Week 11: Start screen and fixing code

This week will be mainly adding codes for mechanics or editing code in game maker. I have learnt how to use code more effectively and to clean up unnecessary code. This makes the game less buggy and when in need, the code is easier to read and edit.

To update, Meepoo’s collisions are incredibly frustrating at the moment because she gets stuck everywhere. From the walls to the edges of the floors, she just can’t seem to move without getting stuck.  It will be something that I will continue fixing and testing.

I was looking over personal notes and testing the HUD (heads up display) which will be used for the health bar/ flower counter/ vase piece counter. These are things that can’t be interacted with and will just be visual in the game. The text boxes for the cut scene is something I am also starting to finish up. Since they are more of a GUI, they can be interacted with (to skip a text box using the keyboard perhaps?).

UPDATE: Finishing up the text boxes currently and I am adding text to it (script for characters and narrator talking), so there is a lot of rewriting to make sure it is simple and to the point. Surprisingly, this is taking quite some time because I thought I knew the story well enough to come up with character and narrator scripts instantly.  It actually takes a lot of editing to make it flow and understandable.

Coding language is interesting and in terms of coding for game, there are definite differences compared to coding for databases, websites or GUI’s. Using python again was still a challenging experience , even though I had basic knowledge of it. Since I was coding specifically for a game, having that past knowledge for coding databases, websites (HTML), GUI and python really made me understand it more and find errors a lot quicker. Here are a few examples of my coding:

controls
This is the code for the Keyboard inputs (controls). As a side note, I should also show the set of rules early in the game so players know how to play.
collision ground
This code is for the ground collisions. The script checks Meepoo’s contact with the ground tile and stops her from going/falling through it.
fade
This code is for the fade. This goes between rooms (in game maker terms) and it generates a fade transition. It will be used for the start screen, start of the cut scene and end etc.

I have also learnt to use time management better because in game maker, the engine follows your code to produce an outcome and when errors show up, you have to set time for testing and research. I am also learning to code more in depth for mechanics which I haven’t done before so having that success of a sprite moving or collecting something is really nice. I have to admit, I am not great at making a game or coding but I am trying my best to make things work and be less buggy. I have noticed that I am making more notes and changes to my game in order to further develop it. I only hope that the final outcome will be worth while and playable.

UPDATES: I have decided to not use slopes in my game because it creates more problems and I have already used too much time just researching and testing it. Even though I used a method that was a common fix for slopes )which we learnt in class and was online), I found that it caused more problems and still didn’t work.

I have also decided on using one enemy in the first level because while I had planned for two types, I found that the enemy I was more invested into was the Chumps (little blue creatures). The mechanic for admitting flowers took more time to develop as well because of the randomization, therefore I have decided to just use one enemy in level 1 and focus on this mechanic. I am also trying to figure out how to make them spawn from the sky and what amount would be acceptable to fight off. I think having this one enemy is already enough to push the player for obsessing over the vase piece because the more that they are in your way (since they come towards you) , the more you want to defeat them to get to your goal (finding the vase piece). This comes back to the idea that the harder something is to get, the more perseverance we will have to retrieve it. It depends on whether the particular item is a ‘need’ or a ‘want’ and how much we value it.

I also created a start screen for the game to open up with because I felt like it was appropriate.  The background was also for testing the colours and designs. This made it really helpful for shapes and objects. The start screen also includes some objects that i wanted to showcase and the two human characters. It’s not animated but will have some animation on the start button to emphasize it.

startscreen capture with gimp
Start screen includes the main character (Meepoo), Baguette (Friend), Watermelon (object Meepoo could collect if she goes back for Baguette), Vase pieces and a Burr Flower (to increase health)

Game Review: Kirby – Super Star

How challenging was it to discover the value of the game? The value of the game needed more time to be uncovered but from the beginning when the story is told, you get an idea that it is about justice and bringing back balance to Kirby’s home from invaders.

Graphics: 7/10

The graphics are nice and don’t just play towards bright colours in this game. It does have dark elements because of the change in setting and time (from day to night) in the level. The style is less pixel art based as some previous Kirby games have been, it has smoother transitions for colour and shadows which is a nice touch. I did find that this game has a lot of flashing for either boarders or sprites when in battle. This could be tiresome to the eyes and even triggering.

