Game design – Seraphic Blue http://seraphicblue.net/ Wed, 21 Sep 2022 15:34:40 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://seraphicblue.net/wp-content/uploads/2021/11/sep-150x150.png Game design – Seraphic Blue http://seraphicblue.net/ 32 32 Hamilton’s Mohawk College Launches New Ethics-Focused Game Design Program https://seraphicblue.net/hamiltons-mohawk-college-launches-new-ethics-focused-game-design-program/ Wed, 21 Sep 2022 12:31:02 +0000 https://seraphicblue.net/hamiltons-mohawk-college-launches-new-ethics-focused-game-design-program/ Preferred region How does this work? By Anthony Urciuoli Published September 21, 2022 at 8:30 am Mohawk College in Hamilton has launched a new program aimed at preparing students for careers in the fast-growing and ever-changing game design industry. Mohawk College of Hamilton seeks to prepare students for careers in the rapidly growing and ever-changing […]]]>


By Anthony Urciuoli

Published September 21, 2022 at 8:30 am

Mohawk College in Hamilton has launched a new program aimed at preparing students for careers in the fast-growing and ever-changing game design industry.

Mohawk College of Hamilton seeks to prepare students for careers in the rapidly growing and ever-changing game design industry.

Mohawk says its new three-year Advanced Diploma Game Design program will also focus on “breaking down barriers and creating game content that reflects today’s more diverse and inclusive society.” “.

While the college’s new curriculum will equip students with the design, technical and artistic skills used in game production, it also includes an ethics course that explores both game content and workplace dynamics.

“This program creates a talent pool that will directly feed the growing digital media and game design industry in Ontario, Hamilton and the surrounding region,” said Sylvia Lowndes, Dean of the McKeil School of Business | School of Creative Industries, Liberal Studies & Communication. “Digital media is one of the fastest growing technology sectors in Hamilton, and this program will develop future ready graduates who can find promising new careers in this exciting industry.

Hamilton's Mohawk College Launches New Ethics-Focused Game Design Program

According to Mohawk, the leadership team that developed the program is largely made up of female scholars.

“This program will provide students with a healthy understanding of how the content they create can impact users and reinforce the importance of supporting a positive and collaborative work environment,” said Advisor Dr. Angela Stukator. co-director of program development. with the Associate Dean, Dr. Lisa Funnell.

“This program is intended to model rather than reflect the gaming industry.”

Mohawk College’s Advanced Diploma Game Design program will accept its first class of students in September 2023, with enrollment opening in October.

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The Smash Bros Creator YouTube Channel is a Game Design Goldmine https://seraphicblue.net/the-smash-bros-creator-youtube-channel-is-a-game-design-goldmine/ Thu, 15 Sep 2022 23:30:00 +0000 https://seraphicblue.net/the-smash-bros-creator-youtube-channel-is-a-game-design-goldmine/ Japanese game director Masahiro Sakurai (the mastermind behind series like Kirby and Super Smash Bros.) used to post daily screenshots for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate on his Twitter account. It was a project he pursued for nearly three years until he finally ran out of photo ideas and announced he would be stopping. It was […]]]>

Japanese game director Masahiro Sakurai (the mastermind behind series like Kirby and Super Smash Bros.) used to post daily screenshots for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate on his Twitter account. It was a project he pursued for nearly three years until he finally ran out of photo ideas and announced he would be stopping. It was a sad day, but there was light at the end of the tunnel, as he also announced that he was starting a new project, and it wouldn’t be long before we could see what it was all about. This project turned out to be his new YouTube channel, titled Masahiro Sakurai on creating games, and man that’s great !

DUALSHOCKERS VIDEO OF THE DAY

RELATED: Smash Bros Director Masahiro Sakurai Joins the Among Us Fan Community

The channel is Sakurai talking about game design elements while giving tips and pointers on each one. He plans to give those interested in creating video games a head start while making his dives into the concepts simple and easy to understand for audiences, including people who aren’t interested in creating video games. . In short, everyone can watch his videos and learn interesting things.

He talks about some of the other games he’s made, such as the early games in the Kirby series, and his philosophy behind designing them as he did. It also provides design documents and builds used for the development of some of its games, including Smash Bros. Its overall goal is, in its own words, to “make games more fun!”

