Box’s World – Post Mortem

Posted by (twitter: @avidgamerNino)
May 13th, 2013 11:11 am

Theme:

I liked the theme, I felt this was the perfect theme for my first ludum dare compo, once I finally understood it. I am sure everyone had a glance at Piet Mondrian’s Compositions, I know I did. At first when I hear the word minimalism, I think of either Bomberman or Mario shrinking down to size or as I used to call the “teeny- weeny disease.” So I felt I should research the term a little more deeply. The words that really hit home when I read it on Wikipedia was, ” simplest and fewest elements are used to create the maximum effect.” so I felt my game should live on that statement.

The idea:

I was mostly inspired by Piet Mondrian’s Art. You start in pure blackness as a black box and you strive to come out of the dark and “make something of yourself.” So you then navigate through the darkness somehow then come to some simple obstacles or compositions that are preventing you from escaping.

Design/Mechanics:

The first level/area is based on the composition by Piet Modrian’s Composition with Yellow, Blue, and Red. The mechanics would work like so: Blue colors would transfer you from white area to white area, Red areas would be elevators lifting you up from floor to floor and Yellow/Green would transfer you to a different area. I wanted to have top down camera at first centralizing the black square/player, but midway through I changed to a third person camera. I designed my levels based on those mechanics. I wanted to start in darkness so I needed a way to be guided through, so I then found my answer for Audio. I used as few sounds as possible making only four files that would be the only sound in the game and I wanted to make the most out of the sounds as I could. I needed to plannout my repeating level assets better.

Programming

I have been working the model-view-controller shown to me through Unity3D by mbakr . I think it has been working quite well usually I think I run into trouble figuring out my static variables, but with this method it helps me keep my static items organized with the get and set methods.Towards the end of the compo, I think I got a little sloppy just throwing scripts on objects that may have been better set on the player/controller or thought the model itself.

Audio

I enjoyed doing the audio. Being a bass player in the past, had me really enjoy making the music. I think for next time I might even try recording my bass amp through some audio recording device. It was my first time bring sound and programing it in Unity3D as well which was awesome and easy. Audio sets a mood for sure.

What when wrong?

Guiding the player or Instructions/ Tutorials, helping guide in the darkness. Spending to much checking ludum dare site and twitch.tv which could have been used on more designing/brainstorming time . I think interpreted the theme minimalism to an extreme, by adding to much minimalism to everything, including the instructions which really threw some players off (see images above for something I should have done). I did not want to change it during the compo because I felt it was probably going to take adding a tutotrial/learning section. I think I may have spent a little too much time in Unity3D with level design. Better planning of levels with repeated assets can go a long way.

What went right?

I feel I definitely got the theme right . Finishing the game went right. Whenever I hit any “road blocks” I went back to my sketchbook replanned any problems that I had and at the same time came up with more ideas. Using the sketchbook was nice and I plan to do it more often instead of sitting there thinking in my computer chair.

Conclusion

I felt I got a real crash course on getting a game out before a deadline which I have not really done before. With this theme I think I got “off the hook” designing some assets which usually takes up most of my time. I feel as though this was my warm-up to ludum dare, because when I look at some of the other entries, they don’t need to be so theme concentrated. I received great value in my feedback for navigating the player and feel the next experience won’t leave any aspects open for interpretation.

Play it here:

Box’s World

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-26/?action=preview&uid=20551


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