Recently, 45 people gathered at Eyebeam Art and Technology Center to undertake the Jean-Claude Van Jam challenge: over two days they conceptualized and built electronic games inspired by action-movie star Jean-Claude Van Damme. Once a group formed, they were assigned a movie to base their game on. The challenge was organized by the Eyebeam Game Research Group and indie video game collective Babycastles. This event is an example of a handful of game jams that happen every few months around NY.
The community involved centers largely around Eyebeam and Babycastles, as well as NYU Poly. The participants gathered recently to show off their work to audiences and a panel of game-expert judges. One group turned Blood Sport into Master Tanaka’s Flexibility Challenge.
Another team created My Thailand, a dating simulation between Jean-Claude and co-star Kylie Minogue, from Street Fighter, in which the player must select real-life Van Damme quotes to flirt his way to winning Minogue’s heart. The winner was Wrong Bet, inspired by the movie Lion Heart. The elaborate installation game involves 10 players involving computers, a betting circle, real money, and real heckling.