Ludum Dare 30 — August 22nd-25th, 2014 — Theme: Connected Worlds

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Romeo and Juliet, The Game -- make love, not war/suicide!

by Arakade - Jam Entry

Connected by a couple's love ...?

Two households, both alike in dignity,
In fair Verona, where we lay our scene,
From ancient grudge break to new mutiny,
Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean.

From forth the fatal loins of these two foes
A pair of star-cross'd lovers take their life;
Whose misadventured piteous overthrows
Do with their death bury their parents' strife.

Or maybe not...? Could House Montague and House Capulet have been reconciled with something other than their favourite children's deaths? What if the kids could have calmed their parents' strife with beautious words of balm (i.e. got them all to chill) ?

You play Romeo (full version: or Juliet).
In scene 1, you traded insults and fists with the pityable Capulets.
In scene 2, you met your true love -- but of your family's enemy's house!
Now, you hope to marry your beloved but first, you must reconcile your families through soothing tongue!

--

Created for Ludum Dare 30 in Unity by 2 programmers (1 indie gamedev, 1 Java). We tried to use the jam as a learning opportunity for several things we haven't tried before. Neither of us had used Behaviour Trees (AI) nor done human avatars! Our end result isn't everything we hoped for (a write-up will follow in a few days after lots of sleep) but it's still quite a bit and lots was learnt! (including lots of what doesn't work ;-) )

The basic premise is that each line of delivered dialogue has an effect on all who hear it. An insult offends your enemies, a compliment or calming phrase heals. The non-Player characters are driven using an emotion-based Behaviour Tree. They choose their own conversation based upon their emotions and will flee when too upset.

A finished implementation would see better feedback (e.g. emotes, scores), more & better phrases (including translations from Shakespearean 'New' English to Modern English/other) and a 3 act progression with dramatic semi-open conclusions emphasizing the changing outlook of the protagonist and the consequences of his/her actions. Potential conclusions could include:
- WORST: solo suicide and/or all-out war for no resolution (or hurting your Love such that there is no mutual suicide).
- MEDIUM: mutual suicide if you manage no familial resolution (perhaps leading to the story-standard resolution over their children's deaths).
- BEST: Various levels of peace brought about through your successful actions.

We haven't decided if/how much effort we'll put into this after the jam. Let us know if you think there's a market(?). After a few bugfix builds (including trimming 35MB of uncompressed sound out!), we've added a post-jam build which we'll add a few features to. At this writing it already has better feedback (the AI's show a :-( when they're running because they're upset -- in the Jam version they just leave despite this being the reason!).

--
To allow us to focus on learning and doing the things we wanted, we used loads of assets from the Unity asset store. Here's a list (some references to be filled-in later):

- World geometry is from the marvellous Michael O's "Cartoon Town and Farm v1.0" https://www.assetstore.unity3d.com/en/#!/content/17254
- Models are UMA (Unity Multipurpose Avatar) and 1 Autodesk Character Generator (we also tried MakeHuman -- good but wasted hours trying to make clothes for them!). On that note, be *really* grateful the game characters are wearing clothes! Why doesn't anyone warn you these modelling programs and auto-generaters seem to think boxer-shorts are sufficient attire!? :-P )
- AI is BehaviorDesigner. Great stuff! Learning Behaviour Trees was one of the goals and this implementation ran flawlessly (bar deleting "shared variables" on prefab instances sometimes when prefab updated).
- GUI is NGUI (our first time with this, too after years of 2DTK!) but we used Unity OnGUI for speech bubbles after we ran out of time for 9-sliced ones.
- The sound was last minute from http://www.freesound.org/people/dobroide/sounds/115872/ -- labelled quiet city, foolishly it's 46mb so blew-up the download and contains more background sounds than at would have liked.

Enjoy our humble work and look forward to trying yours!
Thanks!

Downloads and Links


Ratings

#320Graphics(Jam)3.53
#608Innovation(Jam)2.59
#642Mood(Jam)2.50
#668Theme(Jam)2.27
#716Overall(Jam)2.59
#755Fun(Jam)1.94
#1796Coolness30%

Comments

Buttsteam says ...
Aug 26, 2014 @ 8:23am

Can't run.

"Resource could not be found." :'<

Arakade says ...
Aug 26, 2014 @ 12:39pm

Hey @Buttsteam
Thanks for trying. I suspect it was still uploading then! Dropboxing 56m! Hope you'll give it another try anon (Azuroj looks cool - will try when I'm on desktop!).
Thanks!

liquidminduk says ...
Aug 30, 2014 @ 12:33pm

it took quite a long time to load!
Even though you used pre-made assets the visuals came together nicely.
Great effort!

mrexcessive says ...
Sep 1, 2014 @ 6:24pm

Hi there. Seems to be very ambitious. Runs okay Chrome/W8.1, but the animation and movement of character are disconnected, couldn't reliably move where I wanted. Lots of impressive models.

Ofursnati says ...
Sep 5, 2014 @ 11:12am

Good solid entry, graphics are nice. conversation options seem limited.

DarkCart says ...
Sep 5, 2014 @ 9:41pm

Unable to run.

tbam says ...
Sep 5, 2014 @ 9:48pm

Can't quite figure out what's going on. Graphics look amazing, but the gameplay fell a bit flat for me.

kristof says ...
Sep 5, 2014 @ 10:40pm

Hey there, best graphics i've seen yet at ld30. couldn't interact with anyone, everyone gave me a sad smiley after responding. The atmo-sound you picked doesn't feel very fitting at the moment. I hope you'll continue this one till it's really playable!

Hippolyta says ...
Sep 5, 2014 @ 11:05pm

A good starting point for a real game! I think you guys learned a lot of tools/tech with this piece...
Keep on going! ;-)

Dietrich Epp says ...
Sep 6, 2014 @ 12:38am

Sorry, I can't suss out what's going on: I get presented with the same two dialogue options over and over, among other things.

Xanjos says ...
Sep 6, 2014 @ 12:47am

A bit confused over what it is I'm actually supposed to do but I do like the animations though and I suppose the actual story of Romeo and Juliet does relate to the theme.

klianc09 says ...
Sep 6, 2014 @ 3:17pm

It looks good, but that background noise is just annoying.
And I think it doesn't work right, as I can only say two lines of text when I get to the crowd, and they never interact in any way.
For moving I would have liked to hold down the mouse instead of repeatedly clicking.

I guess this concept is just too big for a ludum dare, but could be really nice if given enough time for polish.

jukimv1986 says ...
Sep 8, 2014 @ 8:07pm

I would like to play a more developed version, as I found the current one too confusing, which tends to happen when you have ambitious plans for your game ahead of the ludum dare. It is great that it helped you as a learning project, I am looking forward to what you will come up next. Well done!

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