Snow Crash

Download the Standalone Version

Snow Crash is a game that I worked on at a 48 hour Game Jam hosted by MSU’s Spartasoft student group in about February of 2009. 48 hours is not very long to produce a working game from zero assets and no starting concept, but it is a great way to get your development skills razor sharp.  I’m very happy with the end result of the game, and feel like I learned a lot in such a short amount of time.  And the game’s a ton of fun to boot!

With this project I happened to have the incredible luck of being grouped with some of the best developers that MSU has to offer.  Marie, our only modeler, has amazing talent, a great eye for detail and is one of the fastest modelers I have ever seen.  Jon is a prodigy in his own right; it took us until near the end of the project to realized that he was not a senior and was, in fact, a freshmen.  Burt was the most experienced of us, and ended being great group leader and teacher.

The long and the short of this is that as a very green game programmer at the time (Snow Crash being my first game), I was able to learn volumes from this group.  Collaborative design, rapid programming with strict professionalism, team dynamics, seat-of-the-pants design that must be reusable and modular, the ability to code well into the late morning, the wonders of late-night delivery and caffeine, and most importantly, the importance of having a unanimous vision.

A unanimous vision among the group is what truly make that game what it is.  After we finished the first sprint of design and everyone had agreed to it, everyone knew exactly what needed to be done to finish the game.  It was only a matter of coordinating who was working on what and what was our current top priority.

I think it was also important that we all loved every part of the game.  Everything from the style to the feel of the game, to the original design goals.  The fact that we had so much emotional investment in the project really helped keep us going (especially after the 12 hour mark).  With a short schedule and a very real desire to make the game fun and as quality as we could driving us, we were able to get way more done then I would have ever thought possible.  In the end, we ended up having an fun game at the end of the 48 hour limit.

We went on to further develop the game causally off-and-on when schedules permitted.  In addition to the We actually co-founded an LLC to turn the game into an iPhone game.  As soon as we get approval from Apple, you will be able to download it (now named Snowdrift) from the app store for free.

If you want to play the game, please click one of the links above for the in-browser (pending) or standalone application.  Please comment on the game by sending an email to Paul.Dziadzio@Gmail.com

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