Category Archives: Bad Guys

Conference Project: Catch Me If You Can

steva My final game is very similar to my first draft, but it did suffer some changes. The player is now coloured yellow, while the police is blue. He is trying to get to his red Ferrari without being noticed. He has green dumpsters that he can hide and not get detected. This picture represents the first sketch that I have made. In this picture we can see the player and the final goal. PRAVO 3 This picture represents the continuation of the game, with the bad guys (police). The bad guy is doing bad things by multilplaying each time it hits another blue circle, creating a smaller and faster circle that will catch the player easier.  The player now has to maneuver his way into the car and into the safty. stevaaaaaa Now when the player has finally reached the car, the circles will stop indicating that the player (thief) has successfully fled, thus making the player winner. I had many planes for this game, and I have certain ideas how to develop it more, adding new characters that will have their own behavior and actions, such as inspector or something similar, and I hope I will work on developing this game even more.    

Conference Game: Catch Me If You Can

  photo-4 Catch Me If You Can is my final conference game, it is designed in a very simple way, giving a player simple controls and a clear goal. As seen on the first sketch the player is controlling the colored smaller circle. The player is controlling a thief running away from the police. The police is aware of the crime and that is way there is so many bigger circles representing the police. The player moves around the screen with simple “up” “down” left” and “right” arrow key, giving him a big range of motion. When or if the player is hit by the bad guy (police), this immediately creates more circles, thus making it harder for the player to reach the goal (rectangle in the bottom of the sketch). The rectangle represents the getaway car, which the player use to get away from the police. photo 1 When the player has reached the car, the game is over, he did manage to escape for now, and a sign that indicates that will appear. This is just a start of the game, as I have an idea of creating second level, which will feature the actual ride and driving away while being chased. This is still just an idea, but it a probable one. – Stevan Radosavljevic

Group Game #1: Permission

Permission (formerly Ion Rush and Ion Deluge) is a game about…permission. With very few differences from its beta, Permission is still a game about waiting for the opportune moment. 2 The most significant and recognizable change to occur in this version is the code structure. Now entirely legible, customizable and malleable, beams can easily be placed in any location with any rate of change. They can even move on their own! 1 I feel that porting this to the tablet worked wonders, as the simple back and forth movement of the player is made for touch controls. The only real vulnerability of this update is the lack of changing background colors. Nonetheless, Permission remains a product I’d happily defend and continue to develop in the the future.