Judging by the popularity of the channel, it is doing a great job so far. It’s only been a little over a month since the channel started, and it has already amassed over two million views and 430,000 subscribers on its English channel; it also has a Japanese channel with similar numbers. The fact that he has no plans to profit from these videos at all (he even explicitly states that this project will probably cost him a lot of money the longer it lasts) is even more of a reason to like and appreciate the content that he is ready to provide.

Some of his advice may seem basic and self-explanatory at first, but when he starts to dig a little deeper, it’s quick to see just how complex they are and how beneficial it would be to understand them on a deeper level. One of his recent videos called Draw the Light, Not the Asset focuses on game graphics. When drawing an item for a video game, he recommends drawing the light that an object reflects rather than the object himself. He then gives an example of several trees being copied and pasted across a landscape, transforming it from a dull image into something truly beautiful with just a few lighting tweaks.

Its tips and advice can also be compared to other games, for better or for worse. To use the example above, take a look at Pokémon. Their recent games have been heavily criticized for confusing their graphics. This was especially the case for Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield’s Wild Area, when fans got a peek at the flora during a Treehouse Live presentation ahead of its 2019 release. reflecting on the trees rather than the trees alone, they would have been much more beautiful and organic. The same can be said about other parts of the Wild Area, such as grass and bodies of water.

Comparisons to other games can also be drawn from one of his early videos, titled Stop at Big Moments! In this video, Sakurai explains how pausing the action during major events in a game, like a fatal landing, can help sell the impact or emotion it’s meant to have.

It also shows how using slow motion or screen shake effects can further add to this. You can probably think of many games that have used it expertly. The first example that comes to mind is the Kingdom Hearts series; I still felt something after losing your life or winning a major boss fight, thanks to the iconic slow motion effects and sounds that accompanied the final big hit.

RELATED: Super Smash Bros. Sakurai Shares End of Year Message with Fans

It does a great job of digging just deep enough to not only show the complexity of these concepts on a basic level, but also to inspire its viewers interested in game design to dig deeper for themselves. All of this is great for people who play games or are interested in them, but other videos from his covers may apply to other things in life besides video games.

Going back to the asset creation video, the trick to drawing the light that an object reflects rather than the asset can be applied to any art form outside of games. If you’re a budding artist, you might find a lot of value in its graphics-focused videos. Using the trick about pausing the action at important times can help you if you want to make movies, shorts, or even books. Beyond that, it’s just nice to listen to Sakurai talk. Its soft inflection and its way with the words resemble an anecdote in a chaotic world.

Seriously, Sakurai has a lot of valuable information to offer as a veteran game developer. He’s too modest to say it himself, so I’ll say it for him: feel free to like his videos and subscribe to his channel.

NEXT: Masahiro Sakurai on Sora in Smash, Disney, Making DLC, Future Games

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Goldeneye 007 Still Features My Favorite Video Game Design Failure https://seraphicblue.net/goldeneye-007-still-features-my-favorite-video-game-design-failure/ Wed, 14 Sep 2022 11:24:11 +0000 https://seraphicblue.net/goldeneye-007-still-features-my-favorite-video-game-design-failure/ Goldeneye 007 box illustration If you’re of a certain vintage, then the most exciting nugget among the many video game news announcements last night will have been the re-release of the classic N64 Goldeneye 007. Long tied up in legal wrangling, the retro favorite seemed doomed never to return – but he finally returns. And […]]]>

Goldeneye 007 box illustration

If you’re of a certain vintage, then the most exciting nugget among the many video game news announcements last night will have been the re-release of the classic N64 Goldeneye 007. Long tied up in legal wrangling, the retro favorite seemed doomed never to return – but he finally returns. And so does the mouthiest optical illusion ever.

Xbox and Nintendo Switch users will be able to have fun infuriating their friends by picking up Oddjob and Slappers Only in what is arguably the best multiplayer mode ever. And with the game itself comes the return of one of the biggest design failures. (Ready to start playing? Check out the best Nintendo Switch deals available now.)

Goldeneye 007 box illustration

Goldeneye 007 box illustration

Ever since the game was released in 1997, players have been asking the eternal question: is it Pierce Brosnan’s hand, or is his mouth really wide? Over the years, the cover has fallen into oblivion – and it’s getting a facelift after yesterday’s announcement. I’m actually pretty glad developer Rare didn’t decide to fix it.

