A spooky Kickoff
Once again, we have started a new project and this time it will be the final one. I have to admit that I am a bit nervous because many of our group members will be looking for an internship during this time and might not always be available. But from my impression, people are really motivated and that fills me with confidence.
The game concept itself was thought out by me and is a 2 player coop just like my first project. This time, it will have some slight puzzle elements but still include compat in a way. Both players will toss a flame in between them and use that flame to fight enemies and light torches (which are the main puzzle part of the game).
Our main challenge as designers was the question how we are planning to weigh the puzzles and the combat since the relatively short time frame of nine weeks will not allow us to flesh out both in the same intensity. In the end, we have decided to focus more on the combat since an established enemy is more reusable. We will try to give the enemy a bit of a puzzle feel though, meaning that they will require a specific tactic from the players.
On top of that, we are mostly documenting the design choices, writing the GDD, developing lists for the VFX, sounds and animations etc.
Since the artists have told us that they would prefer doing something darke with a more monochrome color-palette I decided to have the setting in a Victorian manor that is infested by ghosts and has to be cleansed by the players.
We had a lot of designer-artist meetings since we have to set down specifics in our first work week. For now, we have decided on three different types of enemies and their visual design (their shapes have to be quite distinct because the camera will show a zoomed out top-down perspective). We also had some talks about possible room-to-player ratios but that has not been finalized yet.
When it comes to coding, our programmers have already started with a game prototype before the project even began and are quietly working to establish all of the mechanics. Their long-term plan is to establish a modular approach for puzzle and enemy behavior that can freely be attached to any in-game object. This will give us designers the freedom to have some sort of toolkit for creating and populating the levels. Right now this sounds like a lot of work to me but their pace is quite fast so I hope we will actually manage to have something in this vein.