Conference Project: Red Run



  Perhaps the most difficult part of finalizing our conference game was trying to figure out how to port the game from the desktop to the tablet. Although we had come up with a fairly simply and attractive interface on our desktop version, we had a major hurdle to overcome on the tablet — the user would not have a keyboard. Instead, they would only have one ‘key’, which corresponds to the mouse on the desktop version. We ended up implementing a ‘clickbox’ for the player to tap each time they want Red Riding Hood to attack the Rabid Squirrel. We originally put it in the upper left hand corner, and floated the idea of turning it into a moon or some other celestial object. However, when we actually tested the design, it looked horrendously clunky on top of having granny’s cottage on the screen. So we merged the clickbox with the end goal — granny’s house. We still struggle with the fact that it doesn’t necessarily logically flow. But in the end, it is perhaps the most elegant solution we could achieve. In designing our code, we primarily use our classes as a way to load, size, and sort the images into arrays that would handle the character’s animation cycles. All of the actual ‘action’ takes place in the main function. Since animating the characters is such an involved process, it made sense to use the classes to deal with the most difficult aspects of putting our characters on screen, so we could trust that when we wanted them to perform a particular action, we wouldn’t have to also worry about properly coordinating their walk cycles & etc. -Amy York chart   The narrative story within our game focuses on the familiar knowledge of the Little Red Riding Hood fairy tale. We use Red as the player’s character with the objective of getting her basket of magic buns to Granny’s cottage in the woods. The challenge is to prevent the squirrels from stealing the magic buns on your way to Granny’s by spraying them with a water bottle. Conceptualizing the game was quite a different experience compared to creating it. We created a Red, Squirrel, and Squirrel_Bad class to be able to switch through animations. Many of the ideas we initially came up with to add variation to the experience to the squirrel behavior did not make it into the final version due to the ability of coding and animating it within the time constraint. Visualization became a key factor in creating the game to chart out different animations for the characters on paper as well as charting exact points of collision to better understand what needed to be adjusted. -Destiny Colon wolf   The progress of Reds Run created an interesting challenge. Twisting the classic tell of Red Riding Hood, we made the adversary a creature of the forrest. Our narrative had more layers than we had time and skill for which sadly reduced our gameplay to arriving at Granny’s house without getting jumped by squirrels. Although this was one method of gameplay designing the code was difficult. It became messy when our art assets needed to be animated as sprites which required a class of it’s own, but wasn’t compatible with the amount of interaction required of it through the several collisions tested against it. Some of the code had to be designed at the expense of more functional features. Untitled   Easing in Red changed, the manner in which the easing interacted with the squirrel, and how the assets were called into draw() affected the way collision was detected. It made it very hard to manage and later affected the evolutions of our bad guy.  Initially the way the assets were being drawn should have been taken care of through a variable for the current animation of the squirrel. I was under the impression that the code in the classes of the characters would’ve interacted appropriately with collision after taking the bun, but after the job was passed down the variable was not performing the way it was meant to. It should have redrawn the next animation called from the squirrel class, but instead a new class had to be made in order to display the next evolution. Another issue that became a necessary evil because of the code already invested, was Red’s attack. In order to repel the squirrel one had to hold down the “click box” until the squirrel was far enough for the player to feel safe. I attempted to fix this by using return() in order to break out of the approach() function, but it was also affected by the code I wrote for determining how far Red would have to be in the screen for approach to take action. This variable was made a static point on the X-axis meaning after Red walked past it Red would always trigger the squirrel’s approach. forrest prototype   – Jessica Sanchez

Conference Project: Lamp Lighter


(the new title card)

For my conference project, I continued working on my second group game, “Light the Lamps” (which was a continuation of my first group game, “Relay.”) I renamed the game “Lamp Lighter,” and updated it quite a bit. In “Lamp Lighter,” you play as the titular character whose job it is to protect its city’s lamps from evil bats who seek to snuff out their light with red goo. Background: As I mentioned in my post about my second group game, I wanted to add a background that was Victorian London-esque. I’ve included pictures of my drawing process: Sketch15341220

(the first sketch)


(after another sketch, the line work process started)

backgroundfinished   (the finished background!) 

I decided to keep the background mostly gray with highlights of yellow.


After play testing my second group game in class, I decided to change the color of the player and make an avatar for it, to really help it stand out against the background:


Bad Guys: 

Though I toyed around with random motion for a bit, I ultimately decided to keep my bad guys moving vertically in a straight line across the screen, but with random x coordinates, so that they’re not too predictable. Random motion ultimately made the bad guys too unavoidable, and this way the player really has a chance to explore the terrain of the game.

Screenshot 2015-05-11 06.03.03

I also updated the globs that the bats spit at the lamps to make them more texturally appealing – rather than just one single red color, they’re various shades of orange and red. Power Ups:  As I mentioned in my post about the different states of my bad guys, I decided to add a power-up to help the player stay alive. The power up looks like a glowing blue ball, and, when collected, it freezes the movement of the bats and turns their eyes blue. They can still shoot fire, they just can’t move around temporarily. The power-ups generate randomly throughout the screen and then quickly shrink away. As soon as one disappears, another one reappears.

Screenshot 2015-05-11 05.38.04

                  (the power-up)

Screenshot 2015-05-11 05.38.21

                  (a frozen bad guy) Sounds:  Finally, to put the finishing touches on the game, I added some sound effects from To start, I added an eerie track of multiple people whispering for the soundtrack. I also added an ominous noise for when new bad guys spawn (which happens whenever you press on the screen,) and a freezing noise for when a player collects a power-up. All in all, I’m really please with how this game turned out. I definitely got it to where I wanted it to be aesthetically, though there’s always room for improvement. There are still some bugs in the code that I’d like to work out (lamp posts staying red even after the player touches them, bad guys never unfreezing, etc), but once those are taken care of, I might have my first “finished” game.

