Petits essais dessinés Ep.4 : La culture du jeu vidéo

Aujourd’hui on discute d’un outil que nous sommes en train de créer : la carte du monde du jeu vidéo.
Dans le petit essai dessiné de cette semaine, Oscar vous la présente et vous l’explique :

Voici la carte :
La culture du jeu vidéo

Alors rendez-vous dans les commentaires, sur Youtube ou sur les réseaux sociaux pour nous filer un coup de main !

https://twitter.com/themgames

https://www.facebook.com/themgamesstudio

A non-exhaustive list of Game-Jam-made games

Game Jam Preserve


Game Jam – Oscar Barda

By Lisa Schaeffer

Here it comes, a new article from Them Games!

So we went looking over the internet but could not, for the life of us, find a list of video games made during game jams – a sort of compendium of success stories if you will !

Of course, this list is far from complete, and will be updated as jams and time pass.

Drop us some names in the comments or by email, we’ll be pleased to add them!

So here it is, in all its glory:

GAME TITLE GAME JAM OF ORIGIN PLATFORM
Classroom Aquatic Oculus VR Jam 2013 Steam, Oculus Rift
0rbitalis LD28 You Only Get One Steam
Evoland LD24 Evolution Steam, GOG
Surgeon Simulator Global Game Jam iOS, Android, PS4, Steam
/ Escape \ LD 21 Escape iOS, Android
Sputnik Panik Flappy Jam itch.io Android, iOS, Ouya
SUPER HOT 7DFPS Jam Steam
Gods Will be Watching LD26 Minimalism Steam
Deadcore (Deadlock) 7DFPS Jam Steam, Desura
Inside my Radio LD23 Tiny World “Digital Stores”
Costume Quest Amnesia Fortnight Double Fine iOS, XBLA, PS3, Steam, Linux
Stacking Amnesia Fortnight Double Fine PS3, PC, OSX, Linux, 360
Goat Simulator Coffee Stain Studios jam Steam, iOS, Android
1 shot 1 kill LD28 You Only Get One PC, OSX, Linux, Browser
TRI : Of Frienship & Madness LD20 It’s Dangerous, Take This! Steam, GOG, itch.io, Humble
qbqbqb LD26 Minimalism Steam, Humble, iOS, Android
The Sun and Moon LD29 Beneath the Surface Steam
Titan Souls LD28 You Only Get One PC, OSX, PS4, Linux, PSVita
Broforce LD23 Tiny World Steam, Humble
Retro Game Crunch LD24 Evolution Steam, Humble
KRUNCH MiniLD21 Greatest Fear Steam, Humble
Dynamite Jack LD6 Light&Darkness Steam, Humble, iPad
Galcon Fusion LD8 Swarms Steam, iOS, Humble
Galcon Legends LD8 Swarms Steam, Humble
Galcon 2 LD8 Swarms Steam, iOS, Android
McPixel LD21 Escape Steam, Humble, Android, iOS
Mini Metro LD26 Minimalism Steam, Humble
Color Zen LargeAnimalsGames Pjct Days 3DS, iOS, Wii U
TinyHawk LD11 Minimalist iOS, Browser, PSN
Fishslap MiniLD24 Pick’n’Mix Android
Super t i m e Force Toronto, Ontario Game Jam 2011 XBLA, PS4, Vita
Connected Words LD30 Connected Worlds Android, Browser
Soccertron LD28 You Only Get One Steam
Dodge LD26 Minimalism Browser, Steam Greenlight
Vaults inc LD29 Beneath the Surface Still in dev (PC, Mac, Android, iOS)
Singular LD28 You Only Get One itch.io, iOS, Android
In vivo LD27 10 Seconds Humble, itch.io
Bad Hotel LD20 It’s Dangerous to go Alone! Take this! Steam, iOS, Android
Vox LD23 Tiny World Steam, Desura
Quiet, please! LD22 Alone PSMobile, Android, iOS
Expand Adelaide GamesDevClub Jam ‘10 Windows, OSX, Linux
Even The Stars Space Cowboy Game Jam itch.io Windows, OSX, Linux
Mew-genics LD24 Evolution  
Offspring Fling 2011 Game Jeam ‘Motherhood’ Steam, Desura, own store
Darknet (Ciess) Oculus/Indiecade VR Jam Oculus + ?
The Binding of Isaac Procedural Death Jam Steam, PSVita, PS4
Pew*9 Global Game Jam 2011 XBLIG
Hex Heroes School Jam 2013 PC, OSX, Linux, Wii U
The Last Night Cyberpunk Jam 2014 In dev
Super Hexagon (Hexagon) One day Jam Game Steam
Hot Tin Roof One Game a Month Steam, GOG, Humble
In Tune BoobJam In dev
Hexagarden LD24 Evolution In dev
Hoplite 7DRL iOS, Android
Wojna Taniec Hits Playtime In dev
Kawiteros One day Jam Game Steam
Spacebase DF-9 Amnesia Fortnight Steam, Humble
Hack’n’Slash Amnesia Fortnight Steam
TowerFall: Ascension 48H Game Jam (?) Steam, PS4, Ouya
I Am Bread Bossa Studios Internal Jam Steam
The Lamp & The Vamp Procedural Death Jam iOS, Android
Sublevel Zero LD29 Beneath the Surface Steam
Dark Echo LD26 Minimalism Greenlight, iOS, Android
Eufloria (Dyson) 2008 TIGSource Procedural Generation PC, OSX, Linux iOS, Android, PSN
VA-11 HALL-A 2014 Cyberpunk Jam PC, OSX, Linux, iOS, Vita
Please, Don’t Touch Anything LD31 Entire Game on One Screen PC


