7 min read

Godotes #5 - Game Jams (Part 2)

Godot developers are showing on big time Jams what the engine can do on a short amount of time. Also, the Godot Wild Jam is Awesome.
Godotes #5 - Game Jams (Part 2)
Photo by Fernando Andrade / Unsplash

EDIT: I send this as #4 on the Newsletter, because I'm stupid. If you got here from there, you're in the right place.

This issue is a little different than what I was planning.

Originally, the idea was to get all the Game Jam entries, clean the data, get an estimation of the number of Godot users in Jams and how were they doing in terms of results. Basic stuff.

The problem, if you wanna call it that, is the Godot Wild Jam.

There have been 29 successfully run Godot Wild Jam events so far. Once a month, uninterruptedly (I think).

GWJ account for ~5.4% of all the Godot games on itch, if we count only the ones with a "made-with" category added. ~12% if we are talking exclusively of Jam entries (2158 entries in total)

This is a two part complication: On one side, simply answering "how many games are made with Godot on Game Jams" doesn't really give us a complete picture of Godot usage overall. Not by itself at least.

How many people participate solely in the GWJ? It would be easy to assume that the 12% of entries made for GWJ events would have been made anyway for different Jams on Itch. And maybe that's exactly the case: Developers looking for Jams to enter, regardless of whether or not is the GWJ.

The thing is, I don't believe that to be the case.

A lot of Jams are about the event, especially the big ones: GMTK yearly Jam, the Global Game Jam, and Ludum Dare are going to have big participation no matter what. But for small Jams, that's probably not how it works at all.

GWJ's community is one of the strongest points of the Jam. probably as important as the Godot focus. I know a few developers who only participate in the GWJ and nothing else. So that 12% probably matters a lot and it's not transferable.

To fix the numbers, I would have to account for other One-Engine-Jams. Maybe Unity has one, or Game Maker. And I could account for a number of events and participation compared to blah blah. Truth is, I'm way too lazy to do all that. Maybe when my itch API is finally ready.

On the other hand, there's the problem of results: There are 29 Jams with 1st, 2nd, 3rd...nth positions won by Godot entries. Do I remove those entries from the comparison, even though they account for 12% of all games made with Godot on Game Jams?

So what then?

Then fuck it. I'm just going to focus on two things: The results of Godot Games on the top 10 biggest Jams on itch, and a little bit on the Godot Wild Jam.

🧮 To The Numbers!

Games made with Godot represent ~2.2% of the total submissions made to the top 10 largest Game Jams on Itch (sorted by submissions, not most joined. That left out GitHub's Game Off 2018, 2019, and 2020)

Full Size Image

This list is, clearly, not comprehensive.

I wanted to include every Jam, if possible. I couldn't, because a couple of them simply don't have an "Overall" category or a ranking system at all.

Even then, it's a pretty nice little list: five Top 10 spots and everyone is at least Top 50. There were plenty of Top 50- Top 100 games to choose from, but this was the best way to show at least one game per jam.

Ten Top 50 games created by Ten different Devs/Teams (I'm only putting down the name of the Uploader, even if the game had multiple developers). With some remarkable results:

Edna, #8 on GMTK 2020, is on the list of "Top Marks" and you can watch Mark Brown talking about it on his "The Best Games from GMTK Game Jam 2020"

All in all, Godot developers are killing it on big Jams. Most of the scores I saw were on the upper side of the results. I'm gonna go out on a limb and make an assumption, even if I don't have the data (yet) to back it up: The majority of Godot developers submitting games to big Jams (and not only joining them) are more experienced with the engine than your average Joe Godot user (Hello again 👋). At least for the ones adding the "Made-with" label.

Probably because a lot of the Jams last only a weekend or so, and new developers find challenging to finish something in time, to say the least.

That's one of the reasons why the Godot Wild Jam, and now the Gotm.io Jam too, are so welcoming towards new developers. They're 9 and 10-day Jams each.

🕹️ Godot Wild Jam

786 developers have worked and submitted a total of 961 games over 29 events.  

Full Size Image

Event #17 was January 2020.

I can only assume the jumps from #18 onwards happened because of Covid. More people with extra time to join the Jam.

I myself joined my first Godot Wild Jam on #21, when Covid restrictions kicked in with force (where I live). And I wasn't the only one, apparently

As of the publication of this issue, the community on the GWJ Discord channels has 1718 users with a role, divided as follows:

  • 211 Designers
  • 208 Artists
  • 168 Composers
  • 1131 Programmers
  • 410 Users looking for a Team

I don't have the numbers from previous months though. I imagine they're growing/shrinking on par with the submissions.

~81% of all games were made by Solo Developers, versus ~19% on a team.

I'm not going to show the most prolific devs, because there will be too many coincidences with the list on "Issue # 3 - Developers". Including JohnGabrielUk As the Champion.

The Jam even took a page out of the GMTK Jam and started announcing the Theme on their official YouTube channel, at least until last month.

In conclusion: I believe the Jam is going places. And I really hope it does. But if you wanna get a more in depth history of the event as a whole, I HIGHLY recommend you to watch the upcoming GodotCon 2020 Talk, this Saturday, by Kati Baker, titled Godot Wild Jam's story:

This talk will share the story of the Godot Wild Jam (GWJ), why it was created, how it has grown, and its future goals. We'll discuss how to start a community and the pillars in maintaining and moderating GWJ. We'll also be highlighting developers who have continued their own work post-GWJ after getting their start with us.

P.S.: One extra thing before moving onto the news:

The Godot Wild Jam doesn't require participants to add a "Made With" category, so only a fraction of the total games have it.

260 out of 961 games, or ~27%.

Now, I don't know if that proportion is the same as in the general population. But if it is, and the number of Godot games on itch without a "Made With" field is around ~70% of the total, we could be talking of a whopping fifteen thousand Godot Games on the platform.

I would like that to be the case.

What it's definitely the case, is that from now on I'll be adding the non-tagged games from the GWJ and Gotm.io Jam to the total number of Godot Games, at least for general purposes.

So the current number of games, as of Jan 22, is 5,442.

4,741 Tagged games, and 701 non-Tagged.

📰 Godot news round-up

Still speaking about Jams: Gotm.io Jam #1 started today! There's $80 in prizes, 60 developers have joined so far, and the theme is :

📰 💣 Destroy Everything! 💣

📰 GodotCon 2020

It starts tomorrow, 23 of January. 16 talks, one day. Starting at 8:45 GTM, and running until 16:30 (GTM)

I'm going to leave the official announcement here:

📰 Gotm.io Fall Review 2020

The gotm.io team published a nice update on gotm.io things and added the platform stats  of 2020 on a really nice graph:

As you can see in the graph above gotm.io is growing quickly and we are looking forward to 2021. - The gotm.io team

🗺️ Godot Community Map announcement:

Starting from today, there is a new User groups page on the Godot Engine website! This page replaces the old User groups page by featuring a community map that can be freely navigated and contributed to.

Godot Showcase: Resolution developer Monolith of Minds talks about their experience

📹 HeartBeast added a Devlog for his (and his brother) upcoming game, Demonlocke:

It comes, as with most HeartBeast videos, with good advice and a couple of articles on the description:

📘 Mastering Godot, a new Godot book, is out on Amazon (non-affiliate link, in case you're wondering)

💰 Lospec Gallery, Lospec's Kickstarter campaign, still with 20 days to go, already passed the main goal by $4,622

  • Current amount: US$ 14,622

From Reddit:

If you have anything you want to share with the Godot development community please let me know by sending an email to contact@godotes.com