Bad Guy Object Design: Evil Bats or Relay or Light the Lamps

IMG_5539 The evil bats in Light the Lamps have three states: moving, attacking, and frozen. The bats start the game moving randomly around the screen – their “moving” state is their default state. They transition into their attack phase – which consists of shooting “globs” of red at the lamps on either side of the screen – when the player crosses over one of three invisible “trigger” lines that I’ve placed equidistant from one another. They enter their frozen phase when the player manages to grab one of the floating blue circular power ups that appear at random points throughout the game. The patterns of these bats are very reliant on player choice, which will hopefully make the game more interesting and playable. IMG_5542 (1)

Conference Project: BlackHat

mainscreen The second game, I decided that I would use as my conference game because I wanted to get the extra time to really get this game right. I talked about the beginning of this game earlier in one of my posts. This is the particle game I’ve been working on since well before Spring Break. So, the name of the game is BlackHat. So as I stated in my earlier post, the entire game works on this environment of everything bouncing around on each other. I wanted this game to have a really good flow, almost as if everything on the screen is just floating around. In order to do this I decided that I didn’t want your character’s response to control to be instant, so rather than a screen tap moving your player to a position, I made it so that a screen tap adds velocity to your player in that specific direction.   apocolypse mode enemys The resulting effect is a very smooth, but slightly unresponsive feel. During play tests the class (and I) eventually agreed that the original way is a bit too unresponsive so I added more velocity per screen tap and the result is much more controllable, but still difficult. Interestingly enough, the game itself is very difficult, and not many people have been able to beat it, but when it is beat, the feeling is overwhelmingly satisfying which is just the way I want it to be. Easy games get boring very quickly, but also really difficult games turn the gamer off. I feel as if this game gets the right amount of mix in it. Now, I’ve been going on and on about some of the mechanics, but now I should get into the whole “how it works and plays” section. So here we go: You are the light green ball on the screen and your mission is to get the black hats.   hatmoves Now as you can see from some of the screen shots, there is a black hat on the blue ball. You first have to get that black hat, and in order to do that you must contact the blue ball (this will freeze the red dot/boss). Next the hat will move to the red dot. Once again, you make contact to get the hat. The boss will then lose one point of health and begin moving again, but this time faster. Now while you are doing this, the boss will shoot red blinking particles at you if you enter the yellow search light cone. These particles will damage the player and make your screen more and more red as seen in one of the screenshots above. So the process continues of trying to hurt the boss, and once you get him down to 1 hp, Apocalypse mode actives and the boss spawns extra particles at the bottom the screen as seen in the screen shots above. This last part of the game is the most difficult as there are 3 times as many red particles to avoid while trying to kill the boss. Now you may have noticed the darker green dot in the screenshots. This is the health orb. If you are hurt and you contact the health orb, you gain hp. Overall, this game was quite a challenge to make, but very rewarding in the end. I got to really dive into arraylists and looping to shorten my code a lot. The looping in fact saved me what would probably at least 200 extra lines of code. Other things that proved challenging was making the visual components work without departing from my original theme of the same shape throughout. I feel like I accomplished this by using a very nice color palette and a simple game mechanic. hurt Now, there could be an argument that this game could use some audio component. One might say that the game doesn’t stand on its own without one, but I feel as if this game most definitely stands on its own without any sort of audio. It’s fun and challenging and provides the player with a rewarding victory. Nowadays, most android games are played while listening to some sort of music playing anyways it feels that the handheld game is losing its need for its own stand alone audio. Now if this were some sort of pc or console game I would make the argument that they do need an audio component, but since this game was built for tablet and phone use I would say that the audio is a superfluous addition.

