Monthly Archives: December 2013

Week 16 December 8

It was the last presentation, and it went very well I think.  We spent less time talking about the game, and more time showing how the game actually works.  I made a logo that people have responded well to, and the art looks pretty good.  I’m still unhappy with some contrast issues and wish I could make the assets bigger on the screen, but I can’t complain too much.

The engineers have been great and the game works without major bugs.  They were even able to get the game put onto the touch device.  So a huge shout out for them!  This is the first game we’ve made that we were able to show something at the end that people were actually able to play.

We also showed off the game at the open house and got a pretty positive reaction to the game.  Most people understood the rules easily and had fun going through the different puzzles.  Mostly I wish that we had a few more things in the puzzles to make them more interesting, but people seemed to just like shooting lightning across the screen even if the puzzles weren’t that hard.

Week 15 December 1

We’re getting close to the end, and I am very pleased with our progress.  I’m finishing up the art assets and hopefully with have enough time to go back and polish the assets, or make more things that the engineers need.

I am very happy with Owen.  He has gone by himself and made all the music and sounds effects, and they work pretty well with the game.  That’s one less thing we need to worry about, and a great job of hard work by him.

I’ve also worked with the engineers to solve the lightning problem.  Our solution was the make ten different parts of lighting that are interchangeable.  Each frame the computer replaces each one with a random one, and it creates an effect that looks very much like lightning.  Most people are impressed when they play it.

Week 14 November 24

The game continues on a brisk pace, and I am pleased with the progress that our engineers have made.  I have made more art assets and have seen them in the game, and already I’ve decided to make several changes to the game assets to make them easier to see.

We nearly had a disaster as one of the producers suggested we completely change the visual style to make the game based on the Norse God Thor.  Although I like the idea, and think that we’re too far in production to make a major change like that, considering that over half the assets have already been built.

I also had some faculty feedback over the art.  The biggest problem is the assets just not showing up well against the black background.  I’m going to up the contrast and see if I can’t make them easier to see.

Week 13 November 17

It’s the last game of the semester, and the faculty allowed us to pick our own teams.  Although I was originally worried about this, I ended up on a good team that I am excited to work with.  I am even more excited that we were able to pick our game quickly and start production immediately.  On all of our previous games we spent too much time picking the game and haggling over different ideas.

Our game is going to be called Tesla’s Touch, and will feature touching the screen to connect different parts of the playing area with each other.  I came up with the idea of using an art style called Tesla Punk, which I think will be very good for this game.  It features the style of steampunk combined with electricity.

I started production on the assets, and remembered the lessons I learned from the previous two games.  I made the important assets first, and so far I am impressed with how well they have turned out.  I am happy we’re working on a project that allows me to do what I do best, which is to combine my love of mechanical things with my enjoyment of playing with light and glowing areas.

Week 12 November 10

We presented our game, and I must say that despite our doubts we were actually able to make something that looks pretty good.  Although I’m sad we weren’t able to implement everything we wanted, the presentation went all right.

I made some changes to the lighting to fit up with feedback from the faculty, and the board looks much better.  It’s easier to see the creeps and there aren’t any more distracting lights around the board.  I was also able to go back and add some more detail to the creeps, and they look a lot better.

Looking back I think that I still haven’t fully learned the lessons I should have learned from the Robotron game.  I spent too much time trying to be fancy and not enough time getting the basic things done.  On the next project I am going to focus on this and make sure that I get all the important assets done first

Week 11 November 3

Our game is continuing, but the rift between our team has gotten worse.  We’re at the point now that our producers and engineers sit apart and almost never talk to each other.  I’ve even been asked to be a go-between for them so they don’t have to talk with each other.  I don’t mind, but am concerned because we are definitely behind on the game.

On a positive note, I’ve been able to see my assets in the game for the first time.  I had the scene lit, but the engineers had to take the lights out when it went into Unity so we’ve spent some more time adding lights and trying to make everything look pretty.

We got some feedback from the faculty, and it was very good.  It helped us have a direction and decide what we want to do with the little time that we have left.  It was very good feedback and has helped us make a simple list of things to do that hopefully will allow us to focus and make everything work.

Week 10 October 27

Well, work continues on the game.  Things are not going as smoothly as I would like, mostly because the engineers are having a difficult time learning Unity.  We haven’t been able to implement my art assets yet, so I’ve spent extra time making more assets.  Nancy wants our game to be extremely gory, so I’ve spent time making blood, bones, and organs to spread around the map and hang on the trees.

We’ve had a major problem on the team as several team members have locked horns in a power struggle over control of the team.  Although I have tried to stay out of it, I am worried that this will distract from what our team is doing and make our game work.

But the work continues.  I want to see the art assets in the game so I can judge how they work and make simple adjustments.  We are lighting our scene with cool colors, and I want to make sure we have control over the look and feel of the board.

Week 9 October 20

This week we started on our next game.  We don’t have a name for it yet but it’s going to be a tower defense game that involves an old man trying to keep children off of his lawn during Halloween.  I am excited for this cycle because I personally enjoy tower defense games and think I’ll be able to contribute a lot to the project.

I’m also excited because we’ve added a new mechanic to the game that I’ve never seen in any other games like this.  The old man wants to sleep, and he wants to keep the children off his lawn to have peace and quiet.  As the children get closer and closer to the house there is a noise meter that gets louder and louder.  If it gets too loud than the game is lost, and extra money is earned for keeping it lower.

I made some preliminary assets for the game.  They are very simple but easy to see from a distance.  They included a ghost, a Frankenstein, a witch, and a princess.  They are meant to represent children dressed up in Halloween costumes.  I was also able to make the first level layout and the house where the old man lives.

Week 8 October 16

Well, we finished our Robotron game.  We got some interesting feedback from the faculty about how they saw the game.  The biggest and most important one was that they felt we hadn’t changed the game enough to make it “ours.”  They suggested we make some further changes so that it wasn’t so obviously a copy of the original game.

Overall I was proud of our team and the work we did.  We got very positive feedback from the students that played our game, and we were able to play our game during the presentation.  I even found it fun myself.  I think we learned a ton from the previous game experience and were able to incorporate this information into this latest project.

Looking back, I think the biggest thing I would have done differently is to focus on scope more.  I spent too much time making assets and things and still hadn’t finished basic things for the game like buttons and a number score.  In the future I’ll have to focus on getting the important parts of the game finished first so I don’t have that problem