The build review meetings every week can be a bit of work. For each build review I would come in Monday night to help the producer that was going to give the presentation the next day. The videos would be placed in the template that I created for the weekly build reviews. I liked creating the videos and showing them off to the class. On the 2nd week of doing the build reviews, I created a temple that any producer could use for them presentation. It had our title side, razor, updates, video spots and future updates. I would inserts the videos for the producer and let them use my laptop to present the different changes.
The weekly build reviews are nice to hear about the other games. After the 2nd or 3rd week we caught up with the current status of the games and the usefulness of the presentations diminished. Having the build presenations every other week would increase the effectiveness and allow the engineers to have more in class word time.
There should be a compromise that is made stating that we give the professors a new build every week but we only meet as a class every other week to discuss major improvements or changes in the game. It’s a win/win. The professors have the game builds every tuesday allowing more time to talk to all the teams. The engineers and artists have more time to work on their tasks during class time.
Finally submitting to IGF after working on our game for 8 Months felt pretty great. We wanted to start our iterative process. We looked at everything that we would like to fix before EAE day. One thing that stood out from the meetings were the ability to make tiles matter more and to continue to work on the 3 C’s (Character, Controller, Camera).
Our team didn’t know in what direct we wanted to go. We held a bunch of design meetings and we came up with a rubric on how we wanted to score different iterations that we wanted in the game. The rubric is as follows:
What works in the game. A rubic on what on how we can pick new features.
Exploration of Space
Comedy from Model / Animation / Sound
Relationship / Identification to the character (Aesthetic)
Star of Show
Indirect Damage (Core Mechanic)
Espionage / Challenge
Skillset of Foresight
Survive Player, Can you survive the world
Can you survice the Hostile Territory
Die the least, Die the slowest
Use Minions to Indirectly damage opponent.
Use Minions to make Hostile Territory.
We took the runic and ask each member of the team if they are interested in coming up with a few ideas for a new iteration. The iteration had to include making tiles matter more and had to fit into what is currently working. We got 10 different ideas that we wrote up on the white board. We discussed the white board ideas and I started to combine the different ideas that had similar mechanics in it. After the combination we had 6 combinations left. The team took a vote to pick and we have 3 out of the 6 builds. We have Lights Out, the ability to swap out the tiles, and detonate, you permanently delete the tile. We will see how it goes next week.
Wow! That was fast couple of weeks. There was so much that the team got done in just a few couple of weeks. We were able to implement Allen’s level design that pushes players together so that they will compete more. Rob’s tube design is still a big hit with anyone that plays it.
The camera is feeling better now that we decided which way to go about it. We choose to go with the Third Person fixed camera. The difference is that it will go though objects and parts of the tube. There is still a lot of work that needs to go into the camera to make it smoother and less frantic. We have been getting great feedback about it and we are pressing forward.
Before we needed to submit to IGF, we had to present the new build to the professors. We had to quickly build the presentation that we wanted to show them. I also put the finishing touches on the trailer that we needed to submit with. Roger said that we are the most improved game and that the trailer was put together very well. The professors liked the frantic pace of the game but it seemed to lack progression. Our team was pumped after getting the feedback.
Allen and I worked on filming the different parts of the trailer that we wanted. We started off with an establishing shot of the tube then transitioned to several different gaming mechanics. We finished off with 2 of our minions flying by and announcing when we will be releasing the game.
The last 2 weeks we have been working really hard to get the build done in time for IGF. Every member of the team was helping and contributing to getting the game done in time for the IGF Submission. I hope that we can continue to be hard working and continue to get stuff done.