Group Game #2: Updraft

Updraft, formerly known as Rightfully Yours, is still a game of patience, cunning, and perseverance, only now it’s a lot more aesthetically sound and even more difficult. 1 With the addition of five fans that alternate in two directions at entirely random intervals, the player finds themselves being launched upward or drawn back down. As it is even more difficult to maneuver the enemy’s projectiles at a close proximity, I tried to make the beneficial fans a vibrant color that would stand out against the harmful ones. This lets the player make decisions out of the corner of their eye, since most of the action takes place at the center of the screen. 2 My code is a lot cleaner than its initial state, yet there are definitely changes and clarifications to be made. My conference project is a lot more consistent and logical, while Updraft has no real continuous code style. That said, it functions flawlessly with no known bugs. 3 The controls are much tighter and more responsive in this version. The color palette of this game is derived from a Paul Klee painting. A trophy is indeed again bestowed upon the player on completion. In retrospect, I am highly content with this project and am not afraid to present it to others. I really feel like I’ve developed a game!

Bad Guy Object Design

1 2 3 4   The goal of my particle game’s bad guy was to have him be harder to defeat as you started to defeat him. So in these photos I have my bad guy stages, as well as a couple different screens that show what my bad guy is doing and how he is reacting to certain situations. In order to make the bad guy more difficult, I used his health as a marker to make the bad guy smarter/harder. So, as we see in these state charts, the bad guy gets faster as well as spawns more particles as his health gets lower, culminating in “apocalypse mode” where the bad guy spawns a large amount of extra particles to make his last bit of health very hard to get rid of.

Conference Project: Cloud Catcher

  IMG_0339 Cloud Catcher is a interactive casual platform game. In order to make the sun rise player has to stop the clouds from bouncing (catch them). The player starts with 60 seconds on the timer and 18 lives. If the attempt to catch a cloud fails the player loses one live. If the player runs out time or lives a  sad cloud will appear on the screen asking the player to try again.
The game  is supposed to be casual but addicting as it is hard to win it, but the player is usually very close to winning it. in my opinion this approach will increase the amount of attempts the player takes to win the game and therefore the final victory, the appearance of a weird sun with mustaches, seems very rewarding. IMG_0338 The game has an interesting art design: it looks pretty weird but the idea of the sky and clouds is still recognizable.  The hardest part of programming this game was a creative one: I made all the drawings for the sun, clouds and a big sad cloud. And had to choose out 15 different versions/  It was also interesting to experiment with the colors, however it was hard to make a final decision and match the colors in the game.  I’m very glad that the game runs on the tablet because it makes it much more fun to play

Conference Game: Spare Me

Spare Me is a conventional platformer with a bright palette and a whole lot of bowling balls. Make your way to the tiny star to advance to the next level, but proceed with caution. If you get smacked, it’s back to the start of the level. 1 Trying to get the most variety out of my enemies, these bowling balls can fall at left or right angles, vertically, or directly left or right. Each bowling ball is assigned a random color at startup, so no two playthroughs will look identical. 2 What cannot be shown in these screenshots is the wild activity and motion paths of these bowling balls. At a glance, the screens are terrifyingly chaotic. Yet with a little attention and patience, exploitable gaps in their trajectories become more and more apparent. 3 This was an extremely fun project to code because the platformer lab offers a clean and manipulable archetype that is easy to build upon. I used a total of 8 arraylists to get the job done – one for platforms and one for enemies per level. 4 Far and away my largest difficulty with this project stemmed from the player’s jump physics. Through a bit of crafty (and a little muddled) circumvention, I found a good solution with very few exploits. I’ve been told that the translate() function works well for jump animations, but I couldn’t get it to work. Hopefully in the future I will find a more reliable solution. 5 And of course, if you can manage to make it through to the end, you’ll find recompense in a greasy bowling alley burger.