Sound: 8/10

The sound was really enjoyable and had that classic Kirby theme. A lot of whistling and pitched sound effects were used to bring that lighthearted mood. When you complete a task, the main theme that plays to say it was successful was also a piece that was very encouraging and delightful.

Story: 7/10

The story has Kirby go on an adventure to find all the stolen food before everyone in dreamland starves. is still the hero of the story and needs to go confront the enemies, King Dede and his minions. It’s not a rescuing mission but it is still about saving the day and does help reinforce the values.

Controls: 7/10

The controls are simple and there is a very helpful tutorial in the beginning if you are a new player. While it is responsive, I found that the flashing of Kirby constantly made the controls harder because you would get distracted and confused what to use for attacks.

Replay Value:7/10

This game is quite fun, especially in the adventure aspect, however the constant flashing of visuals, especially the main character you play as (Kirby) was very distracting and even tiresome for the eyes. So I wouldn’t recommend this if the player is sensitive or can be triggered by quick flashing lights.

Week 10: Designing the level and the Sprite Sheets

I am now putting all the components together to create the game and this includes all the visuals and implementing the codes for it to run. First I will create sprite sheets for all my characters, objects, platforms and background decorations. By doing this, I am able to see the flow of all the sprites movements, check sizing and check if things are in level with each other or off centered. The sprite sheets have been converted to .jpgs so excuse the quality and blurriness. Here are a few examples of my sprite sheets:

meepoo_throw
Trying the throwing mechanic if watermelon weapon is gained (watermelon only gained if player goes back for Baguette at the end of level 1.) This mechanic and sprite won’t be used for level one but will be used to try out code and develop the game.
meepoo_jump
Jumping Sprite For Meepoo

UPDATE: I ended up only using one of the jumping frames instead of all 10 frames (as seen above) because it made the mechanic crash quite often when changing between a jump, walk cycle and idle sprite. It also lagged less with one frame for the action, keeping it simple. I choose to use frame 6 because it had enough visual information to convey a jump.

meepoo_walk
Walk/acceleration (run) cycle

 

chat_meepoo
Meepoo chatting sprite sheet (used in the cut scene at the beginning)
chat_baguette
Baguette chatting sprite sheet (used in the cut scene at the beginning)
floating_platform
Platform sprite sheet
bg_trees
Background platform decor sprite sheet
health_emoticon
Heath Meter emotions sprite sheet

 

My visuals are then all exported and put through game maker. This is where I have to manually size the collisions for the visuals because even though they started out all in the same sized dimensions, sprites that have motion will have changes in placement of hair and body parts which affect the areas for collision.  So I will be checking this mainly after I have a few platforms down with my background.

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Game Level Designs: Concept/ideas

The game level will be as mentioned in the earlier blog posts but now have everything actually mapped out in Gamemaker. I am starting out with putting the sky in and laying down the first few platforms, adding collision and then bringing in Meepoo and Baguette. They both have to be at the start because that is where they meet and tell the story and tell the player how to play. I am also looking into implementing code for fading transitions and text boxes.

UPDATE: So far I have my characters in and moving, they can both blink and Meepoo has a working walk cycle which can accelerate. She can also jump now with one frame change which was a lot easier and straight forward than using 10 frames for one action (as seen above)

I will keep mapping out my game level design and test areas to see if the character can jump high enough to reach floating platforms, collecting inventory etc.


Game review: Pitfall – The Mayan Adventure

How challenging was it to discover the value of the game? The game has a focus on survival when the elements in the Mayan jungle are trying to hurt you. The player has to use wits and tactics to get out of situations and have a strong sense of timing as well. This is shown through using vines to swing across and battling enemies. The adventure starts because you have to go find you father whom gets kidnapped and shows value of family, safety and intelligence. Once you get into the gameplay, the values become pretty obvious and works throughout the story.

Graphics: 9/10

The graphics were impressive for the time and had a lot of details. Especially in the main character sprite where any action he did would have multiple frames to show motion. Such examples would be when he swings from a vine or lands. There isn’t a scene where his motions aren’t lively and this is extremely strong when he fights and jumps to battle the jaguar. At the time, due to technology and storage space, the layout of the background was essentially a large piece that got split and tiled when making the game. So the backgrounds are held up with tiles but the coding is done very well to hide any notion of split pictures/scene. This saved memory and would have been more work but it was done so seamlessly that it doesn’t distract the player and still allow specific areas of this design to be zoomed in on.

