In the middle of the semester, I and 3 other student developers undertook the 10th anniversary Epic Mega Game Jam.
Theme: Down to Earth
As expected in a jam, development was extremely dynamic and fast-paced. All of us fulfilled various roles as they arose.
In my case, I designed the Gameplay Model and the playable Level.
My tactic when brainstorming based on a theme is to approach it as a fundamentalist problem. The theme was a common phrase, so I tried to briefly extract its etymological identity and translate that to a holistic design concept.
At the end, we settled for a Zero-G platforming – manipulating floating objects and 6DOF flying constituted the entire gameplay model.
I wasn’t responsible for most of the technical implementation. However, I occasionally had ideas on how to add depth and interest to our mechanics via additional functionality.
I implemented two mechanics on the player character gameplay model:
The script was also of sufficiently quality and made it to the final version of the game without needing to be changed.
All the meshes within the base frame essentially constituted the level, so they had to realise the intended dynamics via affordances, constraints, and signifiers.
I used my knowledge of Universal Design to achieve this:
The meshes are the gameplay, they are the level. So how to arrange them?
I used the design attributes of the props (discussed in previous tab) in order to create and link interesting moments together.
My process for creating a single moments was:
To create global progression, I simply start off using simpler props (smaller number of attributes attached to them, less spatial complexity). Then gradually start using more complicated props.
We managed to make a game in a week that boasted stunning visuals and a polished core, and thus execute our original vision.
At the end of the 7 days, we had a relatively fast-paced platforming experience where you have to go from point A to point B by both evading and using geometry.