Group Game #2: Polarity

polarityTitleScreen With Polarity Shiyuan and I constructed a game that played more like a system.   The base game utilized the concept of polarity in that it attracted and repelled particles based on whether they were a plus or minus sign. We used this to create connections between the separate particles with the win state achieved through a total linkage of the network. However, we sought to appropriately address the intent of group game 2 and integrate an appropriate ‘bad guy’. This bad guy would actively work against the player particle and attempt to sever the connections already made.  We implemented three different behaviors for the bad guy. Each behavior was in turn signalled by a change in  the bad guy’s movement and appearance. The first is a standard seek which switches targets between all the non-player particles in the array. This does not directly target the player but is directly connected with the movement of the network around the player. In this stage the bad guy is a slightly lightened black. polarityMain1stBehavior   The second behavior is signalled by an off center red circle underneath the black circle of the bad guy. This second movement is the same as the first but with an enhanced maximum speed an turning speed. In motion this is a very aggressive action but still does not directly target the player.   polarityMain2ndBehavior   Finally, the third behavior is both quick and directly targets the player. By now the bad guy is fully red and demonstrates a clear threat the the player particle. polarityMain3rdBehavior   Each of the behaviors is triggered by the length of play which is indicated by the number of mouseclicks.  Mouseclicks and the bad guy’s state are reset each time the player is hit. A hit will dissolve all prior connections, resulting in the player starting again.  We decided that mouseclicks were a good indicator of the duration of play. If the player has more time to connect particles then they should face greater duress from the bad guy. The final design was an adaptation from our initial grey and black scheme. The initial interface was rather dark with sparse use of colour. Therefore we opted to change to an interface that was a little lighter and brighter colours so as to stand out. We designated red to be the positive sign an blue for negative. A bright green was reserved for the player particle to differentiate it from the rest of the particles.     AlternatePolarity   -Shiyuan He, Silas Osborne

Group Game #2: Rabid Squirrels

WPimage1   The narrative of our game relies on familiar knowledge of Little Red Riding Hood. As of now the goal of the game is to reach Granny’s house with as many magical buns in your basket as possible. The player must protect the magical buns from the rabid squirrels of the forest or else upon consumption the squirrels will evolve and make the game a bit more difficult. The purpose of having an evolution in the rabid squirrels (our bad guy) is to portray a variation of game play experience with the bad guy’s behavioral algorithms. At first stage they rabid squirrels are only able to steal buns from Red. If a squirrel makes a successful attack against Red they steal a magical bun and become larger and faster, which we call Bad Squirrel State. If Red is successfully attacked again the Bad Squirrel, then becomes Mega Squirrel, which is a large “megazord” of a squirrel, and very difficult to defeat. However, we could not make Red without a means of defense. In order to protect herself and the magical buns she must take to Granny’s house, she has a spray water bottle she can squirt the squirrels with to put them into the state of fleeing before they attempt to attack again. WPImage2   In order to portray narrative points as well as changes, and consequences in our game, we used visual clues to signal to the player what is happening. To show that the buns are magical and are a significant part of the game, goal, and narrative, we created a sparkles animation for the basket and buns. To indicate a successful attack collision on Red we created an animation that causes the basket of magic buns to blink red and then a bun disappears while the squirrel flees with the bun in its mouth. Another indication of player failure is the color palette of the forest, each time the squirrel evolves and becomes more evil the forest also becomes a darker environment. -Amy York, Destiny Colon, Jessica Sanchez  

Group Game #2: Hansel and Gretel

Our game follows Hansel and Gretel as they are getting closer to a Witch and her house. The game is black and white, and it gives the impression that something bad is about to happen.  Their trip is made harder by the falling cones, which sends player back to the start. The witch is waiting in her house. The controls are very simple and the player controls both Hansel and Gretel as they are moving together to the house.  The main goal is to arrive into the Witch house and not get hit by the cones. Screen Shot 2015-04-22 at 10.51.56 AMa When both Hansel and Gretel arrive to the house, the sign “You win.. for now” appears on the screen indicating that the player has successfully passed the first stage, it also implies that there is no real win since the trouble really starts at the witch house. unnamed (1) The game is looking just the way we wanted it to look, dark shadows really giving the sence of something bad about to happen. The game is designed as a two level game and we are hoping that we will finish the second stage as well. The second stage is supposed to see the players in the witch house, where Hansel will be trapped in the cage, and Gretel will have to push the witch in the fire.  