Sound: 9/10

The track that starts off the start screen and cut scene already builds an upbeat sound for adventure. Animal sounds were also incorporated into the gameplay as background noise which made the Mayan Jungle so much more lively and active. The enemies you meet also have build ups of sound which makes you have a sense of urgency when fighting them as they charge at you.

Story: 7/10

The story is simple, you have to rescue your father who has been kidnapped in the mysterious and hazardous Mayan jungle. The process for the story to develop is what pulls the game through and strongly emphasizes on how far you would go to save family. While the story isn’t anything new, it is the process for the story to develop which makes it enjoyable.

Controls: 8/10

The controls are responsive and each motion this main character has is visually stunning to watch. Whether jumping, swinging or using a weapon, the characters details make the simple controls much more lively and seem responsive.

Replay Value:9/10

This was a game that had mixed reviews by people but is still a childhood favorite of mine. I recommend this game and believe it has replay value because the beautiful movements and designs really shows the dedication and effort put into it. The story may be basic where you have to go rescue someone but the adventure, the process was exciting and creative.

Week 9: Designing Objects

This week, I will be focusing on the objects and the mechanics for them to work.

watermelon
Watermelon weapon concepts: For Meepoo’s Attack and is given to her by Baguette.

I have a couple of objects in my game that heavily rely on each other for the game play. An example would be Meepoo’s watermelon weapon that she can use for attacking enemies. The design had to stay consistent with the style and colour palette so I did tests against the platforms and sky background to check this. The watermelon was originally faceless but i decide to make it more cartoony so it felt more like a companion. Since it will be given to Meepoo by Baguette, it could also reference back to him  for that emotional connection. The watermelon will only be given to her if she goes back to help Baguette at the end of level 1. The watermelon is an that you don’t intend to gain but will help in future levels to defeat enemies.

I had to trial a few faces for the watermelon before making the final decision. The face had to be able to hold up a certain cheerful emotion that referenced to Baguette and Meepoo’s friendship and also not overpower the weapon too much.  This object however will not be seen in level 1 and only in Baguettes level (if player chooses to go back for him) and the future levels that wont be made. I wanted to make the design and use it in the start screen to hint that there is another object you can collect, besides the vase.

 

For the flowers, I had to decide on the designs and colours that my concepts didn’t touch too much upon.
I also used opposing colours to emphasize which flowers will be positive (healthy) and which ones will be negative (unhealthy).
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Concepts on how the flowers interact with the chumps
20170529_124614
Here are a few examples of my objects I have created so far:
UPDATE: The flowers that the chumps admit, (as seen below) will have a slightly different mechanic from what I mentioned in the previous blog. I decide that the positive and negative flower will only affect the Freckled Flower counter for lives and not the health bar. This is because it started becoming too confusing when trying explain this mechanic.  So I am keeping them solely for the Freckled flower counter which gives one new life to Meepoo when 10 positive flowers are collected.
health bar snip
Creating the Health meter/life counter with many layers. (The face will having changing emotions for Meepoo’s health status and the numbers are for how many lives she has left.)


Game Review: Super Mario World/ Yoshi’s Island

How challenging was it to discover the value of the game? Once you play through the levels, you start noticing the importance of each character’s roles which enforces the values of friendship and cooperation. Certain areas need team work from both Yoshi and Mario therefore the value is quite easy to notice.

Graphics: 8/10

This is a very pixel art based game but the solid colours and design make it still very appealing to look at. The use of illusions to create visuals were impressive and creative. Something like the water looking semi transparent when moving makes you take another look because there is no transparency on the layer but it is the pixel design and spread of it that makes it look transparent.

Sound: 7/10

The sounds were fun and really reminiscent of other Mario and Yoshi games. It was upbeat and lively to pull through with the adventure and the sound effects only make it cuter.

Story: 7/10

The story is another damsel in distress situation where Princess Toadstool is missing so Mario, Yoshi, and Luigi have to cooperate to find her. While the story is basic and common, the focus on having multiple heroes and for them to cooperate makes this really appealing.

Controls: 7/10

Simple controls that are responsive but nothing too hard  or new. It also definitely has influence from the original Mario 2D platform games.

