Global Game Jam 2015

Dementia Adventure

In the lead up to my beginning the "advanced diploma in game development" course at the AIE, I decided to try and get a bit of a head start by participating in the GGJ again this year.

The game we made this year, is titled "Dementia Adventure" (A title it received, only as the page for the game was being created).  Even though our game isn't actually working at the time of writing (I'm wrestling with unity in wine as I type this, so that I may swiftly correct this small detail), it's still fun to fling things around, and I'm quite pleased with overall result.  One play-tester at the end of jam described our game -- while laughing uncontrollably -- as "The best game ever", which really touch me.  Especially considering I could, at the time, only see the bugs which I did not have time to fix.

The game

The goal of the game is simply to make a sandwich by picking up the ingredients from around your kitchen, and placing them on a plate, or cutting board. This is challenging enough with our special the-controls-are-awkward-by-design-so-as-to-simulate-an-elderly-persons-mobility-impediment-and-totally-not-because-we-didnt-implement-the-mechanic-well interface, but this is just the premise.  The theme for this year was "What do we do now?".  This is also where the name of the game comes in.  Both TeJay and I have had grandparents who have had dementia at some stage of their lives, and we recounted to each other about how they would move things around, or put them in strange places, and then forget.  Our game simulates this disorientating feeling during your sandwich making mission, by moving things around (actually you did this yourself, but you just don't remember) when your not looking, and putting them where they obviously do not belong.

The Team

We had fewer members in our team this year, as there were fewer people participating without a prearranged team.  I attempted to improve our position by appropriating people from other teams.  The other teams did not appreciate this.

TeJay, with whom I worked last year,  was our artist, and once again forewent sleep in order to fill our game with more "stuff" than any 48 hour game has a right to have.  Together with myself, we were the only 2 contributors to commit to the whole 48 hours in our team.

Samuel Moloney, an AIE graduate, and associate of TeeJay's worked through Friday night to get the basic "grabbing" mechanic of our game programmed, and the level blocked in, before bidding us a farewell early Saturday morning.  His help was greatly appreciated, and was a huge help to someone who hasn't really done any significant work with unity (I mostly just wrote narrative last year), and didn't really know where to start.

Finally, Cody Little helped us by composing some rather appropriate music for the game, as well as some music for other teams.

Going Forward

Both TeJay and myself have expressed interest in polishing up the prototype, and implementing some of the mechanics that we had to leave out.  I plan to get what we have actually working first, and then see what other people think of it, before, perhaps, taking things a step further.