Bad Guy Object Design

The enemy showcases three distinct states – dodging, advancing, and recharging. When it is not doing one of these three, its “idle” state is steadily moving back and forth and firing shots at a rhythmic pace. IMG_4644 The enemy’s total health in conjunction with its quantitative distance from the player act to determine the frequency of when its states are called. For example, if the enemy’s health is low, it will attempt to recharge and strafe more frequently, but its distance from the player has the final say in whether the state is even executable. IMG_4646 With both variables interacting with one another, the state probabilities are in constant flux, simulating spontaneous behavior. I’m still unsure of what my exact formula will be to determine frequency, but I’m pointing in the direction of either a modulo timer with a changing limit or a randomizer with a changing scale (or a combination of the two). IMG_4648 IMG_4643

Object Design: Hansel and Gretel

FullSizeRender FullSizeRender-2 FullSizeRender                                 In our game you have to move one “good guy” at a time while the tree cones keep falling, if the tree cone hits the good guy, he moves back to the start. If the tree cone hits the ground it transforms into a witch’s hat or a mouse that will start running towards the witch’s house. The tree cones start falling when the player makes a first move that is equal to 10% of the distance.

Bad Guy Object Design: Rabid Squirrels


Our squirrels have three different phases of difficulty within the game: basic, acorn, and mega. At first we thought that this might make our behavioral chart intricate and complicated, until we realized that the squirrels have the same underlying pattern despite the increase in difficulty that occurs. These basic states are: seeking the player, attacking the player, and fleeing the player.

These behaviors are each triggered by a transition value, which we will alter as the squirrels enter different states of villainy.


The first transition, from seeking to attacking, is triggered as the squirrel reaches a certain distance to the player. This value will be initialized as being quite close to zero, so the squirrel will have to be nearly on top of the player to attack, and will increase as the game becomes more difficult, so the squirrel can do damage from further away. The second transition, from attacking to fleeing, is triggered when the squirrel is sprayed with water by the player. This will begin at one squirt, and as the game increases in difficulty the player will need to hit the squirrel multiple times in order to defeat it. Finally, the transition from fleeing to seeking will be triggered when the squirrel is a certain distance away from the player. This will begin as a high number, so the squirrel will flee nearly to the opposite side of the screen. The distance will shrink as the game increases in difficulty, to add additional challenges for the player.


Group Game #2 – Light the Lamps

 Sketch43152513(a preliminary title screen)

    For my second group game, I’m redesigning my first group game, Relay. I started my redesign by imagining what Relay would look like if Tim Burton were to design the game, and came up with some some sketches: photo (25)Instead of the bad guys being circles, I changed them into black triangles with red eyes. The black and red colors of the triangles contrast with palette of my game, which is mostly grey and yellow. I decided that instead of simple black rectangles for goals, my goals would be lamps. The object of the game is to avoid the bad guys while keeping the lamps lit. The bad guys want to shoot globs of red at the lamps to put them out. If the bad guys manage to cover the lamps entirely in red, the player loses. After sketching, I created a simple interface: Screen Shot 2015-03-16 at 11.27.58 AM As in Relay, the game starts without any bad guys on screen. But, each time you drag the lamp lighter, bad guys start to appear: Screen Shot 2015-03-16 at 11.57.31 AMThe lamp lighter’s eyes also glow when you drag it around. I really like the mechanic of adding bad guys each time the player is dragging, because that way the player has to constantly be engaged with the game. This also gives the player choice – they can choose to drop the lamp lighter, but that will increase the game’s difficulty by making the bad guys more powerful. I also added a behavior to the bad guy that wasn’t present in Relay – it shoots red globs at the lamp to try to put the lamp out:

Screen Shot 2015-03-16 at 11.57.09 AM

I want the bad guys to cover the lamp red section by section, but I’m still working on writing that code. Right now, the globs are an array list within my bad guy class, and the bad guys are an array list in the main class. I might change the wrapping pattern of the bad guy so that they’re harder to avoid, or add a different bad guy that does something else, like shooting globs that freeze the player momentarily. I also want to add another lamp so that the player has to cross back and forth between the lamps while avoiding the bad guys.