Replay Value:8/10

I find that this game does have reply value, especially since it is also multiplayer to include friends/family for this experience. The reply value comes in on the adventure because you have to constantly cooperate and switch between characters for their strengths.

 

Week 8: Designing Game Mechanics

Paper Prototype: Testing the Mechanic of my game’s point system and defeating an enemy.

meepoo_paper

Meepoo will have to defeat these enemies called “Chumps” and she will destroy them by jumping on them. A puff of smoke will show up to indicate the enemy’s death and release a flower (object) at random that could either be a positive flower(makes her more healthy) or a negative flower (makes her less healthy).

A change I’ve decided to make was to have the flower (either positive or negative) hold in position on the platform for a while because it allows the player to choose whether to pick it up or not. This change was influenced by the testing of my mechanics and it ended up seeming too forced to have the flower collected once the Chump was destroyed. It keeps the idea of having unexpected outcomes from the players choices (to battle against the enemies) and wouldn’t agitate the player if the randomization created multiple negative flowers that Meepoo would have no choice but to collect.  So this change was necessarily and really brought out when testing my mechanics.

Also, when the maximum amount of flower points are collected (10 flowers), the game will give 1 new life to Meepoo and reset the flower counter to start all over again. There may be a colour change or little animations of stars to emphasize this.

The top left corner has Meepoo’s face as her health bar and every time she gets hit or hurt, it will change colour (from healthy:green to moderate :yellow to unhealthy:red and vice versa) and change her expression (healthy: beaming happiness, moderate: neutral, unhealthy: sad). The life counter, ‘x _number_’ (as seen in the .gif  ‘x3’) will indicate how many lives she has and once she runs out (‘x0’), it will be game over. When Meepoo has collected 10 flowers, her life bar automatically increases (+1 life) and a change of colour or a  few star animations may be used to emphasized this.

The Chumps will spawn out of the sky and slide across the platforms to try come towards Meepoo. When Meepoo stays still (idle), I will implement a code perhaps that makes the Chumps target her more to make it challenging. They will continuously slide across a platform and fall off when there is nothing underneath them. If not defeated or provoked, they will just continue their job and slide across but this just means Meepoo misses out on some flowers opportunities. The more Chumps destroyed, the more possible lives Meepoo can gain.

Using the ‘Clash Royale Pitch v1.1 [1]’ as reference, here are my two visual slides for my game treatment:

Game Treatment.png

Game Treatmentpg2v2SPELLING CHECKED



Game Review: The Old Tree

How challenging was it to discover the value of the game? This was such an interesting find because this game is only one level and is so well paced. The value of the game revolves around a little alien that goes from destination1 to destination2 and in that journey you get to see the destruction that has left the world uncomfortably eerie and destroyed.  It has great pacing to get finish the level but you really do need to go through it entirely before discovering a value.

Graphics: 8/10

The graphics were an interesting choice but blended well to create this sinister, almost ghostly setting. The alien also made it more bizarre and we followed it to it’s destination. The graphics were definitely an aspect I really liked because it looked so different and moody. Muted tones and strong uses for light really made it mysterious and exciting for exploration.

Sound: 8/10

The sound reinforced the uncomfortable visuals as only sound effects would be heard. The emptiness that is created through a quiet setting captivates the player’s attention heavily because you do not know what to expect or what may sudden happen.

Story: 8/10

This was a short game that took me around 15 minutes to complete but the entire 15 minutes were crucial to discover the underlying values such as creativity and expression. The eerie storytelling revolves around the character’s exploration to see the setting rather than tell the player through text.

Controls: 8/10

When clicking around, it reminds the player of PC games such as “Poptropica”  respectively because you explore with the mouse guiding the character.  Also it makes the player curious to travel through the surroundings and explore different choices. Using a mouse clicker makes the controls simple but it does mean that the speed is set at a certain pace. So you do wait for the alien to make it’s way across rather than controlling it with a mechanic of running or jumping which takes some time.

Replay Value:9/10

I defiantly recommend this game and believe it has replay value because while it is a small game with only one level, it satisfies the audience when the adventure is completed. It did not need more levels to make this story grow because the process of exploring already has you hooked for a solid 15 minutes.

