Dragon Games Pt 3

So, finally finished the game (mostly)

Added proper sprites for the dragon, adjusted the physics so it’s more challenging, and less likely to just fly off the screen after one or two flaps, and fixed the clouds!

I ended up using a much simpler sprite than the piece I was working on last week due to time constraints.

With the clouds, I finally managed to make a system that doesn’t run out of clouds, and has a more random/even spread of clouds going across the screen, while still maintaining the speed differences. The coloured squares on the layout screen each spawn a different type of cloud, which moves at a different rate. The times are based on the speed of each cloud type – the faster types spawn more often, so that there is always a decent mixture onscreen.

In class, my game seemed to get a generally good response. The identified aesthetics were challenge which was my original aim, and competition in the sense of wanting to beat someone else’s score. It was also likened to Flappy Bird, due to this aesthetic and the simplicity of the game.

The second person to play my game intentionally spammed the keys as hard and fast as possible, which caused the sprite to shoot upwards off the screen, as it had been prone to do before I fixed the physics. When I got him to stop, the class accurately guessed the result, and waited in anticipation for the dragon to return, some people even adding sound effects. The mood of anticipation and humour was unexpected for me, but also gratifying (and hilarious).

EDIT: Finally did proper art for the clouds + added a restart button on score screen.

Full game can be played here.



Initial Pitch

Here is our slideshow for our first pitch.

While I think we could have prepared better for it, we seemed to get a good reaction about our game.

We got some really good feedback on things to change or improve, including:

  • Making the game less about ‘saving’ the friend character, and more about helping and supporting her
  • Not having a direct confrontation with the boyfriend, as it is not a good way to deal with the type of situation our game describes
  • Not making the boyfriend an outsider – we had him characterised as an older, non-student who wore clothing that was a bit more obviously dangerous than a uniform – since it makes it seem like only outsiders can be the abusers in these situations
  • Include more ‘safe people’ who the player and friend can talk to and ask for help with their problems

Dragon Games Pt 2

Since last week, I have begun adding more details to my dragon game.

My first update added clouds in the back- and foreground, plus a simple scoring system, based on how long you last before dropping off the screen. This version can be played here

My first idea for making the player sprite more visually interesting was to make a dragon whose body would follow its head as it moved, similar to this flash animated toy. However, due to the method I used – pinning each part of the body together – this cannot work without my dragon actually moving horizontally. Since it only moves vertically, with the illusion of horizontal motion via the clouds in the background, it doesn’t work. The failed game is playable here.

These are the body parts – the tail, body piece and head. I thought an eastern dragon would be more suited to the kind of motion I was envisioning than a western one.

I also had to reduce the force that each button press caused, possibly because the sprite was smaller? I have not yet figured out how to prevent the dragon from leaving the screen when it hits the top, nor do I know why the dragon head in the latest version spins when buttons are pressed.

I have decided to work on a simpler dragon – I’m just going to draw each frame of the movement cycle, instead of trying anything fancy. I will also experiment more with the background, and how it effects the apparent speed of the dragon.

Detailed dragon body.PNG
The body base for my dragon – I have decided to go blue this time.

Characters and Concept art

We have drawn some character designs and concept art for the world of the game.


Also, some of my workbook pages, with my ideas for parts of the game narrative and mechanics:

Dragon Games

After much consideration into the idea of a build-your-own-dragon game – similar to the character builder flash games all over the Internet – I have decided that it would be too complex for the period of time given to complete.
Instead, I have decided to make one of the group’s earliest ideas, a game which involves a dragon flying. The player mush rapidly and alternately press two keys to make the dragon flap it’s wings, in order to keep it in the air.

The first attempt at this – with only the dragon, and flapping mechanics included – can be played here

With this complete, I will begin focusing on the visual and possibly audible appeal of the game. This will include:

  • Adding more detail to the background – eg. clouds
  • Swapping the dragon sprite for a more detailed one
  • Possibly adding secondary action or other details to the dragon animation
  • Adding sound effects and/or music
Working on the game

Game Idea and Storyboard

For our game that promotes healthy relationships in young people, our group is going to work on a game that focuses on the idea of a person who is in a position to help someone else who is stuck in an unhealthy relationship.

Our initial idea for this game is one where the player acts a high school student whose friend is in an abusive relationship with her boyfriend. The player has to figure out what is going on by collecting evidence – such as the friend’s changing behaviours, slipping grades and bruises – in order to confront people and convince them that something needs to change. The game’s ending will depend on who is confronted and if the player has collected enough evidence. The people who can be confronted will include the boyfriend – the risky option, as it can easily lead to a worse situation; the teacher – the ‘good’ option that promotes going to a trusted adult; and the friend – the neutral option, which can go either way depending if you can give good advice and convince your friend.

The game will span over 3 days, in several locations such as the player’s classroom, outside in the school grounds and the player’s home.

Second assignment idea dump

Aesthetic game

Theme: Dragons!

Ideas: based on different aesthetics

  • Sensation – pretty dragons, visually stunning. Can’t really engage touch, taste or smell due to digital format. Sounds? Dragon roars? 
  • Fantasy – dragons. Dragon simulation – what do dragons do? 
  • Narrative – dragon story. Dragon vs hero, dragon raid, daily dragon life, dragon pleasure flight, dragon breeding, etc
  • Challenge – wing flapping (+heavy), combat, puzzle (limbs, size, other), vs
  • Fellowship – dragon pack, cooperative raiding, different dragons can do different things
  • Competitive – dragon vs dragon, hero vs dragon
  • Discovery – dragon world, dragon habbits, different dragons, dragon actions
  • Expression – custom dragons (types, appearances, strength/weakness), hoards, wearables
  • Submission – endless flying, dragon raid challenges, fight dragons, bejewelled dragon 

Mechanics Game

The game that the team I was put in made was a card game that was based around the mechanic of searching for something in order to start a more complicated process. I didn’t have as much input on this game as I would have liked, due to missing the second week’s class, and having my group swapped while I was away. Despite this, it managed to include the mechanic I had picked, ‘Negotiation’.

Players first had to search their decks by trading in cards, or by giving cards to other players, in order to find a card (either a king or 2 to start) to place on their ace. When offering a card to an adjacent player, they could refuse or accept, which was where the ‘negotiation’ came in. 

Our playthrough showed that it was a quiet game, as most people will be focusing on their own moves since everyone moves at once. It was also quite confusing – looking back on it, I believe that I was completely forgetting to pick up cards when I successfully placed them, resulting in my hand being depleted far quicker than anyone eles’s.

It may be fun to play with a better understanding/clearer rules.

Stop Motion

Today we worked on making a stop motion sequence with the rest of the class.

Our group’s model, made by Alex, is of a school girl, which is appropriate as our project is likely to be about a girl in that age group.


The video was uploaded to Facebook by Britta here.