Show of the Week: Fortnite and 5 Big Games That Started Life in a Game Jam

Published 4 months ago by Andy Farrant

Hope you like jamming too

Fortnite is a co-op survival shooter game split into two phases: the construction phase, in which you build and fortify a base, and the defence phase in which you run around shooting monsters that are attacking said base. The idea originally sprung up from an Epic Games game jam, as is often the case with ingenious game ideas, as we discover later in the show.

A game jam is an organised event where game developers have a certain amount of time to let their imaginations run wild and develop a game concept from scratch, just to flex those creative muscles.

Occasionally, though, those ideas turn out to be too brilliant, and more importantly too potentially lucrative, to just leave on a hard drive somewhere. So they get developed further into actual games that you can buy, so we get to play them, and everyone wins.

Games such as Goat Simulator, which started life as a joke during an internal game jam by developer Coffee Stain Studios, after they released their very serious sci fi first person tower defence shooter Sanctum 2.

Clearly, these devs needed a break, because if you had to come up with an exact opposite of a serious sci fi tower defence game, it would be Goat Simulator, a game in which you play a goat who runs around destroying stuff.

Similarly, Surgeon Simulator was what a team of four developers from Bossa Studios came up with for Global Game Jam 2013, a worldwide event that encourages people to design a game within a time limit of 48 hours.

Nowdays you can play Surgeon Simulator on PC, mobile and even in virtual reality, which is why it's hard to believe this tiny team came up with a playable prototype based on performing a heart transplant over the course of just a single weekend. Way quicker than six years of medical school.

Previously on Outside Xbox: 6 Surprising Debut Games From Your Favourite Developers.

About the author

Andy Farrant
Andy is co-editor at Outside Xbox, enjoys difficult moral decisions and fights like a cow. You might remember him from such defunct Xbox video channels as Inside Xbox.

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