The Spooktober Visual Novel Jam 2022, Prize Pot at $6,120 USD

Hey there everyone! I’ve come to reach out and tell you about the jam I’m hosting.

I made a brief introduction earlier, but I’m Nai and I’m something of a visual novel fanatic. The community and events that I run and help organize contributes to something around 300 visual novels a year. Visual novels being a type of interaction fiction, I was hoping to also find a home and place for the jam here as well.

Our competition runs on Itch every year throughout the month of September. The goal is to make a Halloween themed, or Halloween adjacent visual novel or narrative game hybrid in time for October. Then, in October, we celebrate and judge the submissions. Each year, we have a number of sponsors contributing to our prize pot, and this year we’ve picked up $6,120 USD from our sponsors. The 1st place team each year takes away half, meaning you or your team could walk away with $3,060 USD. We also have special categories for best musical score ($200), best voice actor($500), and best cinematography($200) this year.

Our competition aims to inspire creators to make the best submissions they can in the month and encourages teams to reach out to all of the creative types that make narrative games, especially visual novels, awesome. Our jam is engine agnostic, meaning as long as your submission can be downloaded from the jam site and can play on a Windows environment, you’re welcome to use it.

If you want to know more about it, feel free to check out our jam page as featured on Itch.

I’ll do my best to answer any questions that come here, but I have to ask for your patience as I’m still new to this board!


We don’t get a ton of VN traffic here, but many of us are fans and hopefully we’ll have some people interested in your comp - especially since there’s a nice prize. There have been a few visual novels and games with VN elements entered into IFComp.

I personally would love to make a VN, but the “visual” part is the roadblock! Most of of the community here write IF which is primarily text and creators tend to fly solo, but we likely have some teams lurking. Thanks so much for alerting us to this!


That’s fine if a lot of VN related folks don’t come through here. I find adding new perspectives, folks used to many different media, to the competition better than having only people who are used to one type of visual novel.

There’s no strict requirements for the content of the visual novel. Some highly filtered photographs can be great stand ins for illustrated art. There’s no reason raw photographs or FMV can’t be part of a submission either. Many of our submittors come from many different artistic and creative backgrounds and we’re pretty open to inventive and experimental styles.

For folks who need to add a few skill sets, we’re having a live, in voice and text team building session in our Discord this coming Saturday at 2 PM EDT. If anyone wants to recruit artists, composers, voice actors, or even other writers and editors, it’s a good opportunity.


I played with Visual Novel Maker a bit, and I was surprised how easy it was. I suppose it would be possible to create a game that doesn’t use character sprites, but is background environments and clickable items sort of like MYST. I actually prototyped a clickable map in my experimentation.


That’s a great idea!

Myst is an old favorite of mine. I gently nudge people towards older FMV style games. The Tex Murphy games were a riot and would work great with VN presentations.

VNs have a wide array of display types these days, so if anyone is caught on "Oh I don’t have the skills or know how to make a VN, you can get very far with just a phone, some friends and some props.

428: Shibuya Scramble is a great example of live action style VNs.

If anyone wants to participate and can’t figure out how to make it work, feel free to let me know and I can offer some suggestions, or maybe even existing examples to help navigate you.


This looks really cool. I’m not very good with horror plots. But perhaps i can think of something.

This is really cool! I’m going to have to see if I can put something together.

Does the jam require choice-based interaction or are parser games good as well? Either way is fine by me, but I just want to make sure I’m fitting the format.