Art movements in video games, an introduction

«Someone who thinks games are not culturally interesting is illiterate. It’s 2014. Be a snob, not an apologist.» – Eric Zimmerman

When I talk about Art movements, I imply that games are Art. This first article is not mandatory in the series but, I will lay down foundations and will be going through the different tools I use every day talking about games to a general audience (which is my job) often ignorant (and sometimes very dismissive) of video games. You might therefore find in this section a good selection of vulgarised ideas to use on your uncle who only sort of gets technology and literally plays zero video games in order for you to gain his approval on your way of life.

    A foreword of advice

When I introduce video games as an artform, I answer the question straight away: they are.

If global warming has taught us anything it’s that close minded people are not accustomed to the precaution of vocabulary any scientific method commends. You need to express the consensus in simple and direct terms, with certainty if needed. If you are proved to be wrong in the future, do correct yourself but if at a given time, global warming strongly seems at 97% to be human caused say it is. Don’t lose yourself in jargon defending “a very likely theory”. Say “the science is certain and irrevocable, it is”. You are the knowledgeable person on the matter, act like it and make your point before presenting yourself as just another member of an ongoing conversation where everyone has their equal say even.

«Are games Art?»

«Well, the consensus is that it’s likely even though in the industry many people still think that…» no, skip this part and go straight to this one:

Music is aesthetic meaning from sound, Pictural Art is beauty born of visual representations through paint or drawing, architecture is giving meaning to a traverssable sculpture and games are the art of giving humans something to do. Their meaning is coded in rules and abstract propositions and is expressed, made apparent and senseful through active participation in an experience.

Monopoly, Pong, Rugby, all give you something to do and you derive meaning and aesthetic through acting out their rules.

What the game of Go says about the human condition is in its ruleset and remains consistent while played with beer caps or on an ivory board just as Mona Lisa would be the same painting while shown at Le Louvre or in the Amazonian jungle. Context is context, not the piece itself. Even though Go’s meaning is, as all Art’s is, open to interpretation.

    Disclaimer and retenue

Take heed though: saying games are an art-form does not mean every game is Art: much like not every movie is Art, nor is every book or dance move, theatre piece or music track… The vast majority of games played in the world is likely to be non-formalised: you play with water under the shower, run your fingers on the edge of a bench, try to avoid walking on certain-coloured pavements…

And even in the products that come to market, the vast majority of them are kitsch: a dumbed down expression of the art-form, reduced to it’s barely-meaningful parts.

The kitsch paintings of yore were the reduction of the Art of painting to a mass-produced, landscape-adorned, decoration object. When they originated in industrialising Europe around the 1860s to cater to the demands an ever-rising middle-class of bourgeoning bourgeoisie trying to mimic the richer aristocrats, kitch painting became that decorative less-than-Art, non-meaningful or talk-worthy, utterly conventional class of objects that resemble great museum pieces in many ways but carry as little meaning as possible. Kitsch exists everywhere, in every media and art-form and is made to be absolutely and unreservedly non-thought-provoking. Most games are Kitsch but not all of them are.

