Game jams are events, either in person or entirely online, where individuals or teams make video games (or analog games) in a short period of time (usually 24 hours to a month or so), usually with some theme. Some jams have their own dedicated websites, but most are hosted on Itch.io or Gamejolt. I prefer Itch.io for game jams. I host a crap ton of game jams, often without submitting anything of my own. Most of the time, the important thing about the jam is to inspire people to create games with specific themes, usually related to under-represented identities or categories of games that should be more common. Here's some more info about the game jams I've hosted:
Ace Jam was not only my first game jam as a host. It was also the first ever game jam focusing on asexual characters and identity. It's been going on for 3 years now. Ace Jam happens every January. Sadly participation has been decreasing each year. I'll have to do more to promote it next year.
Aro Jam is essentially Ace Jam, but for aromanticism. It was also the first ever game jam focusing on aromantic characters and identity. It's been going on for 1 years now. Aro Jam happens every December. Sadly, it didn't get much attention the first year. I'll have to do more to promote it next year.
Otherships Jam is a tabletop roleplaying game jam that focuses on representing underepresented relationship styles and configurations. It's been going on for 2 years now. There's no set time for it each year, but it lasts a month, generally.
Neurodiversity in Games Jam
Neurodiversity in Games Jam is about representations of neurological diversity in gaming, whether in the players of games, characters in games, game accessibility, or meta on the topic of games (game writing). It's been going on for 2 years now. There's no set time for it each year, but it lasts a month, generally.
This wasn't strictly a game jam. It was a jam about making zines, analog or digital. The definition was pretty broad, and included zine games. I may resurrect this jam someday, but for now it's a one-off.
Mixed Feelings Jam
This was a game jam for mixed race and mixed culture people to make games about mixed identities and characters. Sadly, it didn't get much attention. It lasted six weeks because I extended it. I may resurrect this jam someday, but for now it's a one-off.
Social Distancing LARP Jam
Early on in the pandemic I had the idea to create a game jam for LARPs playable online because I missed larping and there weren't many games written for online play at the time. It got quite a bit of attention, and lots of people submitted games. It lasted for six weeks because I extended it. If the pandemic continues long into next year, I'll host another.
Queer LARP Jam
I created this jam for queer LARPs (particularly those playable online) because I'm in the process of organizing an online queer LARP con and wanted to encourage people to write games that could be run there. Not a lot of submissions, but those that are there are good ones. I kept this jam going for two months.
Queer Magical Girl Jam
I'm planning on running a jam about queer magical girl games with someone I met online sometime in 2021. The idea came to me after encountering homophobia and transphobia in the community space of another magical girl themed jam.