Monday, March 13, 2017

ISMA 5006 - Start of a new project

After a long period of creating various prototypes, experimenting with Unreal Engine and working on my design skills the time has finally come to begin work on mine and Amber's new game. 


What that game is yet... we don't know, but we have some ideas floating about. Our time up until May serves as the pre-production period for this game, with production lasting through to September and beyond if the development required it. (Most likely will be longer going by our estimates.)

This new project we hope will be our first feature title that we can release commercially. In order to try and secure this plan we have applied our business to the Deutsche Bank Award for Creative Enterprises in a hope to gain £10000 to buy needed equipment and get marketing materials as well as receiving 12 months worth of business assistance and advice. If we are shortlisted we will have to pitch our project and indie studio business to a large group of people in a bid to win the final award. This will be extremely beneficial to us getting the kickstart we need as an Indie studio.




On the subject of kick-starts though me and Amber are currently looking into launching a Kickstarter campaign for our new project sometime into production around May-June time, hoping that we can gain the support we need to allow us to work full time as well having the possibility to bring additional talent on board. Currently we are still refining our overall business plans; when the game starts to take shape a bit more we will have a more concrete idea of the direction we will go in in regards to organising the campaign or perhaps taking an alternate route. 

The Game

After gaining a lot more experience with some of the more complicated parts of the engine I now feel like I am ready to continue and can begin applying some of the knowledge I have picked up in the last few months. Animation, AI and game feel are some of the areas I have been looking into and in the last project (The Third Person Shooter) I felt I was able to marry the three of those subjects together. I have been refining the third person character blueprint a little more since, making it potentially usable for this project.

This has lead to a natural progression of ideas somehow, wanting to go back and revisit some of the non-violent confrontation but this time using some mechanics I have developed like aiming and camera switching more effectively and in a different context. An idea that Amber suggested was having the camera aiming and rotating to face interesting things could be interesting, this has also been done in some Zelda games where the player can signal to faraway characters however more work would be done to make it even more interesting. Continuing this concept I have been developing an idea that involves a character piloting a hot air balloon and interacting with various characters and landmarks that the player will come across in the sky, but a lot of work would need to be done to get this feeling right and perfect as a majority of the work would be on making the balloon itself feel as good as possible and feel quite floaty.

The next stage involves exhausting this idea among others in order to come up with a large mind map of potential ideas that me and Amber can cut away at gradually until we have a concept we like, this would allow us to get a stronger game concept on the whole.

Next week I will cover our brainstorming and some of our pre-production process.

-James

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