I still have a lot to work on, but I’m confident that I can get the code written and design a more detailed interface. I’m working on drawing a different lamp lighter on my tablet, who looks more like this:


I also want to design a background that looks like a street in victorian London, and make a better title screen. I look forward to posting about my game when it’s all finished!

Group Game #2: Polarity

Polarity WP_20150313_23_12_19_Pro WP_20150314_01_59_40_Pro For our group game Shiyuan and I decided on a concept that incorporated a notion of magnetic force. Particles with a certain polarity would repel a single non player moveable particle of the opposite polarity to an end zone. The force would have to be carefully judged to propel the target particle the requisite distance. Gameplay would be split into two phases: setup and action. Setup would either last a few seconds on a timer or simply be activated by the player with a tap on the end zone. It would start with the target particle surrounded by an array of other particles of varying polarities. The polarity could then be changed by a tap and the particle dragged to a suitable position. In later stages, there might be fewer particles whose forces would need to be combined. Positive and negative attract and the offspring of two differently charged particles would equal a particle with the ability to exert greater force. In the gameplay mode, forces would be applied and the game would begin its action phase and become kinetic. WP_20150313_23_12_03_Pro In this game there was some confusion over what could constitute a bad guy. We considered what kind of enemy might want to use the magnets and what they might represent. In effect we were creating an enemy that might want to use power for its own purpose. This could be represented by bad guys who had stolen one of the particles which now had to be regained by getting all the other particles to work together. The bad guys then might be at the end zone taunting and indirectly attacking the players by advancing a force field or attractive force at the other end.  This force would impel players to move fast lest their particles be sucked into the trap. Both the bad guys and good guys then are contesting a magnet and the bad guy affects the environment by altering its parameters and the good guys’ movement possibilities.    

Group Game #2: Polarity

  polarity     For group game 2, Silas and I are working on a game called Polarity. The image above shows the design concept of this game, which is switching polarities to create diverse movements. For the basic game mechanics, please check out this post. Since this game was originally conceptualized for its game mechanism, during the design process it started to tilt towards a puzzle, so creating a narrative became a challenge. In order to incorporate a bad guy, first we decided to visualize the timer. Instead of having a countdown, a wall will start moving from the left to occupy the playable space. This wall also serves as a giant magnet that attracts other particles and neutralize them so that the player will have less force to reach the target. To create diverse multiple encounters, we decided to have the wall/giant magnet act differently in each level. For example, it can adopt different shape, including ones that have a channel in the center, which will not only transform play strategy, but may also influence the goal of a specific level.  Since the behavior of the wall would change, it will give each level an endogenous meaning while creating diverse and challenging game play. Though the wall will perform the “bad thing,” it may not be expressive enough to carry a whole narrative; therefore we decided to create a real bad guy and make the wall a weapon that he uses. As Jenkins mentioned in “Game Design as Narrative Architecture”, the conflict between interactivity and narrative is often solved by incorporating spatial stories and environmental storytelling into the endogenous world. In the case of our game, the bad guy need to appear in the winning zone (on the right), where he can hold the object that the player is chasing after. Meanwhile he needs to control the movement of the wall, which starts from the left. This spatial separation inspired us to have a chain that goes across the screen, and the “bad thing” is therefore transferred to the bad guy, because he becomes the one pulling.   Bowserbp On the mechanism level, the bad guy does not have any direct encounter with the player. However, he is crucial for a thorough narrative across levels. During the design process, we have discovered similar bad guys in other games who do not have direct collisions with the player. For example, Bowser Koopa in Super Mario often only appear at the end of each level to kidnap the princess to another castle; In Angry Bird, the pig performs bad things only in the cut-scene narratives and do not actually encounters the bird. To a certain extent, those bad guys are giving meanings to the spatial environment. Similarly in the case of our game, the story will be an enacted narrative, which uses features of the environment to move through the plot trajectory.