See more

See more

Goldeneye 007 box art next to a photo of Pierce Brosnan with comically stretched mouth

Goldeneye 007 box art next to a photo of Pierce Brosnan with comically stretched mouth

Illustration of the Goldeneye box next to a picture of Pierce Brosnan with his mouth enlarged

Illustration of the Goldeneye box next to a picture of Pierce Brosnan with his mouth enlarged

So there we have it. If you’re new to Goldeneye, I’m sorry – this face isn’t going anywhere. But don’t worry, the game itself is absolutely brilliant. You will enjoy. For more design, check out our roundup of the best design failures of all time.

Read more:

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Introduction to video game design https://seraphicblue.net/introduction-to-video-game-design/ Mon, 12 Sep 2022 12:51:17 +0000 https://seraphicblue.net/introduction-to-video-game-design/ Today, September 12, is National Video Games Day, a time to appreciate how far video games have come and celebrate the immersive experiences they provide. To recognize the occasion, The Daily focuses on ARTS 286: Introduction to Video Game Design, a course at Case Western Reserve in which students bring gaming to life. Jaiden Malaika […]]]>

Today, September 12, is National Video Games Day, a time to appreciate how far video games have come and celebrate the immersive experiences they provide. To recognize the occasion, The Daily focuses on ARTS 286: Introduction to Video Game Design, a course at Case Western Reserve in which students bring gaming to life.

Jaiden Malaika Borowski

Art classes weren’t really on Jaiden-Malaika Borowski’s radar when she decided to enroll in the computer science program at Case Western Reserve University. Now one of them could shape the entire trajectory of his career.

Borowski participated in ARTS 286: Introduction to Video Game Design, a Department of Art History and Art course in which students explore games through the development and creation of 2D video games, while by building a critical vocabulary and historical context to analyze the games. and game theory.

“I was wondering if I should pursue an art minor and wanted to try an art class before deciding,” the sophomore explained. “I’m really glad that a STEM school like CWRU offers art classes.”

Course instructor Kerry Richardson said the fact that it is a studio art class, as opposed to a computer class, allows students to be imaginative.

“I encourage students to develop unconventional concepts for their games,” Richardson said. “I place a lot of importance on creating original artwork and audio.”

Borowski, who took the course last spring, said she and her classmates had many informative discussions about art techniques and even learned some video games by playing them in class.

But, the most impactful part for the Seattle native was creating her own video games from scratch using Twine and Game Maker Studio, which she says made the process more professional because “real games published are created with this same program”.

Richardson challenged Borowski and his peers to make virtually any game as long as it was complex – and was made with Game Maker Studio.

Photo of a 2d video game design showing a fire breathing rooster and two people talking and the letters GMM in fire and the game GMM below the image
Borowski’s Game Poster Design

“We were given complete control over the idea and scope of the game,” Borowski said. “I was so impressed with how we all improved and how individualized our games were, even though we all started with the same prompt and teachings.”

She credits the class with bolstering her desire to minor in art while tapping into her passion for computing, and feels she is now better equipped to break down complex art projects into more manageable pieces.

And it showed her just how detailed and difficult creating a video game can be, while showing her that she was capable of creating one herself.

After graduating, Borowski wants to continue combining computer science and art to some extent, eventually working in an animation studio.

Learn more about ARTS 286: Introduction to Video Game Design, which will be offered again in Spring 2023.

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Parametric architecture in video game design to create new realms https://seraphicblue.net/parametric-architecture-in-video-game-design-to-create-new-realms/ Sun, 11 Sep 2022 11:45:42 +0000 https://seraphicblue.net/parametric-architecture-in-video-game-design-to-create-new-realms/ ©Alex Harbuzinski Design presentations have become more reliant on realistic graphics and walkthroughs. Designers create exact 3D models using state-of-the-art technologies to present their work as faithfully as possible. In video game design, it’s not just about visual resolution or realism; it’s also about the interactive experience of design concepts and how players interact with […]]]>
©Alex Harbuzinski

Design presentations have become more reliant on realistic graphics and walkthroughs. Designers create exact 3D models using state-of-the-art technologies to present their work as faithfully as possible. In video game design, it’s not just about visual resolution or realism; it’s also about the interactive experience of design concepts and how players interact with the virtually constructed atmosphere.

The impact of parametric design on video game design and development has recently increased, allowing video game architects and developers to combine digital computing, hypnotic visuals, and memorable worlds in which players can walk around and bury themselves. This art of merging the virtual with the patterns of the physical realms of architecture has created a dynamic space for explorations to its highest potential.

