Meeting 3

Burnaby GDC Meeting # 3

Summary:

  • Design session
  • Themes, story, mechanics
  • Ramin's Pong game written in c++
  • C libraries
  • Framerate independent motion

Last week, Ramin led us through a design session where we discussed potential themes, storylines and game mechanics for a hypothetical game. We started out listing themes we would like to base our game off of. The themes/mechanics we settled on were parkour styled gameplay, size manipulation, the inclusion of portals, gravity manipulation, time travel and a cyberpunk atmosphere. From there, we concocted a crazy story to weave all these ideas together.

The story is set in a near future, cyberpunk themed region overrun by large corporations. The protagonist of the story (the player) is a patient at a therapeutic clinic. Unfortunately, the doctor is a fraud looking to use his patients for his own benefit by trapping them in a virtual world and selling it as therapeutic technology. It is the player’s job to escape the virtual world and expose the doctor for the fraud he is. The story is dependent on the actions the player takes. For example, at the end of the game, the player may choose to side with the doctor and join him in his evil reign of terror or overthrow him and trap him in an infinite loop in his own virtual worlds. The name we decided on for this crazy, hypothetical creation was “Doctor Kerfuffle.”
Next, we refined the gameplay mechanics. There would be a “wanted level” where the player had to avoid gaining the doctor’s attention. There would be “group therapy sessions” which would essentially be a coop mode. The world would change depending on what you told the therapist (doctor) in therapy sessions. As you progress, the fidelity of the world would become higher. The gravity, time and lighting would all change and the player could break out of the virtual simulations by detecting glitches (Hacking?).

After our design session, Ramin gave us a rundown of a pong game he wrote in c++. He used irrlicht.h and irrklang.h libraries for the graphics and sound engines and explained how he used them to do animations, collision detection and game sounds. In addition, Ramin gave us a brief rundown of framerate independent motion. This is used to ensure that the framerate of a game is independent of the speed at which the game runs at. Essentially, regardless of how many frames per second your computer can render, the game will run at the same speed. We ended the meeting with a brief pong tournament.

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