Final presentations for our Round 5 projects have ended. The theme this round was to make something for the BVW Show.
You can see the game that my team produced in my portfolio under “Games: Building Virtual Worlds.”
My team from Round 1 got back together again for this round, looking to capture some of our previous magic. This time, we made an ambitious choice to combine multi-player strategy gaming with a show element, and struggled through quite a few iterations of the game but the final product is pretty solid.
Luckily we decided to approach this round with a “lightening round” idea and polish it as much as possible; unfortunately, though, our choice in mechanic slowed us down a lot. Coming up with a compelling strategy game takes a lot of balancing between control, random elements, and interest curve. Moreover, multiplayer meant that there was a lot more implementation that would have to be done. In fact, we changed our idea a multitude of times between interims and didn’t have our final design until after the last interim before finals today. We went through ideas such as a silent auction to see-saws to scales and pulleys before settling on a simple tug-of-war style mechanic. In regards to implementation, we started with Unity Phone, which still wasn’t ideal for having a lot of players connected reliably so over the course of the first few weeks, Zero spent most of his time with the help of Emmanuel developing a new web-browser based interface that people could use through their smartphones. Turns out that this worked much more reliably than using the phone servers.
As to my contribution; I really did get a lot of opportunity to polish this project the way that I wanted to. At the beginning while we were still finalizing the mechanic and aesthetic style, I took the initiative to model a whole multitude of low-poly prizes (cars, blenders, TVs, sofas, etc.). Though these did not end up taking a main role as I had hoped, I did get to include them in the background of the final build. The final tug-of-war mechanic did allow me to have a lot of fun animating our little characters, and they have a variety of different animations for each emotion. What I am most proud about though is the subtle fact that they wave and acknowledge the guest when they receive a new command. As to the overall environment, most every subtle detail that I wanted are there: There are cameramen around the set that just rotate slowly and even a lighting grid on top of the ceiling where little simulated spotlights are hanging from.
I had a lot of fun polishing this project, and the team was great.
EDIT: This world made it into the Final Show!