© You+Pois
© You+Pois

The art of designing structures, or the design language of a building of a given era, region or culture, is called “architecture”.

The ancient Roman architect Vitruvius described a good structure as durable, functional and attractive in his classical work, De architectura (firmitas, utilitas, venustas). These same concepts apply now, thousands of years later, in the realms of digital games and virtual reality.

© Control

The design of these ephemeral places can reach new heights in a virtual setting where everything is conceivable. He might be able to break away from the physical and financial restraints and become something much bigger. Architecture can now be fully narrative, incredibly meaningful, induce a compelling user experience, and establish a strong connection to the game storyline and player perspective.

This pervasive architectural phenomenon, which permeates virtually every imagery in the game and significantly influences the gaming experience, is, at best, a background support mechanism. Architecture, more than any other part of gaming, can tell a story, create emotion, and affect the gameplay experience. You may have the best characters, plots, and UI visuals in the world, but your experience user will never reach their full potential without a thoughtful architectural approach.

© Overwatch

Video game design

Video games illustrate how different design disciplines can combine to create new realms and where the physical environment can tell a story.

Cyberpunk 2077

© Ryan Scavinky
© Ryan Scavinky

The main plot of Cyberpunk 2077, CD Projekt RED’s most anticipated video game release of 2020, is told through a genderfluid avatar titled V. The title of the game comes from a science fiction genre in which a civilization futuristic hypercapitalist is represented as a reflection of modern reality.

Video games, like architecture, strive to generate incisive critiques of modern society. An unavoidable obligation binds the two professions: video games to amuse and architecture to serve.

© Ryan Scavinky
© Ryan Scavinky

What this indicates is not just what a team of concept artists might imagine buildings to be in 2077. It depicts a scenario in which architecture is seen by the masses as an instrument of oppression to be used by the wealthy elite rather than a weapon of freedom.

    © Ryan Scavinky
© Ryan Scavinky

Late capitalism’s tendency to turn criticism into a commodity art experience is exemplified in Cyberpunk 2077. Its halls draw criticism for their lack of completion, but they also reveal a disturbing connection between architecture and the misery of modern society. .

garden collector

garden collector
© rogerioandre

The most interesting part of Chyr’s work in Manifold Garden is his commitment to using architectural forms to encourage players to explore. Chyr appeals to players by encouraging them to “understand how gravity works” and how the design and physics allow them to assemble a “new cosmos”, live in the environment they find themselves in, and “look like it like a garden”.

garden collector
© Collector garden

Even though Chyr had no formal training in architecture, his enthusiasm and interest in the subject helped him design the game’s geometric realms.

Surveillance

© Philippe Klevestav

Providing realistic locations can be especially difficult in a game like Overwatch since the maps are based on real-world locations. Before starting to work on a map, the designers collect a lot of information and try to identify the dominant and distinctive architecture of the area.

© Philippe Klevestav

A cultural reference is also crucial: what types of foods are prevalent in these areas? What types of public transport stand out the most? Is there anything unique to the selected area regarding festivities or festivals? They take a lot of liberties with each location the designers create, but always strive to make each one as identifiable as possible by including iconic buildings whenever possible.

Among the most crucial aspects of Overwatch, map data is the ability to explore spaces and know precisely where you are at all times. Therefore, a lot of effort is put into making sure that each region of the map stands out from the rest.

© Philippe Klevestav

This may include going through an older part of town to reach a more contemporary or dystopian area. For easier navigation and visual progression within a map, it may be necessary to switch between exterior and interior locations. Differentiation between different parts of maps can be done using color, texture, and lighting.

Game and visualization

© You+Pois

Players pay particular attention to the legibility of spaces. It becomes extremely difficult to maneuver and notice other participants when there is too much graphic noise and complexity, and the judgment scale becomes difficult if there is not enough information.

It’s crucial not to have too much disparity between materials or too little detail anywhere. Various factors contribute to the legibility of a place, including form, language, organization, elements, contrast, lighting, mood and color.

Testing concentration and seeing others playing cards can be extremely beneficial in determining where to improve the aesthetics of the card. It also helps to see that spots that the designers would have thought to be a concern become less obvious after seeing someone else play.

The majority of the focus of visual appeal goes to players’ eye level; it shouldn’t be a static frame where users can only see a scene from one sharp shot, so things should look mesmerizing from every angle, which can be achieved at using parametric design.

