Quick Progress on Za

Back story for our game is a teenage alien was ejected from her spaceship when it crashed onto Earth. Both landed in a jungle but are separated. The ship broken into pieces, which Za has to collect while dodging monsters and jungle pitfalls (fire, croc water, etc) that will drain her energy. Once she’s able to collect all the ships parts and put them together, she’ll be able to leave Earth and find her way home.

Here is a draft of a clip for the opening scene of the game, compiled by Corbin: https://youtu.be/PHUI7mJ6vG4

The game mechanics are using up down arrows, which will be turned into a rope controller that the player pulls and push towards and away from them in order to move Za up and down a vine she’s swinging on through the jungle. When a monster and Za comes into contact the speed of everything slows down, and her energy bar depletes. When a ship part and Za comes into contact everything speeds up and her energy bar increases.

Here is a video clip of how the game is currently working: https://vimeo.com/164998118

For the arcade cabinet itself, we’ve decided to use a frond (palm tree leaf bush) as the back board of the entire cabinet. The rest of the sides and console will have flora and fauna all over it to give it a jungle feel and we want texture to transport the player into the jungle. We’re hoping that the console itself will have plant life like moss on it. The rope controller is something that we are figuring out, but we have agreed that it will be a long rope that is suspended in some way either from the ceiling or from a portion on the frond wall.



CNC Practice

I followed Ben Light’s tutorial and I made a super super super simple maze using a piece of .75 in thick scrap wood and the half in bit in the shop.

What I have to pay attention to is the thickness of the gaps in-between the parts that get pocketed because with the first attempt I destroyed the wood and it essentially became a 5 inch round ashtray because the wood got obliterated by the bit. For the second round I made the gap a quarter on an inch and that worked out so much better. What I did notice was that it wasn’t as clean of a pocket cut I assumed it would be and I sanded a lot of it. What would I have to adjust in mastercam to get it to cut better? or just get a better bit?

simple_maze (playing the maze with a flat round bead…my marble disappeared on me)

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simple maze

Researching Arcade Cabinets

Over at the Game Center there are a few arcade games and Killer Queen is one of them. It’s pretty cool because of the shared gaming experience and it gives you options on how you want to play the game. What I really like is that there is enough space for everyone to surround the console and you don’t feel cramped. For me because I’m small I lean in a lot, and I’m still comfortable with handling the controller. What’s great about leaning in is that the game is the only thing in your sightline and it feels like you’re immersed in the game.




Week 5: Game Controller Design

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This is a screenshot of the circular tilt controller that I’ve designed (Xiwei and I will be meeting up to compare our designs and combine the best of each design into one controller, provided it makes sense)

I have 3 circles where the large one gets sandwiched in between the two smaller ones. The edge that juts out from the large circle is where the player will hold (etched thumb prints on the sides indicates to hold/grip in that area). On the underside slightly above of where the player grips, the accelerometers will be placed…I’m wondering if the accelerometers need to be encased or it’s fine to attach it with velcro, since it’s not a part that will be seen. I did make 2 small boxes for the accelerometers in case we decide to cover them. (those are the boxes on the lower right side) The box in the lower middle of the page is the encasement for the Arduino and there are two small rectangles that will be added to one of the side panels to cut out holes for the power cable and micro usb cable. The Arduino box will be placed onto the bottom small circle.

This is a pdf of the game controller: game_controller

This the pdf of Xiwei’s game controller: Controller


Week 4: Sprites and game idea

blue blob sprite page

penguin bounce sprite sheet

pentapus-1 sprite sheetI had and am still having fun playing and making sprites with Piskell. I’ve made a blueberry with feet, and penguin face with a hat and a quadpuss.

I don’t think my sprites will make it into my midterm game…because the idea that Xiwei (Eva) and I have for the controller we’re building is a tilting controller that will have accelerometers in it and that will control a ball or something that will roll in the games we make. The idea I have is a ball game that will roll on a path or in a maze and the goal is to stay on that path or complete the maze in order to win. Simple enough, but the challenge comes from the physics that will be on the ball. For example if the controller is tilted too much to the right or stays tilted to the right for too long the ball will pick up speed moving to the right and may roll of the path and you lose.


