1. A Crash Course In Game Design and Production - Week 2 Part 3

A Crash Course in Game Design and Production
             Week 2 -  From Vague Idea to General Description

Welcome back!  This is the second installment in "A Crash Course in Game
Design and Production.  The purpose of this lesson is to introduce you to
our course project, and to go through the process of "filling in the details"
between our initial GAME IDEA to our project blueprint, the GENERAL
DESCRIPTION.  We cover a lot of material this week, so I'm splitting this
lesson into 4 pieces.  This is part 3 of 4:
Part 3 - Our Course Project - General Description  B
Title screen, Demo, Game Selection Screen, Game Start, Game play
Title Screen and Attention Getter
When the player starts the program from Dos, the screen is cleared to BLACK.
Then the Game Title appears in color cycling 3D letters on a big sign with
"chaser lights" animating around it.  Under the sign the words "Presented
by:", "Lord Generic Productions","And","Euphoria Game Design Team"
"Starring:" "Inky", "Blinky", "Pinky", "Clyde" ,"and Packy" appear in
sequence.  While each character's name is presented, (s)he appears on
alternating sides of the screen and move toward the sign and stop.  Packy
appears under the sign, between it and his name.  All characters are
animating, and continue to animate throughout the entire sequence.

During this initial sequence, Program "About" information, including
Game Title, Designer, Artist,...,begin scrolling across the bottom of the
screen in a one-line high animated "strip sign" and continue scrolling until
Play Game is selected.

After all the characters are introduced, the Game Selection Box appears in
the lower 1/3 of the screen, and the player can select "New Game" "Options"
or "About this Game." Also if at anytime during the intro animation the
player presses a key, the screen is redrawn with all characters in their
final position, and the Game selection screen appears.
Self-Running Demo
If the player doesn't hit a key within 30 seconds after the Game Selection
Box appears, the game goes into demo mode.  The Game Screen draws and one of
three "pre-recorded" games is replayed until packy is killed by a ghost or
until the player hits a key.  If the player hit a key, the screen switches
back to the title page\game selection screen and he can continue.  Otherwise
the "About" screen animations play, then the "Attention Getter" Title
sequence starts over.
"About This Game" Screen
If this is called from the Title Screen, the screen is cleared to medium
blue and the sequence starts.  If this is called during a game or after the
Self-Running Demo, the "Game Window" is cleared to medium blue and this
sequence plays there.

The "About this game" credits split into three pages of text, the first
page has design, art, LGP, and EGDT credits on it.  The second page has
Contributing Authors and Course Information.  Page three has "For more
information" info on Euphoria, the Course, and LGP. At the bottom of each
page is a "Press a Key to Continue" message, and the player hits a key to
step through them.  If the player does nothing the screen advances after
thirty seconds or so. After the last screen, the program goes back to
wherever called it.

While the player is reading the text, Packy is chased around the screen VERY
fast by the four Ghosts.
Game Options screen
The Player can choose the following configuration options:
Number of players - This can be one or two.
Sound             - This can be ON or OFF.
Controls          - The can be Keyboard or Joystick  (maybe mouse)
Skill Level       - This can be Easy, Medium, Hard, or Nuts
Starting Maze #   - This can be 1-4
Exit              - Takes you back to where you came from
Beginning a new game
When New Game is Selected, the screen is cleared, the Game Screen is Drawn.
The Game Screen has 3 parts they are:
1) Pull-Down Menu Bar - It is invisible until the player hits the ALT key.
   It has options such as New Game, Resume Game, Quit, Options, and About
   which take the player to the appropriate screen.

2) Game Window - This is where the Game is played, and where the About This
   Game sequence plays.  At Game Start, it is cleared, and the Maze and dots
   are drawn.  Inky, Blinky, Pinky, and Clyde are placed in the penalty box,
   and Packy is placed in one of 4(?) starting positions in the Maze.  The
   Energizers are placed in the corners of the Maze, and begin animating.

