Game Jam Timeline

  • Start: August 25, 7:00pm CST (Components will be revealed at this time)
  • End: September 27, 11:59pm CST (submissions must be uploaded by this time)
  • Rating/feedback period ends October 01, 11:59pm CST

Rules For Game Jam Participants

  • Be respectful of other jam participants and playtesters
  • No hate speech, bigotry, harassment, or trolling in the game jam forum, the discord, or inside your game itself 
  • No spam (unless you’re planning to put it on rice and wrap it with seaweed). Self-promotion of your games is okay! But don’t ask people to buy sunglasses using your special referral code
  • Submitted games must be your own original creations
  • Members of the CUDO Plays Committee (organizers of the game jam) can create games, but are not eligible to win the raffle prize
  • Submissions that do not follow the constraints of the game jam will not be eligible to win the raffle prize

Accessing Virtual Components

Tabletop Simulator

Assuming that you have already installed Tabletop Simulator AND have not changed any of the defaults: Just drop this json file and this png file into the folder \Documents\My Games\Tabletop Simulator\Saves\ or /<Username>/Library/Tabletop Simulator/Saves/

If it’s going to overwrite a file… don’t do that. Just rename it the next thing sequentially.  

Run Tabletop Simulator. Select “create” at the start and “single player.” It should automatically open the Games menu and you should see “CUDO Plays Game Jam” under the Save and Load section.  

Upon opening the saved game it will ask you to import an image to the blank board. You may do that if you have an image ready, otherwise just click the X in the upper right of the import pop-up to skip past this and start using the components.

Tabletopia

Tabletopia is free, but creating the jam components in it is somewhat more involved. Check this google doc for the walkthrough.

Frequently Asked Questions (General)

  • What is a game jam?
    • Game jams are design challenges where participants create games within a limited amount of time and under specific constraints. Some game jams give you only a few days or even hours to create a new game. For this jam participants will have a whole month to work, but are limited to a small selection of game components.
  • Can I participate if I live outside of Champaign-Urbana?
    • Yes! This is CUDO Plays’ first foray into digital design challenges and we’d love it if people take the opportunity to participate wherever they may be. However, physical component packs are only available for physical pickup in Champaign, and if you win the raffle and need the raffle prize shipped, you will have to pay for the shipping yourself.
  • I’ve never made a tabletop game before. Where do I start?
    • We can help on the CUDO Plays Discord, but also, you can take a look at the CUDO Plays Strategy Guide which walks through the board game design process, or if you need ideas, our Board Game Brainstorm is a fun exercise! Another good tip is to take a classic game you already like and start making big changes to it and see how those go. Before long you’ll have a whole new creation!
  • Can I make a game if I don’t make art?
    • Of course! In fact, because all of the games in this jam use the same components, this is a great event for people who don’t have the skills or time to devote to art. However, if you do want to create art, there’s plenty of space for it on the optional 8.5×11 inch board, or on the itch.io page you will create for your game submission. Also, you’re welcome to use art you find from other creators as long as you give them credit.
  • Can I form a team? Should I? How?
    • That’s a lot of questions! Yes, you can form a team if you’d like! Join our Discord (https://discord.gg/SSVSqYD) to find team members, though you’re more than welcome to be a team of one if you choose.
  • Can I use game ideas I had before the jam started?
    • Sure! Provided you stay within the component parameters.
  • Can I submit multiple games to the game jam?
    • Sure! Though CUDO Plays always recommends that designers focus on one game, as it tends to turn out better. Also, submitting multiple games will not get you multiple chances to win the raffle pack.
  • Can my game have non-family-friendly themes?
    • Yes. However please do not create games solely for shock value.

Frequently Asked Questions (Components and Submissions)

  • Can I make an RPG?
    • Yup! We’d love to play an RPG using the components from this game jam. One word of caution though, our playtest events are only going to be 2-3 hours long, so for best results we recommend your RPG submission be catered towards shorter sessions and one-shots instead of campaigns.
  • Can my game include character sheets or score sheets?
    • Although you cannot add additional components to the game, each player can have their own physical or digital copy of the rules and can take notes there. There are other options for character stats tracking as well such as using cards or the single 8.5×11 paper. Get creative!
  • How long should my game play and how many players should it support?
    • There are no rules about game length or number of players. You can make a solo game or one that requires 18 people. You can make a game that takes 5 minutes or 5 days. However, it’s important to remember that player count and play time will affect how many playtests you’re able to secure. If your game is on the shorter side and is able to accept a wide range of player counts, you’re more likely to get more tests completed and get more meaningful feedback. Also important to note that the official CUDO Plays playtest nights only last 3 hours, so if your game is longer than that you might need to arrange more of your playtests yourself.
  • Can my game include a timer of some kind?
    • No, you cannot add a timer component as it is not part of the component pack. However, that doesn’t mean your game cannot have timed elements with players keeping time by counting or through some other means.
  • Can I cut or fold the 8.5×11 sheet of paper?
    • No, you can’t alter the sheet except by adding an image to one side of it. This is to ensure that both physical and digital players can easily play each game.
  • Can I change the colors of the components when playing in Tabletop Simulator or another virtual platform?
    • Yes, you can change colors of the cubes, tiles, and dice to fit your game’s theme, provided anyone with a physical game component pack would still be able to play your game. For instance, you could make all your tiles yellow in Tabletop Simulator, but you couldn’t change 2 tiles to yellow and 2 to red and make them different mechanically because everyone with a physical game pack has 3 tiles of one color and 1 of a different color. 
  • Can my players draw on the 8.5×11 paper board?
    • It’s reasonable to assume your players will have a writing utensil. It would be okay to write or draw on the board or in the rulebook as part of the game, but not on the cards or other components. It would not be reasonable to assume a player would have specific or multiple colors of writing utensil, so avoid writing rules including these.