Our idea for the controller came from a maze game where you stand on the controller and you shift around left to right to tilt the maze in order to move the ball. We decided to make a smaller hand operated version of this. The design of the game controller will be (hopefully) relatively simple, where it’s a round disk and there will be etchings on it to show where your hands go. I’m split between it being something you hold in your hands or it being held up by a stand and you push and tilt it to make the ball move. Having the disk in your hand while playing is going to give you more range of movement and space to move in but the arduino and that the accelerometers will have to be placed creatively in order to give good readings and I’m having a hard time figuring out where to place them without making the disk look, feel, or seem to be awkward…I’m picturing a frisbee type disk where the curve is where you hold or in that space is where the accelerometers are placed. Having the disk on a mount eliminates the problem of where to place the hardware, but it limits to movement the player does. But for the game I’m building either option would work.




Week 3: Game Comparisions

  • Research the Golden Age of Video Games and play three different games. Note the layout, game mechanics, and controls. Write a blog post comparing and contrasting the three games, and what you liked and didn’t like about each one.

The 3 games that I played were Moon Patrol, Tempest, and Tron.

Tempest: The game was very simple, all colorful vector lines on a black back drop where the black is mean to represent space. The player rotates around the tube or t-shaped or whatever shaped area (depending on level) to shoot the enemies with fireballs or a one shot super fireball to destroy everything for that level. As you move around the perimeter of the shape the enemies move up the shape towards you. You have to shoot them before they get to you or you die. As you destroy the enemy’s fire and/or the enemy you rack up points. You reach a certain amount of points and you power up a level. The controls on the keyboard were simple enough; left and right arrows moved you right and left, the up arrow or the space bar shot fireballs, and the down arrow was a super fireball…the actual game had a spinning knob to move around on the screen and a button to fire. I liked the simple graphics and the thought that went into the original game with the spinner and button because the spinner was representational of you moving around the shape to shoot at the enemy. I don’t like how the arrow keys translated into the game play because the left arrow meant move to the right and right arrow meant move to the left.

Tron: IT’S LIKE A MORE AMPED VERSION OF SNAKE! It’s a 2 player game or 1 player and the computer. Your goal is to move around the screen leaving a trail behind you and you are trying to get the other player (who’s making a trail as well) to crash into the walls, itself, or you in order to win. There are 3 chances and whoever gets all 3 or the best 2 out of 3 is the winner. When you play against the computer you have 6 levels to go through before you are champion, and the computer becomes more intense as the levels go up. Keyboard controls were just the arrow keys; up, left, and right. I liked that the arrow keys moved in the direction I expected them to move, because I wasn’t trying to figure out how to use the arrow keys for the game.

Moon Patrol: You’re an officer and you’re patrolling the thuggish section of the planet and there are things to look out for like barrels, things flying in the air, things being dropped down and you have to shoot them to zap them. You also have to jump over holes. There are 26 check points which I call levels because the background changes at each point. You get 3 chances to not fall in a hole, roll into a barrel, or  have something fall on you from the sky. You use the arrow keys and space bar to move around and shoot at things. Left and right arrows are for speed, up arrow is to jump, and space bar is to fire. I like that it’s a simple game to get the hang of, I don’t like that you can’t just the angle that you shoot into the sky at things.

Week 1: Do a Unity tutorial

This weeks assignment was to follow along with a unity tutorial from the unity website or youtube (etc). I started off doing a tutorial from the unity website, but even the beginners tutorials weren’t easy to follow along. For me the narrator went too fast and the code wouldn’t work. I tried about 3 different tutorials and I didn’t learn or was able to make anything. So I moved onto Brackeys on youtube.

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I did the first to videos on making a roll ball game, and he was understandable, moved at a reasonable pace, and even though his code was for an older version of unity, the MonoDevelop was able to update it to follow the current typing style.

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rolljumpball, is a screenshot video that shows me playing demoing what I have made so far.