Contribution of parametric design to game design

© You+Pois

Architectural design can be used as part of game design to choreograph how the user perceives and navigates the game. Frank Lloyd Wright juxtaposed low, dark rooms with brighter, towering spaces for powerful effect. A visitor to a Wright design is often trapped in a dark, compact entrance room rather than arriving in a grand, heroic hall at the entrance of a building.

However, as they progress through the structure, light pours in, the roof rises, and the room opens up before them, evoking a more regal and majestic feel than if the whole area had been heroic ever since. the beginning. The difference between the two draws attention and sets them apart.

Parametric architecture can unfold and synchronize the player’s experience by harmonizing and contrasting different parameters, resulting in a much more intense emotional effect and game response. Light can be used similarly in design to draw attention to an important component or the next region the player needs to visit.

Future of the gaming industry

© You+Pois

As technology advances, game developers will have even more creative latitude. However, with more power, it will be essential to think about the way the sites are arranged; how the structures relate to each other; how lighting interacts with architectural style; above all, how to resist the temptation to overload a scene with exquisite detail and contrast.

The concept that video game and parametric design matter is implied by the fact that it will most likely become something even bigger than actual design, deserving the most careful analysis, skill and attention. in conceptual design. Virtual architecture has the ability to generate an even stronger sense of quality.

The design of a video game can constantly change based on real-time inputs and situations. It can be enhanced with interactive elements, helping to bring the architectural language to life like no real structure could.

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The MCCC is hosting an event to promote video game design and development programs. – McCagora https://seraphicblue.net/the-mccc-is-hosting-an-event-to-promote-video-game-design-and-development-programs-mccagora/ Fri, 09 Sep 2022 17:33:03 +0000 https://seraphicblue.net/the-mccc-is-hosting-an-event-to-promote-video-game-design-and-development-programs-mccagora/ The MCCC is hosting an open house for National Video Games Day as part of an effort to promote different degree programs that students may not know are available. The open day will take place on September 12 at 6 p.m. from the cafeteria of the S building. The event is open and free to […]]]>

The MCCC is hosting an open house for National Video Games Day as part of an effort to promote different degree programs that students may not know are available.

The open day will take place on September 12 at 6 p.m. from the cafeteria of the S building.

The event is open and free to the public and students, just register here.

Attendees will have the opportunity to learn first-hand from the professors what to expect if they choose to delve into the world of video game design, development, and programming.

Attendees will have the opportunity to tour the labs and network with the professors they would learn from.

“We have some of the games that previous students have developed and are running,” said Leon Letter, dean of the business division, “so people can see some of the examples of work that students have done.”

The hope is to help show participants the kinds of things they can learn in the programs.

Part of the open house will also talk about transfer pathways for those who complete programs at MCCC and wish to continue to develop their design skills and further their education.

Letter said he was excited about the event and bringing attention to game design and development programs.

Any additional questions about the event can be directed to Leon Letter, Dean of the Business Division, at (734) 384-4282 or lletter@monroeccc.edu.

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Academic Profile: Animation and Game Design | Animation and game design https://seraphicblue.net/academic-profile-animation-and-game-design-animation-and-game-design/ Wed, 07 Sep 2022 11:18:00 +0000 https://seraphicblue.net/academic-profile-animation-and-game-design-animation-and-game-design/ What you will learnThere is a difference between an artist, an animator and a designer, so make sure you understand what it is. Think of an artist as a sculptor – they make the models. An animator moves the models and a designer creates the interactive experience. In game design, for example, this might involve […]]]>

What you will learn
There is a difference between an artist, an animator and a designer, so make sure you understand what it is. Think of an artist as a sculptor – they make the models. An animator moves the models and a designer creates the interactive experience. In game design, for example, this might involve deciding how much damage an ork does with a fireball in a forest at midnight. Studying animation helps students find the part of the process they enjoy the most and develop a body of work that will land them their first job. Most courses cover 2D, 3D, compositing, and stop motion. Graduates tend to have a good balance between technical and conceptual knowledge. Be specific about which discipline you want, as they all work together but are distinct.

How are you going to learn
Teaching is done mainly through practical technical courses and group and individual tutorials. There are lecture-based modules and groups also work together on projects. The tools used for game development and animation are constantly evolving, so it’s important to be nimble.

Entry requirements
While many universities would like to see math and computer science on the list of qualifications, to help with the coding and programming elements of a game design course, they are not essential. For animation, some universities require a portfolio of creative design work during an interview.

