Double Fine has decided to combine their ability to raise money with their ability to create interesting titles with their upcoming in-house game jam, Amnesia Fortnight. Double Fine is giving members of the community who donate to the Child’s Play charity a chance to decide which of the game jam’s pitches become a prototype. This isn’t the first time they’ve used an internal game jam to come up with a title. In fact the game Costume Quest was an idea that originally came from a previous Amnesia Fortnight within Double Fine. Normally Tim Schafer is the one who selects the titles, but this year they’ve decided to leave the decision making up to their community.
In the video above, Schafer outlines why this process has been success for Double Fine in the past; it’s a great morale booster, helps them come up with new ideas, and gives members of their team who haven’t had a chance to lead in the creation of their own title. The only real part about it that has changed this year is that now the community is deciding on which ideas become prototypes.
For those of you that aren’t aware, a game jam is an event in which a team of developers get together and come up with a game or prototype from scratch in a short amount of time. This can be anywhere from a day or two to a couple of weeks, and it’s a process which Double Fine has been using for years.
According to Tim Schafer, Double Fine refers to their in-house game jam as Amnesia Fortnight because they forget all of their ongoing projects and do it all within two weeks, or a fortnight. This time around the rules are simple; everyone at Double Fine can pitch a game – of which there are 23- and the community gets to choose which of these pitches will become prototypes. While in the past it has been Schafer himself who decides which projects to continue with and which to forget, this time it will be those who donate to their charity or to the Humble Bundle organizers.
It’s really a win/win situation for everyone involved. The charities get some cash, Double Fine gets some new ideas backed by the community, and fans who participate can experience part of the game development process. The entire process will be documented, with developers answering questions from the community before the voting is finished.
There are 6 days left to vote if you’re interested. By the time this was posted they’ve managed to raise about $17,000 with over 10,000 people participating. So far the leader is a pitch called Spacebase DF9 which has over 1,000 votes, roughly 200 more than any other titles. So if you’re feeling charitable why not head on over to the Humble Bundle page and cast your vote? It’s not very often the community gets a chance to choose a title for a major game developer.