Pseudo Game Jam

Results (Group B)

Pseudo Game Jam - Group B

The results are in! We received 31 procedural poems throughout the month of July. The poems were then anonymized, and distributed to three editors each, where they were scored for clarity, how well they fit the theme, and their ingenuity. Based on those scores we have narrowed it down to 6 finalists. But rather than posting all the poems and finalists at once, we’re going to publish 10 poems, including 2 finalists, each Wednesday for the next three weeks. In the meantime the judges will conduct a second round of judging, and we’ll announce the winner on August 27th.

That said, we received some fantastic entries and whether they were finalists or not they all deserve to be shared. Please Tweet and post your favourite poems by right-clicking on this Link to this Poem icon next to the poem you want to share and copy the link.

You can find the first group here. Below is the second group. The third and final group will be posted on August 20th.


Cameron Hadfield | The Drive of a Lifetime
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The Drive of a Lifetime

The drive of a lifetime, where in the objects you bump speeds you up.
The glitch, the visible ties that physics initiates breaks the system.
A collective of sport where teamwork and making friendship occur is the drive of the life.
Either team effort or solo queue, the way of travel marvels for the distinct notion to direct towards the goal.

———— Non poem Description ———–
A system where physics is jolted with acceleration by bumping into things for a vehicle driving game. There in confined by a circuit course, moving along a path, objects allow the players to speed up rather than the traditional notion of hitting objects that slow them down. The various objects, the gameplay questions their behaviour of physics and to exploit the view of what real world and virtual reality has to offer.

Alex Leavitt | Cumulus Rising
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Cumulus Rising

Cumulus Rising
is a massively-multiplayer,
procedurally-generated,
action-based,
competitive
cloud simulator.

The player begins with water vapor, formed into a cloud.
The cloud boasts cloud physics,
reproduced from scientifically-accurate cloud data
(and rendered by a voxel-based, cloud graphics engine).

The cloud is white, or grey, or blue.
Or, in a sunset, shades of orange and pink.
The game presents the player with a robust avatar-customization interface.

The player encounters other players in the sky
wafting in the atmosphere. PvP.
Avatars are fluid: a cloud melds with another cloud,
a player forced to cooperate with another
due to a jet stream. The bond is atomic, until they part.

The player grows her cloud:
first a low stratocumulus,
growing to altocumulus,
towering over as cirrocumulus.
Though the game is an open world,
the player will not encounter all clouds.
The pace is slow,
as clouds are wont to be.

And she encounters challenges in the environment:
smog, hurricanes, aurora borealis, rainbows, a kite.

Underneath the cloud cover, the player generates her score:
when the people live in her weather.
10 okta for shade,
50 okta for rain,
and that one there, yeah, it kind of looks like a rabbit with a tophat.
Have a few points more.

Shawn DeSouza-Coelho | River
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River

“These movements cannot be described as the passage from beginning to an end. These rivers flow into no single, definitive sea.” – Luce Irigaray, This Sex Which Is Not One

River is a digital game for one player, playing as Woman, situated within the Womb of Language.

Goal: Woman’s goal is to find its Purpose within the Womb of Language.

Set Up: At the outset, the Womb of Language consists of a single random Word, but not the Word itself. Rather, Woman is presented with a boundless cloud of words consisting of every possible definition, usage, synonym, etc. that that particular Word has ever been an accomplice to, the Word exploded through space and time, its Residue.

Play: Woman, embodied as a completely transparent entity, moves fluidly through the three-dimensional space of the Womb of Language. At any moment Woman may shift instantly to another location, continuing movement without pause, without break. In moving, Woman may choose to pass through a word in the Residue, opening up the word – like a portal – leaving behind the Residue of the previous Word. Woman is then presented with the infinite Residue of this new Word. This process continues until Woman has found Purpose.

Woman cannot fail, for there is no Right Word.

Ian Martin | Survival Simulator
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Survival Simulator

Survival Simulator is a game for one person; however, it allows the player’s friends to send help via social media.

Platform: Mobile (the player must carry it with them wherever they go)

Goal: To survive.

