The Games of TOJam #4
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The Games of TOJam #4

TOJam, in case you’ve somehow missed our coverage of the event for the past two years running (shame!), is Toronto’s first and only video game development jam. This city is full of people with indie game-making chops (some of whom may soon have steady work, if Ubisoft decides to staff up with local talent). Since 2006, TOJam has been an annual focal point for all that technical prowess and creative energy.
The event, which takes place in May, lasts for three days and nights. In that time, all participants (there were ninety this year) must completely code an original video game from scratch. We’re told doing this is exactly as difficult as it sounds. Participants lug their laptops and their desktops to a warehouse in east Toronto and develop their games together, in close quarters. TOJam’s organizers provide a general theme (this year’s was “scale”), some food to eat, chairs, electricity, and not much else. Results are usually mixed, but creating a game with even thirty seconds’ worth of entertainment value in such a short timeframe is considered a triumph. TOJam is not a competition (though there are audience choice awards); it’s a supportive, temporary place for indie and amateur game developers to hone their skills and meet one another.
Since covering the event in May, we have been waiting patiently for all the games from this year’s TOJam to be posted online for us to download and play. That day has finally come, and the screenshots you see are a somewhat representative (but randomly selected) sample of this year’s crop of thirty-seven games (one of which is, apparently, missing, and not available for download).
Each one of these games packs a solid thirty seconds of fun (more, in many cases). You would have to be some kind of joyless monster not to at least try out one of the many Flash-based games from this year’s event. Most of the others require a PC and Windows. Some games won’t function without an Xbox 360 controller.
See after the jump for a complete list of games not pictured above. Or, find them all on the official TOJam site.

Not pictured:

…and there’s also a game missing, according to the official page.