What job can you get?
There is a lot of money in the games industry and a lot of jobs available, although they can be competitive. There are amazing careers in game design, mobile games, user experience apps, or chat boxes for business and the film industry. It also has portability. For example, designers are sought after by major banks to write software.

For animation, many graduates end up in animation companies or other digital roles. At Northumbria University, recent graduates have gone on to work for companies such as Aardman, Industrial Light & Magic and DNEG.

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Game Design Spotlight #5: The Secret World has created an intriguing and mystifying world with real-life quirks like no other MMO https://seraphicblue.net/game-design-spotlight-5-the-secret-world-has-created-an-intriguing-and-mystifying-world-with-real-life-quirks-like-no-other-mmo/ Tue, 06 Sep 2022 21:17:26 +0000 https://seraphicblue.net/game-design-spotlight-5-the-secret-world-has-created-an-intriguing-and-mystifying-world-with-real-life-quirks-like-no-other-mmo/ Welcome to the fifth installment of the Game Design Spotlight, a weekly piece where I examine the design elements of various parts of an MMO, such as an obscure combat system and controversial player-friendly features. Last week, we returned to Final Fantasy XIV to shine a light on the janky home decor system and its […]]]>

Welcome to the fifth installment of the Game Design Spotlight, a weekly piece where I examine the design elements of various parts of an MMO, such as an obscure combat system and controversial player-friendly features. Last week, we returned to Final Fantasy XIV to shine a light on the janky home decor system and its much-needed evolution. Today we cover one of the less conventional titles released a decade ago: The Secret World.

Every aspect of The Secret World serves the theme of “it’s all true”. High-profile conspiracy theories talked about on internet pages and great legends that never carried weight are alive and well. The Earth is actually hollow; a city rests on the Moon Atlantis rises from the depths of the ocean. These strange real-life oddities are naturally mimicked in The Secret World as the end of days approaches, creating a world with an intriguing and mystifying allure that satisfies players’ curiosity.

Of course, real life and the game world are totally different, but what’s captured in the game and conceptually thought out in the development process makes everything believable. The vampires are not shod to fit the game but rather molded into the narrative with real-life references, lending credibility to these mythical creatures.

SWL Harbor Monsters

Actual locations on the planet become tightly knit together as Secret Societies move in to make them their base of operations. Within them are nuggets of originality and familiarity, which stray from reality when encountering hidden portals under a flight of stairs or in a distant alley. All of these crash factors of The Secret World make its overall design unlike any other MMO.

A simulation game

Developed by Funcom, The Secret World was originally released in 2012 with an optional subscription/purchase-to-play business model set in modern times under attack from occult forces. Reading the premise, it might seem quite simple and unoriginal, but it stretches hugely on the sheer scale of opposing players who have to fight. You have creatures that have taken over an HP Lovecraft novel, zombies running the streets of a remote harbor town ripped from Silent Hill, and Elder Gods pulling strings behind the scenes to meet their needs and to their wishes.

The Secret World debuted in a market saturated with high-fantasy MMORPG titles, which helped it stand out attractively as something experimental and fresh. It had an interesting concept, cool trailers, and surface-level gameplay qualities that offered players a bit of experimentation.

However, The Secret World has received many mixed reviews for various uncooked areas of the game, with combat being a commonly named area. Despite this, there was unified praise for its story presentation, unusual atmosphere, world-building, and puzzles. In an interview with GameSpot, former game director Ragnar Tornquist mentioned how the narrative beats would be front and center and that “the story is one huge puzzle”, which unfolds and is unlike anything else.

In a world where “magic, myth, conspiracies, and dark horror” stalk the Earth, the development of all real-life scenarios has taken precedence over its weaker parts, like the combat system. The best part is that Funcom’s efforts to sell this unique world came with an attention to detail and plausibility that stands on its own today.

A replica of the world with dark charm and originality

Reinforcing the essence of secrecy and puzzling myths, players can choose to join the Illuminati, Templar or Dragon societies. Everyone has motives to fulfill to improve the Earth, and the competition is fierce between them. However, factions aren’t just cool clubs people join. Players become chosen and must decide which philosophy they can voluntarily support. The Templars will burn down an entire village to strike a demon child for a fairer world, the Illuminati are menacing and twisted and will do anything to get what they want, and the Dragons believe in chaos and act as a middle ground between good and the evil .