Set Up: The game begins when the player suddenly, or finally, finds it too hard to exist. This game requires no preparation, because the player is never prepared.

Play: The player must tap on the screen to progress in the game. Their avatar will slowly move toward the right along an endless and empty expense. The play area is a stagnant slurry of grey and black. There is no finish line.

At times, an obstacle will appear and impede the player’s progress. The player must pay the game a small fee using their own real-world money to replenish their energy and overcome. These barriers will be almost constant in the beginning, but as the game goes on, they appear less frequently.

As the game goes on, it gets easier.

Survival Simulator will ask the player’s permission to connect to their Facebook and post on their behalf. When asked, the player’s friends are able to remove obstacles in the game. The game, however, will only make posts informing the player’s friends that no help is required, and that everything is fine.

If the player stops tapping the screen, their avatar stops moving. Staying still for too long causes the game to charge the player more money. This happens automatically, even when the application is closed. There is no way to avoid it.

The game ends when the player runs out of money, either by clearing obstacles, or by standing still. When the game ends, it deletes itself from the player’s phone.

The only way to win is to be constantly moving forward.

Lisa Weddehage | Grey
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Grey

“Grey” is a single Player game based on the dicisions of the Player.

Goal: The player is confronted with different and dificult dicisions, which will influence the the avatar and the world around him.

Set Up: The player starts as a normal human being, who wakes up in the morning

Play: The game confronts the player with moral disicions. The Game offers the choice with the most possible points. The player can decide if he or she will follow the orders of the game and earns as many points as possible or if he or she will make up their own minds and follow his own moral code – even though that means he or she can’t get the highscore.
The dicisions shouldn’t be just good or bad – black or white. Every dicision has good and bad consequences, the morally right choice could bring negative consequences for the player.

For example: The player plays a game with a child. The game chose the player the right key combination to win the game. But the player can decied if he or she break the rules of a game and don’t push the right buttons. If the kids win, the player will lose important points. In order to reach the high score, the player must beat the child in a game. It is the player’s choice.

Owen Vince | PAYWALL
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PAYWALL

PAYWALL is a platform game for one player.

Goal: the player’s goal is to run ahead of a continually moving wall (the “paywall”). Their goal is to avoid being “overtaken” by it until, eventually, their character dies of old age, illness or financial insolvency.

Set up: each level represents a stage in the player-character’s life. They begin in childhood and must successively move through themed levels which include school, work and retirement. Meanwhile, the wall – a continually moving force, never slowing or showing remorse – attempts to overtake them.

Play: the player must navigate a series of obstacles familiar to platform games – hoops to jump through, pits to leap – while the wall moves forever forward. As the game progresses, the player’s agility – while peaking as an adult – declines, as they are saddled with hard-to-avoid “afflictions”, such as illness, debt and depression.

If the player is “hit” or “overtaken” by the paywall, the game requires that the player pays to unlock further content, while saddling them with additional “afflictions” that further slow their progress in the game. Debts reduce their dexterity and speed, while depression causes them to slow or for the controls to invert at random. Health is limited and continually reduces. “Medicines” can temporarily restore some health, yet at the cost of further debt “afflictions”.

The game ends either when the player runs out of health or when they can no longer afford to escape the paywall, and cannot therefore continue. Their reward – if they die ahead of the paywall – is to pass on only a fraction of their “afflictions” to the next player. If they lose, however, all of their afflictions are passed on.

Steven Margolin | Power Hungry
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Power Hungry

Power Hungry is a game for two players with one person acting as the instigator.

To begin the game neither player will have eaten for a day. They are then brought to separate rooms where they cannot see the other. Placed in front of one is an elegant meal; the other player is given a plate with poison on it. Both players are aware of what is on their respective plates. At this point ask: “Do you feel powerful?”

Then remove the divider to reveal both players sitting opposite each other at a dinner table. Both players can see each other and both plates. Now ask again: “Do you feel powerful?”

Then leave the room.

