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Wed Jan 14, 2015Firaxis Game Jam

By Site Administrator

A tradition at the studio you may not be aware of is the Firaxis Game Jam. This is where our devs get together and make a game over the span of a weekend. This year a total of 13 Firaxians made up seven teams. Sleep was lost. New ideas were born. Seven cool games were made. 

This marks the 3rd Firaxis Game Jam for our studio. Originally started in 2011 by Barry Caudill, Director of Gameplay Development, we try to do a game jam once a year to have a little fun and so our devs can unleash new ideas. While there’s plenty of interest around the studio for participating, we generally try to wait until the team schedules allow for participation. Teams can be made up of any number of people, and participants are encouraged to try something new. During the first game jam, XCOM’s Senior Producer, Garth DeAngelis, impressed us all when he composed a killer soundtrack. In the end, the coveted “Golden Mouse” is given to a winner.

This year’s theme was “The Butterfly Effect.” This is the theory that a small change can have huge impacts on the future. With that, we would like to present to you the entries for the Firaxis Game Jam 2014. 



By: Will Miller, Designer

      David McDonough, Designer

In Ages, you watch over a small area of land over three time periods. What you do in an earlier era will change the future. As you make your way to creating the game-winning Ziggurat, evil spirits work to destroy what you’ve built. If the evil spirits destroy the catalyst of your civilization, all your progress in the future vanishes from existence.


Bearly Makin’ It EX++

By: Tronster, UI Programmer 

      Rob Sugama, UI Artist

Bearly Makin’ It is the almost self-explanatory game featuring a bear trying to survive the harsh seasons. Collect food to make it to the next level, but also make sure you’re planting trees for next season’s harvest. Food is scarce, and the hungry squirrels looking to steal your food from underneath your nose don’t make it any easier.


Final Burn

By: Sid Meier, The Man

Sid Meier’s Final Burn features a set of intergalactic explorers looking for a way home. They have only enough fuel for, you guessed it, one final burn. Aim the lone spaceship and hope the gravitational pull of nearby planets works in your favor. Did you miss Earth and now you’re stranded in the deepest darkest corner of space? Give Final Burn one more try and see if you can adjust your trajectory to make it home.


Chroma CaTasTROPHE

By: Scott Ramsay, Programmer

      Jen Kraft, QA Tester

      Michael Kotey, QA Tester

Chroma CaTasTROPHE is a multiplayer side-scrolling shooter that tells the cautionary tale of what happens when you forget to feed your pets. As the protectors of the ocean, you must fend off an army of robots led by an evil and hungry cat bent on eating all the creatures of the sea.


Ryan Meier’s Fire Patrol

By: Ryan Meier, Designer

A forest is on fire, and there’s only one cure… water, of course. You have limited resources, and the fire is spreading. Time is not on your side. Call in an air strike of water bombs when things get out of hand. When you think you’ve mastered Ryan Meier’s Fire Patrol, it’s time to load up the dreaded Fireonman difficulty.


The Eponymous Butterfly and Her Extraordinary Effect​

By: John Stewart, Senior Artist-Animator

Enjoy your own personal peaceful garden groomed by the Eponymous Butterfly. Turn a field of nothing into a field of berries and flowers with just a few flaps from the butterfly’s golden wings. Watch what you cultivate—not every plant is compatible with each other.



By: Mark Nauta, Designer

      Dan Price, Audio Designer

      John Heeter, Technical Artist

In RoboSelection, you command, but don’t directly control an army of robots. Input an offensive ability, formation, and movement pattern into your army’s memory and hope it beats your opponent’s tactics. Get into your opponent’s head and predict what they’ll do next to come out on top.