What Went Well:

Throughout the process of creating the game, there were some things that we were successful in. One of the things that went well was the sound design. We were able to successfully convey the atmosphere of the game and give personality to the characters through the use of sound. This was supported by the positive comments from playtesters. In addition, we were able to create a stylistically cohesive and interesting environment through substance shaders such as the unlit shader. With the minimal color choice, being able to have a working shader material to work with early into the process made the designing process for other additional assets easier to visualize. Furthermore, we were able to successfully create a camera distortion effect which helped enhance the gameplay experience along with the physical environment. Since looping and adding changes were some of our main mechanics, having the camera distortion working early on helped plan the duration of the gameplay as we were able to find how many loops were needed before the distortion blocked the view completely. Lastly, we were able to tutorialize an introduction to falling without dumping players with written information. Although this part was added into the later iterations of the game, the playtests proved this addition of the tutorial to be successful.

What Didn’t Go Well:

In contrast to the successes that we’ve had, there were also some elements that didn’t go as well as planned to be, or could’ve been worked on more. First, if we were to make another, improved version of this game, we would definitely add more interaction in the environment. The amount of exploration and interaction was balanced at the beginning and middle portion of the game, but afterwards it decreased and there were less new areas to explore. We could certainly add more to the environment, or space out the intervals in which more elements are being added. In addition, we could embed more interaction within the environment so that there are more layers of complexity to what the players could do within the experience. Another thing that could use improvement was the player’s movement. It still has some friction and collider issues that could be tweaked since playtesters found themselves stuck on some part of the environment in the game. Moreover to keep players interested in the game, we could add more visuals and audios to the game in order to add juiciness and excitement to the experience. Finally, although we were able to fix this issue by the end, working with the Cinemachine camera gave us trouble because it was difficult to implement what we wanted to do. It was fairly tricky to modify and customize the Cinemachine to our liking, as it was something we have not worked in-depth before. 

What We Learned:

We learned a lot about working remotely through this project. It was important to stay connected and communicate our ideas since we weren’t able to meet up in person. To solve this issue, we grouped up often and co-worked remotely. We had our discussions and meetings on Zoom, Discord, and also Google Hangouts. To keep our tasks and goals organized, we used Notion and kept our group members updated on what we were working on through Discord. To avoid merge conflicts on SourceTree, we also changed our workflow. Each person worked on their own scene and only when they finished their task, could they put it in the main scene, making sure beforehand that nobody else was working in that scene. With our game, we also learned how to pace the amount of exploration. We did this by making the environment change only when the player loops, giving players the time to explore along with giving them time to take in the world.

Next Iteration:

For the next iteration, we would fix the player movement to create a smooth motion on the stairs, since there is a slight persistence.  Considering the feedback we received, the game is slightly redundant because the players know every loop, there are some environmental changes but similar overall.  If our team had more time on the project, we planned to have a different map of the world instead of a looping world. For example, we wanted to implement a dark forest for the next scene after a few loops. We thought this would expand the exploration and captivate players by providing new things to interact with. Besides adding more environments, Having more interactable will present some sort of accomplishment.  Other than the mechanics of the game, we would like to try organic shapes for the player character since we worked on the soft body on the player.

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