 

 

 

Week 7: Game Maker, Backgrounds and Platforms

The background elements are coming along together with the style pretty well. It took a few sketches to decide whether I liked the design as a contentious piece of land that uses tiles to build (repetition of blocks but can assembled in game maker) or have a large layout designed, (reference to the 2D platform Lion King Game) where it is essentially a giant map. Making it a large layout would allow me to split it into titles (reference to how the Pitfall backgrounds are seamless but tiled) and allow specific areas of this design to be zoomed in on. This will mean that when following Meepoo across the adventure, the whole image would already be loaded or have individual parts of land (reference to Kirby) where sections are made and designed instead of a block or tile. There would be more detail this way and I would have a larger chunk that I could still assemble like bricks.

20170529_124510
Background Map Design and object notes

I am leaning towards the full on map design (reference to the 2D platform Lion King game) because I just like designing/drawing the whole image first so i know the layout of the game and where Meepoo would go. Also in terms of art style, it’d be easier to shade the entire piece/colour at once instead of little chucks or segments for me personally. It brings out the mood and theme of my game for me more and therefore i prefer doing the background this way.

20170529_124444
Platform mapping ideas

UPDATE: I changed my mind about having a full on map design because after some testing and research, I found that it was lot more extra work and harder for me to make collisions. This was because it is dependent on each individual design of the integrated platforms.So pre-made collisions would not fit for another platform and each one would have to be done again. Using platforms separately means the collisions stays the same and is reusable, which in the long run can save time and be more versatile.

UPDATE:I decided to not use a water colour theme for my game (as mentioned in an earlier blog) because while developing it, I found that it was more work and time consuming. The main issue was that multiple layers of watercolor pieces were needed for the multiple objects and the background details(trees, stone walls) in the game. I also found that I wanted to have pixel art incorporated into my game. This was because I really liked that nostalgic look from pixel art and how shading is just dependent on creative layering. Mixing pixel art with my transparency edge based characters and designs created a slightly different look, which I quite liked.

My platforms will now be created using pixel art style and sizing. From a distance (when zoomed out) I found that the harsh edges from the style actually looked quite nice against my background. If you look closely, you can tell that the stone elements have the softer edges (grey blocks) and the platforms have stronger edges.

sky
Mockup of background and platforms: Testing design, colour palette and style.

Game review: Kirby Dream Land 3

How challenging was it to discover the value of the game? I found that while being an adorable game, the game manages to put in their values from the start. You meet new friends along the way and have them accompany you across the adventure. You help them out and they return the favor and help protect you (as Kirby). The characters take turns with who is carrying who so they are dependent on each other. Examples of this include characters with no legs that need Kirby to take them around but they also fight off the enemies for Kirby. There is a strong emphasis on the values of relationships, friendships and balance, which is very nice.

Graphics: 8/10

This pixel art based game was a great reference for looking at creative designs. It had an enjoyable and cheerful atmosphere which really brings up the player’s mood. The sprites were adorable and had movements really nice movements due to the amount frames they drew for each motion.  Each character had a decent amount of frames, just for walking or the idle sprites to really push the motion.

Sound: 9/10

The music is so upbeat and has a strong 8bit game feel to it. The music also changes according to where you are in the game so the music isn’t as repetitive and you get a chance to hear something else. The sound effects puts emphasis on the motions, actions and make the game play really lively.

Story: 8/10

The story is also another adventure where you want to help the character get to their goal. There is also a start cut scene which introduces the characters briefly, Kirby interacting with them and the story in a picture format. Interestingly, it isn’t that long but you know the basics for your challenge which is enough. The story uses friendship and balance a lot so that you get to meet new characters and have them help you , while you return the favor.

Controls: 8/10

The controls are responsive and doesn’t lag, it also has a smooth flow from the mechanics too. It is really easy to figure out the basic controls and how to navigate in the game.

Replay Value:9/10

I defiantly recommend this game because it gives off such a charming mood when playing it. You can’t help but hum along to help Kirby and his friends and the cute aspect really helps. Overall the designs are excellent and so is the experience.

