Week 6 Hippo time

It is hard to believe that it is already the end of week 6 and it is only 2 weeks from the Halves.

On Monday, we luckily booked a meeting with Chris Bell, the game designer of Way, Journey, and Sky. Because we were inspired by the puzzle design of Way, we would like to ask a few questions about how the Way was made, during his time at ETC. He mentioned that the goal of the game was to create an environment that you could build a relationship with a stranger. He pointed out that they were trying to make a game where you communicate, instead of making a game to communicate. He also mentioned that in Journey, they used animal AI in some supporting roles to enhance the player’s experience. They didn’t use human-AI because players usually have high expectations of how they perform in the game. He also gave us a lot of wonderful ideas about how a co-op puzzle game could be built with a simple interaction. His feedback is very valuable and we would love to use them in our furthur ideations.

Fans Meeting with Chris Bell

Because two of our teammates are gone for Grace Hopper Conference this week, we started to build our most promising idea first this week —the hippos with the frog.

Our wonderful programmer came up with some demo of different behaviors of the hippo.

Training phase – to train different hippos with their targeting rewards
The player uses fish to attract bad hippos to get through the river. There are two different kinds of hippos in our current stage. Good hippos are the peaceful ones that just stay stationary inside the scene; bad hippos are the panic ones that want to eat the fish.
Sometimes when the player uses fish to attract bad hippos, it could cause indirect control. For instance, in this video, the good hippos are moved by the bad hippos, and eventually, the player could jump onto the good hippo.

We also came up with a new idea that we could develop based on the previous penguin demo we followed online. Thie demo is about the parent penguin is trying to find the fish and to feed its baby. What if we are the mother nature and we are trying to stop the adult penguin from finding the fish and feeding the child, without killing them. This could be a good combination of the goose game we researched last week. It seems very promising because of the existing demo.

Our client, Erin, gave us some valuable advice that we should add complexity to the scene. This will help distinguish RL from the hard-coding NPC. She suggested that we should keep designing more elements into the current scene until it reaches its limit. when the environment is too chaotic for the player to control.

Thanks for everyone’s hard work this week! So far our approach seems bright! Let’s keep building more demos before the half!