3) Game Status Window - This is next to the Game window and is where the
   player's Score and Number of Lives left is displayed.  At Game Start,
   the appropriate player's score is set to 000000 and his lives is set to
   three.  Packy's "Sugar Rush" level is set to 100%

After the Game Screen in drawn, "Level 1" appears in a chaser-lighted sign
momentarily in the middle of the Game Window, then disappears.  The Level
Number is also drawn inside the Penalty Box, (behind the Ghosts) so the
player can always see what level he's on.  As the Level sign is onscreen,
the "get ready" music plays.  When the music is over, the Sign disappears
too.  And the game begins.
Game play
When the game begins, the Ghosts leave the Penalty Box one at a time,
Blinky first, followed by Pinky, Inky, and Clyde.  They wander the maze
in dogged persuit of Packy.  Player controls Packy with the Joystick,
Arrow keys, or "Snack Attack Keys",  AZ,. [SPACE] stops Packy wherever
he is.  He continues to "Chomp in place" until he is moved again. Pressing
[ENTER] Gives Packy a "Sugar Rush," which allows him to move at twice(?)
normal speed for a limited duration, up to 10 seconds per level, unless
recharged by a Candy Bar.  Pressing the [ENTER] key again returns Packy to
normal speed.  The Sugar Rush can be used again until Packy's Sugar Rush
Level is 0%

The Player's Primary Game Goal is to eat all the dots in the maze.  When he
has eaten all the dots, the level is over.

The Player's Secondary Game Goal is to eat as many Ghosts as he can by
strategic use of the Energizers.  When Packy eats an Energizer, the Ghosts
become "edible" for a short period of time and will give the player a bonus
that increases with the number of Ghosts eaten in rapid succession, as:

First Ghost  -  200 points
Second Ghost -  400 points
Third Ghost  -  800 points
Fourth Ghost - 1600 points

When a Ghost is eaten, he disappears, and his "eyes" appear.  They wander
back to the penalty box very fast and once inside, the Ghost "reincarnates"
inside the Penalty Box.  The Ghost stays inside, pacing back and forth until
his "Penalty Time" is completed, then he emerges from the box and continues
his persuit.  If there are Ghosts inside the Penalty Box when Packy eats an
Energizer, they also are affected, but no Ghosts reincarnated while that
Energizer is active is affected.  It is possible for the player to time his
moves so that Packy can eat an Energizer, eat one or more Ghosts, then eat
another Energizer and get to the Penalty Box in time to catch the newly
reincarnated Ghosts as they try to leave.

After a period of time, the effect of the energizer wears off and the Ghosts
become lethal again.  This change is evidenced by the Ghosts "Flashing"
five times between their normal and Energized images.  During this
transition period, the Ghosts are still edible, but chasing down a flashing
Ghost is a High Risk activity. If the player's timing is off, and he catches
up to the ghost too late, he's killed.  The duration of an Energizer's
effect decreases by the level the Player is on:

Level 1 -  10 seconds
Level 2 -   8 seconds
Level 3 -   6 seconds
Level 4 -   4 seconds
Level 5 -   2 seconds

The last two seconds of each duration are transition periods where the
Ghosts are "Flashing." From level 5 on the Ghosts begin flashing right away.

If Packy eats another Energizer while the last one is active, the Ghosts
that were affected by the first one will continue to be affected for the
entire duration of the second Energizer.

The Player's Tertiary Game Goal is to eat Bonus Objects which appear in the
Maze from time to time, giving the player bonus points.  Each Level has a
different Bonus Object associated with it, with the Bonus Point Value
increasing with each level.  The Bonus Objects are animated.

Level     Object    Point Value   Animation
Level 1   Pumpkin     50          Blinks its eyes
Level 2              100
 End of Lesson 2 - From Vague Idea to General Description - Part 3 of 4

If you have any questions for group discussion post them to the list server.
    E-mail any other questions, comments or suggestions to lgp at exo.com

                 Mail monetary donations large or small to
        Lord Generic Productions 1218 Karen Ave Santa Ana, Ca 92704

      A Crash Course in Game Design and Production - Euphoria Edition
     (C) Copyright 1996 Lord Generic Productions - All Rights Reserved

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