Transformers is kitsch

Twilight is kitsch

Pop culture is built on kitsch.

And if you (or your uncle) can’t point to a piece of Art in the field of video games, think of it like this: when the Lascaux paintings were made, could anyone point to a masterpiece of a painting? Likely not at the time but it did not mean that painting could not be an art-form, just that in this precise context, no œuvre was known to the early wielders of pigments that could be pointed to as an illustration of a realised potential. It likely took literature, dance, sculpture or music millennia to mature, don’t expect video games to do so in 40 years.

Video games have not been here for long and not being able to point to a chef-d’œuvre of the field does not mean there can be none.

    The gamey-game part

While talking about Art movements in games, we will examine the game-part of the pieces evoked. If you’d allow me, I will illustrate this with a game most everyone has played or seen enough of: the first Mario Bros.

The game-art underlying the piece, is making you jump and avoid obstacles, it is making you reflect on a projection of yourself moving through perilous environments and the emotions born of it. That is what I will be talking about and analysing.

Now “Platformers” are a genre, they are not really an Art movement: they have many of the qualities movements have had in the past: they adhere to a ruleset of stylistic and thematic approaches, have an underlying theme of peril generally running through them and express it mostly through a set of tools and techniques (pixel art, fixed cut 2D perspectives) that say something about what it means to be human and how games should treat them according to the genre, but their expression comes from somewhere deeper.

Mario is the piece

Platformer is the genre it inhabits like still-life or thrillers.

Pixel art, chip tune, 2D are the techniques, like paintbrush or charcoal drawing, like handwritten or printed, like what instrument is playing the music you’re hearing.

What Art movement does Mario belong to? I don’t really think it belongs anywhere… It’s a piece that stands as an exploration of possibilities in a barely born medium and is therefore quoted to illustrate what I mean by “game part” rather than to tease a first movement.

We might note here that some Art movements, techniques, and historical moments are linked (like impressionism and oil painting around a certain period or baroque music and clavecin, gothic architecture and stone) but the are not necessities of one another. One could make a impressionist drawing, a 3D platformer or a plastic church in the purest flamboyant-gothic style.

In this exploration of the young art-form of video games, we will try to pinpoint these early Art movements, some of the ones I find interesting or worth talking about for what they have achieved or what they say about us, humans playing with them.

The first upcoming article in this series will be about the first one we identified at a café in the middle of the summer of 2012 with Heather Kelley, Brandon Boyer, Alex Fleetwood, David Calvo and my humble self from a pun I had made earlier coining Journey, Dear Esther and Gone Home as “Justwalkingism”.

I will, as I have done in this too-lengthy-of-an-introduction use many hazardous metaphors and comparisons to help me make my point, they are not to be taken at face value but rather understood as a way to help us all think of games in another light and try to formalise the premises of a grammar of video games that I have been willing to start writing about for too fucking long.

____________________

If you wish to participate in the conversation, feel free to do so in the comments, on our facebook page, harangue us on twitter or mail me at oscar@ ourwebsite adress which is themgames.net.

inSynch is out

Our game, inSynch, our first commercial release is finally out. inSynch started as a group of 3 guys who wanted to make some things together and then did on a fun occasion. When that was done, we said “let’s make a video game company” and on the 11th of October 2011 we did.

TGarticle

Now, 927 days, a PhD for Charles, moving in together, working hard and a lot more later we are proud to present inSynch to you who are reading these words.

We hope you find this humble assemblage of code, music and photographs to your liking, you can find more information and a purchase link on the game’s dedicated page:

www.themgames.net/insynch/

insynch

If you are so inclined, you will find in the coming days some links to thoughts and reviews that the press might have published about our game on this very page.

A new trailer’s in town a release’s inbound

Hello everyone, here’s the new version of our trailer annoucing the release date for Linux, Mac & Windows of our first game ever!
We’re very excited to tell you all that inSynch will be purchasable on this very website on the 24th of April 2014!

Si vous le désirez, vous pouvez activer les sous-titre en français sur la vidéo Youtube !