Progress Report (Week 2)

The team made significant progress during Week 2, as we moved out of the Ideation/Brainstorming stage and into the Initial Concepts stage. Our next goal is to challenge out of this, and move into the Deep Dive stage by Monday, September 19, 2016. Our progress for this week are as follows…

  • The team had a meeting on Sunday, September 4, 2016, with the goal that each team member have 2 new ideas ready to pitch to the rest of the team (10 ideas). We exceeded expectations and had 14 new ideas for the day. Adding this to the 16 ideas we had at the previous meetings, our grand total is now at 30 ideas. The 14 new ideas are…
    • Idea #1 was monsters fighting each other in a sci-fi setting with turn-based combat (with Zelda-esque level design) involving dungeons to get tools.
    • Idea #2 RPG revolving around deciding what your actions are just based on looking at enemy on how their built (instead of stats).
    • Idea #3 is similar to Pogo Pandemonium from Crash Bash where the objective is to take over tiles. The tiles is a lawn and one player is a lawnmower that takes over tiles by cutting the grass, and the other player is a dog who poops in each tile to fertilize the grass to make it grow back.
    • Idea #4 is sad, but educational and involves a mama Polar Bear and her cub fighting to survive in the Arctic as their home is slowly melting away.
    • Idea #5 has the working title Pillow Plight and involves a pillow getting revenge on humans for wanting to have pillow fights instead of going to sleep. The main goal is to journey to the Pillow God (who’s throne is a nice king size bed) to convince him to use his mystical powers to make humans want to sleep again.
    • Idea #6 is a mind-flayer game where you have to nurture mother brain while defending against attackers. They can also save NPC’s but they can be controlled too.
    • Idea #7 is a stealth game where you play as a guard. The objective is to find the thief while working with/around other guards.
    • Idea #8 is a Battleship-esque game that is turn-based and involves choosing to attack a ship and having to set the weapons and judge the distance to the other ship.
    • Idea #9 is a turn-based game (with the illusion of real-time) like Simon where you can control time, using the correct actions in order to defeat enemies.
    • Idea #10 is similar to Pokemon Go but it involves LARP-ing.
    • Idea #11 is a no-combat game involving town villagers who have no idea how to deal with magical creatures/witches. The player is the “middle-man” between the two, helping each side out.
    • Idea #12 is Creature Platformer, top-down, where the player can mind-control a creature to help them solve puzzles, disarm traps, or defeat enemies. Mini-bosses can even be controlled.
    • Idea #13 2D platformer puzzle having the player construct machines to kill a bunny.
    • Idea #14 is called Heart of Balor (or Eye of Balor) and involves Balor from Irish mythology.
  • Now that we had enough ideas to continue on, each team member made a list of the five ideas that we liked most, and we wrote the ideas that had the most votes on the board. My Prices Are More Than Fair was on all 5 team members’ lists, with The Watcher (the game involving town villagers and witches with player being the “middle-man”) earning 4 votes. The game involving wizards and the character progression had 3 votes, and lastly, 5 ideas earning two votes each (casual horror+mind flayer, Warm Fighter, Mama Polar Bear in the melting Arctic, the turn-based game with an input mechanic, and the RPG where the player’s actions depend on the enemy’s look).
  • Following this, we further narrowed down our ideas to our final four, which we would present the next day in class. Our final four were The WatcherMy Prices Are More Than FairWizards in Training, and Warm Fighter.
  • After presenting the four ideas in class the next day, the team came together for a meeting on Thursday, September 8, 2016, to discuss basic concepts for each of the four ideas (i.e. narrative, mechanics, User Interface (UI), etc.). After briefly discussing The Watcher at the start, we decided the idea was too ambitious to be successfully completed enough to be eligible for presentation in December so we scrapped it and focused on the other three.
  • Succeeding this quick decision, the meeting was then resumed by having each team member shared what they did for the week.
    • Dmitri talked (argued) with Aaron over the Design for Warm Fighter and what mechanics were needed and made a basic prototype. Levels would be more arena-based and would include environmental hazards and puzzles.
    • John focused on design for all three ideas and wrote down notes and ideas for each.
    • Tony looked at the Wizards in Training and My Prices Are More Than Fair ideas and thought which one would be easier to prototype and analyzing what he would want to do.
    • AJ made a rough draft of a business document for My Prices Are More Than Fair which included a target market, marketing, and monetization, as well as a timeline and budget (all hypothetical).
    • Aaron talked (argued) with Dmitri over Warm Fighter. He also did a few pieces of concept art .
    • Following all this, we discussed Warm Fighter.
    • Aaron showed the team a mockup that he made that includes what the game would hypothetically look like in the end. It includes the player shooting a giant lava worm, as well as a health bar for the enemy and a heat bar (both at the bottom of the screen) that goes down the more the worm is attacked in succession which freezes the worm and can reward the player when depleted (like an execution mechanic). If the player tries to use this mechanic too early, it can cause the heat bar to fill back up and make the worm enraged (which during this mode, it can’t be frozen).
    • It has the player’s health bar in the top left corner.
    • Aaron suggested a perk system (i.e. Rage which makes the player move faster when health is low).
    • Environmental hazards suggested were lava jets and crevasses, etc.
    • The home base for Warm Fighter is a longship that would have a gun locker, etc. A crew was also suggested but hasn’t been decided on due to the amount of work that would be.
    • We then talked about My Prices Are More Than Fair.
    • John talked about his ideas for the primary objective which is to make money, and that is made by selling goods, and to sell goods, they have to be acquired. (It’s an endless cycle).
    • The end goal is to increase the player’s net worth.
    • One of John’s ideas is that the player goes from a back alley, sketchy salesman, to Jordan Belfort levels of wealth. The player would start selling things from a trenchcoat, then moving up to a cart, then a stall, shoppe, emporium, etc. This would be considered leveling up and it would be achieved when the net worth reaches certain numbers.
    • Goods can be acquired by exploring dungeons, and buying from suppliers.
    • The screen will have the shop counter with a line of customers. The player talks to customers trying to figure out which item in the player’s inventory would best suit their needs. The player tries to sell the customer the item by setting their own price, which the customer can refuse if the price is too high for their liking.
    • Certain customers can also sell the player a “mystery crate” which increases the player’s inventory, but you don’t know what items come in it (it also decreases your net worth if you decide to purchase it).
    • There is also a sabotaging system allowing the player to sabotage the competition to steal the goods, but over time it will cause net worth to go down the more the sabotage system is used (to prevent spamming).
    • The team then concluded by talking about Wizards in Training.
    • John shared that he thinks it would be (in terms of gameplay) like a generic 3rd person shooter that involves solving puzzles to find new spells, and learning how to use each spells.
    • For the three paths (Summoner, Battle Mage, and Druid), the Druid would have powers more toward Divination where they can see secret paths. The Summoner can do things like summon a shield, etc.
    • We then discussed puzzles and what exactly they would be. For the Druid it would be more like a maze, the Battle Mage would have melee puzzles, and the Summoner would have flamethrower traps.
  • Now that all three ideas have been fleshed out to an extent, the goal for class is to have prototypes for all three ideas (that have been tested in QA twice) in order to challenge into the Deep Dive stage. Once our meeting concluded, the team then got to work. We had our first Work Meeting on Saturday, September 10, 2016.
  • Stay tuned for more updates!
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