Casual Gameplay Competition 3: Results

By: Derek Yu

On: August 2nd, 2007

gimme friction Jay is Games has released the results of its third Casual Gameplay Competition, where the theme was “replay.” Specifically, Jay was looking for games which have a lot of replay value. The winner, Gimme Friction Baby, has a genuinely interesting concept behind it, but its replay value would benefit a lot from a little more speed, in my opinion.

And there were some games in there that I felt had even better ideas, like Timebot, but perhaps less replay value. Seriously, try Timebot out, it’s a hoot. (I also reminds me, when is Braid coming out?)

The Casual Gameplay Competitions are great because it’s obvious there’s a lot of enthusiasm behind it and the games are always interesting and fun. Great job! But if we’re picking a game for having the most replay value, I’m going to have to posthumously nominate and vote for Benzido’s Too Many Ninjas (WIP), which has basically turned our Feedback forum into a crackhouse…

  • fish

    agreed, gimme friction is waaaay too slow.
    having to wait between each turn sucked. all the fun. out of it.

    but very interesting concept indeed.

  • Mazapán

    I think it’s great. Congrats to Walnoot!

  • Jay

    Cheers Derek for the post! :D

    And to set the record straight, it wasn’t a competition for the most replay value, there were many other metrics the games were each scored on. Implementation of the theme “replay” was just one of many.

    And I was frankly very disappointed in a few of the comments posted to our announcement of the winners, some that I recognized as members of your community here.

    Regardless of whether someone disagrees with the decision, speaking out negatively about the results certainly doesn’t add anything to the celebration for the winners. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, put yourself in the shoes of the winners and try reading negative comments posted to your own celebratory announcement.

    While people are free to speak their mind, a better choice of words and restraint should be offered rather than “disappointing results” plus a long argument.

    How about something like “not my results, but thanks JIG and game designers!” and leave it at that?

    We work very hard on these competitions and judging them is not an easy task. Have some compassion for everyone involved, please?

  • Prio

    Jay, my opinion of you just went from decent to near-bottom in a matter of minutes. I am seething right now.

    I regret to say it, but I don’t think I’ll be visiting JIG in the future.

  • Derek

    No problem, Jay. Thanks for having the compo in the first place! :)

    Regarding the comments (which I did not read before I posted), I can’t say that I find it to be necessarily a bad thing that there is a little grumbling, although I agree credit should be given to your hard work. But it seems slightly tyrannical (in my opinion) to not let people speak out against something they feel strongly about?

    In this case, it also seems obvious to me that Timebot would be considered a much better use of the replay theme than Gimme Friction. So I really do feel like those “naysayers” have good points… my personal feeling is that if you call something a “theme” you are implying that you’d like to see it incorporated into the actual design of the game. For example, if the theme was “pause,” I would expect a game where the gameplay was built around that idea would win out over a game that just makes you want to hit the pause button a lot.

    Perhaps (as a friendly suggestion), instead of taking a just a hardline stance on your position in the future, you could give a little to those that disagree with you on your site? It only seems fair to me, since you are expecting them to relent on their opinions.

    Because there is a certain unfairness to the developers who spent time to think more deeply about the theme, when they could have just worked on a game geared toward being played over and over. I realize you have a more broad rubric for judging, but still!

    Also, I take slight offense to the implication that these are “TIGSource people” going over to your site and causing a ruckus. Honestly, dessgeega was the only name I recognized, and she isn’t currently active on the site. Not that it would matter, because I’m not inciting anybody to go over there and post negative comments (although I do try to promote open thinking and speaking one’s mind on the site).

  • rinkuhero

    I agree with Derek’s comment, but can’t add much to it.

    I’ve run similar theme-based contests in the past (the Human Day contest, a contest for the Ohrrpgce engine). The announcement of the winners always got comments by people who disagree with the choices. It’s a part of the territory.

  • Zmann

    Derek I love you.

  • Derek

    And in this case, the disagree-ers were exceptionally polite and willing to explain their views without resorting to flaming of any kind. (More so than a lot of the “positive” commenters, actually.)

  • Jay

    Well that went over like a lead balloon.

    Derek, I’m not looking for credit; compassion is an entirely different thing. It goes with being mature and civilized and respectful of the efforts of others.

    And I always encourage constructive criticism at my site, those words must appear a million times on the pages of JIG. However, not all negative comments are constructive.

    There were 6 judges(!) by the way. Timebot, though it is one of my personal favorites, scored 6th overall. It was also difficult for some people to grasp, and it had some usability issues by forcing the player to switch between the mouse and keyboard frequently.

    The theme was “replay”(!) If this wasn’t a competition to reward replay value, then when? You seem to discount replay value when you say: “unfairness to the developers who spent time to think more deeply about the theme, when they could have just worked on a game geared toward being played over and over.” Do you it’s easy to create a game with good replay value?

    And I’m sorry you took offense to my comment, none was intended. I wanted to speak my mind here, to the others I had recognized as well, since you seem to disagree with the results, too.

  • Alec

    Uh, compassion? On the internet?

    Expecting everyone to say “thanks” is a bit much.

  • ZombiePixel

    That’s fair enough. The JayIsGames audience leans much, much more towards the casual spectrum than TIGSource so some disagreement was inevitable. The issue of Timebot’s controls being a prime example.

  • rinkuhero

    Does anyone really believe that the winners would be hurt if they read comments saying that their games shouldn’t have won? I’ve read dozens of comments saying my games are all kinds of horrible, I’m not hurt by them.

  • Derek

    I don’t think it’s easy to create a game with good replay value, but you should consider that “replay as a theme” versus “good replay value” are two very different concepts, and you seem to be focusing on the fact that they share the same word over what they both mean.

