Chad dev pipeline
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Chad dev pipeline Chad dev pipeline Document Transcript

  • Idea%on Before  we  landed  on  Chad  we  had  an  idea  for  a  puzzle  game  in   which  you  controlled  mul%ple  cubes  that  could  climb  on  top  of  each   other  and  stacked  to  get  over  a  wall.  I  think  we  all  decided  that  this   game  could  end  up  being  boring  and  possibly  quite  hard  to  do.  We   knew  we  wanted  something  instantly  addic%ve  and  something   rela%vely  simple  to  do  for  our  first  ever  game.  I  thought  back  to  my   childhood  with  games  and  remembered  this  one  mini  game  that  was   part  of  an  old  Gameboy  Advanced  game  that  I  was  extremely  addicted  to.  It  was  an  endless  runner   of  this  small  guy  that  had  to  dodge  these  endless  rounds  of  obstacles.  Mo  suggested  a  game  with  a   similar  premise  ska%ng  game  with  limited  controls  in  which  you  can  either  jump,  double  jump  and   duck  out  the  way  of  these  obstacles.  The  group  liked  the  idea  and  immediately  started   brainstorming  stories  behind  this  ska%ng  character,  what  he  looked  like  and  what  his  name  was.   We  drew  influence  from  the  cool  ‘ska%ng  dude  persona’  like  such  character  as  Mart  McFly  from   Back  To  The  Future  and  other  cool  dude  characters  like  Ferris  Bueller.  This  drew  us  to  the  80’s,  the   decade  in  which  most  of  the  character  we  were  discussing  came  from.  We  also  came  up  with  the   name  ‘Chad’  a  name  that  we  believed  summed  up  this  American  cool  guy  persona.  We  quickly   started  discussing  the  art  design  for  the  game  and  how  we  all  wanted  this  retro,  colourful  design   reminiscent  of  the  80s.  We  wanted  the  style  to  mirror  that  of  games  made  in  the  80s,  and  to  evoke   a  nostalgia,  so  we  decided  on  a  complete  ’8-­‐bit’  design.  We  started  looking  at  8  bit  art  and  8  bit   cityscapes  and  drew  out  some  quick  character  art  of  the  basics  of  what  this  cool  dude  would  look   like,  blond  mullet,  sunglasses.  Then  Andy  ran  with  it,  crea%ng  a  character  designed  in  8  bit,   incorpora%ng  the  basics  of  our  basic  sketches. Pre  Produc%on The  pre  produc%on  stage  of  Chad  was  all  about  taking  ac%on  on  what  we  were  planning.  A   significant  element  was  developing  the  character  of  Chad  in   different  ways.   Our  first  design  for  Chad  looked  almost  like  a   collage  and  didn’t  really  have  a  dis%nct  style. Aside  from  the  chunky,  bold  cartoon  features  were   actual  real  life  stock  photos  of  hands  and  shoes   and  looking  back,  this  looked  odd  and  a  liRle  too   plain.   The  feedback  that  we  received  from  our  ini%al   pitch  was  mainly  posi%ve,  with  the  storyline  and  theme  being  credited  for  its  originality.  We   men%oned  an  8  bit  theme  and  our  target  audience  urged  us  to  move  forward  with  that  rather  than   the  design  of  Chad’s  model  that  we  already  had  on  show.  So,  whilst  keeping  some  his  defini%ve   features  in  tact,  we  dras%cally  modified  his  image.  The  addi%on  of  the  leather  jacket  added  a   layered  look  to  his  characters  fashion  sense  and  added  more  depth  to  both  his  look  and  his  image.   Chad Development Pipeline
  • We  began  work  on  the  background  and  objects  found  in  the  game.  ATer  some  research,  we   devised  a  way  to  create  a  template  for  8  bit  art  in  Illustrator.  We  also  researched  how  to  create   effec%ve  8  bit  art  via  tutorials  and  looking  at  work  we  liked  online.  The  buildings,  inspired  by  an  8   bit  skyline  we  had  found  on  Google  image,  were  the  first  to  be  drawn  out.  We  tried  hard  to  form  a   realis%c  metropolis,  layering  smaller  buildings  over  larger  ones  and  going  into  as  much  detailed  as   varying  window  sizes  for  different  buildings.  We  created  two  different  pages  of  the  buildings  in   different  arrangements,  in  an  aRempt  to  vary  the  paRerns  of  buildings  scrolling  past  in  the  game  to   make  it  more  realis%c.  