Michal Miškerník

ŠPONGIA 2023: Introduction

This year I took part in the ŠPONGIA game jam as the technical half of Marshmallow Team. The game jam is primarily for high school students. Anyone else is welcome to participate, although just for fun. They will not receive any points and therefore cannot win. The participants have 17 days to implement a game based on the theme, which was point-and-click adventures this year.

Our team won the competitions 10 years ago, and we wanted to do something special for the anniversary, something that wasn't done before in this game jam. We decided to create not just a game, but a whole handheld console, that will match the game's aesthetic.

This has several challenges:

  • We need to find or design custom hardware, including a microcontroller, display, speaker, buttons, etc.
  • To customise it, we have to design and manufacture a custom shell for the hardware
  • The game needs to run on limited and battery-powered hardware, while still running smoothly
  • The game has to be doable within the 17 days
  • Since the judges are distributed across 2 countries, we will not be able to let them play the game ahead of the demo
  • The submission needs to be purely digital, not a physical device

All in all, this project took almost 3 months from start to finish, but the result is worth it.

I will describe all the important parts in the next posts, both for me to remember, and for others to take inspiration from. Enjoy!

This post is part of the ŠPONGIA 2023 series.

  1. ŠPONGIA 2023: Introduction
  2. ŠPONGIA 2023: Hardware
  3. ŠPONGIA 2023: Custom case