Today marks the beginning of one of the oddest events in recent gaming culture. Imagine, if you will, a 48 hour game jam inspired by the spoof twitter account of an eccentric game developer, with participants all around the world developing his absurd concepts into real games. My friends, allow me to reveal to you that such an event is happening: right here, right now – the global phenomenon that is Molyjam 2012.
Recently a satirical twitter account @PeterMolydeux came into public light. The account sends off tweets mocking the flowery speech and head-in-the-clouds nature of UK game designer Peter Molyneux (Black& White, Fable series) by coming up with ridiculous ideas for games that very well could be from the man himself – especially now that he has gone fully independent with his new studio 22 Cans (Still no word on why it's called that).
Some examples of his game concepts follow:
“Try to imagine a game in which you have an imaginary friend who doesn't believe you are real, you must convince them that you are.”
“Imagine carrying a radioactive baby in a pitch black environment, your baby would act as a torch. Rocking the baby intensifies the glow etc”
“Game in which you can only progress during one minute silences. You need to find creative ways to keep the nation having 1 minute silences”
As batty as they are brilliant, there actually is some potential behind these games. Nothing as earth shattering as Molydeux would want, but still something that could be quirky and fun if made into an actual playable game. And thus, a few members of the gaming industry decided to take it upon themselves to organize this game jam and invite anyone to participate. Formed by Anna Kipnis (Double Fine), Patrick Klepek (Giant Bomb), and Chris Remo (Idle Thumbs), they invited developers all around the world to create games based off the ideas from the account. Word has it that Peter Molyneux himself would be participating as well, or at very least attending.
With 39 development teams stationed in 32 cities across 13 countries, the Molyjam has had a far reach indeed. I am very excited to see some of the works that come out of this, as I'm sure many will be worth a good laugh, or imbue me with deep sentimental thoughts about my place in the world. Needless to say this'll be a fun weekend for sure. The jam has already begun in some places (Cheeky time zones, giving people a head start!) and will continue for 48 hours, concluding on April 1st. Honestly, what better time could this have happened than on April fool's day.
You can find out all the information on the event's website, What Would Molydeux? And connect with your favorite developers and local teams.
Update: There is a livestream of molyjam events around the world on Twitch.tv right here.