Week 6: Game Maker and Sprites

Firstly, I had a go at using game maker, I had to learn what each tab represented (the rooms, objects etc.) because I haven’t even come close to creating a game that detailed before. I played around with game maker to see what the options were and looked over some recommended tutorials. I even tried to make some sprites  and rooms in Gamemaker, however I didn’t like the outcome of it, due to the restricted pixels and small range of tools it had. So after creating some things test code, I decided to use another program for the visuals and export it into Game Maker instead.

meepoo main
Development Stage: Meepoo Sprite

I decided to use Gimp to create my visuals because I wanted to try out the program properly. I started off with a development sprite of Meepoo and played around with the options of the brushes, effects and layers. It took a few tries to get the colours, brush settings and overall look right.

When done digitally and coloured, Meepoo’s hair had issues with how colour would be filled in. The strands couldn’t be coloured without the lines confining them and in my character Mood board, it was something I didn’t think about because the hair wasn’t coloured (as seen below).

Mood Board
Mood Board for Meepoo’s Design: Her hair are just strands and don’t have ends cut off which becomes a problem hen trying to fill in the lines.
meepoo sprite
Final Meepoo Design (Idle)

So this made me change a bit of my design but overall it showed me how I had to adapt to a Game Design’s needs.

So this was my process for the sprites in general: I would have the lines drawn in with a set brush so that all my sprites have consistency in lines. The lines were drawn not in black but a warm toned dark grey because I didn’t want the lines to over power the visuals too much when everything else is pastels and bright. I felt that black looked to heavy and harsh especially up against the backgrounds I tested with.

 

I also had consistency with my colours because I referenced each sprite back to this development page:

baguette-chump-meepoo-e1496580775733.jpg
Development Page for sprites: Final colours, set brush size/transparency and set designs

I checked what the colours looked like on other screens as well, to see how it would be presented and this was important encase any colours were too bright or dark and distracted the eyes. The colours were on another layer so that I could make changes and not interfere with my lines and vice versa:

The concepts were so varied in the enemies, so I had to apply the designs to a digital format to really see which one I liked and which one worked.

20170529_124520
Concepts for Enemies and Mentor characters.

This was also a opportunity to have a play with colours to see what complimented the setting and characters. I also had the characters mechanics designed in the same file to see how it’d look when animated. As you can see, there are a lot of layers to go through so making groups were essential.

chump capture
Enemy Design: Chumps Final
Capture
Enemy Design: Mullette Final
baguette capture
Friend Design: Baguette Final

I also looked over references for creating sprites to see how they moved, interacted and how much detail would be needed.

Games I reference from include, Kirby Dream Land 3, Super Mario World/Yoshi Island
and Pitfall: The Mayan Adventure respectively.  Each game had elements that I found really interesting or creative, which drew me into the gameplay and sprites. I made choices that worked for my game as a result, after reviewing other successful games. The size of the sprites, use of parallax scrolling, whether Meepoo enters or leaves the stage and other mechanics were just some of the aspects that I looked into from other 2D platformers.


Game Review: Against All Odds (Developed by UNHCR)

This game is heartbreaking because it showcases a global refugee’s experience. It goes from leaving their country of origins to starting a new life at a new unfamiliar place.

How challenging was it to discover the value of the game? As you play through the 12 stages, you are in the role of a refugee. It has a creative game play which aims at younger audiences such as early teens. It is effective to allow them to develop ideas about these social issues and bring forth serious questions regarding morality and treatment of refugees. The value therefore wasn’t difficult to discover and very straightforward. From my experiences, it is user friendly and not confusing.

Graphics: 8/10

The graphics are interesting, the style is focused on colour blocking and shading. It gives some dimension to the characters and make the ideas of contrasting views more prominent.  The use of silhouettes to invoke an idea/character/scene fits in with the ominous surroundings and dark mood.

Sound: 8/10

The sound effects are great and emphasis specific parts of the game,whether collecting or spinning right through the zones.

Story: 9/10

The story really makes you think about what it’s actually based on. It’s an issue that does have relevance and impact on our world whether we acknowledge it or not.  It brings to light these issues through a game making it appear and seen by a wilder audience.

Controls: 7/10

There are smooth controls making the mouse pointer flow along side the story and camera view. It isn’t laggy which makes it a pleasant experience and there are also obvious highlighting around objects, places, buildings to contrast against the dark tones in visuals. This makes its important to the player to know if the game is responsive in selection and gameplay.

Replay Value:9/10

I defiantly recommend this game and believe it has replay value because it highlights a issue through a format that is different and interesting.

