task[1]

lim jia sheng,
0344034.

BDCM
.Games Development
::task[1]






task[1]: Game Design Document

todo:

  • Come up with 3 ideas
  • Construct a game design document

research:

Knowing that we had to create a 2D platformer game, the possibilities were endless. I first started searching for inspiration with my favourite genre(?) of games, which I like to call "post-realism", where they explore dinge themes in reality, digging deep into them in almost a half gut-wrenching & half parodying way. Below are a few inspirations that would push forward my ideas:

The Stanley Parable

imagery:

  • Stanley Parable all endings and how many endings there are explained |  Eurogamer.net
  • The Stanley Parable: Ultra Deluxe review: This is not a review - Polygon
  • The Stanley Parable: Ultra Deluxe
  • img

Figure 1.1.5, Various The Stanley Parable imagery, n.d

why:

This game brings us through a surrealistic interpretation of the world of an office worker, working in a faceless overbearing corporation. Whilst it is 3D, it's the story I was particularly intrigued by. It's really cleverly crafted, utilising the "narrator" role in a way that's comedic, fun, & chilling. Above all that though, is the aesthetic. The liminal, cold walls, & bone-chilling lighting & atmosphere was something I really wanted to further explore, in a striped down version, of course.

Undertale

imagery:

  • Undertale endings explained and how to access hard mode | Eurogamer.net
  • Undertale walkthrough, Pacifist guide and tips for Switch, PS4, Vita and PC  | Eurogamer.net
  • Undertale walkthrough, Pacifist guide and tips for Switch, PS4, Vita and PC  | Eurogamer.net
  • Undertale Walkthrough, Part Two: Snowdin Guide

Figure 1.1.10, Various Undertale imagery, n.d

why:

This game puts a spin on classic RPG game concepts, such as XP & sparing, tightly integrating them into the main storyline. The artstyle is simple but just divine in creating the liminal, spooky environment, whilst being almost blissful, calming, in some situations. Not only is the novel concept something I'd love to yank & play with, the visuals, & the soundtrack are all superb. Truly an indie inspiration.

Helltaker

imagery:

  • Helltaker on Steam
  • Helltaker on Steam
  • GitHub - D3fau4/Helltaker-switch: Helltaker is a short game about sharply  dressed demon girls for Nintendo Switch.
  • Helltaker on Steam

Figure 1.1.15, Various Helltaker imagery, n.d

why:

This is a very simple game with a few relatively simple levels. The concept of a human going to hell to get a harem of demon girls, certainly entertain. However, it's the art here & the all-encompassing ironic theme that I wanna yank. The simple, flat, comic-esque artstyle, along with the relatively down-to-earth slice-of-life concepts (ignoring the whole going to hell aspect), both baked inside the game & surrounding it, invigorate its alure by countless magnitudes.

process:

With my initial games juice blended & digested, I got right ahead to coming up with a few ideas.

Grocerer

overview:

A grocery shopping game, where the player would go through multiple levels, as they were a supermarket's floors, in search of items on a grocery list. The player would start from the bottom floor, & at both ends of the levels, there would be an escalator. They are free to traverse up & down at will.

The main challenge though, is that there are multiple brands of each item, & they are shuffled around every game (shuffling is actually a real practice supermarkets do frequently!). The player will thus need to try to collect every item, within the time, as well as optimising for the lowest amount of money spent.

measurables:

  • Time taken
  • Money spent

aesthetic:

2D-pixel art. bright, white; like the Pokémarts.

  • The Pok√©mart
  • Pok√©mart - Pokemon World Online Wiki
  • Pok√© Mart - Bulbapedia, the community-driven Pok√©mon encyclopedia
  • Pokemart 3 by ditto209 on DeviantArt

Figure 1.1.20, Various Pokémart imagery, n.d

Isometric supermarket, n.d

Figure 1.1.21, Isometric supermarket, n.d

SWAT TEAM

overview:

The player is a homeless person, pity-hired by a restaurant to swat flies, in exchange for two meals a day. There will be only one repeating level, with flies spawning in from the side & continuously flying around the screen. The player will hit the flies using a fly swatter. However, if by the end of a certain time, there are flies on the screen, the player will have a bad thing done to them. The first time they would be warned, second time then scolded, then served rotten food, then beaten, then starved, etc.

measurables:

  • Flies swatted

aesthetic:

2000s flash game/comic, but with grungy, gory, & unnerving elements.

  • img
  • img
  • Whack Your Boss | Whack Your Wikia | Fandom
  • Among Us: You're the Impostor - The New York Times

Figure 1.1.26, Various comic-esque 2D game imagery, n.d

Succide

overview:

The player is an average worker that hates their job, & uses self-destructive activities & substances to escape from their living situation. They can either work, go clubbing, get drugs, or go sleep, all at their own free will. Each action, or inaction, they perform will affect how long they survive in the game.

measurables:

  • Happiness
  • Health
  • Wealth

aesthetic:

2D pixel-art-esque, that's clean, liminal, & minimal.

  • image-20221002182110169
  • image-20221002182119469
  • image-20221002182131028
  • image-20221002182138510
  • image-20221002182142672
  • image-20221002182148464

Figure 1.1.33, Various liminal-ish pixel art-ish imagery, n.d

proposal:

This was the idea I ultimately chose to pursue, & I quickly drafted up a document with my ideas.

Figure 1.1.34, Game design draft, 27/9/2022

After some feedback & own retrospect, I collected some visuals that fit the ✨vision✨, changed "Happiness" to "Mood" (it's catchier xdd), & dumped it all into a real pretty PowerPoint.

feedback:

  • 30/9/2022
    • Add some visuals to the proposal so people can see & visualise what I'm talking about.
    • Make sure it's doable & I don't die making a game about people dying

final:

Figure 1.2.1, Final game design proposal, 2/10/2022

Figure 1.2.2, Final game design proposal presentation, 2/10/2022

reflection:

I had a surprising amount of fun doing this whole shebang, even though it's just the absolute tip of the iceberg for this module. I got to stretch my legs, & being able to explore various stories & concepts really stroked that creative spot in my frontal lobe. Game Studies as a prerequisite module also tremendously helped in bootstrapping me into knowing what to do, what to write, & what to think.

With that said though, I still did learn a thing or two about designing a game. The first definitely being scope. There's not a lot of weeks left, & being able to restrain the design to an initial MVP, cutting down all the excess fluff was not easy. There were so many concepts that I wanted to add to Succide, but deep down I know, it's for the best that only its core be worked on for this module.

At the end of the day, I'm still pretty proud of the idea, & am genuinely excited to tackle it for the rest of the semester. I hope that my September brain doesn't fail my November self, & all things go smoothly. Heck, if it goes too smoothly, who knows, the bank of idea loans are booming, hoping my interest rates stay high!

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