We’ve just returned from a very successful weekend at Rezzed. It was pleasure to be showing our game at our first major game event. And the first official UK event to host the Oculus Rift. We’re so glad that we were able to offer players their first VR experience on a game designed specifically for the rift.

Thank you to everyone who chose to brave the enormous queue line and thanks to anyone who came up and said Hi, asked about our game or the Rift – You really made our day.

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Team Meeting – 07th November

ICA & Presentation

Yesterday we presented our current prototype to the entire class of tutors and students, we were quite nervous but managed to produce a great show full of drama, laughs and inspiration, we received a great response from the audience.
We got feedback from the class that it should feel more like underwater through better use of caustics, lighting and movement game play which will be dealt with in the next working development phase.
We took a look at the ICA for the hand-in on the 19th November during the meeting and created an excel doc outlining every team-member’s roles for the hand-in. Luckily we had almost everything ready and finished for the presentation so there is just a little tidying up and collection of files to do.
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Team Meeting – 24/10/2012

ICA and Presentation
We have received the ICA requirement for the first presentation and hand-in on the 6th and 19th of November. It requires a design brief that outlines the key features of the game in terms of design, programming, art and animation. In addition to some concept to convey the tone, we’ll present a video of the movement prototype and the beautymap with all the post process effects, art assets, creature animations, particle effects and sound. Continue reading

Weekly Work Session – 18/10/2012

We are at a challenging point in the project as we are about to move from the pre-production and prototyping phase onto settling on finalized mechanics and art style. We decided to build the game in layers, one mechanic at a time; keeping our options open until each previous element is completed. We are moving along a critical path and the process has slowed down until important design decisions have been made. We agreed early on that the first order of business is the movement mechanic, which is what the player is first introduced to and uses throughout the game.

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Team Meeting – 06/10/2012

So we just had our second team meeting and we have decided the direction we are taking for our Underwater Exploration Game. We boiled down our idea and decided what we aim to produce for our prototype in mid November.

We discussed what assets we need to reinforce the experience of being submersed. We will develop the core Underwater Aesthetics and atmosphere using sound, lighting, particles and post processing effects.

We will also adapt the player Movement to the Manta, and adjust the specifications for the right underwater physics. Since basic movement control is the first feature, we will create a training level where the player is introduced to the core mechanics and explore their usages. And it would be nice to have some audio feedback for the submarine and interactions with the environment to go with it. 🙂

Once we have some blockouts of the first level, the artists will have a better idea of art style and environmental assets. We will also populate the environment with some familiar Sea life, while looking into what crazy creatures the player could encounter below.

That’s right, we are hoping to go deeper and explore more alien creatures and territories, and develop emergent mechanics to go along.

Brainstorm Notes – 03/10/2012

After the story meeting with Dave and sound designer Mark Clough we have come up with a basic 3 Act structure that provide some narrative, beats and incentive, while keeping it fairly open. Each act takes place on separate steps with the exposition happening so you descend to the next level below.

The first act contains the basic and familiar ocean assets and atmosphere, and is where the core mechanics like movement and light is trained. This is what we’ll present for the first milestone in November.

I also spoke with David just now, looking over the characters, creatures, and other potential animation work. We decided to focus solely on the core mechanics and aesthetics like the ambient creatures, consistent gameplay creatures, particle effects, and perhaps submarine mechanics. So no work on feature characters like AI Bot, the Beast, or the Gollum character yet, other than brainstorming, concepting, and character bios.

Once we have done the essentials, the first act, we’ll have an idea of workload and scope. We have started work on a new brainstorm document, which is more focused than the first.