← dom's website - a game by its cover

an annual no-crunch game jam about turning fictional game cartridge label art into real games

from 2015 onwards, jeremy lonien AKA ludonaut and i have been hosting it on itch.io with hundreds of participants and submissions as well as an active discord community.

goals

the origin of agbic is the my famicase exhibition, an annual art gallery hosted by METEOR in tokyo. in it, artists from all over the world exhibit their own and entirely fictional famicom-style cartridge designs. with a game by its cover, we're trying to draw attention to the event and works submitted, inviting game developers to use them as inspiration for a small game (or any other reation), turning the fiction into the real thing.

image credit: cory schmitz

quoting agbic co-host jeremy:

Our second but equally important goal is that we're doing our best to provide a relaxed atmosphere. Like it or not: Game jams, with their historically extremely limited and stress-inducing timeframe of 48 or 72 hours serve to reinforce and normalize harmful industry practices like crunch, for example. Crunch means skipping meals, pulling all-nighters, and ruining one's mental health all just to somehow, supposedly, achieve a better result. We feel strongly about not encouraging that, not even a little bit, so we're doing everything we can with AGBIC to run it as relaxed as possible.

Itch.io provides features for judging, scoring and voting on jam entires - but we very deliberately don't use them. We don't believe competition is a good, healthy long-term motivator.

We're also pretty relaxed about rules. Everything qualifies as a game in our book. Every submission is fine by us, as long as its somehow inspired by fictional game-related art.

And finally, we also keep the submission window open for weeks or sometimes even months, and we will always accept late submissions.

agbic was originally hosted on tigsource and revived in 2015 on itch.io.

while jeremy has been responsible for the majority of hosting duties and communication, i've created artwork and trailer videos over the years, trying to bring a unique look to every iteration. check out the jam pages for details and more visuals.

artwork

jams + submission

links

coverage