ROM 3 will have two themes; pick either one, or go for both!


Happy jamming! :D

Avatar image for isomac
#47 Posted by isomac (148 posts) -

Hmm, I might give the E3 presentation a go. I am not sure what I'll do yet though.

Avatar image for jking47
#48 Posted by jking47 (1290 posts) -

I'm glad we get the Austin farewell option too,I have a couple ideas for that. I will try to make something, will be my first real game!

Avatar image for lcom
#49 Posted by LCom (109 posts) -

Finger's crossed I'll actually have time to put something together for this one! Even if it's just something simple! (I knew exactly what I would do if it had been Johnny V, but I might have an idea for E3...)

Avatar image for chronologist
#50 Posted by Chronologist (314 posts) -

All right, got a premise! I even managed to fit both themes into an idea I had already, so that was really neat.

No Caption Provided

I'm unfortunately short on time so doubt this'll be anything other than a Twine game, but this idea is too good silly for me to not do something with.

Happy jammin' everyone!