Monday, November 9, 2015

Homework 8

A lazy scientist doesn't want to do his laundry, so he creates a device that brings objects to life. He uses this device to bring his washing machine to life so that it can do his laundry. However someone steals the device, and uses it to bring dirty laundry to life. The dirty laundry is terrorizing  the city, and it's up to Washy to save the day.

The player plays in a third person view. The player can move about the map, and attack enemies. We were going to have turn based combat, but we have decided to get rid of that idea since it's too difficult. Now, we will have a game like Super Mario 64, where the player fights the enemies in a large stage. The player has a double jump feature and a "sud blast" attack which is capable of hitting multiple enemies.

It's on PC, using the mouse and keyboard, although the mouse would just be used for navigating the menus.

Blender and Photoshop will be used to make the models and textures that will be used in our game. The enemies will be based on dirty laundry.

The player is vulnerable to the enemies and hazards on the stage. There will be a variety of enemies, each with its own strengths and weaknesses

Interest Curve:
Keep the player engaged throughout the game by increasing difficulty level by level. We will introduce new enemies and traps in order to keep things fresh.

Emergent Properties:
By ensuring that the mechanics are solid enough, we want the player to be able to try and beat the levels as fast as possible. The behavior of traps and enemies can be learned by the player, leaving the possibility of speed running.

It is unfortunate that we had to ditch the turn-based aspect, but we just don't have the time to create and balance something so complicated when the platforming aspect is challenging enough on its own.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Homework 7

Repository URL:

Plans for this week:

This week I plan to work on the design of the first levels as well as improve the character's movement abilities.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Homework 6

The Games

The games I chose to analyze are Persona 4, which I really like, and Metroid, which I don't particulary like.

Persona 4:


The main character moves to a small town in what seems like the middle of nowhere. Life seems to peaceful, if a little boring. A rumor about the “midnight channel” catches his attention, so he decides to turn on his TV that midnight. He sees a girl on TV, but doesn’t think much of it at first, but next morning, that very same girl turns up dead, with the cause still unknown. The main character and his new friends decide to investigate the “midnight channel,” and discover that they have the ability to travel inside the TV. Inside this “TV” world, the team awakens to a mysterious power called “persona.” With newfound powers and knowledge, the main character and his friends attempt to find out who killed the girl and stop him from killing again.


Persona 4 is a turn-based dungeon crawler. You run around the area and encounter enemies along the way. Once combat begins, you transition to a battle stage and initiate combat. The turn order is based on the speed stat of the participants. In battle, you can exploit an enemy’s weakness and will be able to attack again. But beware; enemies are also resistant to certain elements, and some enemies can even be healed by certain elements. To make matters worse, everyone on your team has a weakness of their own, and will be stunned if they are attacked by the element that they are weak to.


This game was released for the PlayStation 2, so the graphics were nothing to write home about. But the leftover space on the disc doesn’t just go to waste; this game has A LOT of content.


The Music in Persona 4 is some of the best music I have ever found in a video game. It fits perfectly with the weird nature of the TV world. The bright colors and strange scenery highlight the differences of the TV world and the boring real world.


The difficulty of the game spikes when you encounter a boss and when you arrive in a new section of the TV world. There is a difficulty setting, but it doesn’t make the enemies smarter, just tougher. So, increasing the difficulty just means that you need spend more time grinding for levels just to avoid dying from the first enemy in a new area. However, that gives you the opportunity to deliberately stay under leveled in order to challenge yourself.

Emergent Properties:

The idea behind the combat is simple: beat the enemy while sustaining as little damage as possible. If you exploit an enemy’s weakness, then beating them is much easier. However, this concept also creates complications: mana does not regenerate unless you leave the dungeon, so you can’t just keep doing that. Also, there are often multiple types of enemies in a battle. One enemy in the battle could be weak to a certain element and the other enemy could be really strong against it. You have to take the enemies out one at a time, which often leads to your team taking more damage than you would like.

Interest Curves: 

This game takes place over a very long time. Every month, someone is put in danger, and it’s up to you to rescue that person. Once you beat the boss and rescue the person, you get the rest of the month rest and enjoy normal life until it’s time for the story to progress. The amount of time you get to rest depends on the amount of time it takes to rescue the person who is in danger.


The simple yet engaging combat as well as the interesting story make this one of my favorite games of all time. If there is something I don’t like about it, it is that the game demands that you grind for hours so that you can level-up enough to realistically clear the dungeons, and it gets tedious very quickly.



In the first game in the Metroid series, bounty hunter Samus Aran travels to a strange planet to stop space pirates from using creatures called Metroids for their evil agenda. Aside from some text at the beginning of the game, there really isn’t any story.


