• JosieGameDev

Animations and Action Plans - Weekly Update #5

Hi again! This week I've been finishing my design documentation for my escape room and making some real visual improvements to my tortoise game. With a few days off to visit home this week, it hasn't been as productive as previous weeks, but I'm happy with what I've completed. Into more detail!

AINT 254 - Interactive Systems Workshop

Most of my work for this week has been on building and implemented some of the visuals of the game, rather than focusing in on just mechanics.

The only real mechanic work I did this week was implementation of the tortoise spawner; now, at given time intervals, tortoise are shot in to a random point on the edge of the map, given that the number of tortoise objects hasn't exceeded the maximum. This has given the gameplay a huge boost, as new enemies pop in at random places over time the difficulty curves as the time goes on. As the moment, tortoise do have a tendency to 'slide' across the field as they are shot in before having to walk themselves, which I need to fix for future versions, but as a basic implementation of spawning it works well.

I spent some time figuring out how to approach animating my tortoise model, before settling on doing it all within Unity itself. I have have 3 basic animations for tortoise walking, being flipped over, and eating, which adds a lot of character to them and makes them feel way more real.

Finally, I've added more UI features to give the user constant feedback regarding recharge time before they can flip a tortoise or bring in decoy food, and what their star rating currently is. This fixes some of the problems encountered in my user research last week with players not being able to tell when they can complete an action again. I think this will also prove really useful when it comes to balancing moves, as having this visual representation of recharge times helps a lot with comparing power of moves.

AINT 253 - Design Process

This week we got some one on one time with Paul and Dan to go over our current plan and documentation.

My documentation is up to an acceptable level, and at Paul's suggestion I developed my User Experience Planning to make it more tailored to my game, and more specific in it's language. For example, what was once 'have intuitive controls' has been expanded to 'have control schemes similar to other games so player knows what to expect, and can move through the scene easily without having to figure out controls'. I also added some of these notes to my user story planning, as some of the newer additions to my plan hadn't yet been added to the early documentation. This documentation has now een submitted for marking, allowing me to begin production of my escape room! I'm very excited to start making, especially as I have such an in-depth plan to refer to along the way.

Through discussion with Dan, I've also decided to add to the cake-making mechanic of my escape room to make my experience more replayable and interesting for players. Instead of a set recipe to make every time, a recipe will be randomly generated each game from a list of ingredients and quantities so it's slightly different each time. For my MAP, this will also involve having 3 distinct recipe types which can be made; cake, cookie, or pie; as well as different models t go with each one. This is a relatively easy and cost effective change code-wise which should make my game a bit more interactive and less of a one-shot-wonder, so I'm excited to make a start on it.

It's been a good week! A big push on my Tortoise game has meant it's looking and feeling like a far more refined game. Some polishing to my design work has pushed it to the highest possible standard, and because I stated so early, there hasn't been a sense of urgency - while others have spent time in the library trying to crush out the last few pages of planning, I've been happy to have a few days off from thinking about my escape room, knowing it's all submitted and done with, ready to jump into building it in the next sprint.

Overall, very happy with how this week panned out, especially considering my few days of break.

Thanks for reading! :)