Jay Is Games

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Jay is Games
Web address www.jayisgames.com/
Commercial? Yes
Type of site Entertainment website
Registration Optional (Typekey)
Owner Jay Bibby
Created by Jay Bibby and others
Launched April 19, 2003
Revenue Not Disclosed
Alexa rank negative increase 21,482 (April 2014)[1]
Current status Operational

Jay Is Games (A.K.A. Casual Gameplay) is a game review website that features daily updates and links to casual games, browser games and flash games of wide interest to casual gamers. It was founded on April 19, 2003 by Jay Bibby[2] initially as a personal blog, although it now has several contributors.

Several video game genres are covered; including escape the room, puzzle and platform game. The site is constructed as a blog, and attracts a large community of commenters. Jay and the site's staff writers read over and filter the weblog comments, often commenting themselves. Comment threads often include hints and walkthroughs.

Features[edit]

The site includes an IRC chat room where Jay and his fellow reviewers spend some time talking to the other game players and amongst themselves each day. The site does not feature adult content and gives the games it reviews an age rating. It also features a regular online poker game.

Another notable feature is the "Favorites" application, an Adobe Flash based application which allows users to store their favorite game on the site in a sidebar, for easy access. The data for the app is stored in a cookie on the user's computer.

Recently, a 'Help Squad' application was added to the navigation bar of the site, allowing visitors to view the most recently commented on reviews, so that players in need of help on older games (and thus game on which the comment page is not actively viewed) can be helped. A Google widget has also been added, so that users of iGoogle (a Google home page) can see the most recently reviewed games on their Google home.

Competitions[edit]

Jay Is Games has also become known for its game design competitions. As of June 2010, Jay Is Games has conducted seven competitions, with an eighth in progress. Although the first competition was focused on producing simple puzzle games, recent competitions have had themes such as "upgrade" or "replay" that entrants could interpret into their games. This openness garners much creativity from developers and enthusiastic responses from visitors to the site.

Cash prizes are given, and sometimes relevant gifts, such as an Adobe Flash download. The main prizes are chosen by the site reviewers, however a unique Audience Award is also given. This prize is guaranteed "at least $200." Visitors must donate at least one dollar in order to vote (to prevent multiple votes), which goes to whichever developer the voter chooses.

Game Design Competitions[edit]

  • Game Design Competition #1 spanned from August 4, 2006 to August 25, 2006 and had the theme of "a simple puzzle game".[3]
  • Game Design Competition #2 spanned from January 5, 2007 to February 23, 2007. This competition also had the theme of "a simple puzzle game", but also had to incorporate an interpretation of "grow".[4]
  • Game Design Competition #3 spanned from June 13, 2007 to July 15, 2007. This competition's theme was "replay".[5]
  • Game Design Competition #4 spanned from August 6, 2007 to October 1, 2007. The theme of this competition was "ball physics".[6][7]
  • Game Design Competition #5 spanned from January 2, 2008 to March 16, 2008. This competition's theme was "upgrade".[8]
  • Game Design Competition #6 spanned from August 24, 2009 to October 18, 2009. This competition's theme was "explore".[9]
  • Game Design Competition #7 spanned from November 16, 2009 to January 30, 2010. Entrees in this competition had to be interactive fiction games with the theme of "escape". CGDC#7 was also the first competition to be judged directly by the public.[10]
  • Game Design Competition #8 spanned June 1, 2010 to August 1, 2010. This competition's theme was "sandbox".[11]
  • Game Design Competition #9 began on September 22, 2010 and continued until November 15, 2010. This theme of this competition was "friends".[12]

Reception[edit]

The website was praised by the staff of Wired magazine for the contributors' ability to find games; "The signal-to-noise ratio on most gaming portals makes for a frustrating lunch break. This group blog finds the cream of the crop for casual players."[13] Slate's Justin Peters called the site "the Internet's undisputed leader in casual gaming information".[14]

References[edit]

External links[edit]