 

Week 5: Game Treatment

Game Treatment:

  1. Game Pitch (Give your game a title) :“Meepoo’s Adventure (The Game)”

  2. Game Story Abstract – Consider the characters, location, objective, challenges, protagonist, antagonistic force. What is motivating the player? Is there a genre? : The main character is Meepoo, who goes on the adventure to find her vase pieces. Baguette will be introduced in the beggining as Meepoo’s friend but will be non playable. The enemies are the Chumps and they keep Meepoo from getting to her vase pieces. The other characters would be the enemies , Chumps and Mullettes. They keep Meepoo from getting to her vase pieces. The chumps will have the mechanic of releasing flowers when defeated but will be randomized with either positive flowers (restores health/life) or negative flowers (decreases health/life). This means that just because you defeat an opposing force, the result isn’t always ideal to what you want. The more the player fights these opposing forces, the more it builds up the story’s values. When the player becomes obsessed with getting to the vase pieces, it will show through game play with how they interact with the enemies, which they could have left alone. The motivation for the player is to get to those vase pieces in time before they deform so that Meepoo can complete her exhibition piece. This will also be a “Graphic Adventure”.

  3. Appearance. Consider the location, environment, texture, colour, lighting, architecture, time period, historical influences, props: The setting will be in ‘FimbleTown’, a made up place where Meepoo’s vase pieces will be scattered around. The town will be set in a meadow like area with bright pastel colours and have occasional stone hedges or walls. It is mainly based on a nature setting so fresh grass and bright blue sky will fill the screen. The game should convey lightheartedness and create a pleasant experience, while having the underlying values more difficult to come to terms with. Lighting will be dependent on the design of the sky but a sun will not be seen and just have bright puffy clouds.  Architecture will be limited and have stone based designs. They will have soft edges to blend into the background better and have mainly solid colours. There is no specific time period set as it is a mystical adventure however the game does lean towards modern time due to the design of the characters. The elements of cartoon graphics will be applied as well such as having inanimate objects having faces. The game also references to more of a flash game appearance but has elements that are created with pixel art, such as the platforms.

  4. Player Roles and Actions. Player objective, what do they want to achieve and through what actions are they going to attain this: The player is trying to achieve the ultimate prize, where the vase is completed in on time for the exhibition in it’s original state. The glory of a completed art piece and helping Meepoo will lead the player into understanding the true values of the game.They will have to between wants and needs, friendship over materialism which questions what the player values. To also get through the level, the player has to defeat the enemies that stand in her way and explore to try find the vase’s location.

  5. Strategies and Motivations. Consider player actions and ability and the consequences of these in relation to enemy, conflict, levels and rules of game:  For the enemy, the chumps will have the mechanic of releasing flowers when defeated but will be randomized with either positive flowers (adds point to flower counter to gain new lives) or negative flowers (removes a point to flower counter). It is not a definite positive outcome when you get rid of something in your way and that goes into the values of letting go and moving on from that obsession.  The player has to decide between going back to Baguette, who comforts Meepoo at the start or move on to the next level to collect the vase pieces before they deform. This brings in the value of choosing between what you want and what you need. It puts the materialistic side of obsessively collecting something for your inventory up against an experience (Baguettes special level). This also goes into the value of loyalty, to go back for your friend or go pursue what you want. If Meepoo chooses to go back for Baguette, then she will find a missing piece of the vase. She wouldn’t be able to find this piece without going back through level 1 to his level (which won’t be made). She will also have his help at the end of the game, recieve a helpful weapon from him and keep his companionship. This won’t be told to the player, which makes them decide on the values of friendship and morality. It also questions materialism (collectible inventory which are the vase pieces) over friendship/relationships. Going back to Baguette however, increases the deformity of the vase pieces in the future levels because she is taking time out to help him. If Meepoo chooses to go to the next level (level 2) then she leaves Baguette behind and loses him as a companion. The player will know that the vase pieces deform but not know about how this impacts Baguettes role in her adventure. Baguette will not be there to help her because he won’t return and Meepoo misses out on a valuable weapon to defeat future enemies (Baguette’s gift of a watermelon). She will move onto level 2 and her vases pieces won’t be as deformed (dependent on time) but she also misses out on a piece in Baguette’s level.