These factions have leaders and places where they operate: London, for example, is the playground of the Templars. Here, the tunnels open up to the public squares and businesses of the European city with an air of authenticity. The Templars also have an ancient reputation to uphold, suitably adorned in regal crimson uniforms with crosses and harboring paintings of glorified crusaders on their chapel walls. The leader of the Templars indoctrinates players upon arrival, giving them insight into what they must accept and the faith needed to live through the end of days.

OctoMob SWL

The introduction to these societies eventually leads players to Hollow Earth, the planet’s viscera, and the link for a portal traveling across the world. It’s “Harry Potter” levels of realism meets fantasy – albeit a darker charm here, but it did a great job of blurring the line. I love this thematic consistency in The Secret World, which practically forced the developers to wonder where players would find the portals and the historical significance of secret societies.

Something like an in-game phone book with fake companies and fake numbers also sold the experience. Alongside the Tokyo subways, covered in dark grime and goo that summon demons, they quickly retreat to reveal an adjacent dimensional world filled with eerily anomalous planets. Add characters throwing fireballs while wearing faded hoodies and broken sneakers, and The Secret World seemingly persuades the player to buy even more into this realistic game world.

And while The Secret World used the setting of Earth, its overall design and mood presented a game world injected with a dark juxtaposition of reality and fantasy. In recent memory, nothing else has touched this deliberately supernatural realm of MMOs, and certainly not as effectively.

This wraps up another week of Game Design Spotlight! Have you ever played the original The Secret World? What about the current iteration, Legends? Was there anything about them that made you think, “Yeah, can I get behind this?” Let us know below! If you have any suggestions, also leave any titles or features you’d like me to cover for next week’s story!

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Virtual reality studio Owlchemy Labs on the universal benefits of accessible game design https://seraphicblue.net/virtual-reality-studio-owlchemy-labs-on-the-universal-benefits-of-accessible-game-design/ Mon, 05 Sep 2022 15:22:30 +0000 https://seraphicblue.net/virtual-reality-studio-owlchemy-labs-on-the-universal-benefits-of-accessible-game-design/ VR developers have a unique opportunity to become accessibility champions, Andrew Eiche, COO of Owlchemy Labs, told me during a recent chat at Gamescom 2022. Eiche is one of the leading figures at the Texas-based studio, which has worked on notable virtual reality titles including Cosmological high, work simulator, Vacation Simulatorand Rick & Morty Virtual […]]]>

VR developers have a unique opportunity to become accessibility champions, Andrew Eiche, COO of Owlchemy Labs, told me during a recent chat at Gamescom 2022.

Eiche is one of the leading figures at the Texas-based studio, which has worked on notable virtual reality titles including Cosmological high, work simulator, Vacation Simulatorand Rick & Morty Virtual Rick-ality.

During a frenetic week in Cologne, we sat down with Eiche for a few minutes to discuss Owlchemy’s approach to inclusivity and accessibility in VR, as the studio recently released a gigantic update. accessibility for Cosmological high which introduced a one-handed mode, dynamic pitch adjustments, localization improvements, character pronouns, and more.

Reflecting on the key differences between accessibility in virtual spaces and more traditional digital arenas, Eiche explains that VR creators should actively seek inspiration in how we approach accessibility in the real world – by learning to both our successes and our shortcomings in making their plans more accommodating to players from all walks of life.

“We can take advantage of the same real-world solutions that exist, right? Where we can’t put things too high, too low, or too far away. We can build spaces like this by holding take these factors into account,” he said. “Or we can add functionality that doesn’t exist in the real world and just have items fire into your hand.”

Eiche says the discretion of VR inputs means creators working in the space face unique challenges when trying to make their tactile spaces more accessible, though he adds that VR control schemes eliminate some issues that could frustrate developers working in other areas of the industry. .

“What we don’t have to account for are complex button presses that need to be pressed in a very specific sequence order,” he says, noting how some console titles have solved this by leaving the players slow down the game – which is a great solution, but (so far) unique to more traditional games.

One for all

More generally, Eiche suggests that if VR developers take a universal approach to accessibility, everyone will benefit. “When we think about accessibility, we try to find these universal solutions. So, for example, our solution for one-handed mode is that if the controller turns off, the game automatically switches to one-handed mode. C is great because [while it helps less-able players]it also helps people with depleted batteries,” he says, noting that everyone wins.