“What it lies in out power to do, it lies in out power not to do” – Aristotle

Liz Boltz | Beyond Good and Evil
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Beyond Good and Evil

“He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster.” ~ Friedrich Nietzsche, Beyond Good and Evil

Genre: Single player, First Person Shot-At.

Goal: Survival. Or justice. Or altruism.

Set up: In each game instance, the player is randomly assigned as an unarmed person in a conflict, and is pitted against an armed artificial intelligence. Attempts to understand the algorithm underlying the shooter’s actions may help the player to survive in some instances; others are completely arbitrary and have no win-state. Each level has a limited time duration. The game restarts if the player is shot or when time is up.

Play: the game begins. You are assigned the role of a teacher at Columbine High School on April 20, 1999. You can choose to negotiate, bribe, or reason with the shooter; attempt to trick or disarm the shooter; or to hide. The game begins. You are assigned the role of an unarmed security guard at a music festival, faced with an unruly and increasingly violent crowd. An audience member pulls a knife and rushes toward you. The game begins. You are assigned the role of a prisoner in the Dachau concentration camp in the winter of 1933. The game begins. You are assigned the role of a passenger on United Airlines Flight 93, September 11, 2001. The game begins. You are assigned the role of a seventeen-year-old Central American boy trying to bring his ten-year-old sister across the United States border in the summer of 2014. The game begins…

Sanket Subhash Khanwalkar | To Err is Human
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To Err is Human

GOAL: World’s deadliest conflicts have occurred owing to a series of shortsighted/inhuman decisions. How would the world be if you get a chance to flip those decisions and make this world a better place to live?

SETUP: The game consists of episodes, each episode inspired from a major event in the world history, Eg: WorldWarII(Release new episodes half-yearly maybe). Each episode contains major milestones in the order of most recent to the actual source in the end. Player’s aim is to flip these critical decisions and change the future(the present now).

GAMEPLAY: Each milestone allows the player to change future course through his decisions(solo/team) based on his skill/platform like physical fights(solo/troops) or strategic(empire-building) or comprehending humanitarian scenarios(pull social interactions/discussions here). Decisions improve/repeat/damage the future. Player completes the episode only once he corrects or destroys the source of the entire catastrophe.

EXAMPLE EPISODE: WorldWarII

In this episode, the player starts from the highly disturbing aftermath of WWII(1945 maybe). His subsequent missions are to minimize the human, financial and moral losses in events like nuclear-bombings in Japan, Pearl-Harbor, Nanking-Massacre, Katyn-Massacre, biochemical-weapons, Holocaust and several battles across Europe. Some missions involve leading large armies to neutralize the opponent while others demand strategic-pacts and counter-intelligence. Strategic decisions may be influenced by several available facts/figures(opponent’s AF-naval-military strength, challenges, weather, supplies, economy, strategic benefits, etc). Certain pacts may involve interactions through multiplayer/social-platforms for taking decisions with deeper insights. Decisions eventually evaluate the new future and apparent success. An episode ends with a highly anticipated root cause. As an exception, only this particular episode ends with curtailing the ambitions of Germany-Italy-Japan in post-1920 era but leaves room for eliminating the real root-causes in another episode of WWI!

THE END: The game leaves players with a restless feeling ‘could I have done anything more’?

Adam Rafinski | Church of Play
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Church of Play

The goal of the game is to figure out what play is. You are part of a secretive society that connects existentially with play, which has been around for millenia. You call yourself an Activator and have a fictional Engineer Identity, because you see to find others of the organization and deepen your personal relationship with play. You run physical and virtual Workshop, where you invite others to create their own Rituals (Ways to Play), through which they become the right to become initiated. An initiation is a private ceremony that is co-designed by all players. Or you can run a virtual or physical Manifestation (Public Service) of the Church of Play, giving Players access to our Rituals. Players that come up with their own real Identity (Engineer) and a Rituals during that may also choose to become initiated.

There are only two rules to the game, everything else is up to iteration: 1. Everything that is created must be compatible with play. 2. The game is going to end. When its going to end is a secret only initiated members have access to. Take control of your own destiny. The Church of Play is real. Everything you do after joining the game is to. Join the Church of Play today!