Be prepared to invest a whole weekend: It really sucks when part of your team can’t be around for any part of the weekend. It causes a lot of problems, redundancy of explaining and re-explaining things, etc.
That wasn’t my personal experience, more a feeling I got, but not having my programmer able to work until almost 4 on Sunday really put us behind. It wasn’t his fault, his temp job beckoned and was actually paying to be in on a Sunday, so that was fair, but man, it does suck.
In the end it’s one weekend to do something great, you can at least give it that much time, or don’t do it at all. By that I mean, DO IT!
Too much going on that weekend: Not anyone’s fault really, but having the game jam the same weekend as the Harpy Diem opening at Babycastles was a bit unfortunate. Instead of giving my project my all until late at night on the first full day I went and hung out with people at that fun party. A true conflict of interest if there ever was one.
Anna Anthropy!: It was great to have such a vocal and well known person such as Anna open the MolyJam. Games should be made by more people, and the jams feel like they encourage that idea, so it made even more sense having Anna here. Why should Oakland/San Fran get all the celebs?
People were really nice and open: Although I didn’t really work with anyone I didn’t previously know, I did enjoy meeting a bunch of new people. Everyone seemed more open and less like they were already in their own groups, at least mentally, from the get go.
Good work processes: Working in a 2 man group, with a friend I am already working with on another project, really helped us learn even better work practices. We usually bounce ideas off each other on the phone or over email. This time it was face to face, going over stuff in a notebook before even getting to the coding and art. We were able to abandon ideas quickly and even still I kept coming up with new things and trying to plot out our whole game in a tree, and kept getting stuck.