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Journal for the game jam

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Journal 3. Post Development post

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Post mortem

Programs used.
-Unity3d 4.6
-Maya LT
-LMMS (Kinda, music broke)

things I coulda done better/took too long on

Spent a couple of hours on the broccoli when I spent about 10 - 15 minutes on every other model (my reasoning for why that was okay, since I gave myself 10hours for modeling). About an hour for the snake's head which was fine but I also spent 3 - 4hrs of time on a 3d rat that I didn't use since it just wasn't working out. Even though I didn't go over the time I gave myself I coulda skipped the rat and taken less time on the broccoli, and increased the programming/polish time.

-Rat drawings
Was going to do some original ones but I did spend a bit of time drawing them from pictures so I just scanned and cleaned those for use.

Wasted a whole day. I really don't know what happened but I gotta reinstall now. For some reason what I hear when I play a sound in lmms isn't what the sound will be when exported. It's not just the file I was working on as any other project I opened had the same problem. Something is effecting the pitch and speed of notes but just fixing the length in audacity doesn't do it fully, so something else is also the problem. Recording straight from the editor with a microphone also creates too much static. So I just used a song I had made for my first game.

I wish I had better clarity of what food type was what, as well a clarity for what tiles could be matched. I'll have to think of a way later. Maybe have the food take up more space on the square, so then I could leave the tile colors the same depending on food type. I originally had the tiles the same color but scanning the screen for matching tiles was too hard.
-I like what I did for the food with having a glow, but I dunno if I would use it in a phone since resources are important, although I need to learn how to profile and optimize to know what should be dropped first. I did that to differentiate the food from the tiles better since they were blending into the background.

known bugs
-when turning the snake sometimes eats food that isn't near it.

Future plans
I plan to make this game into a mobile game and maybe browser. I also want to turn this into a game about nutritional information and leave out the whole pharmaceutical thing or I might make two versions. Either way I want to show the effects of different nutritional imbalances. Some features I want to add is a way to combine two different tile types, but have the combine work only if there is the two types. Like combining Vitamin C with iron, but not have only Vit C or only Iron be combinable.
But before I do any of that I have to finish reworking the art assets (I could use ideas) in my first mobile game Vincible, then advertise.

wow, dunno how I missed it but another bug is that the ratios keep getting higher and eventually will max out. which is odd since when the food is eaten I have in my script if copper is eaten.
copperScrollbar.size += .05f;
zincScrollbar.size -= .05f;

and the opposite if zinc is eaten.

Also, I want to add in something to check to make sure matches are possible or rearrange the tiles if not.




Journal entry two.

Games going well, kept on track, finishing up the music now. It's a good thing I allowed myself a day for the music since this will be my first time creating a sound track, and I was having difficulty with the program (LMMS).

So my game is about the pharmaceutical industry and animal testing. I think it shows both how: "death is useful" and " death is 'useful' ". Although to short and too little time to cover a lot in this game (until future work and turning it mobile) The character has a nutrient (copper/zinc) imbalance that you can fix by either eating the right food to balance yourself or by taking medication to halt the immediate effects. So in playing the game you gotta get food and keep the ratio balanced while eating before you starve (also I kept the ratio 1:1 for the game even though it is something like 1:8 - 1:12 copper to zinc. and all foods have the same value). Got an imbalance? Take medication at the cost to lab animals, but don't let the supply run out. In a future version I plan to show how if one nutrient is off it will start effecting others and have cascading effects.

So far I've run into two minor issues (aside from music :/ ) one with code (fixed it but dunno why it was doing that) and one with a word choice in my UI.

-So for the code problem, I have a match - 3 component to my game. Works fine I followed a tutorial, I made it so when a match is made it creates the food. Now the problem is where I placed my createNewFood method (it recreates the food items to match (so 3 new ones per match of 3)). I accidentally placed it inside my if statement that makes it so only 1 food is created at a time, all I had to do was place it after (before would then create a random food instead of the matched one).

Now the problem is if I had left it inside that if statement, it would only create 1 new tile (instead of 3) but randomly (not every time) a bunch of other tiles would then change and also create food, these random tiles would be anywhere and either had or hadn't been matched before. Ontop of that they would all also create food instantly even though I have it so no food can be created within a .3 second time frame of one another. Anyway weird bug, wished I knew why it was doing that but it is fixed.

-as for the word choice problem, I have 3main counters in the game, one for hunger, medication (is the effects still up), and one that goes down (and once depleted you lose) if both the medication is down and ratios messed up. I was thinking of "wellness", "symptoms felt" but neither of those fit well. Anyway I think word choice is really important and gotta think of a good one.




Journal for Sunday, Monday, Tuesday

Alright, I actually just heard about this game jam 30minutes before the themes announcement and am very excited for it.

Sunday - stayed up thinking about the game I wanted for about an hour before going with my chosen idea (although I need to ask in the main thread if using a preconceived "type" is okay ( I read someone saying thats it's not ok, but I don't see that in the rules), I keep a lot of design ideas down. I guess an example would be if I had a company of heroes type of RTS idea (and lets pretend these games don't exist(no mining for resources but gained in map control)) and then realized I could do a dawn of war style RTS (pretty much same except with heroes). I dunno what do you guys think?)

Anyway, my criteria for the game would be,
-Unique gameplay, most likely from making a hybrid of two existing genres/games.

-Story can't be told in cut scenes or stop to read dialogue. I feel like most people just want to play the game (with the exception of RPGs) and telling a good story is too hard in a short game, as well as short time frame to make one.

-Should have social commentary, a good story without a message is just as good as idle chatter. This includes the no escape from reality type of games.

-With the theme and my own criteria I'm stuck with showing how death can be useful in the real world. So that's really hard without pissing people off, I only have two ideas of how death can be "useful". One would be how gangs/groups use death of a means of intimidation (useful to themselves) hurtful to others. The other idea is what I'm going with is less straight forward, although it still (hopefully) shows the negative side of using death.

Monday - spent a few hours looking for a job (so luckily I have a bit of time to work on this game) and then was able to program most of the day, doing a tutorial from and you (ya, I seperated you and tube to get rid of the video from showing in here).

Ps. I just started learning C# less than a year ago and am trained as an artist, although I like design best

Tuesday - Finished up initial programming, did research for my game (I like to make my games with social commentary and well that means I gotta get facts right and back them up), and am writing this blog post before I go start working on my art assets for an hour or two.

Wed - art/UI
Thur - polish of game elements, program in stuff like points, health, pickups.
Fri - sound/music
Sat/sun - polish and any problem/disliked areas.



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