    “Replay” is a general word that has lots of interesting ambiguities behind it and could be interpreted in many different ways.

    “Replay value” is a very specific thing that is unique to video games. It relies on a game being compelling and unique with each successive playthrough. And honestly, simple “high score” type games are geared more heavily toward this over any other genre.

    So, in my opinion, there are two types of contests that would have been more appropriate to reward “replay value” specifically:

    1. a more general “best overall game” contest or

    2. a contest for games where the goal is to get a high score

    I actually didn’t disagree with your results, I just noted that the replay value of GFB would be enhanced by a faster style of play. But now that I know that your original contest description did not specify that “replay” = “replay value” I do disagree with the results. ;)

  • Jay

    lol! Fair enough, but keep your disagreements over here, mkay? ;)

  • Twisted Rabbit

    Interesting. although i do agree with Derek. I when i first saw the “theme” of the contest we would be seeing stuff with like instant relays and stuff, not geared toward re-playability, but you did say there were wide interpretation of the theme. I did like the runner up a lot.

  • Prio

    >It goes with being mature and civilized and respectful of the efforts of others.

    Basically, dare to disagree with Jay on his website, and you’re immature, uncivilized, and disrespectful of the efforts of others. Remember that, kids.

    > lol! Fair enough, but keep your disagreements over here, mkay? ;)

    You heard the man, Derek. Stop sending your secret TIGSminions over to Jay’s site to disagree with him. Fess up, mister mastermind, everybody knows you’ve got your hand up our butts.

  • lol

    Editors and TIGSource visitors are fucking immature people.

    Thanks for the confirmation, Capt. Oblivious.

  • Prio

    Most. Ironic. Post. Ever.

  • Jonathan Blow

    Braid is coming out … When It’s Done.

  • Moose

    Ouch! I saw the comments on the JIG board and they did seem a little harsh to me – but I liked most of the games in the competition, including GFB, and am now hoping to be able to learn enough Flash to enter one someday :)

    The only complaint I can see is that the announcement of the theme is also the start of the contest time limit, so it tends to be assumed that the thing stopping people from starting work on their game for Comp #4 right now is that they don’t know the theme. Taking something general like replay value to meet the theme of “replay” effectively could make it much easier for someone to enter a game they had been working on for months because it happened to be replayable. I’m _not_ saying that Wolter or anyone else in the contest did it but I can see a bit of a risk there.

    And congrats to everyone who entered :)

  • Jay Replay

    “speaking out about the results certainly doesn’t add anything to the celebration for the winners”

    “How about something like “not my results, but thanks JIG and game designers!” and leave it at that?”

    “keep your disagreements over here, mkay?”

  • Jay

    Thanks Moose.

    The theme will be announced on Monday, I’m just waiting on the art work for it.

    Every competition so far has been a learning experience, as we have tweaked each one based on what worked (or didn’t) with the one before it.

    We didn’t want to constrain the theme too much by saying “replay value” because we were hoping to see some creative interpretations of the theme as we had seen before. And we did!

    But the issue is that some feel that a creative interpretation of “replay” trumps “replay value”, which is a subjective argument. We will try to avoid these issues with future competition themes.

  • loller

    seriously, i’m gay?

    just askin’.

  • Derek

    “We didn’t want to constrain the theme too much by saying “replay value” because we were hoping to see some creative interpretations of the theme as we had seen before. And we did!”

    That’s fine, but the designers were in the competition not just so you could see their creative interpretations but also to win. :)

  • Prio

    Thanks Jay. (The real Jay.)

  • limousinedriver

    Man, you guys are crazy. I come to all these sites just to find games that are fun and share them with my friends.

    Getting so… involved. Lotta passion flyin’ around here. Not a bad thing, but unexpected.

    And for my money, even if Gimme won audience favour, Rerun did the best implementation of the “replay” theme. Please don’t hurt me! :P

  • haowan

    My opinion is that Jay should think hard about what the internet is about and learn to accept that one cannot have a perfect wonderland even if one were to work hard to make one’s web site as innocent as possible.

    From what I can tell JIG is supposed to be accessible to anyone, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t have discussion. The comments weren’t particularly antagonistic – if you thought they were then you’ve obviously been living in your casual gameplay bubble too long and haven’t been visiting other sites to see what the internet is really like. This is further backed up by your assertion that TIGS members are out of control or even posting comments on your site – I don’t know which TIGS you’ve been visiting but dessgeega rarely if ever posts here nowadays and none of the other comments on your article come from regulars here, as Derek pointed out. To have you come over here in a blind rage and make these baseless accusations is quite frankly an insult. Grow up, people disagree with you sometimes.

    If you obfuscate the meaning of a core competition term, you’re going to get debate on its meaning. So you deserve all the discussion and debate and criticism you have received.

    I think JIG is a great site. It’s full of awesome content and always has interesting games posted to it. Keep up the good work but for goodness sake, grow a pair.

  • FireSword

    There was a time i liked flashgames, i visit jay site very often..
    Some consideration:

    1-U have no proof it’s jay speaking, gee it could be Peni with a diffrent nick.
    2-I agree with some comment, i tested myself people are a bit too nervous around here and unfunny.
    3-Who the hell cares about flashgames?
    Are u serious? ahahaha

  • fish

    boo fucking hoo.

  • Adam Atomic

    Timebot is friggin GENIUS. Bouncy countdown game may be a tad more stylish, but timebot’s gimmick is fabulous, and an awesome take on the “replay” theme.

    Just my 2 cents!

    Thank you for having the contest jay :)