Super Game Jam is an episodic documentary—in each of the five (30-minute-ish) episodes, two people get together and spend 48 hours making a game. Because each episode features different people, the entertainment value depends on ten individuals and the chemistry of five pairings. That's why episode one is, by far, my favorite. And why I could barely
finish episodes two and four.
As others have mentioned, the technical quality varies dramatically throughout the documentary. The camera work in episode five is especially awful. You will also see the cameramen sometimes, which is just poor editing.
Each episode starts by showing you some things the jammers have made in the past, or are currently making. Then you get a game prompt (episode one's prompt, for example, is "breakup"), and a discussion of what the game will be. Then they start programming the game, making the music, making the art, and recording the sound, depending on the episode. There are points during each episode when they play the game. Mostly it's just the jammers discussing the game, with over-the-shoulder shots of their screens. The episodes finish with a quick play of the game, a short pub/house party segment of other people playing the game, and mini-interviews with the jammers talking about the experience/game.A lot of people will find this boring. I found it boring.
SGJ isn't just five video files and five games. It's a surprisingly buggy, fullscreen-only application with absolutely no settings, which comes in the form of an 11.5 GB download. The video player has three features: pause, volume control, and seek. Thankfully, you can avoid the application altogether and view the videos in your preferred video player by browsing through the SGJ's files. (Which you should do if you have blurry video in SGJ's built-in video player.)
These are jam games. While some of them are cute, you probably won't play any of them for more than five minutes.
The Special Features
SGJ comes with "uncut discussions" and/or deleted scenes for each episode. Some are quite short (1 minute), others relatively long (18 minutes). And you probably won't watch them.
It also lets you listen to the music. I didn't like the music.
Is too high.
I really did enjoy episodes one and five. Some people enjoy all five episodes. If you think the entertainment you'll get is worth the price tag, then you should buy it. But maybe only when it's on sale.