Making  sure  to  colour  the  majority  of  it  with  purple,  a  colour  the  opposite   side  of  the  colour  wheel  to  the  buildings  lighter  green  shade,  the  background  was  next  to  be   “pixeled”  in.  Our  background  design  s%ll  does  resemble  our  s%mulus  image  but  we  thought  best  to   use  a  wider  range  of  bright  colours  to  enhance  the  80’s  theme. To  inspire  the  game’s  story  and  theme  and  its  development,  we  decided  to  start  work  on  the   musical  aspects  of  the  game  early  on.  We  pieced  together  a  main  music  track  and  had  formed  the   idea  that  the  levels  would  progressively  gain  pace  so  two  other  tracks  were  created  but  in  higher   pitches  and  with  faster  BPMs.  However,  these  tracks  were  soTened  with  light  keyboard  melodies   that  held  the  cheesy  vibe  of  the  80’s  pop  music  but  lacked  the  true  sound  of  the  era’s  synthesisers   and  this  would  give  the  game  a  lack  of  authen%city.  We  decided  to  create  a  new  set  of  tracks,  all   different,  that  featured  a  melodic  main  theme,  a  up-­‐tempo  and  bass  dominated  gameplay  track   and  then  a  u%lity  track  with  some  harmonising  synth  riffs  to  fill  any   gaps  where  we  might  need  music.  We  also  used  the  keyboards  to   create  sounds  for  poten%al  enemies  and  power  ups,  the  enemies   being  represented  by  the  distorted  sound  of  a  modified  drum   machine  snare  and  the  power  up  sound  being  a  very  fast,  ascending   scale. We  posted  these  sounds  on  our  Soundcloud  account  for  anonymous   feedback  and  it  came  back  strong.  It  turns  out  that  the  more   authen%cally  retro  something  sounds  nowadays,  the  more   fascina%ng  it  seems  to  be… Produc%on The  beginning  of  our  produc%on  was  a  liRle  rushed  to  say  the  least.  We  elongated  the  default   tablet  screen  we  had  open  in  Gamesalad  to  a  great  extent  and  simply  added  a  range  of  different   rectangles  and  cubes  in  a  long  line.  We  at  least  created  the  yellow  cube  that  would  end  up  actually   being  ‘Chad’.  However,  the  parallax  scrolling  background  could  not  be  formed  in  such  a  limited   game  environment  as  there  was  nothing  destroying  the  instances  of  the  background  that  were   already  past  the  leT  of  the  screen.  We  found  a  way  around  this  though,  with  the  crea%on  of  spawn   and  destroy  rule  for  the  instances  and  a  few  strategically  placed  aRributes.  ATer  adjus%ng  the  size   of  our  designed  background  and  buildings,  we  were  able  to  insert  them  in  and  shortly  aTerwards,   and  add in  the  corresponding  images  to  cover  the  rectangles  that  were  ac%ng  as  the  wall  obstacles.  A   member  of  our  team,  Andy,  spent  hours  mastering  the  technique  of  randomizing  the  spawning  of   the  obstacles.  He  created  several  ‘randomize’  aRributes  in  the  spawn  actor  and  assigned  each   obstacle  to  a  different  number  and  if  that  number  was  randomly  selected,  the  corresponding   obstacle  would  spawn.  An  issue  that  arose  towards  the  laRer  part  of  the  main  produc%on  period   was  the  size  of  Chad’s  design  image  to  cover  his  Gamesalad  actor.  When  first  added,  it  appeared  
  • really  detailed  yet  small  and  the  walls  were  about  three  %mes  the  size  of  him!  Sure,  it  made  the   jumps  he  made  look  epic  but  it  appeared  less  than  realis%c.  ATer  going  through  a  phase  of  Chad   not  showing  up  at  all  due  to  some  turned  off  aRributes,  we  finally  modified  his  correct  size. Sound  was  added  to  the  game  towards  the  later  part  of  the  produc%on  process  as  well,  yet  other   elements  were  s%ll  being  prepared  whilst  this  was  happening  such  as  the  perfec%on  of  the   character  anima%on  and  some  minor  adjustments  with  the  obstacle  spawn  rate.  One  of  the   seemingly  yet  preRy  effec%ve  decisions  that  had  to  be  made  was  the  choice  for  a  gameplay  music   track.  Obviously,  by  this  point,  we  understood  that  our  ini%al,  intended  main  theme  would  hold   that  status  as  its  chord  progression  and  melody  were  far  too  relaxed  and  joyous  to  be  able  to   mo%vate  players  in  the  way  that  the  actual  gameplay  music  needed  to.  