Week Sauce A Chill Game Jam for People with Busy Lives
Why another game jam?
Although there are many great game jams out there, sometimes it is difficult for people to try them out because of:
The fixed schedule: what if you are unavailable those specific dates?
The speed: what if you don’t have the skills to do a full game in a couple days? What if you just don’t like rushing?
The time availability: with jobs, families, and other commitments getting in the way, who can afford multiple uninterrupted days in a row doing this?
The stress: many jams are also competitions; what if being judged stresses you out? If it is supposed to be a fun way to practice and experiment, why do a lot feel like crunch time, and high expectations?
Other extraneous requirements: what if you don’t want to share your code, or your platform of choice is not accepted?
We made Week Sauce for the people that want an easy, laid-back way to practice making games, get better at their craft, get out of a rut or a creative block, and try new things without fear.
How does it work?
There are no set dates. You can start any day you want.
You have 7 days to finish your game. You don’t need to work on it 7 consecutive days, although having a few together, especially at the beginning, usually works better. You can put as much or as little time each day as you can afford.
You can use whatever tools, libraries, engines, or programming languages, and build for any platforms you prefer. You can reuse code, buy assets instead of creating them, work alone or with others. The jam is not only for digital games! Board games, card games, role-playing games… anything you consider a game works.
Once you work on it for 7 days, it is done! Let’s be clear, you probably didn’t have time to make all the stuff you wanted, or get it super polished. Maybe it’s missing sound, or enemies, or a menu screen with a fancy logo, or even win and lose conditions. Maybe you look at it and it feels more like a failed experiment than a full game. It doesn’t matter, it still counts!
So go ahead and publish whatever you have! A simple way is to use itch.io, but you can upload it to your own website, or to any other storefront. You can publish it as free or paid. We think publishing is an important part of the experience, but making the assets and going through the approval processes of your publishing method of choice takes time, so the 7 days deadline only applies to making the game, not the publishing.
If you talk about it on social media, use the hashtag #weeksauce so other participants can find, and talk about, your creations. You can also follow @weeksaucegames on Twitter to check what others are up to. If you publish in itch.io, you can also join the monthly jam there and see everybody's submissions. And if you just want to chat with other participants in a very low-key Discord server, we have one of those too.
Repeat! Try not to work on the same thing two times in a row. Avoid “finishing” the work you did on a previous entry: it is already finished, move on! Do the jam at your convenience throughout the year. It may be good to have a loose goal, like say doing it once a month, but don’t fret if you have to skip some. The whole point is to do it enough you feel positive about getting things done and putting stuff out there, getting better at what you do, and exploring many different types of projects.
What about a theme?
Since the schedule is so open, we use a monthly theme. Feel free to use it or ignore it; if you do more than one jam in the same month, you can use the same theme or try something different.
The theme for June 2022 is…
Choose a place you have lived in. The theme of your game is something that place is known for.
The theme for July 2022 is…
Pick a favorite book, make a game based on a specific chapter of that book.
What were the themes of previous months?
Imagine a game you love is the sequel to an earlier, previously unknown, but recently rediscovered game. Make that game.
Pick a musical group you like & turn their name into the theme of your game.