  6. Level Summary Explain how many levels are in the game and describe each location visually. Use reference material and images to depict each level. Each level ends with? We are making one level for this assignment but the full game would include different levels (perhaps 3 more) to collect more vase pieces and even the special level mentioned for Baguette.In level 1, FimbleTown will be set in a meadow like area with bright pastel colours and have occasional stone hedges or walls. It is mainly based on a nature setting so fresh grass and a bright blue sky will fill the screen. Architecture will be limited and have stone based designs. They will have soft edges to blend into the background better and have mainly solid colours.

    The player would go through the level knowing that the longer they take, the more broken down the vase pieces get. This will increase the player’s rush to collect the pieces and ultimately blindsides them to focus on their goal instead of experiencing the adventure fully. This goes back on the value of letting go and questions what we value as a person. The level will be referenced from Sonic the Hedgehog, Kirby dream land 3 and Mario respectively but have my own style and designs. Each level would end with a climax, in level 1 it ends with two arrows for the player vividly see. You either go back through level 1 for Baguette to his special level or move onto level 2 for the vase pieces.


  7. Story Progression Explain the sequencing of events. When does the player gain information Who and what is driving the plot? The player gains information at the start of the game. Meepoo will be notified that her vase piece has been shattered into pieces and is scattered over FimbleTown. She will be told that she needs to get it back on time and pieces will deform more overtime. She will then talk to her friend, Baguette who tells her to stay safe but he does not come along on the adventure. Meepoo then goes off and explores the place and will run into the enemies that stand in her way. They will target Meepoo and cause her to decrease health through battling. Meepoo will be able to collect flowers for health and increase of lives. Once the enemy is defeated she can continue to look for her vase piece in the level. At the end of the level, she reaches an area where arrows are set up. Meepoo has the options shown to her visually, so she can go back to Baguette (by going through back through level 1) or move onto the next level (level 2). This is where the level 1 ends and stops.  Meepoo will be driving the plot because she will take actions into her own hands and go collect those vase pieces. She will propel the story forward with her actions/ the player’s actions and decisions.

  8. Hardware & Software Specification:  Hardware: PC, hard drive and for Software: Gimp, Game Maker.

We had a class activity where we had to make a Tangram puzzle using just cut up pieces of paper to create animal shapes.

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Tangram Puzzle

“Race to the end Board Game” :The game we made in groups for 30mins was called “King Corn”. It was an interesting concept to use a newspaper article to inspire a board game. Our article was about Prince Harry and his sister, talking about sibling bond. In the cartoon, they were holding corn therefore King Corn was born.

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Race to the end board game- King Corn

Game Review:

This week’s game review is on Undertale, a delightfully adorable 2D platform game. The simple graphics and compelling story leads the audience into the story narrative. The colours are limited to the hues of purples, warm toned oranges and yellows thus creating a complementary visual design.

How challenging was it to discover the value of the game? The value was developed through the story and requires the player to go through and pay attention to details in order to understand it. If a part was skipped, then it would affect how the story presents the values, so this is really dependent on the player and their patience to get through the heavily text based aspect in storytelling.

Graphics: 7/10

The style was pixel art based, which made it look very nostalgic. While the limitations of pixel art are noticeable, the graphics for the characters do convey motion or movement when needed. The backgrounds also follow this and uses colour to effectively create shading, sense of space and emphasis on certain areas. This does limit the variation for the characters expressions however, which could make you less likely to empathize with them and connect.

Sound: 7/10

The music fits with the visuals to create that nostalgic effect. While it does loop, it creates an upbeat and delightful atmosphere for the adventure to commence. The sound effects often prompt the player to respond or put emphasis on something, which becomes really helpful.

Story: 7/10

The story aspect was very detailed and specific. There was a lot of story that had to be told and at times, could get confusing. How the story was presented may have not been as appealing because of the lengthy paragraphs that do that a bit to fully comprehend. As we are introduced to new settings and characters all at once, it becomes a bit complicated however the story itself is very interesting and worth a read.

Controls: 7/10

The controls were decent with the buttons responding and selections available. It did take me some trial and error to figure out what to use to control my character/select things though.

Replay Value:8/10

It is user friendly and delightful. It has appeal because of the nostalgic design and the story makes it a worthy adventure to go on.  It has replay value through this and it does make you immerse yourself into their world.