Metroid is a shooter-platformer game. You start with just a blaster, but can find new weapons and upgrades later. This game has an open world, but some areas are only accessible after you have acquired certain upgrades, which encourages exploration. I understand that this is a very old game, but the jumping and shooting left a lot to be desired. When you jump, it feels like you are sliding on ice, and it is very hard to land where you want, which is not a good quality for a platformer. The shooting might be worse. The enemies move up and down very quickly, and you are only able to shoot straight forward or directly upward.


This game was released in 1986 for the NES. I don’t know how it holds up against other games of its time, but I can’t appreciate this game after being spoiled by modern games.


The visuals is done well despite the technological limits of the NES. The game is surprisingly colorful, and fits the aesthetic of an alien-infested planet. The sound fits the aesthetic to a degree, but it’s nothing special.


For a game with no easy way to get health back, enemies do way too much damage. If that wasn’t enough, there is no saving in this game, just a password system that lets you restart the game with the gear you had when you died. This wouldn’t be so bad, but the last area has enemies that you have no way of knowing how to beat. In order to kill a Metroid, you have to freeze it and fire five rockets at it. Odds are you didn’t even bring the freeze ray with you, and you just get killed, and have to restart the game.  Good luck.

Emergent Properties:

This game is very simple, and nothing cool comes from that simplicity.

Interest Curves:

It’s pretty much a constant rising curve. The game doesn’t have any particularly easy or difficult parts to it. However, the absence of a save feature means that for every bit of progress you make, you have more to lose, and so you have to get more and more invested in the game.


Personally, I did not like Metroid. Its mechanics are hard to deal with, the areas all look the same, and the lack of a save feature makes progressing very difficult. One thing that I did like, however, is that this game encourages the player to explore the map. The levels aren’t linear and there is no map to refer to.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Homework 5

The over world in our game is a platformer, and you just can't have one of those without a double jump. I have created a blueprint that allows the actor to perform a double jump and reach new heights.

As you can see, the actor that I am using for this is simply a cube with a cone on the front. Since it is a simple cube, the cone is necessary to indicate the actor's orientation after it rotates. I haven't gotten to any complicated mechanics yet, and instead have been adjusting the actor's physics (acceleration, air control, etc.) in order to make it feel good to control it.

The blueprint for the jump was not too complicated to make, although it's a great deal more complicated than a single jump. This blueprint involves creating a variable that keeps track of the amount of times that the actor has successfully jumped. If the number is less than 2, then the actor can jump again. Additionally, when the actor lands on a surface, the jump count is reset (otherwise, the actor could not jump again after landing). Finally, I added the ability to hold down the jump button to control the amount of air time. As soon as you release the jump button, the actor will stop jumping. This feature makes the jumping feel floaty and slow, which is unacceptable in a platformer. So, I have had to do a lot of fine tuning on the jumping and falling physics in order to make the jumping feel more intense.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Team Homework 1

Here is the first video that shows the progress of our game. I am working on the mechanics, Jorge is working on the AI and battle system, Joshua is working on assets and animation, and Michael is working on music and sound effects. Next week we expect to have more fluid movements as well as the foundation for our turn-based combat.

Monday, August 31, 2015

A Few Images Created by Me

I'm not a great artist, but I took a digital design class in high school, where I was able to learn about Photoshop and Illustrator.
First image- Fantasy Scene Project
                After learning Photoshop for a few weeks, I was given a project that required me to edit myself into a fantasy scene. This version is the second-last version of this project, because I think it looks better without me in it.

Second image- Splashe Logo
                My digital design class was part of a group who would design the logo for a company called Splashe. Out of the logos that I made, these were my favorites.

Some of My Favorite Games
With great difficulty, I present to you my top two picks: Dark Souls and Castlevania: Symphony of the Night.

Dark Souls
Dark Souls is a role-playing game in which the player is thrown into a dark, gloomy fantasy world. The story is almost non-existence, but the world is so immersive that the player can figure out much of what’s going on just by playing the game. That’s what I like about this game – it is up to the player to find out everything. The game doesn’t even tell you which way to go. Also, it is one of the most difficult and punishing games I have ever played. When you die, you lose all of your souls, which serve as the world’s currency as well as the character’s experience points. You are only given one chance to get them back; if you die again before visiting the place of your previous death, the souls are lost permanently. With all the punishment and difficulty thrown at the players, every successful feat gives them a great sense of accomplishment. Combine that with a killer soundtrack and a beautiful, open world, and you’ll enjoy exploring every bit of Dark Souls.

Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
If you had played any of the early Metroid games, you’ll definitely see where this game got its inspiration. Castlevania: Symphony of the Night combines Metroid’s emphasis on exploration with Castlevania’s gothic theme to create one of my favorite games of all time. This game is where the term “Metroidvania” comes from and is responsible for many of the exploration-based platformers that exist today. Aside from that, this game is just plain fun. Good-looking and diverse scenery, cool bosses and nice mechanics will keep you entertained for hours.
Here is a video of me testing Open Broadcaster Software.