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In this guest post, Bossa Studios CMO Tracey McGarrigan talks us through a gamejam, the starting point for all of her company's games.

Every Bossa title starts its life during a gamejam.

To start the jam, we all have breakfast together (which sometimes involves actual jam), during which anyone from any department (artists, designers, QA, coders, musicians, marketeers, commercial product managers, data analysts etc.) is free to pitch their ideas with the aim of getting mini teams together to experiment with cool new concepts and prototypes around the gamejam theme or mechanic.

A gamejam at Bossa Studios
A gamejam at Bossa Studios

The teams then have 48 hours to transform these great ideas into something real and fun for players! It’s a chance to not only work alongside new team members, but to play around with new technologies or learn something new outside of our usual roles.

It’s this way of working that keeps Bossa dynamic, innovative, collaborative and transparent. We believe that creative ideas can come from anyone and though a passion for games is essential, a hunger to make things that no one has ever seen before in brand new ways and the freedom for everyone to be a part of that process is why our gamejams are so important.

At the end of a gamejam, we usually share some pizza as all the ideas are presented back to the whole studio for feedback, and of the 80-plus games ideas we jam during a year, two or three will go onto become fully produced once the studio decides which are our favourites—sometimes it takes a while for us all to agree, but we always do in the end.

We also believe in the power of open development and after each jam, we then share what we are planning to work on with our community, who in return, share their ideas with us and help shape our games from the very early stages. For example, every island you see in our latest title Worlds Adrift is made by our players!

A Bossa gamejam is quite a unique way of working in the games industry, and is all about trying new things with an open mind. In this spirit, we hope everyone visiting the Power Up! event this month has fun discovering new games to play and love!

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