Our Games: 

All Blog Entries by Tag

Global Game Jam 2013 - Crush

Theme: the sound of a beating heart

There's a game idea I've been kicking around for the last year or so. Right around GDC last year a few things happened in the same span of time: I played Anna Anthropy's Dys4ia, I played Unmanned, and I watched Indie Game: The Movie, where Jonathan Blow talks about taking his deepest flaws and vulnerabilities, and putting them into his own games.

When those things came together, I started thinking about how I could translate my own issues and flaws directly into a gameplay experience. Comically enough, I landed on... the way I get when I have a crush on a boy. There's a lot I can get into about why I consider this to be an *actual* issue (my lack of mental discipline and obsessiveness) - but when I tried coming up with ways to explore my boy-craziness in gameplay, my idea was to specifically explore the heart-in-your-mouth sensation of actually trying to talk to said crush. I thought the panic was pretty interesting, and something that a lot of people would be able to relate to.

But the interesting part is that in the last couple of months, I've started to discover that I might have a real problem with anxiety. Not just the sort of everyday nervousness that comes from trying to talk to someone you don't really know, but irrational, overblown panic and fear. It manifests itself in several ways, and has begun to interfere with my everyday life. Now it seems like this funny, simple idea I've been building up has taken on new significance.

On the way to the jam, we joked about using the GGJ to make a game about anxiety - and then it turned out that the theme was the sound of a beating heart.

Crush is a simple prototype that explores the idea of anxiety. We were trying to recreate some of what I've been feeling. Perhaps in breaking down the pieces that make up a panic attack, simplifying them and creating a system, I can learn something about what is happening to me.

*EDIT* I did a more detailed write-up about making the game & what I learned here.

>> Click here to play the game online <<



Team: Issam Khalil & Cat Musgrove

Time Frame: Friday (01/25) 6:30pm - Sunday (01/27) 2:00pm

Music: from http://www.JewelBeat.com


**Note: It is actually possible to beat the game!

Download the playable prototype here. (Unzip and play .exe)

PrintView Printer Friendly Version

EmailEmail Article to Friend

Reader Comments (2)


I attended GGJ at UAlbany (I worked on All in Vein), and after arriving home I started thinking about the games I saw at the jam. Honestly, the one that stuck out the most was Crush. Sure, some of the other games were nice, but Crush was the only one that appealed to my emotions. It's seemingly simple, but incredibly unforgettable at the same time.

The simplicity of the game world and the graphics keeps you focused on what is happening in the game, making you focus on the anxiety that the player character feels and transferring that feeling to you.

I was trying to watch television tonight but I couldn't get into it. I kept thinking that I should tell you how awesome the game was and hopefully give you some inspiration to keep developing indie titles.

I absolutely loved the game. I will certainly remember it as my favorite game from GGJ 2013. If this is what you can create in 48 hours, I'm extremely excited to see what Trouble Impact releases in the future!

Nice job guys, and good luck working on future games1

January 28, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBrent Popp

Wow, thank you so much - this really means a lot to me! This was an idea I felt strongly about, so it's definitely inspiring to hear that it made an impact on you. Thank you for letting us know!

January 28, 2013 | Registered CommenterCat

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>
« Crush Follow-Up: What I Learned | Main | Meet the Bosses: Boss #2 »