We  had  two  tracks  to   choose  from:  a  track  featuring  a  low,  fuzzy  bassline  and  stereotypically  8  bit  and  retro  sounding   instruments  layered  over  the  top  that  provided  a  somewhat  glitchy  melody;  and  then  a  track   backed  by  a  more  melodic  bassline  in  a  slightly  higher  register  with  a  stronger,  finer  melody  that  is   complimented  by  strong  harmonic  nota%on.  It  was  a  piece  with  character  vs  a  piece  with  musical   appeal  and  we  had  to  pick  the  character  to  boost  the  game’s  atmosphere.  Players  want  to  really   dig  in  to  the  8  bit  world  and  that  track  provided  such  a  gateway!  Most  sound  effects  on  the  other   hand  were  scouted  from  an  online  directory  apart  from  the  death  sound,  which  I  created  by   sounding  a  deep,  short,  somewhat  blunt,  two  note  descending  scale  in  E  minor,  on  my  synth.   Sounds  such  as  the  jump  sound,  were  adjusted  pitch  wise  in  order  to  correspond  effec%vely  with   both  the  music  and  the  game  environment. Post  Produc%on   The  alpha  version  of  had  had  received  some  very  promising  feedback,  despite  the  fact  that  it   featured  virtually  no  artwork  and  just  mechanics,  so  with  a  liRle  bit  more  ar%s%c  detail  linked  in,   we  expected  posi%ve  reviews  from  Beta.  Fortunately,  we  were  right.  The  theme  was  an  engaging   success  that  complimented  the  simple  mechanics  to  form  a  fun,  casual  liRle  game.  We  wanted  to   add  more  though.  We  knew  that  we  could.  There  was  no  voice  ac%ng  for  Chad,  which  we  had   planned  to  incorporate  all  along.  There  was  also  no  anima%on:  he  needed  to  make  some  sort  of   movement  when  he  jump  and  landed  whilst  on  the  board  and  there  needed  to  be  some  sort  of   physical  consequence  triggered  when  he  crashed,  rather  than  the  glitch  stop  swiTly  succeeded  by   the  game  over  screen,  that  the  game  came  to  when  he  collided  into  an  obstacle  before. Adding  in  the  jump  anima%on  was  just  a  case  of  lowering  the  bounciness  of  his  actor  to  stable  it  a   bit  and  making  sure  that  the  frames  of  it  didn’t  move  to  fast  or  to  slow.  We  understood  that  it  was   all  about  enforcing  the  absolute  correct  amount  of  seconds  between  frames  to  ensure  that  the   way  he  moved  was  swiT  enough,  yet  smooth  enough. The  ‘destroy’  anima%on  ,  as  we  called  it,  was  significantly  harder  to  create,  as  we  not  only  had  to   design  a  whole  new  pixel  work  of  art  but  we  also  had  to  stop  both  the  background  and  all  other   obstacles  from  moving  as  soon  as  Chad  would  collide  with  one.  We  grasped  some  inspira%on  for  8   bit  explosion  artwork  online  and  drew  out  a  similar  design  in  illustrator  but  in  the  colour  blue,  so   that  it  didn’t  blend  in  too  much  with  the  already  reddish  background.  Mo  rather  comically   recorded  some  vocal  sound  effects  to  accompany  Chad  using  the  simple  acous%cs  of  the  four  walls   of  his  bedroom.  The  shouts,  screams  and  cheers  that  he  produced  were  later  added  into  the  game,   using  the  same  randomise  behaviour  as  the  obstacles,  except  this  %me  just  for  sound  and  with  the   addi%on  of  some  “blank”  numbers,  to  ensure  that  Chad  doesn’t  cheer  necessarily  every  %me  he   jumps.   View slide
  • The  thought  of  adding  in  a  further  amount  of  obstacles  didn’t  arise  un%l  the  latest  stages  of  the   post  produc%on  phase.  Just  as  we’d  thought  we  really  had  a  game,  we  broadened  our  thoughts   and  perspec%ves  and  strived  to  make  it  beRer.  The  idea  of  moving  obstacles  such  as  vehicles  may   have  been  a  simple  and  rather  obvious  op%on  yet  it  makes  such  a  difference  to  the  gameplay,   adding  an  extra  factor  for  the  player  to  bare  in  mind,  the  wariness  of  the  speed  of  the  obstacle,  as   well  as  its  size.  The  designs  for  the  lorries  and  sports  cars   were  added  in  to  the  randomised  obstacle   spawner  rules,  only  the  Lorrie’s  speed  was   change  to  500  rather  than  the  wall’s   standard  300  whilst  the  sports  car’s  speed   was  placed  at  400. View slide