“When considering something like colorblindness, we don’t have a traditional colorblind mode. Instead, we used textured patterns and we keep those patterns the same throughout the game. We try to think of the best design universal given the situation.”

It’s a mantra that influenced Owlchemy’s decision to stick with teleportation, which sees players traversing spaces indicating where they want their character to move next, as the basic mode of locomotion in its VR games.

“We view our movement style as an accessibility feature,” says Eiche. “This might be a semi-controversial take, but we’re sticking with teleportation because we’re worried about the players. [choosing another method of movement] and giving their headset to someone else, who immediately gets very sick from that type of movement – and now the whole VR thing has been spoiled for them.”

Other VR titles sometimes allow players to switch between movement styles, with some offering more traditional mechanics that allow players to run and jump in real time. Eiche has no problem with others in the space innovating in these areas, but notes that there could be a selection bias within the VR industry that creates a false sense of security. around issues like motion sickness.

“The loudest voices are always going to be the ones playing VR the most, right? And they’re going to say they have an iron stomach – and that’s okay,” he continues. “But let’s say we snap our fingers and all of tomorrow’s content just uses the smoothest locomotion, okay? Automatically, people who get sick are going to opt out. They’re just not going to play — so of course the market (ie those left standing) will continue to demand it.

“I think there’s room for both – but I think saying ‘you have to have options’ or ‘some genres have to use one’ doesn’t necessarily help. So we’re just embracing teleportation. If anyone figures out how to make sure 99.99″ percent of people don’t get sick, we could let them down. But we didn’t find that. Of course, some people will get used to it, but we are virtual reality for everyone.”

Build it and they will come

The VR industry is still in its infancy and, according to Eiche, that means it has a unique opportunity to innovate right from the start. When it comes to accessibility, that means doing your best to develop mechanics that welcome as many people into the fold as possible – even if, on occasion, it might take a little time to get it right.

“Sometimes there are things that we just don’t have time to do or tweak – so we come back and look at the game very carefully. [to find the areas we can improve]. For example, we had a subtitle system that we were building after launch to Vacation Simulator because subtitles in VR are very difficult. It was not always easy for us to guarantee that everything would always work with one hand,” explains Eiche.

“There will always be something we missed, so we go back and assess our plans with a fine-tooth comb. In the most ideal world, we would be able to release a game that is as accessible as possible on day one, but the VR games have been slow in terms of sales, it’s not like the majority of our players are coming out on top, and it allows us to continue to make deep passes further down the line.

Eiche reiterates that it is better to stumble, learn and improve than simply not try at all. He thinks VR is still in its “NES era”, which means there are still a lot of knots to unravel, but it also gives developers in the space an opportunity to “set the tone” and get started. create solutions from the start.

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Mark Brown’s Platformer Toolkit, a playable trial in platform game design, hits 100,000 downloads https://seraphicblue.net/mark-browns-platformer-toolkit-a-playable-trial-in-platform-game-design-hits-100000-downloads/ Mon, 05 Sep 2022 10:26:19 +0000 https://seraphicblue.net/mark-browns-platformer-toolkit-a-playable-trial-in-platform-game-design-hits-100000-downloads/ Mark Brown, creator of the Game Maker’s Toolkit blog, has announced that his latest project Platform Toolbox has taken a new step. This is an interactive video trial where the player has to fix a bad platform game. Brown shared the news on Twittersay that Platform Toolbox has generated over 100,000 downloads/browser listens so far. […]]]>

Mark Brown, creator of the Game Maker’s Toolkit blog, has announced that his latest project Platform Toolbox has taken a new step. This is an interactive video trial where the player has to fix a bad platform game.

Brown shared the news on Twittersay that Platform Toolbox has generated over 100,000 downloads/browser listens so far. It took the project just over two months to reach such a milestone.

Platformer Toolkit is an experimental platformer game design video essay, which was built with Unity and published on itch.io (available for free). The player controls a character named Kit and must modify his speed, jump height, and other parameters using an interactive toolbox.

The goal is to fix the wrong move and see how different options might affect the platforming gameplay and overall feel. Platformer Toolkit also contains Brown’s explanations of the various mechanics and settings, so the project not only serves as a fun mini-game, but also as a great interactive lecture on basic platform game design principles.

Mark Brown is a video game journalist, best known for his Game Maker’s Toolkit blog on YouTube. At the moment he is also working on his first game, a 2D platformer about a robot solving puzzles with a magnet.

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