Sunday we finished our third game jam and won! As always going trough this post we will walk you trough our experience doing the Game jam.
The theme was Fast food and had to be either a platformer or multiplayer game.
As last time the time frame was only 26 hours, which always tends to be a couple of hours to short.
Winners would be chosen by vote after everybody had played each others games, and bit surprised we ended out on top.
- Unity3D as our go to game engine.
- Photoshop and Pyxel edit for creating pixel art.
- Visual Studio C# – for coding the game.
- SourceTree (also known as git) for sharing files between team members.
Looking back at our two other game jams we decided that 2D was our best bet at making it trough the GameJam. Before even getting the theme we sat down and started brainstorming ideas, we knew that the game had to be either multiplayer or a platformer, which is both very broad categories. Multiplayer instantly got us thinking of games like Smash Bros and SpeedRunners, so we hopped we could somehow mix those two games into the theme.
The final idea
The game is essential a mash up of SpeedRunners and Smash Bro, with some original features of our own, and fast food characters. The game allows up to 4 players, using controllers or 2 keyboards, in a SpeedRunners like world. Instead of the camera following the player in front, it just animates trough the map, given the players the challenge of staying inside of the camera’s view. If a player end up outside of the camera’s view he will start to loose health and eventually die. Players are able to throw other players, making it hard to stay alive.
Being our whole team this time, we knew that we had the man power to turn the graphical part of the game up a bit. On both our first Game Jam, and our second graphics wasn’t our highest priority. Fortunately we have both a great pixel art designer and a animator, allowing us to focus a lot more on the final look of the game. All graphical elements in the game is hand drawn and animated in either Photoshop or pyxel editor. In total we had over 60 sprites drawn just for the game.
If you played our last Game Jam game “DrugRun” you will realize that all the music and sounds are “lent” directly from youtube. Having to use pre-made content is a big let down for us, as our goal is to make everything from scratch. All the sound in GottaGo Fast Food was made during the game jam (which explains why the game only has background music and nothing else).
Doing the first stages we agreed that if we were going to make a multiplayer game, it would have to support at least 4 players. Having four players on one keyboard is close to impossible. Not only because the size of a single keyboard is way to small, but because there is a sent amount of keys a keyboard can have pressed down at a given time, giving the spamming players an advantage.
Our first though was to use multiple keyboards, but having players remember that they are not supposed to touch each others keys was definitely game breaking. We finally settled on using game controllers, but where does one get hold of 4 Xbox controllers. Simply said we didn’t get a hold of any Xbox controllers. Fortunately we are all PlayStation gamers, so we all had ps3 controllers laying around. Only one problem PS3 controllers does not support windows.
Our solution was to download 3rd party drivers trough some software called Motion-Joy and emulating the PS3 controllers to work as an Xbox controllers. The biggest downside with this solution was that every time we accidentally disconnected one of the controllers we had to manually reactive the drivers and restart Unity for it to recognize it again.
Of course the game also supports the use of a single or multiple keyboards.
What went well:
- Getting an idea as quick as we did. Having everybody agree on a single concept only 10 minutes after the theme is released is a big relief as that was our biggest problem last time
- Going full 2D and using pixel instead of high resolution sprites. Doing everything in 2D space removes a whole dimension of work(pun intended :D) and really allowed us to spend much more time to add extra features and add additional graphical elements.
What went bad:
- Getting controllers to work. Having to work with PS3 controllers instead of Xbox controllers, meant that we had to use 3rd party drivers causing a lot of trouble.
- We had a lot of features that we simply didn’t have time to implement, because we spend way to much time on not important mechanics.
- Finding the sweet spot, where we have to realize that something isn’t going to work. Spending up to 2 hours on a feature that never made it to the final game.