Experience. Experiment. Expertise.

Created in 2014, EXPER3 is a home-brewed annual game development jam that takes place at varying times during June, July, and/or August, depending on which of these works best with local schedules. It started as my 30th birthday gift for my husband, a professional software engineer that has always dreamed of creating his own games. Life’s many demands have a penchant for getting in the way of long-held dreams, and I wanted to encourage him to give his creations the time and energy they deserve.

As a writer, a gamer, and a would-be RPG Maker creator with limited coding experience, I elected to face the same challenge alongside him – both to further my own long-term goals of publication/release, and to force allow him the freedom to use our free evenings and weekends for the personal projects he puts off in exchange for spending more time with me. We encourage anyone and everyone who has dreamed of making something and releasing it into the world to join us in pursuit of their own creations. If others are inspired by what we’re doing, we’d love to share that wealth.

The rules are somewhat loose, adapted from the goals set by other game jams such as Ludum Dare, and from my own experience with National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). Participants may choose to create four small independent game concepts during the EXPER3 month, or work on a project of larger scope for the entirety. Any and all engines, languages, platforms, and genres are welcome. The goal is to produce a functioning, playable end product by the end of the month. Release is not mandatory; finished games may be in alpha state as long as they are playable. Perfection isn’t what we strive for here; only getting things out of our brains and onto a screen.

There is an annual theme for EXPER3, which I have taken the liberty of choosing at random. Projects must draw their inspiration from this theme to qualify, whether that inspiration is implicit or explicit. I try to think of interesting and broad concepts that might make for fun games, and run with whatever suits me by the time the challenge starts.

Past themes have included:

  • July/August 2014: power
  • July/August 2015: illusion

If you decide to join us, please let us know! We’d love to encourage you, and since this is very much a personal challenge (rather than an organization or business) we’ll never know unless you tell us. I will be happy to trade links and offer what feedback/support I can to anyone making an EXPER3 project happen.